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    Welcome to the pages under construction about Barry Bynum, rock and blues guitarist/songwriter, Christian worship leader, recently relocated to USA after 6 years in Ireland...what follows is an article from a Texas newspaper describing some of what has happened up to now...

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"I have had the joy of playing to and getting to know people of Ireland, England, Europe, and the USA. My life has been blessed so much by so many, and I continue to have a rockin' good time!"

 
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When a Texan who is a well known and traveled Christian rock and blues guitarist/songwriter goes to Ireland to live and tour for 5 years, then returns to his home state, one of the questions that arises is: “Just what is it that you did over there anyway?”.

Barry Bynum is the man, and the guitar is his instrument, and when he begins to explain his travels and background, one could have a hard time keeping up. Suffice it to say that he’s been a lot, done a lot, and seen a lot of things. Most of them have had to do with music, or the Gospel, or both.

Whether in an intimate setting, playing a solo acoustic set, or using an elaborate backup band and singers,Bynum is known in Ireland, England and Europe, for the fun and friendly nature of his concerts, and for guitar skills and songwriting that delve into the spiritual sides of life with the ease and grace of a seasoned pro.

And why wouldn’t he be? “ I could play the ‘uke!’ before I could stay up well on a bike.” Barry recalls fondly early days of learning to play. “ The classic garage band, crowds staying away by the thousands. A lot of experiments in a musical lab, with some explosions!”

The space between then and now holds a long list of tours, recordings, ups and downs, stops and restarts, musical exploration, soul searching, having a family.Then there’s this curious little thing about Northern Ireland.

The young guitarist helped to form the band "Liberation Suite" in San Marcos
(which went on to be popular in the British Isles and Europe) at age 16, after what he calls “new life and true freedom” came to him “because of Jesus Christ”. It was in Ireland on the first tour that Barry and the others in the band began a long relationship with the people on that little piece of green to the left of the Queen.

“ When people would hear we went to Belfast to live, their concept was... Northern Ireland is barbedwire, guns, bombs....like the classic picture of a terrorist controlled state. There’s some of that, and we were exposed to a little of it, but it’s not what you think.Most people want peace, and from what I saw, the true Christians are in the forefront of fostering the move away from division and bigotry. True reconciliation is alive and well, and alongside it is true spiritual revival, especially among the younger ones.”

After years of touring off and on, Liberation Suite scaled down its operation, and Barry went on to a solo career, actually moving his base to Belfast along with his wife, Kristi. While in Ireland, they were blessed with a son called Jack (Irish name?). Barry released two albums of his own in Europe as well as holding to a fairly heavy concert scedule, and regularly leading a rock music worship service in Belfast. The latest album,“To You”, includes live recordings of Bynum in that setting, along with recent studio tracks. Just released Dec. 4th, expectations are high. The previous recording, “Stickin’ Your Neck Out”, received some international airplay in Western Europe. Both albums were recorded using backup musicians from Ireland. Mr. Bynum has also lent his skills to a number of Ireland's artist's projects, both as an axeman and producer.

“You know, in a lot of ways, the Irish are no different from anyone else, and everybody needs the Lord. The natural spiritual sensitivity they have opens up when the Holy Spirit moves. I have been able to communicate that in a language I enjoy speaking, the music, and the response has overall been
real good.”

“The Irish have a slightly different take on R & B and Soul, which influence my music a lot, and I’ve enjoyed seeing what some of them do with a Texan idea. I cut my songwriting teeth on the first round of the British Invasion, and got interested in Texas and Chicago Blues along the way, so somewhere in all that mix-up is the styles we have enjoyed. Really music is music. There is a real affinity in Ireland for Americans, especially ones from Texas, so that adds up to a great opportunity for me. I love them as an audience.... I think we must be friends with half the country.”

So what about now? Being back in Texas is an adjustment, to be sure, but the guitar man is eating it up. “ Having our boy near his grandparents is real important to us. In terms of playing and travel, we’re sort of taking that slowly, a step at a time. There are a couple of tours planned, to Southeast Alaska in March, then back to Ireland for a short stay this summer.We are taking a little space and waiting to see what God has planned.”


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