Tonight and tomorrow night: Umphrey's McGee at the Belly Up and the Fillmore

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Umphrey's Mcgee will be returning to Colorado after starting their two-month long tour that spans the great U.S. of A. from the East coast to the West. Starting in Boston late in January and winding down the Atlantic coast, UM's tour made its way back to the motherland, Colorado, for two nights of jamming and one intimate, fan-inclusive experience at the Stew Art Series prior to the show at the Fillmore.

The Stew Art series is one of the most innovative ideas a band or group has brought to the table since the inception of pulling girls on stage for serenades. Through a series of different mediums ranging from text messaging to chalk boards to pre-made cue-cards, Umphrey's Mcgee will perform a completely improvisational set based on the stated direction of the audience. This means lucky UM-heads can literally take control of a song simply by chiming in on a certain topic, word or idea.

This experiment in audience participation has made the Stew Art series a highly coveted event giving old fans and newbies the chance to interact with the band prior to a show, as well as watch the skills of musicians challenged in a completely open environment. You want the song to slow down? Let them know and they will chop into a slower version, or a completely improvised jam. What other bands out there are willing to put their skills to the test of their fans? None like this.

Umphrey's Mcgee also has plans to release a complete series of digital EPs through their website, giving a fans an early taste, offering a new track, "Wellwishers," for free download.

Stew Art series tickets start at $99 through the Umphrey's Mcgee website. Tickets to the Belly Up Aspen shows are sold out, but there are still tickets available for the Fillmore Auditorium show on Friday, February 11. Put your money where your mouth is and give Umphrey's Mcgee a chance to show you just why they have been making great music for over a decade.

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Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.