This past weekend I had the opportunity to check out the very first Vertex Music Festival in Buena Vista, Colorado. Overall, it was a relaxing weekend filled with music, friends, and the beautiful outdoors Colorado is widely known for. While I was there I took some time to sit down with a few different artists to chat about the music, Colorado, and the culture that encompasses their lives. The first artist I spoke with is one of my current favorites and I was really looking forward to it as I’ve been fortunate enough to see him a couple other times this year. Jackson, or better known as his stage name, Big Wild, hails from California, but loves playing music in CO. Here’s what he had to say to us before his set at Vertex.
Summer Brew Fest has been held annually on the 4th Friday and Saturday of July at Mile High Station since 2009 The taps of 50 different microbreweries were flowing in Denver Summer Brew Fest 2016. This event benefits Swallow Hill Music, a nonprofit community for musicians and music lovers who appreciate the ability of music to bring people together. The Denver Summer Brew Fest satisfied all of the senses with live music and multiple food trucks selling pretzels, sausages, turkey legs, pizza & more! We had the privilege to cover this celebration of tasty brews on Friday the 22nd, with a large majority of the breweries coming from Colorado.
Cloak & Dagger music festival is self-described as a “small music festival focusing on music, and music alone.” While it is still relatively young, we’d argue that the festival itself is anything but small. This year marks only the third incarnation of the festival here in Denver (they had an event in Albuquerque earlier this year), but when past lineups include such dance music heavy hitters as Four Tet, the Gaslamp Killer, Thomas Jack, Justin Martin, and Cashmere Cat….well you get the point. Calling it small is just an exercise in modesty.
Vans Warped Tour made its stop in Denver last Sunday on the Pepsi Center Grounds. The longest running traveling tour in the nation has seen the rise of punk and alternative music’s greats and continues to be one of every band’s dream gigs. In the past I remember it being very different; lineups used to be a bunch of seemingly nobodies and then mega-headliner acts to close the night. Fond memories of Warped Tour 2009 (the last time I went) spring to mind when Underoath massacred the stage after endless mini circle pits and bands I didn’t know.
Save the date, Cultureheads: Saturday August 6th. Also remember the venue: Price Davis Studios. This art gallery, which is located in the heart of the RiNo district at 31st and Larimer, is the perfect space to host a celebration of the rich cultural tapestry that is Denver’s burgeoning street art scene, which is exactly what this party is all about: New Amsterdam Sprits wants us to know that this is our town.
The guys in Terravita are no strangers to the electronic music scene. Rising out of the Boston rave scene in the early 2000s, they initially started out as a drum n’ bass act, but have diversified along with the scene….incorporating elements of dubstep and trap into their mixes since. They’re veterans of the festival circuit at this point as well, with appearances at the likes of EDC and Shambhala among their credits. Oddly enough, the last time they played here in Colorado was at a much smaller venue in comparison to Red Rocks….we had the chance to ask Jon and Chris about that, as well as a variety of other…..conversation pieces.
The post 2000 era of sample based electronic music is thriving. Artists like Pretty Lights, DJ Shadow, Z Trip, Girl Talk and more have made an industry for themselves by pushing the boundaries of production with well produced sample laced tunes. We took some time to sit down with Denver based producer Fun Da Mentalist on the eve of the release of his new full length self titled LP. He has been producing for over ten years and it shows on this eight song opus of sound. Three years of studio time after his previous release ‘The Ben Franklenstein Monster’ have shown to be a very productive and transformative period of time for the young and aspiring producer making him sure to be an artist to look for in 2016. The full album can be found on Soundcloud here: http://bit.ly/2aycsUX
The Ben Franklenstein Monster can be found here: https://fundamentalist.bandcamp.com/
Free Downloads on both and co-produced by Denver’s own Bill Goldstein, Dwight Forcey, and Tyler Gettel aka TKettle.
This past weekend we had the honor of covering the inaugural edition of Divide Music Festival. Set in the beautiful mountain town of Fraser, CO just past Winter Park Resort, Divide offered some of the best music of our generation: featuring a carefully crafted lineup that served as a perfect blend of old and new. We saw performances by the Cold War Kids, JR JR, Saint Motel, Bleachers, The Coteries, Paper Lights, Cake, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Passion Pit, Kid Cudi, The Fray, Miike Snow, and Blondie. Filling out the lineup were some of Colorado's’ best up and comers like Edison, Modern Suspects, and local hip hop act Splyt. We enjoyed a plethora of outdoor activities from camping to hiking, as the festival grounds are bordered by the Continental Divide and surrounded by 360 degree views of Colorado’s beautiful Rocky Mountains. When it was all said and done, to put it simply, our experience was one that we hope to duplicate for years to come.
Cement legs and fatigue. Those two words best describe how I felt upon entering Day 3 of Global Dance Festival. I am all too familiar with this feeling having played sports all my life, nothing new. However I am not going for glory on the field; I have spent the past 2 days crawling up and down Red Rocks. As I approach the press entrance on day 3, I realize just how much this weekend has been lifting me up and dropping me dirty. I give a quick moment of silence to my calves which will assuredly become paste by the end of this wild ride.
One of the things that we are fortunate to do a lot of here at Colorado Culture is interview music artists from around the world about a variety of different topics. No matter the artist however, we’ve got a stock question that we like to ask everyone, mainly because it always prompts such diverse and interesting answers. The question is (since we’re Colorado CULTURE) “what does culture mean to you?” And it’s a bit of a two-parter, this first part just concerns defining the term itself, and the second part involves defining it as it applies to Colorado. For the second part, the answer (more often than not) contains something to do with weed and/or bass music. Which is something we’ve always found to be a bit curious. No one hardly ever mentions beer.
Once again I walked into Colorado Springs small town venue, Rawkus, on July 15th not knowing what to expect. Once again I was seeing an artist I had never really heard much about before. Once again I was absolutely taken back by the performance I witnessed.
Photo by Mike DeVita
As many of us head bangers know there’s absolutely nothing better than whipping your hair around trying to break your necks to dubstep, which is exactly what the crowd was doing during Barely Alive’s set at Rawkus in Colorado Springs this past Saturday.
Question: what do Bassnectar, Hieroglyphics, and the String Cheese Incident have in common? Give up? Well aside from being some of the heaviest hitters in their respective genres of music, they also all happen to share representation at the same talent agency: Madison House.