Top

news

Stories

 

The Show(case) Must Go On!

Originally from Texas and born into a family of musicians (Mom was a singer/songwriter of considerable note, and Dad was a bluegrass guitarist), MLE found inspiration in everything from Freak Chakra and Hardkiss to Madonna and her father's bluegrass licks. She's been mixing for friends since age thirteen and began spinning vinyl in public around seven years ago. Mainly through self-promotion, MLE began stepping up her appearances in the state the past four years.

Some have called her the "breakbeat goddess" for her personal blend of funky breaks and hard-rolling bass lines. The style earned her the Vinyl gig, as well as appearances spinning on the same bill as Paul Oakenfold, DJ Icey, DJ Ani and Supastar DJ Dimitri from Dee-lite. She now serves up her danceably dirty house with a self-proclaimed "feminine touch" every Tuesday and Saturday night. MLE has produced three mixes in the past two years and is also creating her own music. In addition to her nights at Vinyl, she's a staple at the Burning Man Festival and has played almost every major club in Denver and Boulder. She can be seen regularly around Colorado, from Vail to Pueblo and everywhere in between. Goddess lives. -- Carpenter

BOB MONTGOMERY/
PETE OLSTAD BIG BAND
NOMINATED IN JAZZ/SWING
Big bands, though usually associated with swing, have a rich tradition in the otherwise small-group orthodoxy of post-bop jazz. Charles Mingus and Oliver Nelson are just two of the many great bandleaders who used larger ensembles to expand the range and emotion of the jazz vocabulary. Add Bob Montgomery and Pete Olstad to that list.

"The appeal of a big band as a player is that seventeen or eighteen musicians can come together and play as creatively as a small band, but with the added electricity and energy," Montgomery says. "We also play in small bands of four or five and love the creativity of those groups, but there is something special about a large group of musicians thinking together, listening to each other and working musically in tandem that creates a musical excitement."

Montgomery and Olstad, both trumpeters, organized the group two years ago. "When Pete and I first decided to put it together, the word got out quickly. Most of the top musicians in Colorado called us, wanting to be in the band," says Montgomery. The list is long and auspicious: Tom Baker, Al Hood, Garner Pruitt, John Davis, Jeff Jenkins, Pete Lewis, Clare Church, Wade Sander, Al Hermann, Alex Heitlinger, Jeff Young, Ken Walked, Pete Sommer, Jayn Pettingill, Mike Marlier and Jerry Noonan. Their collective credentials could choke a tuba: The players have served time in the bands of everyone from Clark Terry to Tommy Dorsey to Quincy Jones. Olstad is a member of Tom Jones's touring and recording group, and Montgomery has won numerous awards over the years as both a musician and a music educator.

The band doesn't have a CD released yet, though there are plans to assemble a compilation of its live performances sometime in the future. In the meantime, the ensemble should be experienced in its natural habitat: live, in concert, a synergistic collective of soloists all breathing, thinking and expressing itself as one. -- Heller

MATTHEW MOON
NOMINATED IN SINGER/SONGWRITER
Moving through drummers at an alarming rate -- he's worked with seventeen skinsmen in six years -- Matthew Moon has been performing in Denver since 1990. Having first distinguished himself in the singer/songwriter category, Moon -- who boasts a large catalogue of original compositions -- pooled a larger group of musicians to take his sound to the next level. And despite personnel challenges, his show goes on.

"Our drummer situation got to be kind of joke after a while," he says. "The main thing, though, is to not lose steam. You gotta keep it going, no matter what. Even if you have to do the gig with a xylophone player and a tuba for bass."

His ensemble's debut disc, 1999's More Than I Can Give, featured help from some of the taller talent of the Denver music scene: Hazel Miller, Jake Schroeder from Opie Gone Bad, Yvonne Brown and Coco Brown all contributed vocals. The Hate Fuck Trio's Sam DeStefano plucked banjo on one cut, and drum virtuoso Kenny James contributed his timekeeping skills.

A consummate renaissance man, Moon studied at Boston's prestigious Berklee College of Music and lists influences as broad as Michael Hedges, John Coltrane, the Indigo Girls, Bruce Hornsby, Paul McCartney, Sheryl Crow and Rufus Wainwright. Known for penning moving love songs, he culls his material from real life, as exemplified on his most recent releases, 2002's I Thought U Should Know and this year's XOM.

"As far as writing, I am mainly inspired when my relationships are in the shitter," he says. "Normally, one bad relationship can render a whole record, if not more."

Let's hope he continues to dodge Cupid's bow. -- Hutchinson

THE MOTET
NOMINATED IN JAZZ/SWING
5 P.M., OUTDOOR STAGE
The Motet's influences come from points as distant as Africa, the Caribbean and New Orleans. Melding world rhythms with blues, funk and jazz, the group has developed a reputation as one of Colorado's most promising acts in the increasingly well-worn jam niche. Drummer Dave Watts, known for his work in the Theory of Everything and on Keller Williams's Laugh, propels the band in and out of a variety of fusion-esque musical journeys and plain old dirty grooves.

« Previous Page
 |
 
1
 
2
 
3
 
4
 
5
 
6
 
7
 
8
 
9
 
10
 
11
 
12
 
13
 
14
 
15
 
16
 
17
 
18
 
19
 
20
 
21
 
22
 
23
 
All
 
Next Page »
 
My Voice Nation Help
0 comments
 
Loading...