Robert McFarland - Singer/Songwriter

Listen to the songs in the player to the right while you read the Bio. It will help you get a feel from where I am coming from. Peace and Chicken Grease from Kentucky Fried Chicken University! Enjoy!

I was born back in 1970. First child to my momma and daddy. Put on this Earth to Rock and Roll. Born to boogie deep in my soul. Or so the song goes..........This is actually a lyric from a song titled "Born to Rock" that will definitely be on my first CD when it is released.

I was raised in a musical family. My mom was always singing those old country songs. My dad was always playing an instrument. When we were in the truck there was always an 8-track playing. Yes you heard it right, an 8-track flashback moment. I was very curious about music, my dad said I would watch him from my crib while he played the banjo. I even have pictures of me inside the banjo case before I could walk. I was given a guitar when I was about 5 years old. I tried to play like the people on Sesame Street but it never sounded like them. One day we were driving in our station wagon and I was in the front seat trying to play something. My dad said something to the effect, "I thought you could play that thing." He was just tormenting me, joking around. He said I threw the guitar in the back seat and started pouting. I never touched another guitar again until I was sixteen. I can't remember why not or what happened to that guitar, but that was that.

However, I did start learning the banjo when I was ten. I would watch my dad play and he would have friends over for these bluegrass jams. I asked him to teach me only the solos on the banjo. I thought the back up parts were pretty lame. I wanted to learn the flashy parts. He told me that you only played a solo for a small part in the song and the rhythm parts were most of the song. So I agreed. Its funny, but I never thought of it until writing this bio. I have always concentrated on the song and rhythm parts more than the solos when writing my own songs. I guess that must of rubbed off on me from my dad. He said I put my hands down right from the beginning the way you were supposed to. This must of came naturally for me, or maybe because I watched him for close to ten years. I progressed quickly and thought I was on my way. My brother started playing bass and before you knew it we had a little trio. Although me and my brother never sang, we were to shy. To this day I can talk till the cows come home in front of hundreds of people, but ask me to sing and I freeze up.

Baseball, video games, bicycles, etc... pretty much took over my time outside of school, so my banjo playing never advanced. I did pick up the guitar when I was sixteen. I was always into country and bluegrass but I was slowly getting hooked on Rock and Roll. I started on acoustic guitar and learning bluegrass songs. I took all of my money I got from graduation and bought an electric guitar and amp. At this point I started recording myself not only playing guitar but writing and singing songs I had written. To date I probably have written close to 500 songs. And from listening to some of those songs I can see why I never sang. Ha. Ha. But I had a dream, by the time I was twenty six I wanted to have released a couple of CDs and touring the world.

With most things I go over the top and lose interest in a hobby. I was working, fishing, riding motorcycles, and living with my girlfriend at the time, so there was very little guitar playing for a couple of years. My friend Danny called me up one day out of the blue and asked if I wanted to join a band. I said sure why not. I jammed with them one time and Danny said you are in. You have to learn these 25 songs because we have a gig in two weeks. What!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can't learn 25 songs in two weeks. So he said look, just sing some of them and pose with your guitar. Luckily the other guitarist was really good. He looked almost like James Hetfield of Metallica. And we turned out to be a Metallica/ACDC tribute band. See he could do the Metallica stuff and I could do the ACDC Stuff. Danny thought I sang pretty good, so I bought into it. I definitely knew how to pose and I challenge the best of them to this day at that. I thought I could do a pretty good Bon Scott impression but I tore my voice up after a few songs. Right away I was trying to get these guys to do originals. But they wouldn't budge. We did attempt to do one original but we never played out with it. I don't think it was ever recorded. But we were jamming and I just started singing. I do remember the title, it was called "The Uncrowned King." The band did not last and we only played out a handful of times.

I was twenty four and still did not know what I wanted to do with my life. I did not really pursue the band thing but I kept writing. I had made my mind up, if I was going to be in a band I was going to at least play half of my songs and half covers. I got another chance when I was 28 with my buddy Don. I used to deliver mail to him and he would always get these CDs in the mail from BMG/Columbia House. I found out he played drums. He had just went through a divorce and was pretty torn up. I suggested that we get a band together and just jam to help him take his mind off things. So Don pretty much put a band together with his brother and a couple of friends. We were all singing but decided we needed a singer to carry the songs we were doing.

We got a great female singer named Renee. See, I was torn, I thought people who knew me would think I got punked out and was not heavy anymore because we had a female singer. People in school called my brother "Metal Ed" and me "Hard Rock Bob." We both had long hair and listened to Heavy Metal and Hard Rock. But Renee could also Rock! But like me, she would damage her voice sometimes with some of the songs we were doing. I suggested once again, notice a recurring theme here, that we do originals. People only wanted to do covers and bars only wanted to hear covers. So I went home and wrote a song "Razor Blade" from a woman's perspective for Renee to sing. I would of never written that song if it were not for the current position the band was in. So next practice, I said lets try this song. So, I sung it the best I could and everyone asked who sings that? I said I wrote it a couple of days ago. No one believed me. Check out the song on my playlist on this site.

After that I started bringing songs every week. I had wrote or co-wrote seven of the nine originals we were playing live. The ironic thing is the first night we played out. We were warming up with "Razor Blade" and did not even play the whole song.  A guy came up and said he wanted to buy 5 CDs. We did not have any CDs we were just trying to get enough material together to play out. So, I was sure I was on to something with my originals. This was my "Behind the Music" Live moment. I did not want this to be the Robert McFarland Band with me writing most of the songs. But no one else was really bringing anything to the table as much as I was. I got burned out and left. Everyone was really cool in the band and they did go on to release a successful Cd. They had written more originals and the CD was really good. All of them to my knowledge still do music in some form to this day. So music is the fiber that ties us together. Music is the soundtrack to life, if you will.

A funny story about "Razor Blade" is that I actually sent it to "American Idol" when they had their song writing contest. Now I know music, it is my life. If I could get this song in the hands of a Lady singer who was already established, #1 all day long, no questions. But, "American Idol" picked a song that fit their show. I can't say it was a bad song, but you do not hear that song anymore do you? Case closed. So at thirty I tried to put together a couple of bands but nobody was serious. So I went into hibernation.

Bring us to 2014, I decided it is now or never. I am going to make music on my own terms. I am working on my voice and musical skills. I want to release a CD of all original material sometime in 2015. I believe it is best to be a first rate you than a second rate copy of somebody else. I always say, "I don't play second fiddle to anyone, I played lead guitar." Joke inserted to the left. Haha. The songs you hear on the player are rough demos. I wrote and am the only one playing and singing on all of them except "Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening," lyrics by Robert Frost music by Robert McFarland.

The funny thing about "Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening" is I did this for my final exam in poetry class when I was in college in 2011 or 2012. The version on this site is only a demo to show my teacher what I was going to do. I was very nervous because this was the first time in years that I had to sing in front of people. I wanted to go first to get it over with. I knew it was good but I was just so shy about my voice.

There was a girl who broke out in hives that went second. She was a light complexion but her hives were all red and then this big vein popped out on her forehead. Nobody wanted to go next. I took the spot. Just me and my guitar. I wasn't going to break out in hives but my ears felt like they were on fire. I played the song and thought I did a very good job. I was expecting this great big applause, nothing. Silence. Well, I almost couldn't get up out of the chair I played the guitar in. The teacher told everyone, "Everyone take a deep breath, this happens sometimes at poetry readings I do. When someone gets up there and knocks it out of the park, no one wants to follow them. Just pretend this did not happen and do your presentation as you have prepared it."

After the girl with the hives and me doing my song, nobody wanted to go. I felt great, that my teacher liked it but I also felt bad that nobody else wanted to go after me. The next girl that went up was very nervous and she said something to the effect that hers would not be as good as mine and she did not want to follow me but wanted to get hers over with. I really felt for her. My teacher said that I was on the border of A/B in his class, but with this final exam he was going to give me an A. Rock on my brother!

I have many projects lined up. As mentioned above to release a CD sometime in 2015. I am in the process of writing a romance novel. I know, I know, it sounds kind of corny but it will be sweet. I am also passionate about teaching others music. I am currently working on a trilogy. Banjo, guitar, and mandolin bluegrass lesson plans on DVD. See, I believe you have to have a plan to accomplish anything. And if I learned anything in college, you have to have a syllabus to lay a program out. I will lay out a year long lesson plan for each instrument broken down into the quarter system I used in college.

I am also trying to learn painting/drawing to express my art in that form as well. Just this year I have really gotten into flowers for some strange reason. My mom has always planted flowers. Last year I started taking pictures of her flowers and started planting my own this year. I think it is just amazing how something can start from a seed and grow so fast and beautiful in such a short time. Funny, I have written about ten or so songs about flowers in the past. One of my favorites is a song called "Roese." I know it is misspelled but it has a certain meaning that will be included on that CD in 2105.

To be continued.........................................................