Featured Artist: Bald Rock Boys

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Featured Artist: Bald Rock Boys

Ricardo Tovar

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Friends for 20 years, Forrest Hartman and Wade Meith have no aspirations of becoming famous off their country/classic rock covers. These two Chico State alumni play for the love of playing music and nothing more.

“I think you can have a lot of fun regardless of what level you’re at,” guitarist, keyboardist and vocalist Hartman said. “I’ve heard some people before say they heard some great player and say, Oh, well, I can’t play anymore. I don’t think that’s what music’s all about. No matter what level you’re at you can have a good time. Just stick with it.”

Inspired by Hartman’s children, who also play in a few bands, they decided they had played music all their lives but never with each other and decided to form the Bald Rock Boys.

“I saw his son’s when they were performing,” bassists, guitarist, vocalist and steel player Meith said about joining up with Hartman. “They were 13 and I hadn’t performed in a long time. It was really inspiring to see them do it was like we’ve got to do it.”

Meith has an engineering background and works for a local company. Hartman may be known by some students at Chico State as a Journalism professor for several key classes. Both see music as a hobby, one that they love, but one that is really more for fun than anything too serious.

“I’ve always loved music and loved to play and loved hanging out with Wade,” Hartman said. “So it’s a fun hobby that’s been going well. People seem to like hearing us play. It’s great.”

The duo formed in early 2018 and practiced for several months before making the jump to playing live. They have now performed all over Oroville, from Shakeys’ pizzeria and wineries.

Everything is on the table for the two, except for rap, hardcore and heavy metal.

“I love playing for people and hopefully the songs we play resonate,” Meith said. “I don’t think there’s anything, really, beyond that. Other than, sharing that love of music and hopefully people like what we’re doing.”

A major highlight for the Boys was when the Paradise ice rink reopened, the Bald Rock Boys were honored by being the opening act and Meith thinks it’ll be hard to top that moment. Given they got to give back to a community that was devasted not long ago.

Each was asked what one word describes the Bald Rock Boys and Hartman answered “electric” and Meith said, “party.”

“There are no expectations, which is two words, but you know you just come and just hang out,” Meith said. “Have fun that’s really what this is about.”

The Bald Rock Boys have nothing ruled out. From playing Jimmy Buffet, Kenny Chesney, Billy Idol, playing in Chico someday and possibly writing their own music one day.

“I never rule anything out. I mean I’ve done some writing but it’s been a long time and you know I’m pretty busy with school and like Wade, I’m pretty happy just gigging around town,” said Hartman. I really think I’m past the stage where I would expect it to blow up as a rock star or anything but I do like writing a little.”

Whether they stick to covering great musicians or decide to venture off into uncharted territory, the Bald Rock Boys remain a strong musical duo that should grace Butte County for years to come.

Ricardo Tovar can be reached at [email protected] or @rtovarg13 on Twitter.

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