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Interview:
The Bottle Rockets are happy to welcome a new generation of fans
 

By GARY GRAFF
Digital First Media, @GraffonMusic

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The Bottle Rockets have been around for 24 years now -- long enough for the Americana group from Festus, Mo., to witness a demographic shift in its audience.

"Now we're seeing the children of our original fans," notes singer-guitarist Brian Henneman. "It's like we've gained a whole new crop of kids who are becoming of age and going out to dig on music, 'cause their parents were playing our stuff to them the whole time they were growing up -- and now they're coming out to see us, too.

"It makes you feel older, but that's alright. That's one of the advantages of staying together for a long time."

The quartet has, in fact, maintained through five label deals and 11 albums, the latest of which was 2011's "Not So Loud," though last year the Bottle Rockets released expanded reissues of its first two albums. Henneman, 52 -- who was a crew member for Uncle Tupelo before the Bottle Rockets popped in earnest -- says the group has "three to five" new songs ready for live performance, some of which it's already playing, and plans to get into a recording studio soon.

"It's the kind of stuff we do; I don't think there's going to be any mind-blowing, 'Omigod, I can't believe they did that!' moments, but it's good stuff," Henneman says. "We're one of the lucky ones in that our fans are of the type that are still willing to buy stuff. Some bands aren't so lucky. Kids today are being raised on free music and not feeling like you have to buy anything.

"And you can't blame anybody for that, you know. If they started giving food away, how would you be able to sell it anymore? I get it, but that won't stop us from making (new) music, either."

The Bottle Rockets and James McMurtry perform Thursday, May 29, at the Magic Bag, 22920 Woodward Ave., Ferndale. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call 248-544-3030 or visit www.themagicbag.com.

Web Site: www.themagicbag.com

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