D.B. Rouse, Brendan & The Strangest Ways
341 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo, NY, 14202
Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM
This event is all ages
D.B. Rouse is America’s least-earnest traveling troubadour.
Offering up all the sincerity, none of the pretense, Rouse is armed with a guitar (nicknamed “Meal-Ticket”) and a kazoo. In fact, he is sponsored by Kazoobie Kazoos, natch. A poet with an absurd sense of humor, the Milwaukee-based (but always touring), former cruise ship lounge singer, goat farmer, and cabana man, released his latest album Choices Were Made on February 1st.
Recently, one choice made resulted in Rouse becoming yet another musician robbed of his gear while on tour. Rouse’s experience contains an unusual fact, however: The gear was stolen while Rouse was in the vehicle it was stolen from. With his van doors unlocked due to Rouse and his wife sleeping off a night of drinking in the back, thieves quietly worked in the front, absconding with Rouse’s laptop and most of his instruments.
If you’re asking, “Oh, no! What about Meal-Ticket?!” don’t worry, Meal-Ticket was spared, the tour rolled on, and while this event makes for a story, it also adds an important counterpoint to the art made by a guy like D.B. Rouse.
In other words, it’s not all fun and kazoos.
“It could have been so much worse,” Rouse admits. “What if we had woken up? What if they were armed? I was ready to quit,” he confesses. “Ready to quit touring, quit music, quit everything.”
Instead, after the insurance company refused to cover the cost of replacement, Rouse reached out to his fans. Owing to the relationships Rouse has built through that unique quality of pretense-free sincerity and humor, he was able to replace the gear.
Even so, he did quit one thing: Drinking.
And with that, Rouse continued the pursuit of his dream to be “the best damn hobo musician in the world.”
Not unexpectedly, the negativity of the robbery and the positive aftermath – the “choices made” – inform Choices Were Made. The album’s first single “Get My Shit Together” is a prime example. The title speaks for itself.
Even so, Rouse speaks for himself, too, offering this confirmation:
“This album is about a person struggling to quit drinking and get their shit together. It’s about having the courage to leave behind old habits, and facing the world with your best self forward.”
Other songs on the record, including “Your Jailbird is Coming Home,” new fan favorite, “The Only Designated Driver in Milwaukee is Having a Pity Party,” and the inspiration for the album’s first music video, “About the Bite Missing From Your Sandwich” all speak to Rouse’s undaunted sense of humor in the face of adversity.
Brendan & The Strangest Ways
Brendan & the Strangest Ways is the moniker adopted by songwriter Brendan Shea to create music for the restless spirit. His songs are heartfelt reflections on the loves and losses experienced over countless miles traveled in a search for something that always feels just a little out of reach.
In autumn 2016, Brendan returned home to Buffalo, NY after completing a seven-year journey that saw him living and playing on and around all three US Coasts. He got his education in the thriving Austin scene, which he’s aptly referred to as “musician boot camp.” He applied the knowledge in the storied music city of Seattle, developing his sound while fronting a talented crop of revolving-door bandmates who would help him record his full-length debut, Brendan & the Strangest Ways.
Brendan’s peers have called him a true songwriter’s songwriter who expertly crafts his lyrics like a mason building a brick wall, and whose haunting melodies and compositions have a way of outlasting durations of quiet to stay stuck in your head long after you’ve heard the last note.