The Rock and Roll Report Band of the Week is Backyard Tire Fire

Every once in a while, it is good to find a band that is focused on making straight-out Rock-N-Roll. Bloomington, Illinois band Backyard Tire Fire is one such band that is focused on making that good, old-fashioned rock music.

Backyard Tire Fire formed as a band in 2001 when singer-songwriter Ed Anderson got together with drummer Tim Kramp. At that time, the two musicians formed the group with Warren Hawk as the bass player. Together, that trio created the “Live At The Georgia Theatre” album in 2002.

The original line-up was short-lived as Anderson and Kramp moved to Bloomington, Illinois only a little while after releasing that debut album. In Bloomington, the two musicians talked Anderson’s brother, Matt Anderson, into joining the band as the bassist. That line-up has been together ever since.

Since the formation of the band, Backyard Tire Fire seems to like to split their time between being on the road and being in the studio. The band can be found out on the road doing hundreds of concerts each year, whether as the main act, or as one of the openers.

On those rare occasions when you won’t find Backyard Tire Fire out on the road, you will probably find the band in the studio, working on their next release. The band has kept itself busy, musically speaking, having already recorded and released seven different releases since 2001. In 2008, the band put out two different releases alone. They are currently on tour in support of their newest release, The Places We Lived.

With as much time as Backyard Tire Fire seems to devote to touring, the longing to spend some time at home seems to have come out in Ed Anderson’s lyrics in the songs on the new release. Many of the songs on The Places We Lived have the feeling of wanting to spend some more time at home base. Songs like “Time With you” and the album’s title track really bring out that feeling of nostalgia, either for someplace that hasn’t been visited for quite a while, or for a place that now only exists in a memory. And the last song on the album, “Home Today,” was written from the point of view of someone who is getting the chance to see someone whom he hasn’t seen for a while.

When Ed Anderson went about writing the songs that would be considered for the band’s new album of The Places We Lived, he wrote part of them while sitting at a piano, and the rest of the songs were written while he was using a guitar. Because of this, the new album from Backyard Tire Fire splits time between guitar-based and piano-based songs. On songs like “How In The Hell Did You Get Back Here?” the band approaches the song as an all-out rocker. Other times on the album, such as with the song “Home Today,” the band takes the laid-back approach.

With The Places We Lived, Backyard Tire Fire has produced one of the finest albums released in 2008. In my opinion, you need to check the album out for yourself and see if you agree with me. And if you get the chance, you should also go out and see the band in concert. They are currently on tour in support of that new album.

To find out more about Backyard Tire Fire and their concert dates, go to You can also find them on MySpace at To find out more about the band’s record label, as well as other bands that call it home, go to