Chinese Bluegrass? Yes! Day Two adventures at RockyGrass

You never quite know what you’re going to see at RockyGrass, but you always know you’ll be entertained.

So it was on Saturday in the Wild Flower Pavilion when festival-goers witnessed the intriguing hybrid of bluegrass mandolin and Tuvan Throat Singing (AKA Mongolian Throat Singing) by the Tom Peng New Grass Band.

Although his entire band could not make the trip to Colorado, some familiar faces joined Tom and vocalist Nancy through their mixture of bluegrass standards, originals and Chinese folk songs. Kids Academy instructors Leslie Zeigler (bass) and Brad Murphey (guitar) enlisted the help of Leslie’s former Railsplitters bandmate Dusty Rider (banjo) to round out the ensemble. Curious? Check out some videos here and here.

Photos courtesy Beth Cooke

Photos from RockyGrass 2019 Day One

CBMS President and Photog-in-Chief Kevin Slick caught sets by Mike Marshall, The Barefoot Movement, and Frank Sollivan at RockyGrass.

Pete Wernick - Upcoming Performances

19-20 July 2019 - SnowyGrass

Pete & Joan Wernick will be performing during the SnowyGrass festival in Estes Park.

Performances are at 6:30pm on Friday, and 3:00pm on Saturday.

Admission to the festival includes a morning Bluegrass Jam Camp with Pete! Admission is only $35 for the weekend, and the festival is hosting other excellent artists such as Wood & Wire, Blue Canyon Boys, The Cody Sisters and more.

See SnowyGrass website for full information: https://www.snowygrass.com/.

 

2 August 2019 - Avogadros, Ft. Collins

Catch Pete with Long Road Home at Avogrado's Number in Fort Collins on August 2nd at 8:00pm. This is a rare performance that you won't want to miss!

Catch the band live on the air before the show on KRFC, 88.9 FM, at 12:00pm.

See Avogadro's website for more information: https://www.avogadros.com/.

The Lonesome Days at the Bluebird Theater - June 13, 2019

By Summers Baker

This January, The Lonesome Days sold out the Fox Theater in Boulder and Denver bluegrass lovers took note. For the many Denverites who missed the party bus to Boulder that night, The Days’ next Denver show announcement was highly anticipated. And, in usual fashion, the Lonesome Days did not disappoint. In early May, they announced their June 13 show at the Bluebird Theater, where they were to be joined by the Adam Aijala Trio, comprised of Colorado jamgrass veterans Andy Thorn (Leftover Salmon), Greg Garrison (Leftover Salmon) and Adam Aijala (Yonder Mountain String Band).

The Lonesome Days’ connection to those musicians runs deep. Jonny Miller, the lead
singer/mandolinist for The Days, has joined members of Yonder Mountain String Band on many stages in Colorado, and The Lonesome Days have even done a tour opening for Yonder across the Midwest.

“We couldn’t have asked for a better group to join us for the show,” says Jonny. “We admire each of them so much on a musical level, but also as people. They have seen a lot of success in this business but are grounded and good-hearted people that we feel fortunate to be friends with.”

The Days were also joined by Grace Clark, who opened the night with a set of her original music accompanied by cello and guitar. Grace, who has sat in on multiple occasions with The Days, was right at home in front of the bluegrass lovers as they quickly filled the room for the night. By the time The Adam Aijala Trio picked their first tune, the room was packed.

Adam Aijala Trio’s opening set was filled with original music. Any Yonder Mountain String Band fan in the audience certainly noticed that Adam was playing some songs from the early Yonder catalog. Jonny Miller sat in for the last few songs, and then they left the stage to an energized crowd. The Lonesome Days put on a show that the scene won’t soon forget, playing most of the songs from their debut record, along with a slew of new songs that were all grounded in that recognizable Lonesome sound for which they are known.

My personal favorite was their rendition of Jonny’s song, “Twenty-Five.” Haven’t heard it? Go check it out. When I asked Jonny what the highlight of the show was, he told me it was when Andy Thorn and Adam Aijala joined them on stage near the end of their set. “Playing Andy Thorn’s song, ‘All That I Can Take,’ was a real highlight for me. I just love that song. To play that song with those two and share it with my bandmates was a really cool moment for me. I felt fully immersed in the moment and was beyond grateful to be on the stage with all of them.”

And that energy certainly translated to the audience. In classic bluegrass style, The Lonesome Days encored by inviting up a bunch of local fiddlers to play an old-time tune, and everyone left the theater buzzing. “It was really special for us to play the Bluebird as a headliner,” says Jonny. “I know many of us in the band have seen so many great shows there over the years. It’s always been my favorite indoor venue in the city.”

Review: Tristan Scroggins' Digital Album "Fancy Boy"

By Kevin Slick

“Fancy Boy” was released on 8 March 2019 on the  Bandcamp  digital music distribution platform.

“Fancy Boy” was released on 8 March 2019 on the Bandcamp digital music distribution platform.


Tristan Scroggins has been working on the technique of crosspicking on mandolin. Anyone who follows this modern mando-master has seen videos of him in hotel rooms around the world picking out tunes in cascades of notes that tumble down like a waterfall, or ripple like river, depending on the listener’s favorite water-music metaphors. 

Scroggins has compiled five tracks and released them online under the title Fancy Boy and the EP is a gem. The arrangements are beautiful, with Tristan joined by Megan Lynch on fiddle, Adam Chowning on guitar and tasteful clawhammer banjo by Tyler Andal who also plays some fiddle as well. 

Cross picking has been primarily associated with Jesse McReynolds, though Colorado bluegrass fans know the work of Jordan Ramsey well. Tristan, who can burn up the fretboard with the best of them, opts for a more melodic and even stately approach to the tunes on this project.  

Home Sweet Home” in particular stands out for the devotion to melody and feel above speed. This has become one of my favorite recordings. The music is not rushed, not forced in anyway, it sounds effortless; a complete joy to listen to anytime. Click through now and listen, you’ll be glad you did.

Bonnie and the Clydes at the Audi Auditorium - 03/30/2019

Although not hardly, strictly bluegrass, Bonnie and the Clydes are a band well known in the front range and their music runs through Americana, Country, Western Swing and Bluegrass. Here they are playing a song named Cowboy Yodel at the Audi Auditorium in Broomfield.

This is the third in our 2019 series of Audi concerts - there will be two more this fall and they are all “must see” concerts, watch our website and facebook page for more information!