Rowdy, raucous, and filled to the brim. That’s how Lawrence, KS rings in a new year. Split Lip Rayfield killed it with a sold-out show at The Bottleneck for New Year’s Eve joined by Granny Tweed and The Sunflower Colonels. With plenty of champagne to go around and barely any standing room, navigating this crowd was a task in and of itsel
The String Cheese Incident celebrated its 20th anniversary as a Boulder band during a three-day New Year’s Eve run at the 1st Bank Center. Out of all the big name jambands that got their start in the ‘80s and ‘90s, I can say with certitude that SCI has evolved the most from its incipient incarnation. On its first night, it opened with a Sgt.
New Year’s Eve 2013 was going to be a special night for the Colorado jamband scene before any notes were even played. String Cheese Incident was about to tie a bow on their 20th anniversary as a Boulder band. Yonder Mountain String Band would soon cap off their 15th year as a Nederland quartet. And for a certain faction of music lovers, recreational marijuana would become legal to purchase at the stroke of midnight.
Last September a devastating “100 Year Flood” about fifty years overdue devastated parts of Colorado, in particular Boulder County. The historic town of Lyons, a beautiful gateway town to Rocky Mountain National Park and precious wilderness was affected worse than most. The St. Vrain River and other waterways turned the town into a riverbed, destroying and displacing many homes and lives. One of the worst hits was the Planet Bluegrass Ranch. Festivarians celebrated their 41st Rockygrass Festival last summer a little over a month later the property was underwater.
Colorado’s String Cheese Incident is one of the few touring bands that draws so many loyal followers regardless of how rarely they actually perform. Cheese was touring over a hundred days a year in the early 2000s, as nationally traveled as any, with trips to the Caribbean, Costa Rica, and Mexico sprinkled in. As the guys grew up, their families and different musical ambitions made rigorous touring less possible.
How often is it that you are lucky enough to witness a brand new group of already legendary powerhouse musicians premier before a live audience? Maybe some are more fortunate than I, but last Friday at the Boulder Theatre was a first for me. Boulder audiences were fortunate enough to catch the premier performance of a brand new folk rock/Americana “super-group” Hardworking Americans.
When bands do five-night runs, the first night is usually expected to be, more or less, the warm-up night. Yonder Mountain String Band had no such things in mind as they laid down a blistering show to a packed Boulder Theater on Friday night that set the bar pretty high for the remaining four nights.
Here we have—singer-songwriter Todd Snider (usually a solo fellow) and bassist Dave Schools (Widespread Panic) leading the charge, Neal Casal (guitarist for Ryan Adams, Chris Robinson); Chad Staehly (of Great American Taxi) on keys, and King Lincoln drummer Duane Trucks (nephew of Butch Trucks, who worked the set for the Allman Brothers, if you want a reach of a tie-in)—the Hard Working Americans. It’s a solid crew.
If part of your plan for Warren Haynes’ 25th Christmas Jam was to get in town early to have a leisurely night Thursday at the Asheville Music Hall, Roosevelt Collier and Friends threw a pleasant kink in the plans. Kinks usually get a bad rap but in this case, this evening’s kink was very kind. The Asheville Music Hall is right in the same area as all your favorite Asheville entertainment establishments at 31 Patton Avenue. If you have yet to visit Asheville, you will find the ‘Strangers stopping strangers, just to shake their hand.” f