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Nathaniel Rateliff and the hi-dive on CBS Sunday Morning

Nathaniel Rateliff
Nathaniel Rateliff Brandon Johnson
"Take a little soul, mix in some rock, country and blues, and you have the unique sound of Nathaniel Rateliff," said CBS Sunday Morning host Jane Pauley at the start of the show's October 23 segment highlighting Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats

This wasn't the Colorado musician's first time on national TV; he appeared on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon seven years ago, and then as recently again as last November. It wasn't even his first time on CBS, as CBS This Morning: Saturday did a segment on Rateliff and his band last November, too. But it was still a big boost.

"For the Colorado-based band Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, taking the stage at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre is always a kind of homecoming," narrated Anthony Mason over footage of the band greeting its usual sold-out crowd at the iconic venue.

Mason pointed out how the 44-year-old Rateliff is finally singing with the likes of Paul Simon and Willie Nelson, and playing Saturday Night Live.  "I just didn't think it was ever going to happen. I don't know, I'm sure it's because somewhere in there I feel like I don't deserve it. Experiencing joy is not always easy," Rateliff told Mason.

But in fact, Rateliff has been in the limelight for a while. He started out playing smaller Denver venues, such as the Mercury Cafe and the hi-dive, before moving up to the Bluebird and the Gothic and then regularly selling out Red Rocks. Rateliff has paid homage to those roots, too, by joining with his friends to purchase the Skylark Lounge, where Rateliff and his band have also participated in quickly sold-out charity concerts.

And the hi-dive (as well as a Westword box!) made its appearance on the show as well, when Rateliff and his close friend and bandmate Joseph Pope III took Mason there to show where they had cut their teeth in the Denver music scene. Rateliff and Pope credit each other with helping them get through difficult times: When Pope was going through chemo in the early 2000s for testicular cancer, for example, the two were practicing when Pope's hair began to fall out. Rateliff shaved his head on the spot.

Watch Rateliff's appearance below:
If this made you itch to see Rateliff live, you'll have to wait a couple of months. The band plays Belly Up in Aspen on December 9 and 10, and returns to Denver on December 16 to play Ball Arena. Tickets are available here.
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Emily Ferguson is Westword's Culture Editor, covering Denver's flourishing arts and music scene. Before landing this position, she worked as an editor at local and national political publications and held some odd jobs suited to her odd personality, including selling grilled cheese sandwiches at music festivals and performing with fire. Emily also writes on the arts for the Wall Street Journal and is an oil painter in her free time.
Contact: Emily Ferguson

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