Like a Metaphor
The Short Bartron-Tyler Group Biography For nearly a decade, the Bartron-Tyler Group (BTg) has inspired, grooved, and enlivened diverse audiences at festivals and concerts all along the West Coast. Bartron and Tyler's musical partnership began over 20 years ago in the San Francisco Bay Area. Years of playing in rock and cover bands followed before the focus shifted to the intricate structures for which BTg is known. In 1991, they premiered as a guitar duo, soon thereafter recording a disc at the prompting of Nashville producer and friend Bob Tassi. John Hasty joined forces to add percussive spice, building on the group to produce the next two critically acclaimed CD releases, 'Fillmore Street Live' (1994), and 'Leap Day' (1997). For the CD release concerts for 'Leap Day', the band wanted to ground the sound with a bassist. The natural choice was Joey Fabian, with whom Hasty had already performed in diverse musical settings over the last four years. The roots that have been growing over the past 20 years serve as a strong foundation for the group's unique sound. Their latest release, 'Like A Metaphor' (2002), showcases this new, fully realized quartet's amazing cohesion and flow garnered through four solid years of gigging. ----------------- Identity Crisis 'Barton-Taylor-Bartles and James, NO NO NO. Who would name their kid Bartron Tyler??' Geez. 'What kind of music does BTg play?' Well, let's see....it's rock, jazz, folk, Afro-Cuban, Celtic, bluesy, bluegrassy fusion. They just call it Hardwood. You can empathize with the problem of recognition in a cookie-cutter genre, one-word-moniker-for-ease-of-digestion world. Let's examine the individual components for clarity. John Bartron's fiery technique brings to mind images of Ralph Towner and the late Michael Hedges. Bartron's compositions are bristling with inventive melodies, twists, and theme and variation. Although he plays acoustic guitar exclusively, with the help of a well-equipped pedal board, he can create pastoral loops of infinite delight or violin-like notes that rise to the rafters. Mike Tyler, on a hybrid acoustic/electric guitar, gets tones as smooth as glass or as crunchy as Satriani. Hands down he is the best slide player to be heard today. His fusion-tinged compositions blow the player and non-player out of their seats. Joey Fabian, on electric and double bass, brings a solid musical background and lots of fun to the group's sound. Just to see him on stage is pure joy. He bridges the gap of melody and rhythm with power and grace. Pulsating underneath it all, is John Hasty. Playing one of the most bizarre looking drum kits ever assembled, he drives the dynamics of the band from a roar to a whisper. His set blends hand drums and kit to cover sounds from Africa to Zeppelin. ---------------- The Sound With influences as diverse as the Dixie Dregs, Phish, King Crimson, Oregon and the Hellecasters, BTg has created a sound that is completely it's own. Once you hear BTg you will understand. It's one thing to have wonderful recordings, but the other side is laying it down live. In concert, BTg leaves fans spellbound and wanting more. With great writing, kick-ass playing, and pristine recording, BTg has become a musical force that won't go unheard. Their sound is capturing new fans every day, from teens to their parents. With hundreds of shows and thousands of discs sold, the question is: why are they not as popular as the Monkees or free pancakes on Sunday?