Bob Carlisle grew up around music all his life, even as a child he would perform in talent shows. He was a natural.
During the eighties, he worked as a studio background singer and made the first call list. Which basically means, his voice is on the majority of records ever recorded during that time. If you listen to Motley Crew's Girls, Girls Girls, that's Bob. He sang with Sting, Barry Manilow, REO Speedwagon, Dolly Parton, and the list goes on and on, and on.
Bob was in many bands growing up and was ultimately signed by one of the biggest labels in the word, Jive Records. It was around that time he realized there was more to life than touring and being a star. He asked to be released from his record deal and went back to making the music he loved. Soon after, his song Butterfly Kisses became one of the most popular songs of the decade. He won a Grammy and multiple Dove awards. He was asked to perform on the Oprah Winfrey Show, Regis & Kathy Lee and the song stayed high in the charts for weeks and went on to sell over three million copies.
Bob's story wasn't all pie in the sky. In this episode, Bob shares a rare story about being rescued as a small child from an abusive home and adopted by a loving couple who raised him and encouraged his musical abilities. It's out of these types of tragedies, love arises and replaces hate and pain so that millions of people's lives could be touched and set on a better course.
Bob Carlisle YouTube VEVO Channel
You're listening to the groove with Devin Pence and Reggie ham.
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Welcome to the group podcast. This is Devin Pence
and this is Reggie ham. Here on the groove. We know that every life has a purpose, but sometimes it takes a while to figure out what it is. And very often what it is is nothing like you planned it.
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Do today is just a a labor of love for me. This is going to be amazing. This is going to be fun. This has got, this isn't work at all. This is one of my favorite people, one of my favorite singers. Uh, if you ever listen to Christian music and said, man, why can't it be as good as like regular music, secular music, whatever. You never said that about this guy. Okay. This guy is as good as it's ever been. He's as good as it gets. He's top of the food chain in every, in every aspect, uh, of, of music. Bob Carlyle is with us today. You've heard him, you've heard him sing background on, on rock records through the 80s, everything from Motley crew to Barry Manilow. I mean he's sung with everybody. And then you've heard him as a solo artist. You probably know him best. His song butterfly kisses, that was a multi-week number one smash hit in 1996 but Bob's career is storied and varied and it is multi textural and multilayered and you are in for a treat. That is so true man.
Um, I'm a huge fan as well. And um, I know you guys, I the, I'll never forget the first time and you know, we talk about this the first time I heard his voice, um, you know, actually the truth of the matter is the first time I heard his voice, I had no idea it was his voice, you know, right on Motley cruise over and so on. But um, this is, this is going to be a great episode and I'm just going to just turn it over to you guys. And just kinda, you know, chime in every now and then. One thing that I thought was so funny that I had to say before we get into the show is you're at guys, when we were recording the show, I thought someone was in the background. Some guy was in the background whistling, calling, you know people. But turns out Bob has this big giant light bird. So when you hear somebody whistling, it's not any of us, it's Bob's bird and the things that, that's hilarious, right?
When you put Bob in the room, you just see how far you can like just see how far, how long you can last. Let's just, let's just get him cranked up and see how far he bounces off the walls.
All right, let's just, let's just get into it.
Today's guest is one of my favorite singers, one of my favorite songwriters, one of my favorite artists, one of my favorite people, Bob Carlyle.
[inaudible] how are you baby
man? I'm excellent, Bob. It's, uh, it's good to hear your voice.
It's nice. It's always nice to hear your voice, Reggie. I'm glad you're busy and doing stuff. And having fun.
Well, I don't know if I'm doing all those things, but I'm definitely busy. So, and keep you from thinking about it. That's it. That's exactly right. Oh man. Uh, well listen, I'll just jump right in. I met you on a very interesting day in your life. I remember somehow we got put together to write a song and I don't even think you knew who I was coming out. I didn't know. You know, I was like, okay, well I'm going to go, I somehow got a session with Bob Carlisle. I'm going to it. I don't know how it's going to go, but I'm at least going to meet the guy cause I was such a fan and I get out there and you had just lost your big, big record contract and uh, you, you said, Reggie, I just lost my big record deal. I'm gonna sign this little record deal. I'm going to go sell this thing on the weekends. I'm going to have fun. I'm going to be a soccer dad. I'm not done. I'm not doing this song and dance anymore. I'm just, I'm just going to make the record I want to make and, and uh, you know, and it turned out to be the biggest record of your life. And you, but you said that the thing you said to me that made me love you from the beginning. He said, if you're here to make money, you're in the wrong place, man.
Now you got to go to George King's house for that. I, you know, Reggie, I don't remember that. Uh, I remember when I was at Rick Delilah's, his house, he said, I know a guy you got to meet, you said Reggie,
that must, that must have been, yeah, that been how we got together. Were you guys in Nashville at the time? Yeah, we were all in.
Yeah. Uh, yeah, I was, um, that, that about summed it up. I was signed to a big label and, and they unceremoniously, uh, let me go with no, no reasons. No, not even any conversation. It was unique. And so I, uh, I signed with a little label and, and sold a bunch of records, so it worked out good. But yeah, I've never been, I've just never had, I've never been one with that. I guess I just don't have the self loving kindness enough to go and just create myself as empire around me. I know that, that, uh, that has a lot to do with what an artist needs to be, is confident in himself and selling themselves. But I've never been one of those, I've never been one of the little skinny pretty guys who wants to get out there and just make the world a Dorham. I just w I just loved, I loved my family, man. And I, and I, and I, of course, I love making music. It's all I do. But, but, um, I, it was, it was amazing when I just started singing stuff in kind of my own range and, and things of that, about things that were important to me is when is when it really happened.
Well, man, that's, I think that attitude is, that's one of the things I loved about you. I think that's what people will respond to about you is it's, it's, it's such a no BS. No, no, no nonsense. No, I'm not putting on any airs, man. I'm just gonna like grab a slice of pizza, do a shot of whiskey and I'm getting ready to sing. Sing your face.
Well it's always been, it's always been like that for me because I've never, like I said, I've never been a star attraction in my mind. I've always been at guys, when I get out on the stage, the first thing I feel like I have to do is disarm my audience, is to let them know that we're all, we're all just in a booth at Denny's here guys. And, and if I could do that, then I could do anything and they don't care. Cause I, I can, I screw up. I can laugh at jokes and they just love it. But when you get up from the get go and try to convince people of what an anomaly you are, it doesn't, it doesn't work for me. I've never been good at that. I just, you know,
yeah, there's a, there's a certain, uh, you have to have a certain people who can kind of buy into their own myth. I've always been fascinated with the princes of the world, the Elton John's or the, you know, where they, it's like they walk out on stage and you're like, Oh they,
they actually believe that that's because they're told there that a lot. I can understand why the suicide rate is what it is in pop music with artists. You know, the Kurt Cobain's of the world, because man, when you're, when you're on the top of the billboard charts, they're licking your nostrils brother. They, they, you were King your God, small G you can do anything. You, anything you want, anything you want to buy, anything you want to do and, and they just love you. And you realize after a short number of time that what goes up comes down. And eventually they're down the hall licking the nostrils of the next flavor of the month. And if you're not grounded somehow, you know, I was in my forties when all this happened to me, but if you're not grounded somewhere with a family or relationships, it just, it can screw your head up real best, especially the interject drugs and been in a real wild lifestyle that suddenly has to end. You don't like it. And it, and it, these, these, it's, I could see why these kids believe that they are what they say they are. But man, these are companies about making a dollar $2 for every dollar put back in at least. And when you're not bringing those dollars anymore, they, they got one in, in the stable, you know, so,
yeah, that's right. Yeah. And they don't even know what to do with you because the, I, I'm not speaking from an artist standpoint, but just from artists I've worked with once they're done with you, because once you've hit that level, not only like you're, you've got all the yes men around you, but everybody knows you. They know who your grandma is, they know what you can for lunch. So everybody you walked down the street or anywhere you go and you're just kind of left with these, this giant world of everyone that knows every and everything about you. And a lot of times when a fan walks up to you, they kind of expect in a weird way like, well I know everything about you. Like do you not know anything about me? And it's kind of like a really weird exchange. But if we could read, just, let's go back a little bit and let everybody know kind of what point we're talking about and what record we're talking about and what exactly blew up here.
Yeah. So when I met you, Bob, you know, you were, you had just come off your, your Sparrow I guess records run and that was a huge Christian music label. Uh, but you were, you were about to make the butterfly kisses record, which originally was called shades of grace. I remember, you know, the whole, the whole making of it was there for the most of the process. And you had cut this little song that you wrote for your daughter called butterfly kisses and that's
it's sold. It's got to if sold well in excess of 2 million records now. And it just, it was um, it was, God, you know, I didn't, I needed to do with it. He's somebody pulling the strings up there, but I'm very grateful, very, very grateful. I think one of the happiest days of my life, and this is going to be contrary to any everything anybody in the music business believes, but it's just the way I'm wired. I went to the label that I was signed to, which was a big, big, big label and with Clive Calder and all that jive records in it, and I just, I told them I want out, I want out, I don't, I don't want to make any more records. And as just surprised him, everything was doing so well and, and they, they did, they cut me loose and it was just the happiest day of my life. Isn't that strange? Because everybody wants a record deal. Everybody wants to tour, everybody wants to be popular. I just wanted out and uh, it was after the record that you and I made and, um, and I was never happier,
man. I just like to, I just like to take this opportunity, Bob, to thank you for getting out after the [inaudible]
I just just made a record with a Reggie ham.
I'm not going to tour it. I don't care if you sell it. It wasn't like that. I love that record and I still toured that record with touring it.
I will tell you this. So when you called me to, to, to help you make that record, uh, I remember the conversation, I was like, Bob, man, I'll only do this if we do the record. You actually should do that. That we all we all want to hear you do. And man, I'm telling you, there's some moments on that record. I want to talk, I want to talk about your process a little bit. And I know the quote unquote process is like real, like it's a real like a, you know, pretentious word to use. But uh, you, you there, there's a, there's a cut on that record that's it's a cover of Amy Grant's baby baby. You, you told me from the day I met you that you'd always wanted to cover that song and do it in a kind of a soul kind of way. And so we did it, and I don't know if you remember this, but I remember it because my jaw was on the floor, but that, that vocal track, that lead vocal is a, is a one take vocal. It's the first
I was ready. I would want to do that solve for a long time. I was ready
man. I'm telling you, I, me and the engineer said in there, and I'm, and I'm sitting there, you know, in the quote unquote producer chair and you finish it and he looks at me. I look at him and I'm like, dude, I don't know what to do here. I, there's nothing to produce.
Let me tell you something. It ain't like that no more. It's a struggle these days. But yeah, that was, that was cool. We were in Las Vegas where we want me to cut the vocal. Yeah.
You had this kind of process that I've really kind of taken to heart and you said something I'll never forget. I know, I know you're probably nervous now because you think, man, man, this kid listens to everything I say, but you, we were talking about like hitting the high point of your day and you know how you work in the studio and how you kind of plan for working live and all this and, and you said, you know what, I'll be at 100% for about two and a half hours. And he said, and you said, and then you'll get Bob at 90% or 80% but I don't think that's what people want to buy on a record. And I was like, you know what that, that's right, man. It's like you can beat your head against the wall with any endeavor for 12 hours, 15 hours, and you get diminishing.
And it's like, man, while you're at 100% do it at 100% and then be done, you know, then then kind of rest. And I kind of watched you do that. And I was like, and man, that 100% is gold, so what do we need to mess with? You know? And I w is that, is that, so is that something you developed when you were, cause a lot of people don't, may not know this, but you were a, like a world-class background singer for all the big eighties records. Did you kind of learn that, doing, doing that?
Okay. From that, I, I kind of had that discipline, um, before, but yeah, during the 80s I was a first call, uh, vocal guy. There were three guys, well, actually in LA, there were three guys who were doing all the vocal sessions back in the day. It was Tommy Funderburk Richard Page and Tom Kelly, Richard Page was the singer of a band called Mister Mister at the time. And that's, that band exploded. So he took off on the road and they needed a to pull another singer. And I've been working with both the Tom Kelly and Tom Thunderbird. They pulled me in and for the 80s I did, I sang on, eh, if you look on the back of your records from the 80s, any record, I'm on it. It was, it was just everything from Motley Crue to Barry Manilow and everything in between. It was so fun. But, um, but yeah, there's a real discipline. I had it anyway, but that really drilled it home, working with those guys as far as knowing where your notes are, knowing where your cutoffs are, where are you, where are you, where do you breathe, where do you, where does your tea go? And some things start to get second nature as far as those kinds of things. So the easy to double, easy to edit. Ah, I dunno. It's just, it's just a lifetime of doing it, you know?
Yeah. It's, well, and you're the, like, you're the only voice on girls, girls, girls in that, right?
That's not true. No, that's that. My voice seems to be the predominant one, but no, that's me and Tommy Funderburk. And so sadly, I forgotten the young lady's name that saying to black girls, she's phenomenal. And, and, and it was the three of us actually in there doing it.
But to me, I mean the, you know, the list, it would take us an hour to list it off seriously. And I didn't know that till, you know, years later until, um, reg was telling me about it. But I go down that list and one name in particular jumps out at me. Uh, Carmen,
just, just above Sandy. Patty. It's baffling man. Just it, just to know, like, you know, when I first started hearing you, cause you know, I, I picked you up like in the 80s. I grew up in a church in church. My dad was a pastor and I was the good Christian boy who wasn't allowed to, you know, listen to rock and roll, but I was still a musician and all this kind of stuff. And I'll never forget when the allies record came out, you know, now we're going back, you know, 1985 and man, it was just the sound. I mean, I think it's the same thing Reggie was talking about, you know, this, it's just like, it's just, it was so unique and, Oh, I didn't even know. I just found it and played it and it was like, it changed my world. Now.
I really never went to the soaring top of the Christian rock scene, which is fine with me. But you know, like there were other bands like Petra and white cross something. I dunno, but, but that was all kind of like Disney rock, you know? And I just, it didn't appeal to me musically. It was just so formulaic and on the one and just everything is just so predictable and we didn't want to do that. So we all came from a real kind of a sleazy, oily RNB background and we wanted to, we wanted to get some, uh, get some stank up on this thing. And, and uh, we did. And the public we had, we had one record that sold reasonably well, but we never really sold enormous amounts of records. We toured a lot. That band was much, much more popular in Europe than we ever were here. They went nuts for some of their, I think they, I think they actually listened to the music.
I'll tell you man, this, for the first time I came out of my dorm, one of my college buddies was picking me up. We were going somewhere. He had, he goes, dude, I want you to sit down and I want you to say anything for three minutes. And he played me surrender and every time you would go higher, he goes, he's not done. He's not done. Hang on a second. And by the, by the end of it, we were just, my mouth is a Gabe and I'm like, who is this? And uh, he's like, this guy's name is Bob Carlisle. He sings with a screw called allies. And for the next year and a half we would have these, these extensive, I mean extensive like popping popcorn parties. We would sit around and decide, okay, if you had Neil, Sean and Jeff Porcaro, who's your lead singer, and it would always be Bob Carlisle would always win in the, in the rock super group lead singer. Uh, and that leads me, that leads me to ask you this. This is like a urban myth or maybe it's not. I never asked you this. I've known you for 20 plus years. Did you get the call to go sing for REO? Speedwagon
no, I didn't get the call to go sing with them. I sang on the records I got, I got, I knew him real well. We had a lot of fun. No, I sang on a couple of their records, background vocals on it. I think pretty much every song and uh, and Kevin Cronin and all those guys, they were, they were really, really nice people. But no, they didn't. They didn't. Three dog night did. Wow. That's a, that might be a bad cause I said no, thank you. I'm mowing my yard. Do you think,
Bob, do you think that some, I don't like to call it Christian music, but faith-based music, music that we're where in the world we were. Do you think some of it got too hip for the audience? I mean that, that sounds like what you were talking about with allies.
No, I don't think it ever got too hip for anybody. I think it Christian music in general from its very beginnings and believe me, I was there. That's how old I am. But it um, it started off and always been seen as a, as a, an outreach and an in an alternative. So that's what's why, you know, when the police were huge on the radio, everybody sounded like the police with their little tight snares in their little Telecasters with delays. And then we, we did that too. Everybody did it, you know, but it was never like, there was never a mandate from a record company to go out there and say, man, bring me something new. Bring me something exciting. We mean something that we can just lay on everything now. It's always been more of the same and try as much as you can to sound like secular radio without be, without stealing the song kind of thing.
Now as obviously that's not a hard fast rule. There've been many, many artists who have done wonderful work in Christian music, but by and large, that's how it's perceived as an outreach and an a and a, uh, a second choice. And so you don't get a lot of cutting edge stuff from it, from a subculture like that. You just, it just doesn't breed it. It doesn't, you know, you like when you're a kid man and your first bands that all you wanted to do is play that riff one more time. Cause it can't believe how good we sound doing it. Let's record it. That doesn't really, it isn't a forte in that salamis, it wasn't for me now, now I'm not knocking in a Christian. Music has been so terribly good to me. And, and I, and I love it. And I love the music. And, and uh, being a Christian, I love the music, but, but no, I don't think there's anything too confusing coming. Of course. And of course I, I don't listen to Christian radio anymore, so I couldn't tell you why I never have, but I couldn't tell you what's on the radio right now.
It's, uh, well, I, I will, I will tell you this, I don't think you're, you're not really getting into AR until you got some controversy, you know, until, until somebody is like talking about how much of an atrocity this is. Uh, you know, that's not Bob. Did you, did you ever deal with any of that? Did you, did, you know, cause you came up in the Jesus movement, you, uh, and I remember my, you're not the age of my father. You're kind of between my age and my father's days, but I remember my father having sideburns, you know, and, and playing, you know, and having a drummer in the band and all this, and it was like kind of a deal. Did you, did you ever deal with any of that? You know, Hey, you're not bringing him in.
Oh sure. Back
in the early days. Yeah. I remember bandsaw. Someone 50 was a great band, went on later to be Andre crouch has bad, great soul bands. Kind of a silly name for such a crazy band, but Oh yeah. They went in the original Calvary chapel where it all began. They started playing red bone tunes with Christian lyrics. Will you come in when the roll hall goes? Chuck Smith came up and unplugged them. Wow. Yeah. I've never been unplugged since that time, but, but sometimes I'll get challenged by people who really have been working on their spiritual gifts or, and honing them and practicing in the mirror with the brush, with the hairbrush. Right. And they like to come up to me and lay stuff on me. Like you didn't use of scripture or you didn't, you didn't. And I, I tell them guys, I'm not a pastor. I'm a singer and a songwriter.
I love the Lord, but I'm not gonna. I don't feel comfortable with a lot of that stuff. I just up here to sing you songs about my life and my shortcomings in my and all that stuff. And you know, and, and take it as you will. I'm sorry you're disappointed that we didn't have the miracle healing service. But I don't do those. I don't do them. You know, and I always, when I'm playing in a church, I'll always tell the pastor, I said, if you'd like an altar call after the concert, please come up and do it. Cause I don't, I, when these people come forward to give their lives to God, I don't want them to stare at me. I'll be gum blown out of town the next morning. I want them to see somebody who will be there the next day. And I think it works well that way. And I've been criticized for not being this and that'd be in that, but that's just life I've, I've learned now as I'm older that just, just brush it off. Well, let me, let's talk a little bit about the beginning, the big inning, little Bobby C and the shiny shoes. You, um, first two years of your life, man were, were Epic. I mean, uh, not a lot of people know. Are you comfortable talking to
Oh sure. Yeah. Yeah, that's fine.
Yeah. Cause I remember when, when, uh, Yolanda, now we're adopting and you kind of pulled me aside and you said, Reggie, you may not know this. And you told me the whole story and you, you, you talked about adoption and it was like, I don't know, we were already friends, but that, that kind of solidified the bond.
Well, I, I didn't tell the story much, uh, in the past just because my folks were alive and I, and I didn't know how it would make them feel. And I love them. They're my parents and I, I didn't want to do anything that would make them feel uncomfortable. And so I never really addressed it, which is fine with me too. But they're gone now. I'm an orphan and they, uh, they, uh, I just been sharing it from time to time. I shared it with you at the time I told you it was, nobody knew I was adopted. Uh, I was, um, toddler, slightly younger than a toddler and that was, it's a very long story. I won't go into it, but my parents knew these people and they had left me abandoned in a trailer, uh, with a big old hand prints on my backside and they'd been beaten on me and they, they was, nobody would know where to be fast. So my dad came back, got a gun, got in and took me, brought me home. Wow. That was the end. I've been his ever since. But man, that's just like old school stuff. We had to sign the adoption papers and when I was still real little, but I remember having to drive up with my folks up to, uh, Solidad penitentiary to get the signature of my birth father. He and, uh, I was, uh, I was very, I've always been a very, very fortunate young man.
Adoption is something that all a lot of people, you see them all the time on talk shows and stuff, wanting to find their birth parents a year, where's my mommy? And that's cool if you want to do that to me, I didn't grow up with secrets. Nobody told me, you know, any deviation for what was true, you're adopted. I can remember being five, six years old and everybody coming in a room and, and I had memorized a phrase, a word they'd given me and said, Bob, tell them what we got. And I would say didn't know what it meant, but I would say it phonetically adoption papers. Everybody would hug and cry. And I hadn't, I went back to my room, that was my job and I just remembered. But, but you know, it, I've never had a desire. My father had always, always told me growing up, he said, man, if you ever want to go meet them, her, whoever, don't go on your own, tell him I'll take you. You know, that's kinda guy. He was, he was, that's pretty cool. I always knew I was adopted. It was just a part of my life. And as long as I got older, I understood more and more about what adoption was. And I had terrific parents. I had, I just really didn't have a desire to, uh, to do a lot of searching.
Do you think being an only child being adopted, do you think any of that, uh, steered you into the arts, you know, into music? Did you, I mean, was it, did it affect it in any way?
Did I got really good guitars because nobody had to share? I'll tell you a little story. I was, I can remember even when I was five, six years old, I have faint moment memories of, of my sitting down at a piano and, and I wasn't like other kids. They told me, he say, you didn't just get on it and try to bang on it. You know, you, you would select notes that would harmonize with each other. It was different. And, and, uh, let me go back to a dental thing that I always draw and that it was a scripture where it says raise a child up in the way he should go. And when he's older he won't depart from it. Something like that. And I, everybody always assumes that's just beat the scriptures into your kid so that when he eventually, obviously we'll blow it, he'll come run it home and I don't think that's what it means.
I think what it means is free when it says raise a child up in the way he should go, well how do you know a way a child should go you? So you look at a child and you start seeing things, you start seeing gifts, you start seeing Tennessee's trends. And I was just real musical and my dad, he was an old country guitar player and he, I started taking guitar lessons when I was seven years old and I was just passionate about it and never wanted to quit, always practiced. It was nuts. It just, I just took to it like it was fresh water and I was thirsty. And so that had a lot to do with just, just the attention that I got music. My dad would practice with me, he would help me. It was a kind of a family thing. But, uh, I just, I just loved when other kids were out playing football. Man, I was in the band baby. It was, it was great. I remember the first time you, uh, performed live in front of anybody. Yeah. Well first official time. Yeah, I did elementary school talent shows and stuff, but I mean first official time was a talent show and play keys, pizza parlor. And I'm in Anaheim, California. Yeah. I went in there with my little tiny study model Rickenbacker and my suit and tie and my little buddy loves suit and I got up there for the mic and I sang for sailor it. I did the whole thing, man. And I got second place lost to grow with. I think she was faking it
just like American idol. Right. And she made, spends a balloon animals or something. I don't always, he did. Everybody's got to have a bigger story. It's not another, yeah, it's not enough man.
The guy with the uh, you know, with the Chinese orphan story. So, uh, I use whatever you got folks. That's what I always say.
Yeah. Well I just, you, you've, you and Yolanda, I think about you from time to time. Just just your day to day as, as I'm out in my day to day life. I'll think of you guys sometime and just wondering what's your day to day life is. And I know you've got it down to a science, but you are just to be commended, my boy for just what, what you have, what you have put your mind to in a family setting and, and decided to do it. And it's just, it's just terrific. But I know you guys have been B.
Well I appreciate you saying that. I will talk, we'll talk one day. It's, it's, it's, you know what, it's, it's a, anything you're doing for your kids is always a labor of love, I find. You know, it's interesting we're talking about adoption because I can tell you, I both my kids are adopted. I don't think I could love them any more or feel more connected to them. Or you know, my daughter's Asian, nobody in my family's age, but I don't even see that. And I mean, you know, I just see her and, and, and, and I see my son and my son. It's weird. I don't know if this happened to UBA, but my son's starting to kind of look like my wife and me in a weird sort of way.
Oh yeah. Oh yeah. People used to say that about my father and I all the time. He looks just like you, Matt. Man, Parenthood is not about donating sperm man. It's about, it's about getting in and out and up and down inside someone's life and loving every cell of them. The change you become them. I truly believe that. Truly.
Well that's, that's absolutely right. And, and I love, I love what you just said about the train up a child thing. I think that really is pertinent to what we're kind of talking about on this show. Because I really feel like, I mean this is, again, this is going to sound like a Ridge is off on his little rabbit trail, but I really believe you and you've been a big part of this Bob. I, I look at people, you know, we are in this business where people have to achieve. Like you can't, you can, you can work at a tire store and you can be a weak link and you can still collect a check. You cannot do that in the arts where you, where you have to perform every night. You gotta be, you know, you only got about five shows where you can be the weak link and then you're gone.
You know? So, so I see people like that. I see people like UFC, these, these really high achievers, these genius level talent. And I think, man, everybody, I believe everybody's got that somewhere. But they, if you haven't been affecting people around you in your life, if you haven't been flying in the groove, I mean for lack of a better term, I think it's because maybe you had been trying to force yourself into something that's not what you're born to do. I look at Bob, I see you on a microphone and I go, that dude was born to do that. And it's, and it's, and it's evident the fact that you're, you know, you knew from a young age and you're in, your parents cultivated it. I know some kids [inaudible] their family like makes them, you know, you're okay, you need to go to karate because you need to learn this discipline. You need to get a baseball cause you need to learn this when maybe what they are is the kid who needs to be staying in home drawing.
What's the difference? It is the difference between telling a kid what they should be and observing in them what they want to be. That's, that's it right there. That's the raising a child up in the way he should go. We'll study him. Where's he going?
And if you see a trait of a gift or an attribute, nourish it. You know, that's what that scripture means, including all things about God too. But, but I think it means that more than more than just, you know, he's going to blow it. So Graham and full of scripture chew gum, run at home. I don't think so.
No, I I totally agree with that. Um, that's, and that is, that's having respect for that, for that kid as a person going, you know what you're, you're made in the image of God. There's something special about you and you're gonna if I look at you and observe you and hang out with you long enough, I'm going to figure out what that is. And it doesn't have to be what I want it to be.
Well, I've often wondered that, that perspective of what it would be like, what society in general could it be like if kids didn't have to go through the filters of their parents, you know what I mean? Do you know what I mean? You don't have to give me a minute on that one. Same can be said with the school system. It's like, you know it conveyor belt, run them all through, do this [inaudible] go do that. If you're not good at basketball, you're kind of a weirdo. And I'm afraid that's kind of what's happening
now. Yeah, you have an awful lot of parents out there who are pretty non non-involved in their children's lives. That's unfortunate because the kids are going to get there. They're going to, they're going to develop their personality from their surroundings, whatever they are, you know, and, and I that, that, that's scary to me. I, I'm, I'm, that makes me very sad.
Let's go, let's go back for one second cause I missed something. And you said something early, early on about when you're, you know, the butterfly kisses record, you know, blew up. You weren't, you're in your forties I think you said, right. How do you think it would have affected you had that record blown up when you were 25 or 30
well, that's kinda was my point. I don't know if my head would have been screwed on quite as securely as it was in my forties, although I was married then too. But, but, uh, I think I'd had enough years of, um, of understanding an unconditional home love relationship with my own family that, that this kind of stuff, albeit exciting and, and, uh, and fun and, and profitable. I mean, I, I don't have a passion for chasing money. I like money. It wants its skin and clean and put on my plate. I like it just fine, but I don't, but I don't have a passion for going out and just trying to make, turn a dollar into two. I just never had that passion. My passion has always had been about the music. And so, um, if, if you could keep your priorities straight as hard though, music business is hard. I don't think there's any, you talk about any two walks of life that would be different in this world. I think any two musicians walks a license be crazy different because there's so many angles to it. You know, and I, I've just been very [inaudible]
very fortunate. You, um, you called me from England. Um, did you meet the queen? Does that happen?
No, I did not, but I, I stayed at a hotel next to her house.
That's the same thing. That's pretty much the same thing.
You were a, the thing I always loved about you about, but I want to say this publicly. We've got a forum, I've told people, I've told friends privately, but I'd love to you, you want, when I met you, you'd lost your record deal. You weren't sure what the future held, you know, and so you were kind of at the bottom of, you know, in a low point I would say of your life. And then, and then I watched you hit the pinnacle of your success and you, I've, you know, we've both been around people who went from rags to riches and they changed. You didn't change one bit. You were you, well yeah, you had a nicer car, but I just always admired that about you were still the same dude and you know, you still understood the absurdity of it. I think that's, that's what I always look for is if you can still see the absurdity and what's happening to you, then, uh, then you know we're going to be friends.
Well that's very nice for you to say that Reggie. It's not a conscious effort on my part to be the guy who's not concerned with and all. I really, maybe it is not as well as Jackie about that. She probably give you a different rendition cause she sees me when nobody else does. But I, yeah, it's just never been the end all be all for me. It, you know, I, I obviously need to make a living and that was a nice part of it that I was able to do that. And uh, but yeah, it's just, I've never been, I've never had a big enough ego of, to always too afraid, too afraid to jump out there and tell them this is what I am. Look at me. I'm riding it all the way to the top. I've never had that then. So it's, I love, uh, audiences. I'm not scared of them. I love singing and talking to people. And Sam, I, this is what we have an awful lot of fun, but, but it's, it's never been the end all be all for me. I don't know. Maybe it should have been, I don't know.
Let's, let's talk a little bit about what you're doing now. You have got a new record out called Bobby or is it, is it out yet? [inaudible]
nah. Yeah. Yeah. We're still working on it, but it's going to get out this year is a, is my band called little Bobby C and big motor. Yeah. I love it man. Yeah, it's not a Christian record. It's a soul record and it's good. It's good. We're, we haven't missed it yet, but we're getting close. Got about, I've got about five vocals now. The vocals, the can, all the tracking's done and horns and is recorded with absolute purest stuff is just guitar, bass, drums, Hammond B three home D six Claven net, um, uh, stereo, uh, the old deal roads, you know, and uh, it's just a hoot words. It's funky. Is
it? Is it, is it all original tunes?
Yes. Yeah, every, every one of them. And so it's, it's, uh, we're just having a big time. We're taking our time recording it because I got to the place where I had been out of the music for so long, just being dead and grandpa around here and I, and I, uh, I needed to do something. I just, I needed to, I needed to push those buttons again. I need to feel that again. So, but what I always had wanted do is put a band together of my old buddies from the neighborhood and do it. I mean, these guys are good. And, and um, I'm from Santa Ana, California. I was born and raised here and it's just amazing that I'm back here now. Cause of my parents passed away. Then we got there, their house. And so we remodeled that house and we moved into it and it's lovely. But
so you're living in the house you were raised?
No, I'm not. Not the house I was raised in. No, but, but it's, it's their, their home. I, uh, I wrote a song called, there's a song on the record called, um, long, long road. And the course is like, there's a long, long road to get back to where I started and it's, I missed the feeling and all the record companies and all the rehearsals and all the records and all the TV and all the radio and all the trying to be something. I am, what I miss most about music was just playing with my boys, playing with my guys back like in the old days in Santa Ana. And I mean I need these guys. I got some players out here that just will just tear you up. And uh, we've been working on this record actually, it's been a year now cause we're just doing it. Everybody's real busy. You know, some of the guys were touring with other guy, other artists and another who doing this and that. So we, we get together when we can and work on it and it's getting close to be done. It's about a year now. It's going into, so this is, this is the world's greatest GarageBand, but yeah. Yeah. But it's his real good GarageBand brother. Oh, I wish I could play you some right now.
That's all. That was good too. Well maybe, maybe when, uh, when it's mixed in, in your, you're ready to show it to the world. Come back and let's play some cuts.
Yeah. I love that. [inaudible] were really fun record. I, you'll, you'll, uh, you can't a musician who knows what he's talking about. Can't listen to this record without cracking up. That's awesome. That's awesome how foggy it is. You gotta laugh because you just can't believe what just whiz by you.
Uh, that can't wait for that. If you're saying that
it's awesome. I'm having so much fun. That's what it is for me these days. Uh, have, uh, enjoying my life. You know, I'm, I'm, I'm not taking anything too awfully. Seriously. I'm retired pretty much, you know, I'm doing a tour here. Oh, in a couple of weeks. Leaving on a short tour, but, but should be out probably by the middle of the year, I think, you know, realistically, cause we're all hitting it when we can. Are you guys gonna tour it at all? Oh yeah. No, we want to do a, you know, blues, jazz festivals, kind of a kind of a tradition trucks kind of vibe as kind of that market we're going for it there. It's just, just a red, it sounds like we're, Bob's at right now is where we're trying to get to, but we just can't get there. It took me a long time. I haven't felt, I haven't had this much fun with music since I was 17.
This is, you know, there's something, there's something about the, the way that, I dunno if maybe it's technology or the fact that everything just spins so fast on Facebook and Twitter and, and the, the, the, it's almost like the, the, the Gates have come down and everybody's a little bit more free to kind of roam around the yard too. I really do think, and just musically speaking, there's just a great tapestry of different styles out there right now. I couldn't tell you what's on pop radio. I couldn't just a bunch of pops and clicks, but, but uh, but yeah, pops and clicks baby. But I'll tell you this, there's a lot of good music out there and they're, they're touring and doing it, you know, and they're selling records. You're probably not selling billions of billions, but that doesn't matter to me. It's a, is it an interesting Bob that you, I find that when you get back to that center of having fun and that you feel like that's kind of where you, when you got, when you made the butterfly kisses record, you just, man, you were to letting it fly.
You're just like, ah, I want to say it this and I want to say it this way and I don't care. There's not really anybody standing over our shoulder to tell us. I was told that I could make that record it, produce it myself, and write it myself and with whoever I want and, and, uh, and it became your biggest record. It did. You know, and I enjoyed that record, but not like I'm enjoying this one. This one's back to the beginning. So that, that, that means this might do some things you, you don't expect. You might not. I, the, the real point is I don't care. Yeah, that's it. Uh, I hope, I hope people love it. I don't, I can't see how on earth they won't, but I don't care. I, I was very, very, very fortunate to, to not have to be daily grind and adult living now.
You know, so I have the time to really just have fun with this. If we've, we get it done, we'll get it done. But it's a good record, man. It's, it's, it's just killing me. You think? I mean, do you think fear, I mean, this is a leading question cause I believe this, but all of the, all of my favorite stuff happened once I stopped being scared of whether or not everybody was gonna care. Yeah. Do you think fear is kind of a killer when it comes to making music? Absolutely. You know, it's, it says you know, the world the way it is. Well, if you want to do what you want to do, you're not gonna make any money. You've got to do what everybody wants you to do, then you'll make some money, but you'll be unhappy. And it's just that constant tug of war, you know? But fear, fear for an artist who knows what he's doing to get out and really say whatever it is, doesn't have to be political or it D for godly, just anything you want to just get out. And I've been in the Christian music for 35 years, but I'm looking for the opportunity to sing about girls in cars.
Well it's come true and I'm just as new.
Yeah. Have you guys seen this? I'm digressing a little bit, but, so my wife loves old eighties movies and I don't like them. I hate them for a various, I don't just, I don't know everything about it, but that's true man. [inaudible] mama gone and the end, the montage is, are so long, you know, with this funky, but one of her favorite movies is this movie called Joe versus the volcano. It's got Tom Hanks in it. It's old movie. And she would always try to get me to sit down and watch it and I just just never would. And finally, you know, not too long ago I actually had, you know, sat down and like, okay, I'm going to watch this with you. And the whole movie is about what you guys were just talking about, just living life in fear and the script, I don't know who wrote the script, but it was brilliant, but it's basically Tom Hanks works at this lube factory and they make lube. I mean that's just kind of this greasy, grimy, kind of honorable, you know, he's in the marketing department and it's just like, you know, bad lighting and all this kind of stuff. But there was a line in there that just flew out at me and it, it talks, it relates to what you guys were talking about. He's going in and he's quitting. It's this big scene. He's quitting his job and he looks at us boss and he's like, I've been afraid to live my life. So I sold it to you for $300
wow. That's it.
You know? And that's, that's, that's really, it just like hit me right across the face. I'm like, man, I've just, how much of my life have I done that, you know?
Well, I'm, I tell you what Bob, um, that's, that's absolute truth. And that's, that's kind of what we're talking about. That's, that's the whole kind of point of this, of this podcast is to help people basically find the groove that they've been looking for. You're, you're that person who I look at it and go, that's, that's the kind of talent that you, that's unstoppable. I mean, I, I assumed, I watched these singing shows and I think, and I often play this game in my head where, okay, if I, I would love to sit Bob down right there on that stage and then let him do his thing and then let everybody sit down or always wanted to take you to a karaoke bar and just like pull everybody's,
we lived in Las Vegas for 10 years and my wife and I went out with some friends to this, what wound up being a karaoke experience. And I ate it.
And they're all just, I'm just getting elbows in the ribs. Come on, Bob's gone. You know, they got the song, come on, sing it, sing it.
Yeah. Shofar song. Oh,
you know, I'm in a pair of cargo shorts in a, in a tee shirt, you know, going [inaudible], Hey puts it on his real crappy, the Muzak version of it. And it started playing and I sang, it got done man. I was finished up and everybody loved it and I got second place again, had to got up and stay my own sticking hit personally. And you got second place in the Las Vegas talent show.
Awesome. And there were probably people in the audience going, he doesn't sound funny.
Yeah, yeah. I just don't do well at talent shows. I can remember back when we were, kids were little and we were raising our family and everything and money was tight. Man. We had a bill come due. I don't know how to do it. I just find some nightclubs somewhere who's having a singing contest. I'd go in and win a couple of hundred bucks, come on and pay the bills. It's out there is fine it. Oh my goodness. That's the group. That's the group. Yeah. You just, you absolutely just coined our phrase. It's out there. Just find it. Find it. Yeah. Well, my phrase, my girl, I phrases, I don't want to find it. I spent long enough trying to get rid of it. Yeah.
Oh, Bobby Carlisle. Man, this has been awesome. I can't thank you enough for being with us today and I love the fact that you're still following the voice and doing the thing and Nope, it's no BS and it's never has never has been with you. I love that Bob, and so I can't wait to hear a little Bobby seeing big motor and is a man. Is there any place I can point people to is you still got a website up or you got to kind of a Facebook page, take a look. Yeah, we'll put it in the show notes, but I want people to, if people are hearing this who have never heard your music or never check you out, I definitely want them to so go check out Bob Carlisle. He's all over the internet. I remember I used to be somebody and I'll always have that. All right, man. Thanks for joining us today on the groove. Thanks Bob. All right, Devin. Thank you, Richie. I love you guys, man. Thanks.
Be sure to head over to the groove, podcast.com to learn more about Bob. You'll also find the show notes from this episode and a link to our Patrion page if you'd like to help support the show. We would also love to hear from you guys as well. Let us know what you think about the show and stay tuned for more episodes of the group.
You've been listening to the groove with Devin Pence and Reggie ham.
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