Thursday, Jun 27th, 2019
Fort Worth, Texas-based solo acoustic guitar master Darrin Kobetich classifies his sound as “ambient delta raga thrash grass,” but that’s just scratching the surface.
He was an illustrator/graphic designer at a Fort Worth newspaper(remember those?) for 24 years until 2010. Since then, he has been . . . “Free” of working for The Man. Currently, he is doing more travelling outside of Texas, playing solo mostly through the southwest, some southeast and ever increasing the distance in all directions. When at home base in Ft. Worth, he stays busy with bluegrass bands Blackland River Devils and Boxcar Bandits (in addition to guitar, playing dobro and mandolin), and during trips to the Austin area, with brother Adam as half of the Kobros duo (injecting some Balkan sound in there, too) as well as surf rock band Chrome Mags, improv/jazz/world/funk band Rage Out Arkestra and most recently rock band, Groom Lake Racers. He also teaches a few lessons when and where he can.
Born 1965, Long Island, New York, of Croation/Sicilian descent, Darrin grew up listening to a lot of music from his Dad’s record collection(Chuck Berry to Bluegrass to Ventures to Zorba The Greek and everything in between). His musical journey started out with four chords he learned from his father at age 12…. Soon he was hooked on The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Rush, etc.
Moving to Weatherford, Texas, in 1980 Darrin formed his first real band, an instrumental power trio, a year later. Inspired by German guitar phenomena Uli Jon Roth and Michael Schenker, he honed his chops playing covers and experimenting with improvisation. Spent a few years in various metal bands before joining the New Orleans-born thrash metal outfit. Hammer Witch in 1989. They released a cassette (1991) before disbanding in 1994.
Darrin then formed experimental metal band, Amillion Pounds, which was fronted by his brother Adam. It was during Amillion Pounds’ run that Darrin composed his first acoustic songs, influenced by Jimmy Page and Leo Kottke. By 2002, he was completely immersed in the acoustic guitar, inspired by the likes of Michael Hedges and John Fahey, as well as Middle Eastern and other world music.
Amillion Pounds disbanded in 2004 and the following year, Darrin and Adam founded the Electric Mountain Rotten Apple Gang to play bluegrass and mountain music. The Gang eventually evolved into the Blackland River Devils. Darrin has provided music for theatrical presentations at Hip Pocket Theater, and performs with various artists. He’s self-released several CDs : Off the Beaten Path, the epic hour-long 12-string exploration The End of One Enchanted Evening, Songs For A Muse Meant The Longest Winter, Sidetracked, An Exercise In Revelry and his latest , Free.