From their college days to midlife, Tim Bluhm and Greg Loiacono have remained connected at the hip—the Mother Hips, that is.
Since 1991, the two guitarists and singer-songwriters have blazed a trail of West Coast rock-and-roll that put them on the map locally and nationally.
This year, the Mother Hips mark 30 years together, and the group’s label, Blue Rose Music, celebrates with a special, limited-number vinyl reissue of all 10 of the band’s studio albums leading up to the release of a brand-new, still-untitled record in late 2021.
The band is also hitting the road this summer for the first time since Covid-19 canceled live music more than a year ago. The Mother Hips make their next North Bay appearance in a special Cookout Concert on Sunday, July 11, at HopMonk Tavern in Novato.
Bluhm and Loiacono co-formed the Mother Hips while attending college in Chico, and the band was signed to Rick Rubin’s American Recordings before they graduated from school.
“I think about how much music we played all the time,” Loiacono says about college. “Every molecule and minute was spent on the music, and I loved it.”
“I’m recalling those days and reviving those memories now more than I normally would,” Bluhm says. “It’s a good feeling; I enjoy talking about those times, but they were just regular old times, like any other time if you break it down. We were just doing what was in front of us, same as we are now.”
While the band’s lineup and self-described “California Soul” sound shifted around over the last three decades, Bluhm and Loiacono remained the constant core of the Mother Hips.
“We really like making music with each other and the band, and I think it’s as easy as that,” Loiacono says.
Bluhm and Loiacono are taking a trip down memory lane by reissuing their studio albums on vinyl with Blue Rose Music. Many of these albums are being released on vinyl for the first time, and the artists worked with the label to include extra liner notes and photos for the releases.
“It was an exciting undertaking,” Loiacono says. “We are fortunate that Blue Rose—and [label owner] Joe Poletto in particular—not only came up with the idea, but saw it through.”
After spending most of 2020 in social isolation, the Mother Hips worked quickly to record their upcoming studio album, slated for release in November 2021, and they are excited to see fans once again at their often sold-out shows.
“At 30 years, there’s a lot of good vibes going around, a lot of love and support, and that’s probably the main thing that keeps us going,” Loiacono says.
“This band has been a huge part of our lives,” Bluhm says. “So much of my life is written in those Mother Hips songs, and those songs are a part of other people’s lives. Now, someone will walk past me and say, ‘Oh! Mother Hips guy!’ That’s part of my life, I’m Mother Hips guy.”