- Special Sections
- Public Notices
Life has been full of surprises for Taylorsville native and musician Bob Carrithers, but luckily, lately they’ve been good surprises.
“What’s most amazing is that people don’t mind hearing me sing,” Carrithers said. “When I started I had no idea. I really don’t consider myself a great singer, but I heard almost nothing negative in terms of the CD.”
The CD Carrithers refers to is called “Dr. Bob ... Good for What Ails Ya,” and is available from most digital media outlets like iTunes and Amazon.com.
This singer-songwriter first picked up a guitar in 1963 after a friend, Kenny Brown, bought a set of drums.
“I was playing dances in ‘66 on Main Street,” Carrithers said. “I remember when there was a dance every Saturday night some place.”
Still, Carrithers never thought he’d end up writing and recording his own songs.
“I cut my teeth on Jimi Hendrix, and by the time I got done, I was doing George Strait,” he said, adding that he’s played everything from brass, country and blues.
“I hope that shows up in the material,” he said.
Carrithers said his album is classified as country, and most of the songs are family-oriented.
However, Carrithers cautions that one song, “Good Bad Girl,” might not be for everyone.
The song is about the perception that good people don’t know how to have a good time, Carrithers said.
But, there are 11 other songs on the album, if that one isn’t your favorite, he said.
Carrithers credits locals Mike Driscoll and the Lawson family as musical influences.
“I can’t even say how much I appreciate those people,” he said.
Carrithers did lay down the guitar for a few years, though.
“I got married, and when my kids started growing up, I quit playing and writing for a few years,” he said.
But when his youngest daughter got out of school, he picked it back up.
“I was going bonkers,” he said. “I thought, ‘I have to do something.’”
Because of health and personal issues, Carrithers said he ended up in Campbellsville, where his wife, Janie, walked into a studio one day and met Danny Bailey – a former muiscal engineer in Nashville.
“When I think about, I see how fortunate I’ve been,” Carrithers said. “I don’t know why I ended up in Campbellsville.”
Carrithers said Bailey got him involved on an up-and-coming record by a young artist, but without naming names, Carrithers said that artist broke his contract and the deal didn’t work out.
“It broke all of our hearts, but you learn to deal with disappointment and go on,” he said.
Friends started suggesting Carrithers record his own songs.
“I would rather George Strait do these songs than me, or some young person on the rise,” Carrithers said. “I got to a point where I thought, ‘You’ve got a full-time job, you either quit [writing] or you put your own music out.’”
So, Carrithers recorded his album on One Bar Records, a company owned by a friend named Terry Wooley.
Carrithers said Wooley submitted one of his songs to iTunes.
“Somebody liked it and they put it up as a single ... listed under ‘New Country Artist Bob Carrithers,’” he said.
“It hasn’t been lucrative, but the fact that that happened to me is just mind-boggling,” he said. “I know people who are better than me who would pay to have that spot.”
Carrithers said that through iTunes and other digital media outlets, he has even sold music overseas.
“For a small-town boy, that’s funny to think about,” he said.
Carrithers called this a journey he’s just starting.
“What you can do if you just try is amazing,” he said. “I just did a radio interview that I never dreamed would happen. I just want people to hear my music.”
For now, Carrithers is enjoying the ride and plans to release another album, tentatively called, “Trucks, Women and Life in General,” later this year.
“My goal in life is to be able to stop and do this,” he said. “This is what I love to do. I’m pleasantly surprised people can stand to hear me. It makes me more determined.”
Carrithers said he thinks country music still has a message people can connect with and is about situations we all face at times.
“It makes me feel good that I can make people feel better, or at least let them know they’re not alone.”