Bob had a long history in the state, including running both the Saratoga Hotel in Caldwell and the Miners Exchange in Idaho City. I met him after that, when he started promoting shows in Boise. His company was called Big O Productions and Idaho Concerts, and he put on shows at various venues around the Treasure Valley, including The Winery at Eagle Knoll, Egyptian Theatre, and The Bouquet, as well as in Sun Valley and North Idaho.
Bob often came off as cranky and opinionated, and that was fine with me — it was part of his charm. He knew what he liked and he believed in authentic music performed by real musicians, and he dismissed everything else as fluff. The Record Exchange partnered with Bob on many shows, and we were proud to help him promote the fine list of artists he brought to Idaho.
I don’t believe he ever made much money at his shows; his real payoff was how he changed the musical landscape of our city and state, and I believe we all owe Bob a debt of gratitude for that. The next time you think of a great musical experience you had at one of his shows, think of Bob. He was one of a kind and we miss him. — Michael Bunnell
Asleep at the Wheel, BeauSoleil, Cowboy Junkies, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Los Lobos, Nickel Creek, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Son Volt, The Swell Season, The Frames, The Greencards, The Waybacks, They Might Be Giants, Wilco, Joan Baez, David Bromberg, Greg Brown, Junior Brown, Alison Brown, Sam Bush, Neko Case, Kasey Chambers, Guy Clark, Vassar Clements, Jerry Douglas, Steve Earle, Justin Townes Earle, Alejandro Escovedo, Patty Griffin, Nanci Griffith, David Grisman, Emmylou Harris, Robert Earl Keen, Leo Kottke, Alison Krauss, Taj Mahal, Delbert McClinton, Del McCoury, John McEuen, James McMurtry, Keb’ Mo’, Allison Moorer, Tim O’Brien, Carrie Rodriguez, Jake Shimabukuro, Ricky Skaggs, Chris Thile, Richard Thompson, Tony Trischka, Dale Watson, Dar Williams, Keller Williams, Rosalie Sorrels, BR549, David Wilcox.