A mostly a cappella group, that does amazing things with their own stuff, as well as pieces popularized by others. Find out more at http://www.bobs.com

The four bobs that make up The Bobs are Joe Bob Finetti, Matthew Bob Stull, Amy Bob Engelhardt, and Richard Bob Greene. Previous Bobs include Janie Bob Scott, Lori Bob Rivera and Gunnar Bob Madsen

A complete discography as of mid-2001 is (with the appropriate Lady Bob):

  1. The Bobs (1983, Rhino Records)
    by Gunnar Bob Madsen, Janie Bob Scott, Richard Bob Greene and Matthew Bob Stull
  2. My, I'm Large (1987, Rhino Records)
  3. Songs for Tomorrow Morning (1988, Kaleidoscope Records)
  4. Best of the Bobs (1990, Tradition & Moderne, Germany)
    enter Joe Bob Finetti
  5. Sing the Songs of... (1991, Rhino Records)
  6. Shut Up and Sing! (1993, Rounder Records)
    exit Gunnar Bob Madsen
  7. Cover the Songs of... (1994, Rounder Records)
  8. Plugged (1995, Rounder Records)
  9. Too Many Santas (1996, Rounder Records)
    exit Janie Bob Scott; enter Lori Bob Rivera
  10. I Brow Club (1997, Rounder Records)
    exit Lori Bob Rivera; enter Amy Bob Engelhardt
  11. Coaster (2000, Primarily A Cappella Records)
  12. The Best of the Bobs: 20 Songs, 20 Years (2003, Primarily A Cappella Records)

The Bobs standard bio :

Western Onion went broke. Say what? Yep, they went broke, leaving all the singing telegram deliverers broke and unemployed. That was the Great San Francisco Singing Telegram Depression of 1981. Two of the unemployed were Gunnar Madsen and Matthew Bob Stull. They placed a twenty five words or less ad in the free classifieds, looking for a bass singer. They got one call, from Richard Greene who was not only a bass but a songwriter and recording engineer. They rehearsed for six months. Gunnar remembers that their first gig was at an open mike in a Cuban restaurant where they were shuffled ahead of the line of waiting flamenco guitarists by a manager aware of the patrons' acute flamenco ennui. They sang Psycho Killer, A White Sportcoat and a few others that night. The audience loved them.

At first all the arranging that Gunnar and Richard did was cover tunes. As they began writing their own songs, the need for another voice became an imperative. Auditions found Janie Scott. Lots of local appearances caused the stage show to gel. A record contract with a local record company, Kaleidoscope Records, produced the first album, The Bobs. A Grammy nomination for their arrangement of Helter Skelter, a nation wide tour, and soon they were on radio, then TV, eventually traveling to Europe doing huge festivals and concerts. When the first CARA Awards were released in 1992, The Bobs won Best Arrangement for "Helter Skelter." (they also won the category - Signed Professional Best Album, 1992, and ever since, they've won CARA Awards too numerous to mention) The description of the song which accompanying the award was the following. "Rather than translating instrumental parts to voices or relying on cliched syllables and voicings, Gunnar and Richard created a new vocabulary of sounds and textures. The arrangement deconstructs the song line by line, transforming the Beatles classic into an a cappella, post-modern performance art piece." That's a definitive description, accurate too!

Another notable avenue of expression for the Bobs have been in collaboration with dance companies. Their first was the commissioning of a series of songs, The Laundry Cycle for the Oberlin Dance Collective. Later that year (1987) after returning from their first European tour they met the dance troupe named Momix, who later changed their name to ISO. Improvising with them was the source of creation for a show. Their continued work with ISO for a number of years was noticed sufficiently that they received a commission from Lincoln Center, a one-hour presentation on PBS and a spot in the Smithsonian Institute's Museum of American History! That's quite an honor for the only New Wave a cappella group in history. It's also a testimonial to just how important the Bobs have been to the flourishing world of contemporary a cappella music. They are among the elite handful of totally original creators who blaze the path which so many others follow it becomes a freeway.

After ten years of bob bob bobbing along, it began to feel flat to Gunnar who decided to retire (to the shock and dismay of his legion of fans). Could the group continue? The answer was an emphatic yes. Joe Finetti has been an amazing addition to the group. He added vocal percussion, sound effects and pyrotechnics never before heard, in addition to a finely trained voice and writing abilities. And so the Bobs have continued to add to their musical palette of possibilities as no other group. Another apparent disaster was the departure of Janie Scott whose shoes were briefly filled by Lori Rivera. Now those seemingly impossible to fill shoes belong to Amy Engelhardt whose personality has such a sparkle to be blinding (well, at least put on shades) and singing to match. After ten recordings released by the Bobs whose exclusive club now numbers six and some cameos, we eagerly await their next departure from the norm.

If you like The Bobs, you'll also like Da Vinci's Notebook.

 

  1. The Bobs (1983, Rhino Records) by Gunnar Bob Madsen, Janie Bob Scott, Richard Bob Greene and Matthew Bob Stull
    1. Art for Art's Sake
    2. Prisoner of Funk
    3. I Hate the Beach Boys
    4. Bus Plunge
    5. Cowboy Lips
    6. Helter Skelter
    7. Through the Wall
    8. Be My Yoko
    9. Lazy Susan
    10. Nose to Nose
    11. Trash
    12. The Deprogrammer
    13. Eddie the Jinx
    14. Democratic Process
    15. Psycho Killer
  2. My, I'm Large (1987, Rhino Records)
  3. Songs for Tomorrow Morning (1988, Kaleidoscope Records)
  4. Best of the Bobs (1990, Tradition & Moderne, Germany) enter Joe Bob Finetti
  5. Sing the Songs of... (1991, Rhino Records)
  6. Shut Up and Sing! (1993, Rounder Records) exit Gunnar Bob Madsen
  7. Cover the Songs of... (1994, Rounder Records)
  8. Plugged (1995, Rounder Records)
  9. Too Many Santas (1996, Rounder Records) exit Janie Bob Scott; enter Lori Bob Rivera
  10. I Brow Club (1997, Rounder Records) exit Lori Bob Rivera; enter Amy Bob Engelhardt
  11. Coaster (2000, Primarily A Cappella Records)
  12. The Best of the Bobs: 20 Songs, 20 Years (2003, Primarily A Cappella Records)

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