Oregon Music News: Oregon’s all-genre music magazine since 2009


Steve Barton talks with Inessa about his new album / audio

By INESSA // Tall Tales and Alibis is his new album. He'll be at Music Millennium on Saturday, March 24. Plus bonus conversation with Steve and Dave Scheff.

Creative juice flows as it will. Sometimes but a trickle, but often enough, it’s a torrent. Of ideas. Of notes. Of imagery. And so it is for Steve Barton. Not only the lead voice and instigator of Translator, the indie band of the 80’s who so deftly merged new wave, punk, psychedelia and the iconic sounds of rock n roll into one vehicle, Steve’s heart and mind have never stopped brewing up new thoughts and sounds.


Barely did we dig into New Blue World, Steve’s collaboration with drummer Dave Scheff that saw release last summer, now comes a triple-album! Revisit MY first visit with Steve, when he was fresh to Portland. Check out our conversation HERE.

Tall Tales and Alibis is a multi-layered find made over the course of a few years. Rich with guests and collaborators, there are 37 tracks on this triple-bill. Original music plus a few unexpected covers.

With the record-release imminent, time to institute a gathering of minds at Robin Road.  Plus, we got Dave on the phone from San Franciso to reflect on how and when he and Steve began this inventive collaboration, frequently across the miles.  The upsides, the challenges and how it all has worked for the both of them over these many decades.

Dave is flying in to Portland to help introduce the new baby at Music Millennium on March 24 at 5p in a very special in-store with Steve and Dave. Dave is playing on a drum kit Steve found in his recent travels. Put to rights by Revival Drum Shop.

While Steve is a master craftsman of the lyrics and the guitar, Dave works principally with the drums saying, “it’s the way I express myself”. Enjoy the laugh fest in below conversation with Dave, Steve and I.

Keep it Mysterious. Fudge the Truth

 It seems a massive undertaking, creating a triple-album with 37 tracks. How to even release a collection like that. Piecemeal, or perhaps a long series of singles-releases, an album a year. Possibilites seem endless. But Steve says it felt right to gift the collection of a piece. It speaks to a certain time. Tomorrow will be different.

But for now the title of the album, Steve tells me, translates as a “mysterious tall tale”. And alibis are, well, a “fudgin of truth.” Yet you will find that this collection of experience  in song reflects to the here and now and speaks so very personally to those of us who will dig into both tales, and truths. One of the shiny, new beauties is included live, at the end of our conversation. “Stare At the Sun Tonight”.

Find all of Inessa's posts on The Inessa Blog


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