Oct. 29--Bob Schneider's biggest fear is becoming predictable.
"I'm scared to death of failing," the Austin-based musician said. "The idea of not being entertaining or becoming mediocre, I'm so terrified of it that it makes me really good at what I do."
Tracking down Schneider's musical roots requires a transcontinental trip to Germany, where his family moved when he was 2 years old so that his father could study opera at the University of Munich. Schneider credits his original sound to the European part of his upbringing.
"I was exposed to a lot of really bad music in Europe," he said. "They have some incredibly bad Euro-pop music that I grew up listening to. I mean, the biggest star in the history of German music is David Hasselhoff. That should tell you something. It skewed my musical tastes toward the weird and bizarre, which is probably why my music is pretty unique."
Schneider and Houston-based band The Tontons will perform at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1, at the Yucca Theatre.
Schneider's newest album, "Burden of Proof," was released on June 11, and the collection tested as many experimental elements as his other releases. When it comes to describing his music, Schneider has an interesting outlook.
"I always tell people it sounds like Paul Simon, mainly because he was so eclectic and everyone likes him. I mean, some of my music does sound like him, but describing my music to someone is like describing what I look like to someone. My music is so eclectic that it would be like one song would be my thumb and another song would be my nose, and if you just heard one song, you might only know what my nose looked like. The best way to get me is to listen to a bunch of stuff, and you'll start to get the whole picture," Schneider said.
That inconsistency helps to define the musician's trademark. He derives so much of a musical identity on the grounds of not having an exact musical identity at all.
"I do whatever it takes to get the message of the song across," he said. "I don't stick to any sort of style for very long. I'm not doing anything too tricky, but it's never easy to describe."
For more information on this and upcoming shows, go to talltownes.com.
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