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Thursday, February 26,2015

Getting old, then new again

How theNEWDEAL got its jam back

By Dave Kirby
Jamie Shields, keyboardist and founder of theNEWDEAL, was enjoying a break from the brain-lock cold last week. Well, what passes for a break from it in Toronto, anyway. “Yeah, it’s only 10 below today,” he said with a laugh. Well, all right then, time for a vacation. So what passes for a vacation for Shields is taking his jamtronica trio out again for a swing through Colorado (where it isn’t much warmer these days), Texas and the East Coast for morsel-sized bits of road work. Born in the early days of jamtronica, the- NEWDEAL had been one of the genre’s more spontaneous, less mannered outfits, deeply invested in euphoric galactic anthems, layers of Shields’ synth colliding and sparkling across a furious rhythm section.
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Thursday, February 26,2015

Hello, GoodBye

Bidding Farewell to a long-time friend Bill Vielehr —a Rembrance

By Dave Kirby
The BIFF Chairman and longtime Boulder metal sculptor left this planet unexpectedly last October — a shock to the system for his staggeringly wide circle of friends, including this writer — but Kathy Beeck, BIFF co-founder and a friend of Vielehr’s...
Thursday, February 19,2015

Winning musicianship

Wood Brothers may not have a shelf of Grammys, but they’ve got a different take on success

By Dave Kirby
To be completely candid, we missed most of the Grammy Awards a couple of weeks ago, except for the segment where the ever camera-shy Madonna seemed to be commanding a legion of worshipping satyrs, a spectacle made only more surreal with the sound off at our local gym before expressionless, lycraclad Boulderites pumping away on their ellipticals.
Thursday, February 5,2015

moe. blows out a few candles

The band gives their moe.down festival a rest — for now

By Dave Kirby
moe.down did carry an early repute as one of the essential stops on the groove scene circuit, reinforcing the notion that moe. was one of the primary stanchions in the last two decades’ jam band movement. That vestigial tag continues to follow the band around, at least in some of the press and promoter blather around them, and it’s probably misplaced.
Thursday, January 29,2015

Eminence Ensemble works hard for the music

Band does DIY tour-booking and festival creation

By Dave Kirby
We had made the mistaken assumption that our inability to get Eminence Ensemble drummer Tanner Bardin by phone last Tuesday, bouncing off a full-and-not-accepting voicemail box, was a ski-hooky thing.
Wednesday, December 31,2014

YMSB — One Bite at a Time

Dave Johnston talks about Yonder 2.0, New Year’s resolutions and a new album

By Dave Kirby
Banjoist Dave Johnston knows a little about this, as Yonder Mountain String Band found themselves in the position this year of morphing the structure of their much beloved four piece with the departure of mando player and co-founder Jeff Austin in April.
Tuesday, December 30,2014

Here and there

Big Head Todd dishes on the fast life

By Dave Kirby
Todd Park Mohr was enjoying a little holiday season downtime a few weeks ago when we caught up to him after a dinner out in Littleton; he kept apologizing as his cell phone nervously straddled mobile and Bluetooth car modes. Mohr is a guy on the go; even his devices have a little trouble keeping up with him.
Thursday, October 30,2014

Adrian Belew’s killer app

All things considered, Adrian Belew has had a pretty weird year

By Dave Kirby
After amicably stepping away from Trent Reznor’s reformed Nine Inch Nails project in June 2013 and being politely excluded from Robert Fripp’s reformed King Crimson later that year, esteemed guitarist and sonic disrupter Adrian Belew now finds himself currently on tour with his long-tenured Power Trio, and poised to unleash his experimental project called Flux, a music and visual art app that he’s been working on for five years.
Thursday, September 4,2014

Berta Rojas carries torch for tradition

Acclaimed Paraguayan classical guitarist makes a rare area appearance

By Dave Kirby
What may be surprising about the track, though, is that the string and percussion ensemble backing up Rojas’ guitar, The Recycled Instruments Orchestra of Cateura, is comprised of kids from Asunción, Paraguay, playing instruments recovered from, and in some cases constructed from, garbage heaps in the Paraguayan capital.
Thursday, August 14,2014

Is Eric Johnson learning to relax?

The storied guitar virtuoso talks about living in the moment and blowing out a few candles

By Dave Kirby
Anyone following the career of Austinbased guitarist Eric Johnson has learned to reconcile the guitarist’s singular fretboard mastery with his sluggish pace of releasing recordings.
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