Bob Carling

Bob Carling


Bob started his musical career when he pestered his mum for a guitar in his teens, because he hated playing the piano! He’s been playing guitar ever since. Initially he tried to copy the Beatles, Ralph McTell and loads of other now rather ancient singer-songwriters.

He plays acoustic and electric guitar and bass guitar – and more recently mandolin and mandola. And he has aspirations of getting hold of other more exotic stringed instruments…

He has been in various bands, over the years, but he started seriously gigging when he lived in Southampton and started a band in 1999-ish called Kairos, which had some local success.

In the summer of 2005, when Bob moved to Canterbury, Dave Woodward came up to him at an open mic night after he had sung a couple of Simon and Garfunkel songs. “Do you like Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young?”, he asked, to which Bob said, “Yeah, but that dates both you and me!”. But that started a fruitful musical relationship because we both liked that “acoustic-ey” rock thingy. This was helped by us both going to a superb song-writing workshop where the tutors were none other than Steve Knightley and Phil Beer of “Show of Hands”, organized by the wonderful Debs Earl of “Folk in the Barn” fame. That workshop inspired us to write our own stuff rather than just do covers of other people’s stuff (although we do that as well). And at least it got round the age-old problem of new bands doing the pub thing… do we do covers or our own stuff? We do both, but mostly our own stuff – and we introduce the latter by saying “this sounds like…”!

At about this time Steve Allen joined the band and we started calling ourselves “Homage” – because every time we sat down to write a song, we kept saying to ourselves “that sounds just like…”. So we thought, sod it, why not roll with this and say that we sound like other people – and so the name was born. Homage is not a bad name, but sounded a bit cheesy (“fromage”!) so, after a lot of bandying around loads of band names, we re-named ourselves “Acoustic Architects”.