The Weekend Six: Six Shows to See 03/04 & 03/05

By: Hannah Oreskovich

It’s feeling like spring around here folks, so get out there and catch a show! No snow means no excuses. Here’s The Six:

Today (Friday 03/04):

CITRA with HiFi Gentray at Illegal Pete’s in Denver 8PM-Close

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We just dropped a bit on CITRA and their debut EP Ocean this morning. Check that feature out here, and then head to Illegal Pete’s on S. Broadway in the D to catch this groovin’ four-piece live. They’re opening up a night of margs and burrito bowls for Denver’s HiFi Gentry, the rockin’ outfit composed of Andrew Kobil, Max Rutherford, Mark McKenna, David Beuerman, and Derek Slate. It’s gonna be a fun one kids. Check it out!

Peep a live performance of CITRA on KUNC:


Amoramora with The Elegant Plums at Merchant’s Mile High Saloon in Denver 9PM-Close

The wagon IS the original party bus people. 

The wagon IS the original party bus people. 

Remember “the band so nice they named it twice”? That’s Boulder’s Amoramora and they’re taking the stage at Merchant’s Mile High Saloon “for a night of high energy jams and pizza funk.” As doubled as their name, these boys are also playing dual sets this evening after classic rock and blues opener The Elegant Plums hit the stage. The two groups have actually teamed up with Bus to Show this evening too, so if you want to hop on the AMORAMORA RAGE BUS (WAGON), $10 gets you a ride both ways + entrance to the show. Get the details for that here. Party!

Listen to Amoramora’s get-down-funky “Behave Yourself”:

Ben Hanna & The Knighthawks at The No Name Bar in Boulder 10PM-Close

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Ahh how we love Ben Hanna. And tonight he’s in one of our favorite spots, rocking out with his full band behind the big brown door. Rumor has it Hanna’s dropping a new album in the near future. But until then, you’ll have to see him in person to hear all his recent thangs. So head for The Hill and catch Hanna’s rocking set tonight. It’s sure to be a sweet show.

Watch Ben’s latest viral video for one of his new songs here.

Tomorrow (Saturday 03/05):

Eldren with The Velveteers and Phallic Meditation at Hi Dive in Denver 8PM-Close

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Denver’s psych-space pop six piece Eldren are headlining a show at the Hi Dive this evening. Their mashup of “jazz, prog rock, jam, power pop, indie rock, and more” is bound to keep you entertained. PLUS Boulder’s The Velveteers will be warming up the stage with Demi Demitro’s killer guitar playing/vocals and John Demitro’s sick beats. Phallic Meditation is opening the night- the name alone tells us that’s one set we gotta see. So go get weird with these three awesome acts! Tickets here.

Lend your ear to Eldren’s song “Girl”:

The Letters Home and Boulder Sound Lab at Boulder House in Boulder 930PM-Close

If you want to explore some dirty soul partnered with some booty-shakin’ grooves, then hit Boulder House tonight for The Letters Home & Boulder Sound Lab show! The Letters Home, a six-piece from LA, recently dropped their mashup collaboration Mother Freakin’ Mashups Vol. 1. They plan to keep you dancing after Boulder’s BSL gets the party started!  So go grinddddd.

Check out Boulder Sound Lab’s groovy track “Psilos”:

The Next Day (Sunday 03/06):

Miles Wide Album Release Concert at Washington Park United Church of Christ in Denver 7PM-Close

Denver’s Miles Wide recently added two new members and dropped an EP, The Kindness of Strangers. Formerly the solo project of Kyle Donovan, the now trio actually recorded the EP in the church they’re performing this concert in. The Marquee called the album the “long lost love-child of Carly Simon and Art Garfunkel” so you know it’s good. This show sounds perfect for a Sunday evening- get yourself to it folks! Tickets here.

Listen to The Kindness of Strangers for yourself:

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PS: This week, our Sunday partnership with Green Light Radio and Streetside Productions will feature a track by Boulder’s Augustus! The rock trio are playing The Fox Theatre next Friday with Trout Steak Revival and Caribou Mountain Collective. Head to our Facebook page for your chance to win free tickets! And tune in Sunday to any of the Colorado Community Network Radio Stations here (95.3 or 95.5 Boulder) or stream Green Light between 9-10PM to listen to Augustus’ track “Bloodbath” live!

See you soon music lovers.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

The Weekend Six: Six Shows to See Valentine's Day Weekend

By: Hannah Oreskovich

We’ve got your weekend picks, so whether you’re spending it with that special someone or a hard glass of bourbon (we don’t judge), here are the shows to check out around town for Valentine's Day Weekend:

Today (Friday 02/12):

Asalott at Goorin Bros Hat Shop in Boulder 5PM-Close

Looking for that last minute VDay gift? Then this show is perfect for you! Goorin Bros. have an awesome hat selection that your mate is sure to dig. Come by and shop with Asalott’s wicked beats in the background, or bring your babe and make it a date! They’ll make your heart thump while you find the perfect Shalone. Drop on in and get down.

Watch Asalott’s recent Tiny Desk submission video:

Silent Bear Trio and Birthday Celebration at Tandoori Grill in Boulder 830PM-Close

Listen to Silent Bear and The Electric Band:

Abstract Solution at Taco Junky in Boulder 10PM-Close

Abstract Solution is a “rock and roll project that will funk you out with the best vibes, energy, and sound you’ve never heard”. They’re bringing that goodness to TJ’s tonight, so come groove over margs and guac. They promise to make all your dreams come true tonight, whatever those may be. Alright!

Learn more about Abstract Solution here.

Whiskey Autumn at The No Name Bar 10PM-Close

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Whiskey Autumn will be singing to you and your boo behind the big brown door tonight. Come get baddd with this electric-pop and R&B trio - a sensual rendition of Frank Ocean’s “Thinkin Bout You” has been promised. Things are going to get wild. Come check it out!

Watch Whiskey Autumn’s recent Tiny Desk submission video:

Tomorrow (Saturday 02/13):

February House Concert from The Birdhouse Concert Series featuring Weary Bones and Ben Hanna & The Knighthawks in Boulder 7PM-Close

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Longmont’s Weary Bones will be opening up this lovely evening at The Birdhouse with their “unique harmonies and beautifully odd guitar to bring their honest lyrics to life”. And then Ben Hanna & the Knighthawks will make you sweat. Seriously, you can’t sit still at a BH show. This is an awesome DIY concert, put on monthly by local artists themselves. Go hang in their living room, crack one open, and neck on the couch. It’s gonna be rad.

Watch Ben Hanna's Tiny Desk submission video:

The Next Day (Valentine’s Day- Sunday 02/14):

Valentine’s Concert with The Heartstring Hunters, Ben Rabb, & Shanna Hoar at The Laughing Goat in Boulder 8PM-Close

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New York folk artist Ben Rabb will be opening up this romantic evening over your heart-art latte as he ends his most recent tour, with special appearance by Shanna Hoar. Then Boulder acoustic indie-folk group The Heartstring Hunters will swoon you into the night at The Laughing Goat. Treat yoself.

Watch The Heartstring Hunters “Let’s Let Go”:

ANNNDDDD HEY-

Big thanks to all of those who bought tickets to the Homevibe Presents show with Ryan Montbleau at The Riverside this Sunday! The show sold out weeks in advance and we sponsored some press for the event so we appreciate those who checked out our feature and are ready to wine and dine their Valentine with Homevibe!

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Our recent partnership with Cafe Aion Music means we will also recap their upcoming weekend shows for the month of February in our Friday feature. This weekend’s lineup includes Ben Hanna and Whiskey Autumn; read more about both acts here. As you might have noticed, each of these artists actually play Friday and Saturday shows in Boulder this weekend, so feel free to fall in love with one and stalk them at both of their performances.

PS: This week, our Sunday partnership with Green Light Radio and Streetside Productions will feature a track by Boulder’s Whiskey Autumn! The three piece recently released their single “07.04.07” with an accompanying music video that you can watch here! They’ve got two shows this weekend -one at The No Name Friday & one at Cafe Aion Saturday- so let them croon you and your honey live. Tune in Sunday to any of the Colorado Community Network Radio Stations here (95.3 or 95.5 Boulder) or stream Green Light to listen to WA’s “07.04.07” on Valentine’s Day!

See you lovers.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

The Weekend Six: Six Shows to See 12/11, 12/12, & 12/13

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Snow or not, we’re hittin’ shows this weekend! Here’s where you should trek to franz:

Today (Friday, 12/11)

The Haunted Windchimes at Chautauqua Community House 730PM-Close

The Haunted Windchimes. 

The Haunted Windchimes. 

We always love a cozy show at Chautauqua Community House and tonight The Haunted Windchimes are playing. They’re a folk/roots four-piece from Pueblo, CO signed to Blank Tape Records who have been touring the state quite a bit this year. They’ve played A Pairie Home Companion and OpenAir CPR

Haunting is an accurate inclusion. Listen to their track "Make It Rain" here:

Samsonic at The No Name Bar 10PM-Close

The No Name.

The No Name.

Samsonic is one part Miles Wide and one part we’re not sure what else! But we always love a good No Name performance. There’s nothing like sipping whiskey in a warm, wooden room with all of your best friends and great tunes. Go check ‘em out.

Tomorrow (Saturday, 12/12)

BolderBeat Presents: The 9th Annual Homevibe for the Holidays Concert at The Walnut Room 630PM-Close

John Craigie. Taylor Carson. Augustus. Danielle Ate The Sandwich. We’ve brought you holiday tidbits with these performers every day this week. And tomorrow is finally the night! We are ecstatic to be hosting a show with Homevibe Presents and can’t wait to see all of you in your best ski-themed clothes! Come eat pizza with us, escape the cold, and listen to some amazing tunes. Tickets still available here. See you soon.

Get stoked with a John Craigie vid from "The Day Off Sessions":

Whiskey Autumn at Jamestown Mercantile Co. 8PM-Close

Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Jamestown’s even prettier in the snow. So join the WA boys for dinner and a show at The Merc this evening. They just dropped a new single this week (see below) and rumor is they’ll be playing it tonight for your listening pleasure, harmonies and all. We’ll be bringing you more info on them next week when their new music video drops. So stay tuned! And in the meantime, go catch these boys tonight.

Listen to their latest single 07.04.07 here:

XMas Sweater Soiree with Ben Hanna & the Knighthawks and Hunter Stone and the Getaway at Studio 700 930PM-Close

You're our idol too Ben Hanna.

You're our idol too Ben Hanna.

We recently checked out Studio 700 for a feature we’ll be bringing you in January, and we gotta say, it’s a pretty dang sweet spot. Formerly an insulated recording room, the guys at Studio 700 have worked hard to turn the place into an awesome performance space with cool lighting and great sound. Tonight, for only $5, you can check it out and wear your best Christmas sweater while Ben Hanna and Hunter Stone croon your ears off with their bands. Go go go!

Watch Ben Hanna’s latest music video here.

The Next Day (Sunday, 12/13)

Sister Speak with Riley Ann and Emily Shreve at The Walnut Room 8PM-Close

Sister Speak. Photo Credit: Jill Dedman

Sister Speak. Photo Credit: Jill Dedman

San Diego’s Sister Speak is led by musician and vocalist Sherri-Anne and backed by various instrumentalists. This is their last show before they head to British Columbia for the rest of the month. So go check them out! Boulder’s own one-woman-band Riley Ann will be opening for SS and Denver’s Emily Shreve is also making a set appearance. Sounds like it’s gonna be a powerful show! Roll to it.

Watch Sister Speak cover Nirvana here:

That’s all we’ve got for you! See you out!

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

The Weekend Six VIDEO EDITION: Six Shows to See 11/20, 11/21, & 11/22

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Weekend! Weekend! Let’s go to these shows:

Today (Friday, 11/20)

Paul Kimbiris and The Dark Side of Pearl Concert at the Chautauqua Community House 7PM-9PM

Joined by the talents of cellist Philip Parker, percussionist Leor Manelis, keyboardist Danny Rankin, and vocalist Beth Preston, tonight is one of Paul Kimbiris’ last shows of the season. Kimbiris and these powerful players will be performing a number of songs off of his album, “The Dark Side of Pearl.” Though it’s a bit softer than what you saw with Kimbiris' project BLVD at TFS, it sure sounds like the cozy type of night we want to be a part of. There are only a few tickets left, so get yours here. PS: Say hi to Paul’s mom, and wear a nice shirt.

Watch Paul performing for CPR OpenAir here:

Ben Hanna & the Knighthawks, Whiskey Autumn, & Hunter Stone at Shine Gathering Place 730pm-Close

Get ready for Ben Hanna to electrify an entire room once again kids! We were crazy for Hanna’s performance at TFS and we can’t wait to see what he’s got up his sleeve tonight. The show is only $5 and Whiskey Autumn and Hunter Stone will be opening things up, making for an overall tasty lineup. Word on the street is Whiskey Autumn is dropping a new single soon; yum. Anddd we caught up with Stone earlier this week before his rehearsal for tonight’s show so we can tell you, it’s gonna be a good one. Leggo.

Watch a Ben Hanna original right hurr:

Funky Friday at The Armoury featuring Vance Romanca, Amoramora, & Booster 8PM-Close

Vance Romance. 

Vance Romance. 

Head on down to the Larimer part of town tonight in the D and catch this funky fresh lineup at The Armoury. Rumor has it that tonight is Vance Romance’s last show for awhile, so catch it while you can. Plussss Boulder bands Amoramora and Booster will be kickin’ thangs off! The place is gonna be straight groovin’. Peep the set times here and head out.

Already ready to funk? Peep Booster’s “Slinky” vid here:

Augustus at Gold Hill Inn 9PM-Close

Augustus.

Augustus.

Augustus is making their Gold Hill Inn debut tonight and it's gonna be a party!! It's only $7 at the door and the Boulder rock trio is even setting up rides for fans and friends on their FB event page here. Head for the hills with these boys- the mountain views + their rockin' tunes will be well worth it.

Watch an Augustus video here:

Tomorrow (Saturday, 11/21)

KUNC Presents: Yawpers Album Release Party at the Hi-Dive 8PM-Close

Now that looks like rock'n'roll. Photo Credit:  Kirsten Cohen

Now that looks like rock'n'roll. Photo Credit: Kirsten Cohen

The only way you’re lucky enough to check out this one is if you already bought your tix friends because it’s SOLD OUT. Which isn’t totally surprising since Boulder--->Denver--->Bloodshot Records band The Yawpers are hanging out at home for the release of their newest album “American Man.” They’ve got quite a badass tour schedule, which you can peep here. So here’s to hoping you’re one of the lucky few shotgunning beers with these good ol’ American boys tonight.

And whether you’re headed to the show or not, watch The Yawpers “Doing it Right”:

The Next Day (Sunday, 11/22)

The Lovebirds and Theresa Peterson at Vapor Distillery 7PM-9PM

Lady projects + Vapored libations= All good things.” That’s what’s up with Sunday’s gig at Vapor Distillery. San Diego duo Veronica May & Lindsay White are The Lovebirds and they’re going to be bringing some “folk that pops” to you Boulder. Local staple and Boulder-in-the-Round creator Theresa Peterson will be opening the show. So go check out all three of these lovely ladies! It’s going to be a great end to the weekend.

Check out The Lovebirds “UNI” here:

So many killer shows. See you out there Boulder!

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

A Thank You From BolderBeat

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Thanks to you, The Fall Showcase was a major success. 

Ben Hanna and The Knighthawks at The Fall Showcase.

Ben Hanna and The Knighthawks at The Fall Showcase.

Hey Boulder! Thank you so much for your support of The Fall Showcase last Friday! We had 100 people check out the event - and almost all promotion for the show was done just through our site and social media. So you rock! Special thanks to The Riverside for working with us. We also had a great time with Rocky and Skylar from Green Light Radio- and we’ve had a number of you reach out to let us know you tuned in to one of the CRN networks. Thank you!

BLVD at The Fall Showcase

BLVD at The Fall Showcase

Six months ago, I had a hunger to promote the local music scene and all of you great people making art within it. I started this site and approached my friends to work on features with me and they said yes! A huge thank you to David Landry, Zach Dahman, Pete Laffin, Alex Cutter, and Greg Laut. Their strong teamwork made TFS possible and they keep our website alive and kickin’ with all of their great contributions!

We’re excited to bring your more events and are already working on the next one :)

Whiskey Autumn at The Fall Showcase.

Whiskey Autumn at The Fall Showcase.

If you’re an artist interested in having us promote or host a show with you, please reach out to us at bolderbeat@gmail.com. We’d love to hear your ideas.

Check out more event photos from The Fall Showcase here.

And if you dig what we’re doing, tell a friend.

Like Us On Facebook Here

Follow Us On Instagram Here  

Follow Us On Twitter Here

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

It's Here: The Fall Showcase Tonight at The Riverside!

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Come party with us tonight. 

The day is here! It’s time for The Fall Showcase, Boulder! While we’re not bringing you a Weekend Six this week, we’ve got more details on our event tonight to share with you, so readddd on:

The Fall Showcase   headliners Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

The Fall Showcase headliners Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

LINEUP

Have you checked out our exclusive interviews with each of the bands on the lineup? Read about Whiskey Autumn, BLVD, and Ben Hanna and the Knighthawks meow.

TIME AND $$

The show starts at 8PM & ends at midnight. It’s $5 and all proceeds go to the bands and the sound guy! We want to recognize local talent, so you’ll be supporting them with your admission.

The Fox King.

The Fox King.

GIANT BOLDERBEAT MERCH TABLE

Remember when we brought you Boulder artist Michael Maloney aka Ohh Mika the Fox King? Well he will be at the show tonight selling his art and talking to you about his different pieces! He’ll even be signing original prints. So stop by our giant BolderBeat merch table, say hi, and check out all of the interesting art he’s been working on!

We will be giving away buttons, stickers, and free band merch! So come get yoself some.

Buttons for you.

Buttons for you.

Don’t forget to signup for our monthly newsletter at the giant BolderBeat merch table! Doing so gets you a free sticker and a chance to keep up with all of Boulder’s local talent- you’ll have a shot at free tickets to shows, exclusive content from bands, and the opportunity to win lots of cool thangs.

Stickermania. Come get yours.  PHOTO CREDIT:    HANNAH ORESKOVICH

Stickermania. Come get yours. PHOTO CREDIT: HANNAH ORESKOVICH

All bands will be at the merch table following their sets for a meet and greet. Want a signed EP? Now’s your chance! Get to it.

Look it's The Riverside!

Look it's The Riverside!

VENUE

Do you know where The Riverside is? Did you know it’s surrounded by FREE PARKING?

We thought so, but let us just remind you that:

The Riverside is at the corner of Broadway & Arapahoe (1724 Broadway)

PARKING: THERE IS FREE PARKING IN THE LOT ACROSS THE STREET FROM THE RIVERSIDE (NEXT TO COLONEL MUSTARD'S LAST STAND). THERE IS FREE PARKING ON 13th BEHIND THE RIVERSIDE WHERE BOULDER'S FARMERS MARKET POPS UP ON SATURDAYS (NEAR THE PARK). THERE IS FREE GARAGE PARKING ON PEARL JUST A FEW BLOCKS FROM THE RIVERSIDE. THAT’S A LOT OF FREE PARKING!

STREAMING DA SHOW

Big thanks to our official sponsor, Colorado Community Radio Network (CRN). They’ll be streaming the event live on Green Light Radio, which you can check out here! Plus listen up for live interviews with the bands!

PS:

You do not have to be 21 for this show; everyone will be ID’d at the door.

PPS:

Are you in a local band? Or are you a local musician? Interested in participating in something like The Fall Showcase? Stop by tonight to support local music and tell us! We’d love to work with you and plans for another show are already in the works!

LOOK IT’S SOCIAL MEDIA

Join The Fall Showcase Facebook Event Here

Like Us On Facebook Here

Follow Us On Instagram Here  

Follow Us On Twitter Here

Can’t wait to see you tonight Boulder. 

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

BLVD: The 90s Rock'n'Roll You Know You've Been Missing.

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Paul Kimbiris has a new project and we dig it. 

BLVD. Four letters, three guys. And their first show under the new name is happening this Friday at The Fall Showcase. So who are they?

Well, we’ve brought you info on Paul Kimbiris before. You might remember him headlining the Fox back in May with backing band The Paper Stars. Or maybe you saw him at Augustus’ CD Release show at The Lazy Dog in June, where again, he was referenced as a solo artist with a backing band. Well guess what kids. Paul’s got a new gig in this town. And he wants you to know it’s “a little less sad bastard and a little more punk rock”. F*ck yes.

BLVD is composed of Leor Manelis (drums), Danny Rankin (bass), and Kimbiris (guitar, vocals). When I met up with Paul to learn a little more about his new project, he told me he’s played with these guys forever. They were with him for the Fox show last May. And practicing for that is actually where BLVD kind of kicked off.

“We were practicing for the Fox show and- you know we were practicing pretty stuff- melodies, a waltz. And just joking around, I played one of my old songs and [the guys] were like ‘Hey what else do you have like that? That’s the best song I’ve heard you play.’ I mean I wrote these songs like late 90s. I’d put them to bed. But when you play songs with really good musicians- you can play two chords and it can be fucking awesome. And so that’s what we’re playing. These old songs I wrote and we’re rock and roll, you know?”

I told him I didn’t- BLVD hasn't put anything out yet (though they will be this winter). And they haven’t exactly performed live yet with their new material and under the name BLVD. So Kimbiris explained the sound to me like this:

“70% of what BLVD plays are songs I wrote late 90s- so they’re influenced by things happening then. The Pixies; British rock bands like Blur. You’ll hear it; you’ll hear it. Like right around the time OK Computer came out- I mean that record was huge for me as I’m sure it was for a lot of people. Minor keys, delayed pedals, that atmospheric sound. That’s what we’re doing with these songs. And no acoustic- this is all electric. But these are songs from another life.”

And what other life are they from?

“Well they sound like they’re about a guy who was living in Philly. Because that’s what I was doing at the time and they’re all about my experiences.”

And is the name somehow from that other life too? Why BLVD?

“Back in Philly, there’s this street called Roosevelt Boulevard. It’s where we used to buy drugs and it’s, you know, ‘one of the most dangerous streets in America.’ Bad traffic, pushers, everything. And I used to hang out there. So I felt like it fit this. And I liked the name- it looks good on a t-shirt or a hat.”

I laugh. So what is BLVD most looking forward to about playing The Fall Showcase?

“I’m looking forward to playing louder and to an audience that’s a little bit younger than me. And for the folks that are coming to see Whiskey Autumn and Ben Hanna [and the Knighthawks]. Ben was one of the first people I met when I moved to Boulder and we lived together. I met him at a Conor’s open mic.”

Boulder’s crazy that way.

“You know, I had no plans to play music here when I first got here. I came from Austin and met some folks like Philip Parker and Gregory Alan Isakov and they heard me a couple times. And they said to me, ‘You’re good. But you should try harder.’ And sometimes, that’s all people need to hear.”

Definitely- and those are pretty awesome people to hear that from. So what’s next for BLVD?

“We’re playing Chautauqua on November 20th but that’s going to be a very sit-down and like bring your mom. Like my mom will be there. And wear a nice shirt. We’ll be doing things different for that- we’ll have a cello, more strings, an organ. We can’t rock there- it’s a hundred year old building. And then I want to put something out. Something we record live maybe and do overdubbing on. My last solo record took a year; I want this next one out quick. Like a month. And then in January or February we’re going to be doing an OpenAir session. And from there- play a lot in Denver; we’ll play a lot in Boulder too. But Boulder’s venues are pretty limited.”

They are indeed. Which is one reason The Fall Showcase is happening.

“Yeah it’s gonna be a great show. The middle slot’s the best slot and that’s where we are so it’s gonna be great.”

Though they're just revving up their 90s engine, something tells me BLVD’s going to be taking off pretty quickly. So come see their first show together as BLVD this Friday at The Riverside for The Fall Showcase!

Join the FB event here.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Producer Robbie Stiefel: Wolves, Making Studio Magic, & Finding That Thing.

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Robbie Stiefel is a talented set of ears crafting tunes with several of your favorite local bands.

Ben Hanna and the Knighthawks. A Shadow of Jaguar. Whiskey Autumn. Greg Corcione. These are just a few of the Boulder-based acts that producer Robbie Stiefel has worked with over the past few months. And after recently watching Stiefel insert his own beats and sounds to a band’s live performance while he sat next to me at The No Name, I can see why so many local acts are partnering with him. His job is to bring that thing into a band’s recording. That thing. You know, the one that every musician is always chasing. And the one that Robbie can somehow hear in his head whenever he listens to a track. So I sat down with him over a giant calzone to find out exactly how he does it. How did he develop finding that thing? And this is what he told me:

Stiefel’s from the East Coast. He grew up in DC, started playing sax at 11, and followed that with guitar, which is when he says “the addiction started.” Toss in his Dad’s love for James Brown and Stiefel’s own discovery of Zeppelin’s discography at 13 and there was Robbie: a kid obsessed with sound.

“I used to sneak into my high school gym and re-record songs with this rudimentary cassette four-track trying to recreate Led sounds using ambient rooms. I was always trying to capture different noises, different ways to do something. And I played in a couple of high school bands too.”

Robbie at   The Crucible Recording Studio  . Photo Credit: Kristy Gray.

Robbie at The Crucible Recording Studio. Photo Credit: Kristy Gray.

And eventually, playing in bands is actually what brought Stiefel to Colorado.

“My first more serious band project was Ego Vs Id. I grew up with Jesse [Parmet, currently of The Yawpers] and when we first moved here, he had this big house and it was basically just a studio for us. It was like our college- we were just teaching ourselves and experimenting for a couple of years with different recording techniques. Eventually, things got more serious with Ego Vs Id and we had unlimited access to a local studio. We actually just worked for a year and a half on an album and learned to craft songs in the studio, trying to make them sound effortless. Making that album solidified something in me.”

But, like many bands, eventually the guys went their separate ways into other projects. And for Stiefel, the most serious of those became production.

“I ended up moving to the Bay area for awhile. I worked with artists there and made connections at different studios. And then I made my way back here eventually and have kind of been doing that same thing.”

Stiefel at   The Crucible Recording Studio   with Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit: Kristy Gray. 

Stiefel at The Crucible Recording Studio with Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit: Kristy Gray. 

Which is when I wondered, what exactly is the producer-artist relationship like? To which Robbie had my favorite answer of our whole conversation:

“Being a producer is like holding a wolf by its ears- I feel so responsible for the project and its success and to make sure that what a band wants done is done. By the end, I want them to feel like I’ve made it more clear as to what they are. I put a lot of pressure on myself- I can be obsessive but I think that’s a good thing. I mean- it’s a lot of money to record. I’m getting paid here. And it’s not like paying someone to fix your deck- it’s paying someone to work on what is most important to you. So I always feel like I’m playing with this very dangerous thing- like a wolf- but it’s only dangerous because I care about it so much.”

Robbie and the wolf. Photo Credit: Kristy Gray at   The Crucible Recording Studio .

Robbie and the wolf. Photo Credit: Kristy Gray at The Crucible Recording Studio.

Though holding a wolf by its ears sounds like an almost impossible task, Robbie assures me that while it’s a challenge and a fine balance of sorts, he puts in a ton of preparation before heading into the studio with an artist:

“What it’s really about in preparation before the studio is synergy. The way I work with projects is that I’m basically being invited in as a temporary member of the band or a collaborator, and so there has to be this initial connection there. Especially with bands- they have this brotherhood-tribal-thing and I’m coming into the mix aware that I’m in that situation and building trust. And sometimes you don’t have a lot of time to do that before you start recording. But I’m an artist too, so when I ask them to make big choices, I get the whole ‘I don’t want anyone telling me how to make my music.’ That’s why building that initial trust and having synergy are so important. I know that what I’m asking an artist to do [in my role as a producer] is a lot.”

And so what does one do when there’s a battle back and forth on finding that thing: on finding the right mix, the right beat, the right shaker for a track? On creating and developing one’s sound and making studio magic?

“In those situations, it goes back to trust. But the best thing I can do is to let a certain amount of any idea be worked through- everyone needs to be able to express what they want. You can’t shut anyone down. And then I have to ask, ‘How passionate are you about this?’ because then I need to let them know realistically I will go down that road with them, even if I wasn’t intending to, but that the consequences and hesitations will be x,y, and z. I can’t beat around the bush- that’s the worst thing you can do in a creative environment. At the same time, they have to feel comfortable- somehow you have to have that.”

Stiefel at   The Mountain House Recording Studio   with Greg Corcione.

Stiefel at The Mountain House Recording Studio with Greg Corcione.

Which brings me back to the night I watched Robbie tapping out new rhythms and making sounds that somehow fit into a song he’d never heard before at that live performance. How did he hear those beats he was making? Where does that come from? When I ask him about this, he laughs:

“I’m at a point now where I do just hear it. It’s hard to explain. But I think the development of that came from having an awareness when I’m listening to something of what excites me. There’s this alarm that goes off and I’m suddenly aware that something has grabbed my attention. ‘Oh that’s where that shaker comes in’ or ‘That’s where that intentional harmony changes.’ And I can pull sounds from so many things that I’ve listened to. Eventually, you just kind of have this idea of ‘Oh that might go there’ and things come together.”

And in listening to music from several of the Boulder artists that Stiefel’s been working with, things sure do. A Shadow of a Jaguar already released their single that Stiefel worked with them on, titled “Mama Needs the Bottle” and you can listen to it here:

And the other artists mentioned have plans for new releases soon. We’ll be featuring those as they come out, but in the meantime, go check out two of the artists Stiefel has worked with LIVE THIS FRIDAY at The Fall Showcase.

Read more about Robbie here.

And get details for The Fall Showcase on our FB event here.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Ben Hanna Wants to Surf with You at The Fall Showcase This Friday.

By: Zach Dahmen

Behind the scenes of Ben Hanna.

Boulder-based musician Ben Hanna.

Boulder-based musician Ben Hanna.

It’s a cold and wet fall evening as I wait for BolderBeat’s Fall Showcase opener at a coffee shop on Pearl Street’s west end. I take a few more sips of coffee and in walks a mop of black curls with a five o’clock shadow. Ben Hanna sits down across from me and instantly, his deep voice becomes the prominent sound over a bustling coffeehouse. With little prompting Ben starts telling me his story, with little to no filter; much like his music. He has these basset hound eyes which, as he starts to tell me how he fell in love with music, draw me into his twenty minute answer.

Hanna grew up outside of Detroit, Michigan. As he describes it, the suburbs are more akin to Orange County, California than the inner city. Instead of the hard knocks attributed to growing up in Detroit, Hanna was afforded an adolescence steeped in whatever music he could get his hands on. The earliest parts of his musical journey had him taking huge pit stops with The Violent Femmes, Ryan Adams, Radiohead, and Nirvana, the latter being a big enough influence that he’s actually wearing one of their shirts under his bulky cardigan tonight. Starting with simple bar chords and punk rock at the age of 15, Hanna progressed into taking lessons and giving serious thought to being a musician: “I wanted to be a player. I had a vision of me sitting in as a session musician down the road.”

Tea Time.

Tea Time.

After high school, Hanna moved to Colorado for college. He tells me this part of his life was framed by the music of Townes Van Zandt, whom he lends credit to as a catalyst for finding his voice as a songwriter. An even more noticeable influence in his music is Lou Reed (watch Ben Hanna’s “High Society Scene” as a perfect example). And Ben does credit Lou for helping him find direction. He tells me, “Lou Reed and Bob Dylan, they didn’t have these panty-dropping singing voices, but they were getting the point across in a really effective and powerful way. And so I realized that is kind of the voice I have.”

More recently, Ben’s musical efforts have been shaped with difficult times and personal hardship. The end of a relationship left him unable to write a song for months. That struggle lead him to a different way of approaching music: Being present in each moment.

“It’s being cultivated even when I’m asleep or just observing things, and there is this thought that I am absorbing it like a musical sponge.”

The Street Light Type.

The Street Light Type.

Ben keeps a notebook of lyrics on his phone that he calls “my emotional well.” He shows it to me- there are lyrics, sayings, and musings- a collection that takes more than a few finger strokes to move through. As I glance through it, Hanna tells me he’s got somewhat of a “different sound” overall, especially within Boulder. Unfiltered but focused is what comes to mind as Ben describes his musical life; much like our interview.

That “different” quality was exactly what drew BolderBeat to ask Hanna to open The Fall Showcase. With Ben Hanna & The Knighthawks, Hanna’s sound is a fleshed out, full rock and roll experience, fitting nicely into the night’s lineup of Blvd. and Whiskey Autumn.

“I look at it as a wonderful opportunity to just kinda go surfing; play with the energy of the space and share a stage with different bands because we are all in subtle ways influencing each other. It’s going to be a really nice blend of sounds. People are in for a treat.” Hanna said of the upcoming show.

Sandboxin'.

Sandboxin'.

Beyond his Fall Showcase performance this Friday, Ben will be playing more live shows with the Knighthawks around the Front Range and beyond. Lately though his focus has been continued work on his new record. He’s been in the studio with Robbie Stiefel and Todd Adleman at The Mountain House Recording Studio in Nederland. Ben, admittedly ambitiously, tells me the new record is “a mix between Ryan Adams’ Heartbreaker and The Violent Femmes self-titled.”

Come see the ambitious, unfiltered Ben Hanna & The Knighthawks THIS FRIDAY at The Fall Showcase. And let’s surf.

-Zach

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Interviewer Zach Dahmen.

Interviewer Zach Dahmen.