About Paul Barsom
Originally from Alabama, Paul probably started his musical life at age four by listening to his older brother play and sing "House of the Rising Sun" and other songs on his gold and black Harmony Hollywood guitar. His next act on that inspiration wasn't until age twelve, when he summoned the courage to go next door (he'd just moved into the neighborhood) to ask who it was killing it on the drums upstairs. That led him directly to learning bass guitar, singing, songwriting, piano lessons and his first band (with Chris, that drumming neighbor). Playing in heavily working bands while attending music school led him, at age nineteen, to choose the more sedate and stable environment of academic music over the livelier (and, at the time, cocaine-filled) world of early 1980s rock.
Despite choosing a career in classical music (as a composer, teacher, and orchestral/chamber music bassist), he kept playing in rock bands as a bassist and singer (classic rock, rockabilly, prog rock, metal). He gradually returned to songwriting and performing solo (voice/guitar). The first album for his solo project, The Weed Garden, Boy Interrupted, can be found on all major streaming platforms and as part of his live shows.
His music is eclectic, reflecting a long relationship with music from all over the world and throughout history. Influences span vernacular and classical traditions, including (in no particular order or emphasis) things like The Beatles, the Southern U.S., Igor Stravinsky, Mongolia, Johann Sebastian Bach, Black Sabbath, Japan, John Cage, Pacific Islands, Johannes Brahms, Arvo Pärt, Hank Williams, Robert Johnson, The Caribbean, George Crumb, Irving Berlin, Joni Mitchell, India, John Adams, Miles Davis, Pan-Africa, and more. He says about his work: "I don't really work in a genre - I just write things I hear. And the chaotic path my stylistically overstuffed intuition takes, leads the music into odd corners, with strange juxtapositions of styles and topics. Hopefully it's more metamorphic than aggregate, but sometimes the seams show." He writes about hope, crazies, love, death, children, travel, friends, swimming in still water under starlight, etc.
He currently lives in Silver City, New Mexico with his wife, Susannah and his dog, Ben, who, as a starving puppy, adopted Paul the first day he moved there.