About Larry

Larry Bach is a lyrics-driven folk/Americana artist, living and writing in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. His current release, Rounding the Bend, was recorded at The Rubber Room and is part of the Robust Records catalog. Its songs explore the intersection of regret and redemption. He's written another album's worth of material during the 2020 COVID pandemic, and looks forward to playing it in person someday very soon (along with material from Rounding the Bend and his first two records, Kivvunim (2008) and Openings (2013) and his favorite cover tunes).

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" I Am Not a Cat"

#catlawyer made me laugh harder than I'd laughed in a long time, and it bears up to repeated watching. But it's not just a funny meme. It's an allegory for our disconnected lives, the alienation inherent in growing out of childhood, the strangeness of life during COVID, and the importance of finding the humanity in the other.

Or maybe I just have a bit too much time on my hands...

Rounding the Bend

Rounding the Bend

Larry Bach

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Larry's 10/02/2020 release, Rounding the Bend.

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Liner notes...

A community of listeners and fellow songwriters heard these songs take shape. I am grateful to Steven, Larry, Andy, Liz, Michele, and the Monday night Carrboro Songwriters’ Circle. Their feedback sharpened some lines and softened others, always for the better. 

I’ve been blessed by a great team of musicians on this album: Jack Frost and Isaac Derr play guitar and bass, Robbie Link plays bass and cello, Jerry Brown plays mandolin (and pant-leg), and Allyn Love plays pedal steel and lap steel guitars. My Slow Down for Poetry bandmates Keirsten Hill-Douglas and Ondrea Austin sing on several tracks, and Rachael Hurwitz of Honey Magpie joins them on one. 

Jerry (ably assisted by Isaac) also produced these songs at his studio, The Rubber Room. As great producers will do, Jerry sometimes made the record sound exactly as I heard it in my head, while other times he showed me something even better than I ever would have imagined. He also graciously allowed me use of his 1935 Martin D-28. If we hadn’t recorded a note, the hours with that guitar in my arms would have been worth the price of admission. 

Mitch Collman of Robust Records believed in this project even before I did, and I’m so grateful for his guidance and support. Mitch’s keen ear and big heart have made Robust an ideal launching pad for emerging artists, and I can’t imagine a better home for “Rounding the Bend.” 

These songs emerged quickly, out of  painful circumstances: the suspension of my career, the end of my marriage, and a publicized airing of my personal and professional failings--real and perceived. Music has been a vehicle for grieving, apologizing, healing, and remembering that even amidst great pain, there is capacity for joy and love. Singing and playing with friends has been redemptive. 

This project has been a way to reconcile my past and turn toward the future. I dedicate it with much love to the next generation: Helaine, Shir, and Esther.

Forthcoming

Rounding the Bend is the current release, but Larry's been writing a ton during 2020, and playing around in GarageBand. Here are unreleased songs in raw form, perhaps bound for the studio at a future date.

Original Sin

Larry Bach

Larry's award-winning song exploring the relationship between overt white supremacy and the more common but no less insidious systemic racism that is America's original sin.

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The Ballad of Phoebe Snow

Larry Bach

Larry first conceived this song years ago, when Phoebe died. The idea came to fruition in March 2020, as the national conversation turned to the monetary value of a human life.

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I enjoy a good sermon in the Church of Bruce as much as the next middle-aged white guy, but Springsteen's Super Bowl LV Jeep ad left me cold. If that short film is to be believed, America’s "center" is a cross superimposed on a flag in the reddest of red states, and if we all just work at it, we can come together there, right? It's a far cry from the very best of Bruce: nuanced works like "Nebraska" and "The Ghost of Tom Joad" that avoid gauzy sentimentality, or serious songs about America's wounds such as "41 Shots." Of course, those songs weren't trying to sell anyone a Jeep. 

Here’s my bit of Monday Morning Quarterbacking, in the form of an answer song. Working title, "Two Minute Warning (How Not to Sell a Car)."