Weekly Top Ten August 19, 2015

Singing the Blues Away

Safe to say, a great time was had by all at last weekend’s Sommer Fest presented by Rocky Mountain Highway and Edelweiss German Restaurant – thanks to everyone who came out to volunteer or simply just enjoy German beer, food and culture.  Rumors are circulating that next year may include reggae music – we’ll make sure to let you know as soon as details are available.

Next up is the Commonwheel Artists Festival over Labor Day weekend at Memorial Park in Manitou Springs, where we are proud to present the Pikes Peak Brewing Beer Garden in front of the music stage, which will showcase no fewer than 19 talented local bands over three days.

Family Elephant’s Joe McGarry at MeadowGrass 2015
Photo courtesy of Christian Murdock

The lineup includes four acts you may have discovered at MeadowGrass this year – Woodshed Red, Redraw the Farm, Radio London’s Family Elephant, and Rough Age.  Please mark your calendars now and plan to stop by to say hello and enjoy a tasty microbrew.  We are also seeking volunteers to work on the Zero Waste program – if you are interested in volunteering please e-mail steve@rockymountainhighway.org.

While preparing this week’s newsletter, we discovered that there are a lot of blues concert on tap for the coming week.   Details on some are included in this week’s Top 10 below – others are listed at the Pikes Peak Concert Calendar:

1.  Steve Earle & the Dukes with The Mastersons and King Cardinal, Chico Basin Ranch, Sat Aug 22 (6 pm, $35 adv, $40 day of show – cash only).  Serial husband Steve Earle returns to Eastern El Paso to headline a concert in the Bell Park cottonwood grove, “underneath the light of mason jar chandeliers.”  Steve is touring in support of his brand new blues album, Terraplane.  Camping opens at noon on Saturday; alcohol is BYO with food vendors including Front Range BBQ, Slug & Chug and Long I Pies.  Best of all, the concert is a fundraiser for education programs at Chico Basin Ranch.

2.  Pat Donohue, Black Forest Community Center, Fri Aug 21 (7 pm, $15 BRAS members, $20 non-members).  This finger pickin,’ Grammy winnin’ veteran who spent twenty years with the house band on A Prairie Home Companion visits Black Forest for a special concert presented by  the Black Rose Acoustic Society.

3.  Peter Yarrow, Tri-Lakes Center for the Arts (Palmer Lake), Fri Aug 21 (7 pm, SOLD OUT). We regret listing this concert with the wrong date last week, but maybe it helped sell the show out: Folk yeah!  The outspoken anti-bullying activist and founding member of the classic trio Peter, Paul and Mary will delight the audience with an evening of conversation and song.

4.  Kim Simmonds & Savoy Brown, Memorial Hall (Pueblo), Sat Aug 22 (8 pm, $26, $32, $46).  Originally known as the Savoy Brown Blues Band, these pioneering rockers are in the midst of a 50th Anniversary Tour – Still Live After 50 Years.

5.  The Lonesome Heroes with The Whale Tales, Front Range Barbeque, Wed Aug 19 (7:30 pm, free).  Austin, TX’s Cosmic American band The Lonesome Heroes are touring the West in support of a brand new album, Can’t Stand Still, which was recently named “One of Austin’s Best Discs of 2015” in a review by The Austin Chronicle.   This will mark their first performance at the west side’s favorite music venue, and they will be joined by the Boulder-based Whale Tales.

6.  Davina & the Vagabonds, The Gold Room, Sat Aug 22 (8 pm, $15 adv, $20 day of show).  Keyboardist and band leader Davina Sowers presents an evening “filled with New Orleans charm, Memphis soul swagger, dark theatrical moments that evoke Kurt Weill and tender gospel passages.”  That’s a lot of territory to cover but she pulls it off with verve – as will no doubt be showcased on the upcoming live release Nicollet & 10th.

7.  Ana Popovic with Austin Young Band, Stargazers Theatre, Fri Aug 21 (8 pm, $15 adv, $20 day of show).  Looking for shred?  Look no further than Ana Popovic, also known as “The Serbian Scorcher,” and her Fender Telecaster.  Hometown hero Austin Young is no slouch in the shred department, either.

8.  Be Calm Honcho, Ivywild School, Sun Aug 23 (8 pm, $7).  This two year old band self-describes as “a quartet of sugared, salty hams, living in San Francisco with a lumpy lunch sack of strange strengths.”  Catch them on the “In The Heat of the Night Tour” fresh from performances at the Higher Ground Music Festival in Denver.

9. Tiffany Christopher, Front Range Barbeque, Thurs Aug 20 (7:30 pm, free).  This “Alternative Country Rock” girl from Arkansas is currently on a five-week tour of Colorado and New Mexico.  Over the past decade Tiffany has written over 100 songs and released three full-length albums, including the most recent – Salty Sweet – in 2012.

10.  Joshua Mather, Jives Coffee Lounge, Fri Aug 21 (7:30 pm, free).  Hailing from Fort Worth, solo alternative rocker Joshua released a five-song EP titled Unstoppable earlier this year.

When you fill out your ballot for The Indy’s Best Of Awards, we sincerely hope that you will consider voting for the MeadowGrass Music Festival for “Best Music Festival” and “Best Annual Outdoor Fest” – and for “Best Radio Station” we recommend all volunteer community powered radio station KCMJ, where you can hear The Grass Roots Revival on Tuesdays from 2-4 pm, Wednesdays from 8-10 pm and Thursdays from 1-3 pm.

Be well, and remember that any and all errors are the sole responsibility of:

Steve Harris, Executive Director
Rocky Mountain Highway