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Local music legend Bill Deasy returns for show at The Oaks, with new album online for free – TribLIVE

If you go
What: Bill Deasy concert
When: 7:30 p.m., Friday, April 22
Where: The Oaks Theater, 310 Allegheny River Blvd., Oakmont
Details: Admission is $18; tables available. For more information visit The Oaks website.

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Bill Deasy wasn’t planning on making his new album, “If the Creek Don’t Rise.”
Nor was he planning on playing a show featuring his new and favorite songs at The Oaks on April 22.
But Deasy — the longtime singer, songwriter, solo artist and front man of The Gathering Field — apparently uncorked some musical backlog during the pandemic.
Much has changed since The Gathering Field broke through with “Lost in America” in 1995.
The band still plays together sporadically. But records don’t make the money they once did, and tours don’t stretch the same distances.
When the pandemic hit, it paused the livelihoods of many musicians.
In what would seem like the most depressing entertainment business environment, Deasy recorded an album after a six-year break.
And he’s giving it away, online, via his website billdeasy.com.
“Music was my whole life,” said Deasy. “I’m at a different stage of my career. A recording has to say more because I’m playing live less.”
Although always a musician, Deasy, who lives in Oakmont, has been busy. He and his wife, Paula, have four children, and Deasy holds a day job: He’s special events manager for Allegheny County, putting together the concert series for Hartwood Acres and the South Park Amphitheater.
Deasy’s recent recording renaissance was spurred when he played with his old backing band for the first time in more than a decade at the SouthSide Works last summer. The band includes drummer Dave Throckmorton of Canonsburg, guitarist Chris Parker of New York City and bassist Jerry McDonald of Philadelphia.
“It was so much fun and so well received and felt so good,” Deasy said.
The musicians will gather again when they take the stage at The Oaks later this month.
After last summer’s show, people told Deasy that the band should play together more and record some new music. At first, Deasy didn’t consider it. The musicians aren’t local. But after a few months, he felt inspired to record with his old pals again.
McDonald runs a studio in New York, so they booked some recording time last November.
Deasy came into the studio with a dozen songs, of which they recorded 10.
Although this was Deasy’s ninth solo record, “it was challenging and daunting,” he said. “I hadn’t been in that high level of a recording situation, but in no time we fell into a nice flow of work. Song by song, everything just kept getting stronger. I just couldn’t be happier.”
Deasy didn’t expect to make such a definitive musical statement.
But he’s glad he did, “just to express myself and share my life with people who have followed my music.”
To support his album, Deasy is playing private events for longtime fans.
You never know where he will show up, but expect some more shows.

Mary Ann Thomas is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Mary at 724-226-4691, mthomas@triblive.com or via Twitter .
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If you go
What: Bill Deasy concert
When: 7:30 p.m., Friday, April 22
Where: The Oaks Theater, 310 Allegheny River Blvd., Oakmont
Details: Admission is $18; tables available. For more information visit The Oaks website.

TribLIVE’s Daily and Weekly email newsletters deliver the news you want and information you need, right to your inbox.
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