DRO’s journey began back in 2016 when Rachel Matkin and Barry Mathers once again teamed up to make music. Barry Mathers’ musical career began at the age of 14, playing drums in a band in his hometown of Osoyoos. His parents owned the local music store, Mathers Music and Electric, where he worked and gave drum lessons. Rachel and Barry had previously worked together on three albums by the Cruzeros, a nationally celebrated band based out of Kelowna. Barry was the singer and songwriter, and Rachel sang harmonies on many of the songs. Their mutual love of music by the likes of Buddy and Julie Miller, Steve Earl, John Prine, Fred Eaglesmith, Gillian Welch and many more inspired them to start writing and recording an album of their own. Musicians came and went as the band developed a distinctive sound. Dirt Road Opera solidified its core when Jim Ryan, also a former member of the Cruzeros became the third member of the trio.
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