Rich Robinson Takes Aim At Chris Robinson In New Interview
Guitarist Rich Robinson and vocalist Chris Robinson may share the same last name, but they have shared little else since The Black Crowes broke up following a 2013 tour. Rich currently leads The Magpie Salute, while his brother fronts the Chris Robinson Brotherhood. Chris recently announced he’ll return to singing Crowes tunes as part of a three-week As The Crow Flies tour. Rich has strong words about his brother, especially since Chris called the Magpie Salute a Black Crowes cover band during a visit to the Howard Stern Show.
Rich spoke with Andy Greene of Rolling Stone and revealed the Magpie Salute will soon enter the studio to record original material. The band, which features fellow Crowes alums Sven Pipien and Marc Ford, played over 75 shows in 2017. “We really became a band on that tour,” Robinson told Greene. “That’s what it takes, getting out there and touring and playing to where everyone can start to read each other’s minds. We became a single unit.” Look for Rich to produce the Magpie Salute’s first studio album and support the album with a tour later this year. “I see this group as my main outlet now,” Robinson said.
As for Chris, Rich isn’t impressed with his brother’s plans for As The Crow Flies. “He has a tendency to run his mouth, and actions speak louder than words. So now he’s in a Black Crowes tribute band.” Rich said Chris “pretends to be this peace-loving hippie that doesn’t care about money, while trying to take everyone’s money.” The guitarist might have been referring to a situation where Chris purportedly tried to put longtime drummer Steve Gorman on salary for a proposed Black Crowes 25th Anniversary Tour.
Another issue that bothers Rich is that he feels Chris tries to diminish his role in writing Black Crowes songs. Rich starts out with fury and then throws in a little love for his brother:
Chris wrote the lyrics and I wrote all of the music and arranged the songs. He’s kind of hinted that that wasn’t the case and him saying I’m in a Black Crowes tribute band is him trying to diminish the fact that those are my songs and I’m out there playing my songs with the guys that actually played on those records. That being said, I wish Chris well. Ultimately, I love him. He’s incredibly talented and a great singer. I wish him well. I’m really more excited about what I’m doing now and moving forward and making this great record and getting out there just exploring music with the people that I admire and want to play with.
For now, a Black Crowes reunion seems about as likely as a Talking Heads reunion. Both Chris and Rich have their own creative outlets and now Chris will sing Crowes songs for a few weeks in April. “I’m really happy not to play with him. I don’t think it’s healthy for anyone to be around that. If he’s truly happy playing CRB [Chris Robinson Brotherhood] songs and that it’s silly to play Black Crowes songs until he’s ready to do it, then it’s great. So be it,” Rich said. Head to Rolling Stone for the entire article.
Videographer Steve Hagar has been sharing his incredible Magpie Salute clips here.