Bob Schneider’s Just Making It Up

Pre-eminent Austin Music Awards winner teases new LP

Ready for a sneak peek at the album of the year? Whenever local cottage industry Bob Schneider drops a new full-length, he dominates the ensuing Austin Music Poll. “Making It Up,” debut single from the singer’s sixth solo album Blood & Bones, boasts all the hallmarks of prime Schneider: an easygoing lope, a serene vocal, and an effortless choral hook.

Photo by Charles Reagan

That chill leanness, an elastic rhythm thump cutting the path through plucked guitars both acoustic and electric and warm organ, sets the scene for Schneider’s vocal moving from humbly existential to a chorus paradoxically more grand, broader, but also doubly intimate. The tranquil musical gate neutralizes any anxiety in the lyric itself, which is the song’s hat trick.

I will go
Through this life
And never know
Who I am
Or why I’m here
Or what I’m doing
Or why I’m doing it

But that’s okay
It’s what we do
Every day
All around the world

The video mirrors the surface simplicity of the composition with an everyday Austin spot check – Congress Avenue, Lady Bird Lake – that builds momentum into the clip’s subtle narrative conflict and resolution. Credit homegrown filmmaker Zachary Parks Grigg, who worked previously with Schneider on “Lake Michigan” and also made videos with the Moving Panoramas. The singer shared no input with Grigg, but offered insight to the song and upcoming album earlier this week.

“All of the songs on the album are from the last couple of years, since right before my daughter was born up to about a year ago when we started making the record,” writes Schneider. “‘Making It Up’ is about something I’ve always thought about, which is, ‘What is the truth? Can the truth be known? Can anything be known? Does it matter?’ The big philosophical questions. I like the way it came together on this song.”

Blood & Bones releases in conjunction with Schneider’s appearance at KGSR’s Blues on the Green in Zilker Park on June 13. Until then, his 17-year Saxon Pub residency on Monday nights with Lonelyland continues, although his upcoming tour will impact that. Here’s the video:

Bob Schneider tour dates

April 28: Granada Theater (Dallas)
May 3: Motorco Music Hall (Durham, N.C.)
May 4: City Winery (Washington, D.C.)
May 5: Bowery Ballroom (New York, N.Y.)
May 6: The Ardmore Music Hall (Ardmore, Pa.)
May 8: Brighton Music Hall (Boston, Mass.)
May 10: Blind Pig (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
May 11: Shank Hall (Milwaukee, Wis.)
May 12: Fine Line Music Cafe (Minneapolis, Minn.)
May 24: McGonigel’s Mucky Duck (Houston)
May 26: Nutty Brown Amphitheater (Austin)
June 1: One World Theatre (Austin)
June 2: Gruene Hall (New Braunfels)
July 11: Belly Up Tavern (Solana Beach, Calif.)
July 12: Troubadour (West Hollywood, Calif.)
July 14: The Independent (San Francisco, Calif.)
July 15: Hopmonk Tavern (Novato, Calif.)

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Bob Schneider, Zachary Parks Grigg, Lonelyland, Moving Panoramas, Saxon Pub, Blood & Bones, Making It Up, KGSR, Blues on the Green

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