Most people have never heard of the Rock Bottom Remainders, but the group is calling it quits after 20 years. The band will finish two more Southern California shows later this month.
“We’ve gotten as good as we’re ever going to get,” says lead guitarist and best-selling humorist Dave Barry, explaining the band’s decision.
“You can’t get any better,” Barry continued. “Well, you actually can get a lot better. But we can’t get any better. We’re up to almost four chords now, and the Beatles quit at that point, I’m pretty sure.”
The group’s “Past Our Bedtime Tour” (because real musicians don’t get up early like writers do) will include a public performance June 22 at LA’s El Rey Theatre, followed by a private show the next day for the American Library Association’s Anaheim convention.
All profits will go to charity, as has been the case with every Remainders concert since the group formed for a booksellers convention 20 years ago. They have raised an estimated $2 million since then.
The group’s specialty is ’60s rock ‘n roll with a few original tunes by band members thrown in.
Still, among the most entertaining segments of a Remainders performance, Barry says, is watching Roy Blount Jr. and “Simpson’s” creator Matt Groening clap out of time during an entire show while pretending to sing along with other band members. Neither, he said, will get close enough to a microphone to let the audience hear them.