Music History

Ten Things to See at the Colorado Music Hall of Fame

The Colorado Music Hall of Fame is now officially up and fully operational at its new location at the Trading Post of Red Rocks Amphitheatre. The grand-opening party for the new Comfort Dental-presented CMHOF took place earlier this week. 

The honorary crowd listened to guitar and vocals by local musician Jim Salestrom. The most emotional moment of the night was when Salestrom covered "Rocky Mountain High" and the crowd sang along. To pay tribute to this historic new place for the artifacts held within the museum, here are ten awesome pieces of Colorado music history to check out. See our slideshow for more. 
10. John Denver cast
The new John Denver cast might be even more of a spitting image than the one it replaces, which was stolen from the 1STBANK Center in 2014. "We found a sculptress, Dawn Record, a very accomplished artist herself," CMHOF director G. Brown told us earlier this year. "And she is one of the biggest John Denver fans, it turns out. So she did it, and so it's a happy ending. I get a lot of that in this job — just things that make you feel like the universe is lining up. It's fate."  9. Larry Pogreba's "Lady Butt" Electric Guitar
Larry Pogreba makes some of the most famous guitars in the world, specially crafted over the years for musicians such as Bonnie Raitt, Keb Mo, David Lindley, Jackson Browne, Emmylou Harris, Greg Leisz, Cindy Cashdollar, Darrell Scott and Jerry Douglas. See his "Lady Butt" electric guitar at the CMHOF.
8. Guitar Craftsman Workshop
The Hall of Fame will invite you to a lesson in guitar crafstmanship, explaining each element needed in lutherie work. 
7. John  Denver and Frank Sinatra Vinyl
This bizarre and limited-edition vinyl of John Denver and Frank Sinatra performing live at Tahoe is a real gem.
6. Judy Collins's Dress
The CMHOF holds a lot of cool Judy Collins memorabilia.The crowd favorite was her ethereal white dress, worn on stage during many a show in the 1970s. Collins continues to perform today, set for a string of solo shows after the release of her latest album, Strangers Again
5. Shark Mask
A replica belonging to the beloved band Flash Cadillac, stolen from the museum's previous location at 1STBANK Center almost three years ago, this shark mask is still priceless. The beautiful display paints a true Colorado rock-and-roll scene, crushed Coors can and all. 
4. Original Red Rocks Bench
Dating from the original opening in 1906, this bench from the venue's earliest days is perfectly preserved, found in the John Denver room of the new Hall of Fame space.
3. Steve Martin Photos
Steve Martin has to be one of the coolest Colorado residents to ever grace the stage. He made standup history in 1978 by recording the second part of his comedy album A Wild and Crazy Guy at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in front of a roaring audience.
2. Vintage Pop Posters 
The CMHOF is home to a collection of vintage posters from all over the state. If you can decipher the upper, psychedelic text poster, you get a free high-five. 
1. John Denver statue
This statue used to be at Denver's ranch in Aspen before coming under the stewardship of the CMHOF. "It means a lot to a lot of people. We went through a lot of pains to find the right location, even up here," Brown explained to us shortly after the statue's unveiling to die-hard Denver fans in June. See the historic monument to Denver for yourself in its Rocky Mountain home. 
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Lindsey Bartlett is a writer, photographer, artist, Denver native and weed-snob. Her work has been published in Vanity Fair, High Times and Leafly, to name a few.
Contact: Lindsey Bartlett