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Lessons From A Shooting Star is the new album from Nashville based, New York born songwriter, musician and producer Reno Bo. Before moving to Nashville TN, Bo spent the previous several years on the road playing bass with fellow New Yorkers Albert Hammond Jr (The Strokes) and The Mooney Suzuki and as leader and songwriter of The Fame (whose name Lady Gaga is rumored to have used as inspiration for her album of the same moniker.)
Bo was a middle-school kid living in Poughkeepsie, New York, when a friend gave him the Beatles' White Album on CD for Christmas. He hadn't listened much to classic rock radio; he was a pop fan, raised on Beach Boys records and the doo-wop songs of his parents' youth. The White Album blew the doors wide open, though, kicking Bo down a classic rock rabbit hole filled with the Rolling Stones' Sticky Fingers, Big Star's #1 Record and Led Zeppelin I. There was no turning back.
Years later, those early influences are on full display with Lessons From a Shooting Star, an album that mixes the hooks and harmonies of classic pop music with the size, sweep and swagger of rock & roll. It's Bo's second solo record, with the multi-instrumentalist handling virtually every job — from the songwriting to the bass guitar to the vocals to the production — himself. For a musician who'd spent the past decade touring the world as a member of other people's bands, Lessons From a Shooting Star was a chance to focus inward. It was a chance to make music that was completely his.
Lessons From a Shooting Star may be a modern album, but its basic ingredients — jangling electric guitar, B3 organ, harmonies, double-tracked melodies, Farfisa — cook up a sound that's nostalgic, too. “The Brighter Side," a power-pop track co-written with Brendan Benson, could have been tracked at Ardent Studios during the 1970s, rather than Bo's own Nashville apartment during the mid-2010s. A similar vibe anchors songs like "How Do You Do, which he recorded with Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit guitarist Sadler Vaden, the only other musician to make it onto the album. With its influences proudly worn on its sleeve, Lessons From a Shooting Star nods to the music that shaped Bo's life back in New York while still pushing forward to something new. Looks like the guy has learned his lessons well.
On his debut album, 2010's Happenings And Other Things, Bo worked with Fountains Of Wayne main man Adam Schlesinger (“Stacy’s Mom”, “That Thing You Do”.) His music has appeared on the hit ABC-TV show "Nashville" and in television commercials for Taco Bell, US Bank, Hardees, Kleenex, HP and others. He’s been seen and heard on Late Night with Conan O’Brien and famed British radio DJ John Peel’s “Peel Sessions” in the UK. As a member of the Cabin Down Below band - a collection of NYC musicians who produce Petty Fest, a tribute to Tom Petty in cities all over the U.S. - Bo has performed on stage with Norah Jones, Jakob Dylan, member of Kings Of Leon, Ann Wilson of Heart, Butch Walker, and Donald Fagen among others. If you pause your DVD player quickly enough, he can be spotted playing with The Mooney Suzuki in DreamWorks Pictures war satire Tropic Thunder, starring Jack Black, Ben Stiller and Robert Downey Jr.