A&E » Arts

Bentall puts career in perspective

New sense of freedom, drive to get back into studio come from break



Who: Barney Bentall

Where: Brackendale Art Gallery

When: Saturday, Oct. 29

Ticktes: $18

After a few years of sitting back from touring and recording, legend Barney Bentall of Barney Bentall & The Legendary Hearts gained more than time with his family and his thoughts; he gained perspective and with it a renewed sense of freedom and drive to return to the recording studio.

"When you spend a lot of time in the music business, image and a level of success is important and people have vested interest in what you do," Bentall said from his home in North Vancouver. "It sounds kind of cavalier, but when you take time out, you care a lot less about everything. You’ve got life in perspective. I don’t mean in the negative sense of not caring. Once you realize at this point that you are the furthest thing from being the new hot thing, you just write and perform. It’s important to step back."

Bentall, along with fellow musicians Leslie Alexander and John Ellis, will share recognizable favourites and soon-to-be new ones Saturday, Oct. 29 at 8 p.m. at the Brackendale Art Gallery (BAG).

Bentall isn’t sure whether this new approach to his career has affected his sound.

"I think it might have affected the direction of my music," he said. "It’s hard to tell. I’m sure it has a bit: some people (say my music is) more mellow. But that might be a natural factor of getting older."

Bentall will release his new album, Gift Horse , next spring; however, audiences can sample new tracks at the upcoming concert.

Acoustic gigs, as opposed to the big band sound of The Legendary Heart’s rock and roll, are Bentall’s choice of performance these days.

"I’ve been doing acoustic shows quite a few years now," he said. "I am glad to be doing both. You get to a point in your career when you’ve done plenty of rock and roll. You appreciate it more when you do something else and come back to that. Acoustic does that for me."

With more time on his hands, Bentall found himself in the recording studio with his son, Dustin Bentall, who is no stranger to Vancouver’s music scene and is in the middle of completing his first album. Whistlerties remember Dustin from opening for She Stole My Beer in Whistler last year. Barney said while in the past music between generations faced a huge gap of understanding, youngsters, now listening to music of the ’60s and ’70s, have bridged the divide.

"We now have a situation where young people are listening to what we did," Barney said. "There is more common ground. We can enjoy the same music. It’s a good thing."

Whether seasoned veterans of Bentall’s work dating back to the mid-80s, or youngsters discovering Bentall classics for the first time, the Bentall and friends concert will span generations of music lovers.

Tickets are $18 and are available at the BAG and Mostly Books in Squamish.

Don’t forget to check out Juno-Award-winner Jenny Whiteley’s folk and country tunes on guitar and mandolin the following night, Sunday, Oct. 30 at 8 p.m. at the BAG. Tickets are $15.

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