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Barney and his band The Legendary Hearts, recorded and toured extensively in Canada through the late 80s and 90s. They sold over a half a million records, won a Juno and were a staple on Canadian radio. In 2000, Barney traded in his rock and roll life for that of a cattle rancher in the Cariboo region of BC, deciding to step away from the music business treadmill, spend more time at home, put some blisters on his fingers and tour a little less frequently. During the next five years, he tended to write songs when time would allow or “when an idea wouldn’t leave me alone”. That collection of songs became the critically acclaimed Gift Horse, recorded in Toronto with Blue Rodeo and produced by Barney’s friend Jim Cuddy. The whole process renewed Barney’s love of performing, both in the form of solo acoustic shows, with the newly formed Cariboo Express and the occasional rocking romp with the Legendary Hearts. “I like to straddle the two sides of this magical, musical coin… the visceral feeling you get from rock & roll and the introspective nature of my folky side.”
Barney has put out 16 records. A combination of solo works, albums with his band The Legendary Hearts, two with Bentall, Taylor and Ulrich (BTU) and two with The High Bar Gang (a bluegrass band of friends that has garnered 2 Juno nominations).
Working with his long-time friend and Spirit of The West co-leader, Geoffrey Kelly, Barney recorded an album of instrumentals at his ranch under the RanchWriters moniker in 2021. Shortly after, he released his latest solo album Cosmic Dreamer in 2022.
These two albums garnered him three Canadian Folk Music Award nominations.
He divides his time between Bowen Island, his ranch, and the road. Barney is married to his wife Kath Wolverton. They have four kids, eleven grandchildren, a couple of dogs, a few horses and occasionally, a few cows. He has been on numerous trips to the Arctic and is eager to, once again, immerse himself in the magic and the wonder of it all.
Barney Bentall and The Legendary Hearts:
Barney Bentall and The Legendary Hearts
Ain’t Life Strange
The Inside Passage
Flesh and Bone
The Drifter and The Preacher
RanchWriters – with Geoffrey Kelly
Live at Cate’s Hill
The High Bar Gang:
Lost and Undone
Someday The Heart Will Trouble The Mind