Mama Bare And Baby Bare
:: Bobby Bare Jr. & His Mommy – Where'd I Come From?::
Bobby Bare is an important figure in country music, though his classic
'60s recordings were a bit too Nashville-smooth to really hold my
attention. His recordings from the late '70s/early '80s were the
exception to that rule. Look no further than the album "Drunk & Crazy"
from 1980 to see what I mean. But the transformation from able
Nashville country/folk crooner of the '60s, to "don't give a fuck"
honky tonk man of the '80s, was by way of "I'm a good old boy family
man" of the '70s.
The fact is, Bobby Bare has been married to his former background
singer Jeannie, for like 40 years, so the family man tag sticks for
good reason. In 1973 Bare recorded a duet with the youngest of his 3
children, Bobby Jr. "Daddy What If" would become a huge hit, and the
pair were even nominated for a Grammy the following year. Being a good
business man, Bare's next album expanded the family concept even
further. Singin' In The Kitchen was officially credited to Bobby Bare
And The Family, but don't you worry, Bobby ain't no Charles Manson,
that's fer sure.
"Daddy What If" was written by multimedia Renaissance man, Shel
Silverstein, and Singin' In The Kitchen continued the Bare/Silverstein
partnership. The album takes full advantage of Silverstein's talents
for writing children's stories, coupled with Bare's breezy delivery
and the loose overall feel of a family sittin' around the kitchen
The song I chose, "Where'd I Come From" is one of only 2 songs on the
album not written by Silverstein, but I had to use this one because it
marks the return of then 5 year old Bobby Bare Jr. Little Bobby duets
with his Mom Jeannie here, and it doesn't take much imagination to
figure out the subject matter of the song. Aww, but it's so cute! Of
late young Bare has made a name for himself as a kind of sad clown
indie folk country rock...guy, setting himself apart from his Dad, but
at the same time happily acknowledging that he's finally figured out
where he came from.
A sad footnote: Shortly after the release of this album, Bobby Jr's
sister Cari died at age 15 of heart failure. The family held together
though, Bobby Sr. continued his successful career and all's well that
ends well. Ok, that's enough Lifetime Network for today.