Dirty Cello’s new album rocks Hopmonk Sebastopol
“We thought we would originally call it ‘Greatest Hits,’ but it sounded super pretentious,” Rebecca Roudman jokes about Dirty Cello’s “approximately” 13th album. Why they’re resorting to ballpark figures is a technical matter that pales next to the myriad achievements of the band itself.
Led by Roudman on cello, the North Bay-based band has performed everywhere from Iceland and Israel, to China and much of the U.S., not to mention the occasional castle in Scotland. They’ve played so many locales, in fact, that one wonders if this whole cello-led rock-blues-bluegrass “band thing” is really just a clever cover story for their work as international super-assassins.
I’m sure they could tell me, but they’d have to kill me. So, I don’t ask and choose instead to become complicit in their cover: The band is playing a gig in support of “Number 13” (because, honestly, “Greatest Hits” is kinda on the nose for hit-men) at Sebastopol’s Hopmonk.
The album is composed of high-energy, rocking originals that “all have a story” and are based on the myriad misadventures, travel disasters and internal frictions that occur within creative collaborations. “All of the songs on the album come from some weird event of an incident, usually inspired by ourselves, sometimes inspired by other people—and some of the songs are even secretly inspired by other band members, but they don’t know this,” laughs Roudman.
One track on the album, “Cloud Nine,” was inspired by a fan whose usually dour disposition had turned ebullient when they next saw her. “We’re like, okay, what’s going on? What’s the change? She said, ‘I’m really happy because my divorce just got finalized,’” said Roudman.
Another song came courtesy of an Ohio man who hired the band to help win back a woman who had dumped him. “Despite our advice, the guy insisted upon a nearly half-hour concert of non-romantic Disney songs played in a freezing park in near darkness,” recalls Roudman. “If you want to find out what happened next, you’ll have to come to the show and hear our song, ‘Don’t Offer Me Weed.’”
Get the real story when Dirty Cello performs at 8pm, Saturday, March 25, at Hopmonk Tavern, 230 Petaluma Ave., Sebastopol. Tickets are $25 and available at dirtycello.com or hopmonk.com/livemusic. — DH