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I'm Just a Guitar Player: OMG, it's Tim Reynolds on TR3 and DMB 

click to enlarge Yup, Tim Reynolds can fly.
  • Yup, Tim Reynolds can fly.
Yup, Tim Reynolds can fly.
Discussing Tim Reynolds without mentioning the Dave Matthews Band would be like talking about Fred Savage and not saying a word about The Wonder Years. Although Reynolds has four decades of music under his belt and has earned a reputation as one of the world's most innovative guitar players, his star hangs on his collaborations with Dave Matthews, and it probably always will - just like Savage will always be linked to Kevin Arnold, even if he were to somehow win an Oscar (this would probably never happen).

Reynolds is currently on a massive two-month tour with his trio, TR3 - an act that actually predates DMB - and is coming to Bend on Tuesday night. No doubt many in attendance will know Reynolds through his connection to Matthews, and the 51 year old Reynolds doesn't seem to have a problem with that.

"It's been the story of my life since about '95 when DMB got really big. The more I work with DMB, there's always a rediscovery of new audiences," Reynolds says, "But it's all good, and like I said, that's kind of been the story of the last 13 or 14 years now."

Over the last year, the DMB machine has brought Reynolds even closer to its core - taking the guitarist on tour with the band last summer and signing him on for the upcoming DMB spring tour, in addition to Reynolds recording on the band's next record. Reynolds says, not surprisingly, that a hefty chunk of his fan base is Dave Matthews runoff - even if what TR3 is doing bears little resemblance to the airy acoustic roots numbers that have resulted from the collaborations of Matthews and Reynolds. The current TR3 lineup packs an electrified, high-energy funk and blues-rock punch that's tightly wound around a certifiably danceable core.

While rolling into Los Angeles, where the tour is heading into a four-day Southern California phase, and talking over a sometimes static-laden cell phone connection, Reynolds seems as amped about TR3 as he does about his role in what appears to be a reinvented Dave Matthews Band. With the cellophane freshly wrapped around TR3's new record, Radiance, and the trio out on a rare extensive tour, Reynolds' excitement seems warranted.

"This is actually the longest TR3 tour ever and in a way this is the most focused TR3. I'm at a time in my life where I'm more able to focus on the details of the music," Reynolds says, adding that he's glad to be playing with a band again after several solo tours - some of which incorporated drum machines.

The conversation, of course, soon finds its way back inside the DMB arena - an area in which there is plenty to discuss. Reynolds says the increasingly buzzed about and currently untitled DMB record is still in the works, but thinks fans will find it worth the wait, seeing as how the album combines the slightly retooled lineup following the death of saxophonist LeRoi Moore with the production talents of Rob Cavallo.

"The new record is going to be - it's hard to come up with a word for it - but maybe 'expansive' would be a good way to put it," Reynolds says of the record, tentatively slated for an April release. Reynolds even likens the stylistic transition to that of the Beatles jumping from "I Want to Hold Your Hand" to Sgt. Pepper's - but insists that DMB is not the Beatles, nor is any other band.

We talk more about DMB, but when we get too deep into the details, Reynolds seems to take a step back.

"Ya know, I'm just a guitar player. That's how I roll, man," Reynolds says, and I steer the conversation back to TR3, because that's probably what we should have been talking about anyway.

Tim Reynolds & TR3, Marcus Eaton Trio
8pm doors, 9pm show. Tuesday, February 17. Domino Room, 51 NW Greenwood Ave. $16/advanced, $18/door. Tickets at and Ranch Records.


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