Bluegrass

Head For The Hills at Fox Theatre | 10.07.11

Z2 Entertainment is proud to present Head for the Hills at the Fox Theatre on Friday, October 7th.  Tickets go on sale Friday, September 2nd for $10.00 in advance & $12.00 day of show.

Named “Best of Colorado,” via the Westword Music Showcase (Denver, CO). and former Winners of Yonder Mountain String Band’s-Northwest String Summitt Band Competition, Head for The Hills just released their sophomore studio effort which made the CMJ TOP 200 Radio Listings and boasted a notable cast of guests including Drew Emmitt of Leftover Salmon and Billy Nershi of String Cheese Incident.

Rooted in the tradition of bluegrass but described perhaps more accurately as progressive acoustic/modern roots, HFTH produces a vibrant mixture of homegrown compositions, traditional harmonies, and improvisation. In the live setting, HFTH effortlessly ventures into a myriad of musical styles and sonic landscapes that appeals to a boundless array of listeners. They have performed, supported, & shared programming with such notables as: David Grisman, Sam Bush, The Flaming Lips, Ben Folds, Bruce Hornsby, Emmylou Harris, Cake, Little Feat, Nickel Creek, The Avett brothers, Tim O’Brien, Peter Rowan, Doc Watson, and Railroad Earth, and have performed at Wakarusa Music Festival, Telluride Bluegrass Festival (NightGrass), Northwest String Summit, Mulberry Mountain Harvest Festival, Grand Targhee Bluegrass Festival (Official Evening Performance), Yarmony Grass Music Festival, Bristol Rhythm and Roots and many more.

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Head for the Hills

Fox Theatre

Friday, October 7th

Doors:  8:30 pm

Show Time:  9:00 pm

Yonder Mountain String Band's NYE Celebration

97.3 KBCO is proud to present the Yonder Mountain String Band’s Colorado Countdown New Year’s Eve Celebration at the Boulder Theater Tuesday, December 27th, 2011 through Saturday, December 31st, 2011. Tickets will go on sale to the public on Wednesday, August 31st for $35.00 General Admission, $65.00 New Year’s Eve and $185.00 for the 5-Day Pass.

The Dang-It Bobbys Release New Album 'Big Trouble'

The Dang-it Bobbys, whose sound The New York Times described as “lovely riffs on bluegrass, country and folk music,” will release on September 20 its sophomore album, BIG TROUBLE, the follow-up to its 2009 debut, SOMETHING IN THE AIR. While many of the band’s riffs are lovely, there is much more: ingenious combinations of musical styles as well as smart, funny lyrics and a special energy that is downright contagious.

The Dang-It Bobbys will play the CD Release Show at 10 p.m. Saturday, September 24, at Rockwood Music Hall, 196 Allen St. in New York City. Complimentary Cover; information: 212.477.4155.

The Dang-it Bobbys, led by multi-instrumentalist Kris Bauman, explore what the word “Americana” truly means on the upcoming release, which features musicians from the New York City bluegrass, jazz, rock and country music scene, The band is a real melting pot of American music, showcasing the talents of blues/funk guitarist Luca Benedetti (ulu), jazz/classical violinist Alan Grubner (Henry Threadgill, Howard Levy), jazz bassist Chris Higgins (Pat Metheny), bluegrass mandolinist Dan Marcus (Norah Jones), and the 2001 RockyGrass Dobro champion, Todd Livingston (Earl Scruggs).
The Dang-it Bobbys’ unorthodox background is clearly evident on the autobiographical title track “Big Trouble,” a cautionary tale for would-be travelers to Mexico, juxtaposing a bluegrass style 4/4 and English lyrics with a traditional Mexican 3/4 feel and “gringo-ized” Spanish. On “Hey Guess What,” the cyclical form, heart-wrenching harmonica and mantric snare drum provide the backdrop to a mother’s attempt to come clean to her daughter. “Heading Out,” an unconventional ballad, showcases the band’s range of both intensity and tenderness.
The Dang-it Bobbys garner influence from all facets of American music, from bluegrass and country to jazz and blues. It is this flavorful stew of styles, coupled with the artistry of the adroit musicians featured on BIG TROUBLE, that give The Dang-it Bobbys an unquestionably American sound.
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Upcoming Performances:
September 24, Rockwood Music Hall, New York
October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, Pete’s Candy Store, Brooklyn

Elephant Revival & Steep Canyon Rangers at Boulder Theater

Z2 Entertainment is proud to present Elephant Revival and Steep Canyon Rangers at the Boulder Theater on Saturday, November 19th, 2011.  Tickets go on sale Friday, August 12th for $24.00 in advance and $27.00 day of show.

Elephant Revival

The neo-acoustic transcendental folk quintet from Nederland Colorado, is touring in support of their new album, ‘Break in the Clouds’ released on Ruff Shod Records, an independent label created by Chad Stokes of State Radio. The album was released regionally on Nov. 22nd 2010 with a full national release scheduled for June 14th 2011. ‘Break In the Clouds was produced by David Tiller of Taarka. Their sophomore effort expands upon the group’s multi–genre musical approach, threading together dynamic instrumentation and a diverse rhythmic sound while exploring the depths of all five of the groups’ gifted songwriters. The album debuted at #2 on the iTunes Singer-Songwriter chart, and was featured as a new and noteworthy independent release. “Break In the Clouds,” was also the top album sold in Colorado for four weeks in a row, and top radio spins for a Colorado artist in Colorado for the month of January 2011.

Steep Canyon Rangers

The past year has taken the Steep Canyon Rangers to new heights.  In March 2011, the band released its first collaborative record with Steve Martin, “Rare Bird Alert,” which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Bluegrass Chart and at #43 on the Billboard Top 200.  In 2010, the latest solo record from Steep Canyon Rangers, “Deep In The Shade,” remained in the Bluegrass Top 10 on Billboard for 18 weeks.  While headlining festivals like MerleFest and Bonnaroo alongside Steve Martin with Steep Canyon Rangers include “Late Night with David Letterman,” “The Colbert Report” & “Austin City Limits.”

With smooth vocals, smart songwriting, ferocious instrumentals and jaw-dropping harmony, the Rangers are bringing Bluegrass to music lovers across the USA and around the world.  Steep Canyon Rangers are:  Mike Guggino (mandolin/vocals), Charles Humphrey III (bass/vocals), Woody Platt (guitar/lead vocals), Nicky Sanders (fiddle/vocals), and Graham Sharp (banjo/vocals)

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Elephant Revival & Steep Canyon Rangers

Boulder Theater

Saturday, November 19th, 2011

Doors: 8:00 pm

Show Time: 9:00 pm


Greensky Bluegrass Offers Free Five Song EP Download from New Album, Handguns

An independent band nationally-recognized for their live show, Greensky Bluegrass defy the boundaries of acoustic music with their self-produced fourth studio effort, Handguns, released on October 4.

This new studio offering is a brave expression of what separates their original music from the rest of the bluegrass genre. For years, while the Kalamazoo, MI band has been gaining recognition for their high energy live show, Handguns proves that they can handle themselves in the studio as well.

Recent internet chatter would have you believe that the entire music industry is lost in a vast and inescapable dust bowl; everything that was once thriving and sustainable has now dried into a mere husk of what it once was. But lest we forget, bands used to make their living on the road, playing in front of new audiences every night. Albums were something that were recorded in between tours and then sold on the road to help keep gas in the tank. It’s the way it was and it looks like the way it might become, but the music never stops.


Handguns was recorded in between tours this winter as the band holed up in a studio in Lansing, committing the songs straight-to-tape on the exact recording console that originally birthed Lynyrd Skynyrd’s infamous track "Free Bird” decades earlier. Matching the warmth of the analog sound, vintage microphones were utilized alongside state-of-the-art studio equipment to create a truly blended and artful sonic experience.

This overlap of traditional and forward-thinking runs throughout most every aspect of Greensky Bluegrass. The opening cut is titled "Don't Lie", and the result of "Handguns" is just that, a collection of songs that speak true. Greensky doesn't boast to know it all, but they don't restrain, letting the listener in on the trials and triumphs of their journey.

"Should have been a farmer and blamed it on the weather, with soiled hands and a tired back to show for my efforts," sings Hoffman on the album's title track.  Modest maybe, but as the listener continues, they are relieved that the band did not trade their instruments for plows or cubicles.

Greensky has continued to gain national momentum since they won the Telluride Bluegrass Festival’s coveted Band Competition in 2006 and have been invited to play at this summer’s Northwest String Summit, Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival and NPR’s Mountain Stage, while also playing at Bonnaroo, Bumbershoot and The Hangout Festivals. They’re a bluegrass band but they’re not. Bluegrass doesn’t have distortion, or horns for that matter. Handguns does.

Of course, none of this happened overnight or without sacrifice. Greensky Bluegrass is just as much a grit of the asphalt band as they are a salt of the earth band, having played over 160 shows nationwide, every year, for the last six years. It was by winning over folks on the band’s never-ending tour that got them where they are today – not by a label, syndicated radio play or being on the shelves at big box stores.

As a bonus for all, Greensky Bluegrass is giving away half of Handguns for free. This five-song Handguns EP is available on the Greensky Bluegrass website for anyone who wants to listen.

The motive? To be heard.  For musicians, the model has changed with satellite radio where the F word flies free and name-your-own-price record releases. One thing remains true, however: when the music is great, people will listen.

Della Mae To Release Debut Album

Della Mae, the all-woman bluegrass quartet out of Boston that brings acoustic grit and twang to town with no apologies, will release its debut full-length album in September.

Della Mae features the 2009-2010 National Fiddle Champion Kimber Ludiker, powerful mandolinist Jenni Lyn Gardner, seasoned bassist Amanda Kowalski, and the sweet, sultry vocals and driving acoustic guitar of Celia Woodsmith.

The band will release its debut full-length album, I BUILT THIS HEART, in September, with all-star guests Alison Brown, Laurie Lewis, Brittany Haas (Crooked Still) and Emma Beaton (Joy Kills Sorrow). The album was produced by Austin Nevins (Josh Ritter) and engineered by Erick Jaskowiack. Advance copies are for sale at upcoming shows.

Vintage Guitar magazine describes Della Mae’s sound as “straightforward, expertly executed music that stays true to its inspirations.” The band’s musical style seamlessly blends years of experience with traditional mountain music and modern singer-songwriter sensibilities. With award-winning instrumental abilities and a reputation for energetic live performances, the four women of Della Mae are turning heads.

In the words of master mandolinist Mike Marshall, “These gals can get down and aren’t messing around.”

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Della Mae’s Upcoming Schedule:
July 23: Club Passim, Cambridge, Mass. ( Laurie Lewis & Tom Rozum open)
July 30: RockyGrass Bluegrass Festival, Lyons, Colo.
August 12-13: Saddleback Mountain Bluegrass Festival, Saddleback, Maine
August 27: Newport Art Festival, Newport, R.I. (More info TBA)
November 5-6: Laurie Blue Bluegrass Festival, Prince Edward Island, Canada
December 1-18: Bluegrass Jamboree, Germany & Switzerland

Steep Canyon Rangers Join Steve Martin At America’s Biggest 4th of July Party

The Steep Canyon Rangers brought America's music to America's Day, teaming with entertainment icon Steve Martin to bring serious bluegrass with a comedic twist to the Fourth of July Celebration at The National Mall in Washington DC. Their high-energy performance, part of a star-studded Independence Day event, marks the year's highest profile and most-watched bluegrass concert, the latest milestone for The Steep Canyon Rangers in a year that has included two Presidential concerts!

Performing for almost half a million people gathered on The Mall, as well as millions more at home tuned onto PBS' annual presentation of A Capitol Fourth, Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers debuted their new MP3 single, "Me and Paul Revere." The original song, based on Martin's historical research, sets the record straight amid all the recent confusion and controversy. Sung by Steep Canyon Ranger guitarist Woody Platt, "Me and Paul Revere" tells the story of that famous ride from the point of view of Revere's horse, Brown Beauty. The song has become the official show closer of Steve Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers' 50-plus date national tour in support of their recent celebrated CD, Rare Bird Alert (Rounder), featuring guest appearances by Paul McCartney and The Dixie Chicks.

Part of a patriotic evening that ranged from first-generation rock 'n' roll legend Little Richard to Glee star Matthew Morrison, Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers turned Independence Day into Jubilation Day. Their hard-driving set had folks dancing all over mall, all captured by PBS' cameras. Along with his trademark comical emcee work, Martin displayed his versatility on the banjo, performing both Scruggs style and clawhammer pieces. The Steep Canyon Rangers took the spotlight for the finale, showcasing Nicky Sanders' explosive improvisations on the fiddlers' national anthem, "The Orange Blossom Special."

The Steep Canyon Rangers' appearance on A Capitol Fourth is the latest episode in a remarkable year of working with Martin to bring bluegrass to new audiences at such high-profile, non-traditional venues as Carnegie Hall and headlining Bonnaroo, New Orleans Jazzfest, The Newport Folk Festival and Merlefest. SCR also just signed with Rounder Records, the premier bluegrass record label. Their partnership further establishes Steep Canyon Rangers as an extraordinary presence on the bluegrass and roots music scene, joining the likes of other Rounder artists such as Alison Krauss, Bela Fleck, Mary Chapin Carpenter and Robert Plant. SCR will release a new album with Rounder in 2012.

Sept. 9-10, The Steep Canyon Rangers will present their annual Mountain Song Festival at the world-renowned Brevard Music Center in Brevard, NC. With previous headliners like Doc Watson, Sam Bush, Del McCoury, David Holt, David Grisman Quintet and Steve Martin, the festival has raised over $190,000 for the Transylvania County Boys & Girls Club.

"Me and Paul Revere" is available at www.steepcanyon.com, where you can also find Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers' "Jubilation Day" video and a complete SCR tour schedule. For Mountain Song Festival tickets and information: www.mountainsongfestival.com. The archive of the PBS broadcast is located here: http://video.pbs.org/video/2042635078.

Ralph Stanley & The Clinch Mountain Boys @ Boulder Theater | 7/10

For over 6 decades he has become one of the most influential artists of all time. In 2002 Ralph Stanley received his first ever Grammy Award for Best Male Country Vocal Performance of the haunting rendition of “Oh Death” that was featured in the movie and soundtrack of “O Brother Where Art Thou”. Dr. Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys are still touring a 100 plus dates per year, and enjoying his time at home with his lovely wife “Jimmi” of nearly 50 years. Dr. Ralph Stanley is not only an American treasure but and international Icon.

Sierra Hull: Boundaries—age, genre or otherwise—don’t hamper an artist like Sierra. She’s already earned considerable respect in the bluegrass world, the IBMA’s voting members having nominated her for no fewer than five awards over three years—there’s a good chance she’ll be the first woman to win the mandolin category. Matt Glaser—head of Berklee’s American Roots Music Program—put it this way: “She has no limitations as a musician.” Daybreak is certainly a noteworthy arrival; you can’t help but feel it’s also just the beginning.

More Info / Buy Tickets

Dead Man Winter at Fox Theatre | 8/19/11

Z2 Entertainment is proud to present Dead Man Winter featuring members of Trampled By Turtles at the Fox Theatre on Friday, August 19th.  Tickets go on sale Friday, June 24th for $8.00 in advance and $10.00 day of show.

During a time when I was now fully unemployed and sleeping indoors only by the good graces of friends willing to share a couch, and the loss of my instruments was more than a little devastating.  Of the few possessions I still had, the one that now gained top billing was a cheap acoustic guitar collecting dust in a small room on Duluth’s central hillside.  A few other musicians in town had similar instruments collecting a similar dust and we started what was our first acoustic band, Trampled by Turtles.

We’ve been able to stay together ever since but lately, the drums and amps ringing in the back of my head have been getting louder and the desire to play, write, and record in a way removed from what I’ve been up to has been getting stronger.  Dead Man Winter was born out of these things.

I’d been renting a studio in Minneapolis, I set to the task of making a record.  My partner in the dirty and thankless work of recording was local engineer, songwriter, producer, guitarslinger, and master of the vibe Erik Koskinen.  We spent countless blissful hours exploring guitars, amps, mics, and players in the worn-in beauty and sanctity of Realphonic Studios.  Without a doubt, countless more hours could have been spent but you can’t begin work on the next record until you put out the current one, so here it is.

The musicians that play on this album are dear friends – there’s not a one of whom would I’d hesitate to trust a song that I hold dear.  In the end, the whole experience has reconnected me to that couch-surfing kid in Duluth trying to figure out what to do next in this big, terrifying, wonderful world and now, with a few more years behind me, it’s refreshing.

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Dead Man Winter

featuring members of Trampled By Turtles

Fox Theatre

Friday, August 19th

Doors:  8:30 pm

Show Time:  9:00 pm

Moody Bluegrass Two Featuring Vince Gill, Ricky Skaggs, Sam Bush & More Available Now

Following 2004’s critically and commercially acclaimed tribute to the legendary Moody Blues, the GRAMMY nominated Moody Bluegrass, along with the highly successful Moody Bluegrass Live, Nashville’s finest have come together again to honor the Moody Blues with Moody Bluegrass Two…Much Love released nationwide this week!

“We have had so many cover versions of our songs over the years, but none have stood out like Moody Bluegrass. Nashville's most outstanding musicians have once again brought a new dimension to our songs,“ said Ray Thomas, co-founder of the Moody Blues.

Producer David Harvey returns for this second volume, which perfectly blends the brilliant songwriting of the Moody Blues with the bluegrass sounds of mandolins, banjos and even clogging. The collection of bluegrass covers includes Moody Blues members Justin Hayward, John Lodge and Graeme Edge, as well as band co-founders Mike Pinder and Ray Thomas and a wide assortment of Music City’s finest including Vince Gill, Ricky SkaggsSam Bush and more.

The record spans the entire Moody Blues catalogue, and includes fan favorites such as "Tuesday Afternoon" and "I Know You're Out There." Moody Bluegrass Two translates the Moody Blues’ original songs seamlessly and much like the first bluegrass tribute, the beauty of the original Moody Blues music shines.

Moody Bluegrass Two also features the talents of Tim O'Brien, Harley Allen, Peter Rowan, Jan Harvey, Ronnie Bowman, Emma Harvey, Larry Cordle, John Cowan, Jon Randall, David Harvey, Tim May, Andy Hall and Andy Todd.

For more information visit www.moodybluegrass.com.