Bastion Rose Talks of Music, Shows, and More!


Classic rock band BASTION ROSE has had a renewal and a rebirth, in which time they have released a single, debut EP, as well as another single as well. The band is also currently writing all new music, with some shows happening as well. The band talks about all of this below.


1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

The story of Bastion Rose is one of renewal and rebirth.

Only two years after a surgery that left me without my singing voice and uncertain whether or not it might ever return, I now look toward my first releases as Bastion Rose, a moniker that to me symbolises the transient nature of life, and the preciousness of every moment. The Fade To Blue EP was produced by 3 time Grammy award-winning producer, David Bottrill (Tool, Godsmack, Rush, Coheed and Cambria, Mastodon, Muse, Peter Gabriel) and mastered by engineer Maor Appelbaum (Dream Theater, YES, Yngwie Malmsteen, Meat Loaf, Eric Gales, Walter Trout).

After losing my voice to thyroid cancer, I thought I may never sing again. In November 2020, I had surgery that left me cancer free, but without my singing voice. There was a risk that it may never return. Simultaneously, nerve damage left my right shoulder too weak to hold my guitar. As a guitarist and songwriter, I lost my most important tools. My work with my previous group, Blue Rising, with whom I released 40 original tracks spanning 6 releases (2015-2019), for all intents and purposes, came to an end.

I lost both of my parents suddenly only months before my diagnosis. The days following were the darkest I’ve experienced. When I did begin to play music again, it served as a comforting and familiar presence in my life, helping me to grow and change through the pain. I found some solace in the creativity and opportunity for personal growth I’ve always found in songwriting. During my recovery from surgery, I was now afraid of losing that relationship with music forever.

These experiences tore me down to my core and exposed me in ways I could never have imagined. I’ve never felt more vulnerable. I tried to sing every day, and little by little, I regained my singing voice. After physical therapy, my shoulder strength returned. I was able to play and sing again. I began writing again.

I played some solo acoustic shows. I started practicing on my Stratocaster and found myself drawn again to heavy blues-driven rock. I wrote an album’s worth of material, recruited a band of unbelievable musicians (John Donlon, Steve Pierce, Barrett Abraham, Austin Mudd), and sent demos to producers. David Bottrill reached out after I sent him a demo of the Bastion Rose original, “Coming For You.” He said he liked it and was interested in working with me. I couldn’t believe it.

I’m more thankful than ever to be alive and for the opportunity to continue to grow through music. My relationship with life, people, and with my work as an artist has never been more informed or inspired. Life is mysterious, and I view each day as a gift. I’m excited for the future and my heart is open to what it may hold.

The first single from the Fade To Blue EP, “Coming For You,” was released in May 2023 and already has over 12,000 streams and counting. The follow-up single, “Halo Devil,” was released on July 27, 2023. 

2. What’s the origin of the band’s name?

When my dad passed away in December of 2019, I underwent a painful grieving process that brought me face to face with the darkest parts of myself. I planted a white rose for him in the spring. In March of 2020, I received a call informing me that my mother had passed away. During the spring and summer of 2020, my world was bleak, and it was difficult to imagine that I would ever feel real hope or pleasure again. Still, I cared for the rose. In late summer, the rose bloomed its first blossom. I took a photograph of that bloom and it later became the rose you see in the Bastion Rose logo.

In October of 2020, I received a cancer diagnosis. In a flash, in the very instant that I was given the news, like divine inspiration, I came to a powerful realization: I wanted to live. Life is worth living. Moments are worth having. I underwent surgery and treatment for thyroid cancer and by Spring of 2021, I was cancer free and on my way to full recovery.

The white rose became a symbol for me that represents the preciousness of life and its transient, fragile nature. We are destined to face unimaginable hardships. All of us. But in the rose, I find a reminder that while temporary and destined to end, life is worth it. Moments are sacred.

As life goes on, I try to protect that idea. To let it by my fortress against life’s inevitable woes. A bastion of truth amid life’s distractions. Bastion Rose.

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Bastion Rose is from Bloomington, Indiana in the United States. The volume of talented musicians here is impressive. Indiana University has one of the best music schools in the country and is right here in Bloomington. Our music scene is very tight-knit. It seems to me like most musicians that play out know each other and occasionally a band will break out into the national scene.

All musicians and music lovers converge at one venue in Bloomington, and that is The Bluebird. The Bluebird stage has hosted performances by some of the world’s greatest acts in the last few decades and continues to bring world class talent to our town, as well as nurture emerging local acts. When Bastion Rose plays in Bloomington, it’s at The Bluebird. It’s an eclectic and historic nightclub with a great vibe.  

4. How would you describe your style?

Put simply, Bastion Rose is heavily influenced by blues-driven classic rock, which you can really hear in the tracks included on the debut Fade To Blue EP. Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, and Lynyrd Skynyrd all come to mind as important classic rock influences.

I have recently become aware of the “post-grunge” genre. Audioslave, Tool, Foo Fighters, I think all basically fit this description. These bands are all great examples of more modern influences you can really hear in Bastion Rose’s music. I think what Bastion Rose really has in common with bands like Foo Fighters is that we all grew up listening to and worshiping classic rock icons, then took those influences and created something new.

5. What have you released so far and what can someone expect from your works?

The first single from the debut Fade To Blue EP is called “Coming For You” and was released in May 2023. It already has over 12,000 streams on Spotify and counting. It starts with a gentle strum that creates a darkness of atmosphere, then the fuzz-soaked electric guitar rips forward as the song develops into a slamming rock anthem, complete with powerful vocals, tight rhythm section, and epic outro guitar solos. The song is a crescendo from beginning to end.

The second single, “Halo Devil,” was released on July 27, 2023. This song to me is like if Ronnie Van Zant was the singer for A Perfect Circle. It’s a blend of classic blues and southern rock melodic influences as well as the atmospheric and decidedly modern melancholy of guitarists like Adam Jones and Billy Howerdel. On “Halo Devil,” there is a wide dynamic range with very small pensive verses, a potently aggressive chorus, singable “hooks,” and some quite progressive musical moments.

6. Do you have any new music in the works?

I am constantly writing music and creating demos. I demo very quickly and have a large, growing back catalogue of music that is in development as well as lots of music Bastion Rose is ready to record for the next release. “Fade To Blue,” “Halo Devil,” “Fever,” and “Coming For You” comprise the tracklist on the debut Fade To Blue EP we did with David Bottrill. Other songs that are staples of our live set are “Wild Honey,” “Humble Me,” “Dry Leaf Clover,” and “Brother Sun.” Then there are some of my favorite new songs that we will bring to the stage in the coming months like “Atlas Slumbers,” “Traces of Gold,” and “Cinnamon Fire.” New music is what makes me tick!

7. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?

Bastion Rose has some regional shows planned for 2023 but are exploring our options to partner with a booking management group to help us coordinate shows outside of our market in the Midwest US that we have built through grass roots efforts. Let me know if you know a booking management group that might want to connect with us!

8. What plans do you have for the future as a band?

We have just released the first two singles from our unreleased debut EP, so if all goes according to plan, the limousines will soon arrive and sweep us away on a world tour opening for Foo Fighters, Metallica, or another band of similar icon status and notoriety.

Kidding of course! Although truly, supporting an act of that caliber would be a dream come true.

From my perspective, the next step for the Bastion Rose is to build a team of professionals to support the band in all of the various important areas like booking management and public relations, and perhaps partner with a label to release the Fade To Blue EP and go back into the studio for the follow up. Playing shows in different markets, continuing to release music indefinitely, and partnering with the right professionals in the industry to grow Bastion Rose is my vision of the future.

9. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

You can find both of our new singles anywhere you get your music. We also have a merch store with Bastion Rose t-shirts on our website at

10. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

This music is the natural result of my honest discovery of myself through songwriting. It has been an integral part of a healing and growth process and represents something true I have found within me. While I have been a songwriter long before Bastion Rose, the music on the Fade To Blue EP and its creation has helped me to move through a time of devastation in my life and reconnect with my deep roots in American and British classic rock music. I never could have imagined how far this group would come in such a short period of time, when only a couple of years ago I was faced with the possibility that I may never sing again. The music available now from Bastion Rose is only the beginning, and I’m on fire with excitement for the future of the band and look forward to learning the lessons music still has to teach me.

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