Sweaty, Funky Rock ’n’ Roll: After A Quiet Year, The Crowes Are Ready to Bust Out

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for LiveNation
– We Need A Remedy
After a change of address, writing new material, producing bands, and re-scheduling, the Robinson brothers are ready to rock, like they did here Nov. 14, 2019, at the Troubadour in West Hollywood.
Chris Robinson spent the past year on the sidelines reading old French cookbooks and listening to Sidney Bechet jazz records. Rich Robinson remotely produced music from international acts The Trews (Canada) and Maker (United Kingdom).
The Robinsons, brothers and Black Crowes co-founders, also wrote a bunch of songs during the pandemic and the accompanying shutdown of live entertainment. They hope to release a new record in 2022 and work with George Drakoulias, the producer of Shake Your Money Maker, their first album.
“I had some good days and bad days,” Chris said. “Some unimaginably depressing days and some unimaginably beautiful. When you’re at the whim of the unknown, it’s stressful, and everyone we know has been through the same thing.”
For Chris, a change of scenery helped. His family moved from northern California to southwestern Colorado. His wife, Camille, is an avid skier and Telluride is her favorite place to ski in the U.S., he said. 
“We thought, ‘Why don’t we live down the valley from there,’” Chris said. “We feel like with everything (going on) in the last year and with all the fires in California, it made sense. We’re trying to figure it out like everyone else.”
He said, “Our main focus is work. Our lives are dependent on where this next cycle would take us. We’re inspired by our adventures and our movements and the music we get to make.”
One thing the Robinsons especially missed was experiencing live music as a spectator. Their whole lives have revolved around attending shows, whether it’s an arena concert or an intimate club gig. 
“It’s been that way since I could get my first fake ID and go to the matinee punk shows in Atlanta in the early to mid-1980s,” Chris said. “That’s been a bummer because we’re equally as inspired seeing all sorts of performances. We’re ready; we want to see music too. We want the vibes.”
As it turns out, The Black Crowes are poised to send some of the first positive vibes for rock fans nationally during their amphitheater tour starting July 20. 
Before the pandemic, the Robinsons rode the crest of a public relations wave as they announced their reunion tour on the Howard Stern show in November 2019, followed by a few acoustic sets before live audiences on both coasts and London, along with an NPR Tiny Desk concert.
Then came the shutdown. After a year off, they’re not worried about having to recapture that momentum on tour.
“For us, just the momentum of getting out there and playing and having so much joy doing what we’re doing and revisiting these songs will create its own energy instantaneously,” Rich said.
The Shake Your Money Maker 30th anniversary box set came out in February and has sold well, Chris said, which is one indication the band has kept that high level of excitement tied to a loyal fan base.
COVID-19 notwithstanding, it’s The Black Crowes. Get ready for a rock explosion without the tricks of the trade.
“We have one of the only presentations out there in which we don’t have gimmicks,” Chris said. “We don’t even use in-ear monitors. They’ve taken the teeth out of a lot of stuff and we still have our teeth. It’s moving air and amplifiers and sweaty, funky rock ’n’ roll.”