If you have at least one toe in the Detroit music community, chances are you’ve seen Bob Tyrrell at a concert somewhere. I don’t think I know anyone who goes to more live shows than Bob. Seeing live music is in his DNA. He lives and breathes it. Plus, he’s jammed with many bands, local and otherwise for years.
Oh, and he’s a pretty good tattoo artist as well! His most famous tattoo may be the giant eagle that spans from shoulder to shoulder on the back of Kid Rock. Black and grey, as well as portraits and skulls, are in Bob’s wheelhouse. Full disclosure, I have a Tyrrell piece on my left arm he did for me for my 25th anniversary at WRIF, and I love it. I’d always wanted a tat from him, and he didn’t disappoint.
Bob’s career started relatively late in life. At the age of 34, he did his first tattoo. He was tattooed himself at the age of 31. Beforehand he was interested in artwork and drawing. He even took some late-night classes locally that reinvigorated his love for art. After about three years of drawing, he got tattooed, which spurred his interest. “When I was 34, I’m, like, I got to learn how to tattoo”
His first gig was an apprenticeship at Eternal Tattoo in Livonia. That lasted three months. After only six tattoos, he became a full-time tattoo artist, due to owner, “Tramp”‘s stamp of approval.
He’s tattooed some of your favorite rock stars. Outside of Kid Rock, he’s inked Scott Ian from Anthrax, Kerry King from Slayer, Troy and Frank from Tesla, Mark and Rob from Death Angel, Mike Portnoy from Dream Theater, and others.
Between conventions and touring the planet, Bob is known throughout the tattoo world. Since the pandemic, he’s cut back on traveling and doing the convention circuit to maybe four or five a year.
Over the years, I’ve gotten to know Bob very well, and always look forward to seeing him at concerts and sharing a Jack Daniels or six.
Enjoy some pictures of Bob’s work, and look for him at the next concert you attend.