St. Charles native bringing his band to The Venue on Friday

Edward David Anderson fronts the group Backyard Tire Fire

Edward David Anderson has gotten the band back together and is taking it on the road.

Backyard Tire Fire – which is comprised of Anderson on vocals and guitars, his brother, Matt, on bass, guitarist Scott Tipping and drummer John Ganser – will perform Friday at Mundy Park outside The Venue, 21 S. Broadway Ave. in downtown Aurora.

The show starts at 8 p.m. and tickets are available at themusicvenue.org. Tipping’s guitar skills have been on display at The Venue previously, and he also has put together shows at The Venue.

Backyard Tire Fire in September will release “Black Dirt Blue Sky,” its first collection of new recordings in 10 years. The album is being released on Anderson’s Black Dirt Records in conjunction with the Royal Potato Family label.

Kane County Chronicle reporter Eric Schelkopf had the chance to talk to Anderson, who is a 1990 St. Charles High School graduate. The interview has been edited for length and style.

Eric Schelkopf: So when did Scott Tipping join Backyard Tire Fire?

Edward David Anderson: Before joining the band, he was kind of a touring guitar player. Scott was sort of a secret weapon [whom] we would have come out with us to make the live shows represent the albums as much as possible.

And he also is a good friend of mine and certainly influential. He turned me on to all different kinds of music that I hadn’t hear before.

I wanted him to be a part of it and get in the studio with us and be a full-fledged member, if you will. So we brought in Scott, and this is his first recording with us.

And we have a new drummer, John Ganser, who is someone I’ve looked up to. To get to play with him was a real treat, so when I sort of reimagined Backyard Tire Fire, I really couldn’t imagine it without him.

It’s a really cool lineup I’m super excited about.

Schelkopf: Was this just the right time to put the band back together?

Anderson: My wife and I were starting a record label called Black Dirt Records and a music festival called Black Dirt Music Festival and I thought, ‘Wow, wouldn’t it be cool if we could have Backyard Tire Fire headline the first Black Dirt Music Festival?’ And that’s sort of how it happened, really.

I wrote some new songs that felt like Tire Fire songs. It’s definitely a new chapter for me.

My wife and I welcomed a baby girl into our lives, and we recently moved from Bloomington, where we lived for 17 years, and we moved to rural Havana, Illinois. There’s been a lot of changes.

We just felt it was the right time.

Schelkopf: I understand the pandemic changed how you recorded “Black Dirt Blue Sky.”

Anderson: We never really got to be in the same room together at all. We were in different home studios in the state of Illinois, even outside the state.

We had some guests from Chicago and Nashville and Los Angeles. But now, with the way you can do things with Dropbox and working from home, we put a really cool recording together in isolation.

It wasn’t exactly how I envisioned it, to put a band back together after a 10-year hiatus and then a pandemic hits. But we sort of just rolled with it.

We were able to get some good things done even though we didn’t get to see each other.

Schelkopf: Of course, Backyard Tire Fire will open for Wilco on Sept. 11 as part of your Black Dirt Music Festival, and the new album is set for release on Sept. 10.

Anderson: It was kind of an emotional roller coaster to get to this point, but I’m liking where we’re at. It’s going to be fun to get to Aurora.

This is going to be really cool, man. I like what The Venue is doing.

I think they’re doing some good stuff over there at The Venue.



Eric Schelkopf

Eric Schelkopf covers St. Charles and writes entertainment stories for the Kane County Chronicle.