Colorado Music Festivals 2018: Your Official Guide To Fest Season

Festival season is the biggest time of the year for the music world. So here at BolderBeat, we’ll be updating this feature with every Colorado festival announcement that comes our way. Stay as on the pulse as we are:

May Play Music Festival May 11th

Downtown Greeley is hosting their fourth annual May Play fest with artists like The Burroughs, Brent Cowles, Slow Caves, Silver & Gold, and Post Paradise on the bill. There are a ton of other great local artists to check out, so swoop details and tickets here.

Spread The Word Music Festival May 11th-13th

Taking place at Denver’s Fox Street Compound, Spread The Word features a mix of local and national artists with styles including rock, jam, funk, reggae, hip-hop, folk/grass, electronic and fusion. Headliners of this year's fest include Jeff Austin Band (formerly of Yonder Mountain String Band), Everyone Orchestra (conducted by Matt Butler), A-Mac & The Height, and Bass Physics. Full lineup here.

303 Music Festival May 17th

Hosted by Ru Johnson at Denver's The Church, 303 Magazine is bringing you one awesome night of local music. Trev Rich, CITRA, Eldren, and The Other Black are just some of the bands on the lineup. Full details and tickets here

Five Points Jazz Festival May 19th

This FREE annual festival is back this year in Denver's Five Points neighborhood and will feature artists like Jakarta, The King Stan Band, Impulse, The Hendersons, Patrick McDevitt Nation, and more. You can bounce between venues or just walk around and take in all the good sounds. Full lineup and details here.

Mountain Games June 7th-10th

GoPro is putting on a festival in Vail with headliners like Chris Robinson Brotherhood, St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Bonfire Dub, and The Wood Brothers. The weekend will also feature a slew of athletic events, including competitions for your dog, a silent disco, and art exhibits. You can grab tickets to Mountain Games here.

Greeley Blues Jam June 8th-9th

The Greeley Blues Jam keeps the blues scene alive and this year, their lineup includes The Devon Allman Project, Ronnie Earl & The Broadcasters, and Danielle Nicole. This is one weekend you’ll enjoy being blue. Full lineup on their website.

Taste of Fort Collins June 8th-10th

The 22nd annual Taste of Fort Collins headliners include William Michael Morgan, Eddie Money, Everlast, and Judah & the Lion. Tickets are only $5-$10 and the fest is hosted at Civic Center Park in Old Towne. Grab more info on their website.

Country Jam June 14th-17th

Grand Junction will host Country Jam’s 27th annual four-day fest this year. Florida Georgia Line, Miranda Lambert, Brantley Gilbert, Brett Eldredge, and Big & Rich top the headliners list of the 30+ artists that will play to your boot kickin’ desire. Surrounded by the red rocks of GJ, this festival annually hosts some of the biggest names in country music. More info at this link.

Sonic Bloom Festival June 14th-17th

If you like electronic music, there’s no better place to be than Colorado’s Sonic Bloom Festival. Happening at Hummingbird Ranch in Spanish Peaks Country, the weekend will feature performances from Shpongle, Keys N Krates, Nightmares On Wax, Liquid Stranger, EOTO and a huge array of other beatmasters. The festival will also feature yogis and movement leaders, as well as interpretive artists. And did we mention the visuals? Full lineup here.

Telluride Bluegrass Festival June 15th-18th

Telluride Bluegrass Festival celebrates its 45th year this summer! Tedeschi Trucks Band, Greensky Bluegrass, and Leftover Salmon top the fest’s 2018 list. We can tell you from past experience that this fest is magical and we’ve even met some our favorite musicians at (where else?) the Port-a-Potties. More info and tickets here.

Cover Rock Festival June 22nd-23rd

Looking for tunes from tribute bands? This festival is all about it. Hosted in Avon, Cover Rock Festival will feature tributes to artists like Simon & Garfunkel, Bruce Springsteen, The Doors, the late Tom Petty (RIP!!), and others. More info and tickets here.

Westword Music Showcase June 23rd

Denver’s alt weekly newspaper will host their annual summer celebration this year. With Galantis, Bonobo, The Front Bottoms, Joywave, and a ton of local artists, this will be one to clink a summer beer to and enjoy. More info and tickets on their website.

Van’s Warped Tour July 1st

Warped Tour recently announced that 2018 will be the last year for the traveling festival. Though much has changed since what was arguably Warped Tour’s heyday (moshing is now frowned upon), we’re still sad to see it go. Give these bands a proper send-off- locals 30H!3 are top-billed with acts like All Time Low, Asking Alexandria, and more. Tickets here.

Colorado Rocky Mountain Old Time Music Association (CROMA) July 11th-15th

CROMA's annual Parrish Ranch festival features a great old-time music lineup, workshops, nightly dances, open jams, classes for kids, open stage times, and couples dance workshops. The festival manages to keep old traditions alive while also bringing a modern twist to some elements. Artists at this year's fest will include Bryant and Brown, The Onlies, Betse & Clarke, The Barn Owls, Patt and Possum, Caroline Oakley, Chris Kemiet, and Larry Edelman. Get full details and tickets here.

The Ride Festival July 14th-15th

The String Cheese Incident, Sheryl Crow, and Grace Potter will headline The Ride Festival this year, another Telluride fest that is sure to get you groovin’. Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Chris Robinson Brotherhood, Big Something, and others will keep your summer-chill vibes in check at this one. Full lineup here.

Global Dance Festival July 20th-21st

If you’re ready to dance, Global’s got a crazy mix of electronic and hip-hop artists like Deadmau5, Gucci Mane, Future, and Machine Gun Kelly topping their list. The event is at Sports Authority Field this year and you can snag tickets here.

The Underground Music Showcase July 27th-29th

One of our absolute favorite weekends of the summer is Denver’s The UMS due to its focus on local artists, and all the fun that comes along with wandering around the South Broadway venues hosting the three-day event. In news this year, Two Parts has taken over the event. This year's lineup is stellar with headliners like Alvvays, BJ the Chicago Kid, Classixx, Deerhunter, Digable Planets and over 100 local artists who we absolutely adore. Tickets and full details here

Rockygrass Festival July 27th-29th

Bluegrass, bluegrass, and more bluegrass. That’s what Rockygrass in Lyons is all about! Last year, the festival showed us the changing face of the genre. This year, Sam Bush Bluegrass Band, David Grisman and Peter Rowan, and Hot Rize are already confirmed for this pickin’ celebration, so get your tickets now. More info and tickets at this link.

ARISE Music Festival August 3rd-5th

Colorado’s ARISE is back for its sixth year at Loveland’s Sunrise Ranch, and features seven stages of live music, yoga, workshops, theme camps, art galleries & installations, a children’s village, speakers, and films! Some of the top billed artists for 2017 include Slightly Stoopid, Thievery Corporation, and Trevor Hall. Get more details here.

Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest August 10th-12th

Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest is a FREE, recurring, three-day music festival held every August in the historic downtown of Fort Collins. Bohemian Nights headliners this year include The Motet, Blondie, and The Decemberists. The festival also hosts a number of local bands on their stages- get the full schedule and details for the weekend here.

Local Jam Grand Junction August 10th-12th

Known for its "creativity, passion, dedication, style,  [and] massive talent," Grand Junction's three-day festival Local Jam is a celebration of Western Slope bands ranging from metal to bluegrass. Stray Grass, Jack + Jill, Suckafish, Tim + Richard, and others have been announced for the year. Full details and lineup here.

Mountain Town Music Festival August 17th-18th

Back for its fifth year, Keystone’s Mountain Town Music Festival features a mix of rock and grass bands like Ages & Ages, Mipso, Strange Americans, and Shovels & Rope. The fest is a celebration of “all things Colorado” so you can expect some good brews along with the shows. More info and tickets here.

Velorama Colorado August 17th-19th

Following the Colorado Classic bicycle race, Velorama is returning to Denver’s RiNo Neighborhood for its second year this summer. Cold War Kids, Matt & Kim, Rainbow Kitten Surprise, and The Kills are the bands announced so far, and you don’t have to bike in the race to partake in the party. Plus local acts Brent Cowles, Wildermiss, and Slow Caves are on the bill! More about this new fest here.

Rocky Mountain Folks Festival August 17th-19th

Rocky Mountain Folks Festival showcased artists who brought current politics into their tunes last year, bringing people together in solidarity. Along with its songwriting workshops, the Lyons, CO fest created an awesome artistic community that managed to showcase great national acts too. Indigo Girls, Jeff Tweedy, and Los Lobos have been announced for this year’s fest. Tickets here.

Compound Sound Festival August 24th-26th

Boogie Groove Entertainment is producing this year's first annual Compound Sound. What started as friends performing at a private ranch in 2009 has officially launched into a major music festival. Along with headliners like Cycles, Lucid Vision, Tnertle, and Spectacle, the fest will also have food trucks and vendors, yoga and flow workshops, a healing village and "many more shenanigans." Details and tickets here

Four Corners Folk Festival August 31st-September 2nd

Pagosa Springs 23rd annual Four Corners Folks Fest is ready for a campout with bands like Nahko And Medicine For The People, Amy Helm, We Banjo 3, and Jon Stickley Trio. The weekend will also feature jam camps for kids and adults, and lots of tasty local vendors. See more for yourself and grab camping info and tickets here.

Jazz Aspen Snowmass August 31st-September 2nd

Lionel Richie, Jack Johnson, Zac Brown Band, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Fitz and the Tantrums, Gary Clark Jr., Bahamas, and The Record Company are the big acts at Jazz Aspen’s Labor Day event this year. JAS has a smaller June event too, which will feature Lizz Wright, Leslie Odom Jr., Lyle Lovett and His Large Band, Josh Kagler and Harmonistic Praise Crusade, and Georgia On My Mind: A Tribute To Ray Charles. Details on both events here.

Seven Peaks Music Festival August 31st-September 2nd

Dierks Bentley is throwing a three-day music festival in Chaffee County this year with headliners like Miranda Lambert, Brothers Osborne, Elle King, Lanco, Del McCoury, Sam Bush and The Cadillac Three. The new fest is a real treat for country lovers and the scenery of Buena Vista sure won't hurt! Get details and tickets here.

Denver Jazz Festival September 14th-16th

With a mix of local and international jazz acts, Denver Jazz Festival promises over 600 dancers and listeners for their three-day fest. Hal Smith's Swing Central, Jonathan Doyle Swingtet, Red Hot Rhythm Rocket, and many others are on the lineup. Check out news and get tickets here.

Grandoozy September 14th-16th

Superfly, the geniuses behind Bonnaroo, are bringing Grandoozy to Denver this year! In what could possibly be the biggest festival production the state has seen, headliners have already been announced and include Kendrick Lamar, Florence + The Machine, and Stevie Wonder. Sturgill Simpson, Miguel, and St. Vincent have also made the list; Denver-based acts Tennis, Dragondeer, Gasoline Lollipops, and Flaural will perform as well. This fest is our most highly anticipated of 2018 so don’t snoozy- Tier 1 tickets are already sold-out so grab your passes here.

Telluride Blues & Brews September 14th-16th

As regular festivalgoers of Blues & Brews say, “It's not the altitude that'll take your breath away. It's the views.” That, and of course, the music. This year, Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters, Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite, Govt Mule, Booker T’s Stax Revue, JJ Grey & Mofro, and Anders Osborne will headline. Early bird tickets are already sold-out, so grab passes while you can here.

Festivals of The Past

Wondering what happened to some of your other favorite Colorado festivals? Project Pabst dissipated into the PBR-fueled mountain air with no Denver announcement this year (but Superfly who put it on is the force behind Grandoozy). Bass Center is now in Virginia after the fest was first moved from Colorado to New Jersey last year; Divide Music Festival, who were rumored to return this year, has now been postponed until 2019 stating, “greater forces are working against us;” Groove Festival’s web presence is still replaced by this Japanese site making us still question everything; Mad Decent Block Party appears to have officially gone off the radar; Riot Fest has again only listed its Chicago date in 2018 after the fest cancelled its Denver show last year; and Vertex (which we freakin’ loved) appears to be a distant dream after it was cancelled in 2017.

Make sure to keep up with our festival coverage all summer on BolderBeat’s dedicated fest page!

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

Colorado Music Festivals 2017: Your Official Guide To All The Goodness

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Festival season is arguably the best time of year in music. So here at BolderBeat, we’ll be updating this feature with every Colorado festival announcement that comes our way. Stay as on the pulse as we are.


FoCoMX- April 28th-29th

Fort Collins' premiere music festival has announced its lineup, which features hundreds of Colorado artists. Some of our favorites include Antonio Lopez, The Alcapones, BANDITS, Bethel Steele, Danielle Ate The Sandwich, Edison, Foxfeather, Gasoline Lollipops, and The Velveteers. Full lineup here


Spread The Word Music Festival- May 5th-8th

Taking place at several Denver and Boulder venues, Spread The Word features a mix of local and national artists with styles including rock, jam, funk, reggae, hip-hop, folk/grass, electronic and fusion. Headliners of this year's fest include Kyle Hollingsworth Band, Euforquestra, A-Mac and the Hight, & Analog Sun. Full lineup on our announcement link.


Denver’s Project Pabst- May 20th

“Project Pabst was a wild success,” contributor Zach Dahmen wrote in retrospect of the 2016 festival that took over Denver’s Larimer Street last year. This year, the PBR-fueled lineup includes Ice Cube, Phantogram, Danny Brown, Kurt Vile, STRFKR, No Name, & more. We’re pumped for this. Details here


Greeley Blues Jam- June 9th-10th

The Greeley Blues Jam seeks to keep the blues alive, and this year, they’re doing just that with a lineup including Walter Trout, Samantha Fish, Honey Island Swamp Band, and Colorado favorite The Burroughs. This is one weekend you’ll enjoy being blue. Full lineup on their website.


Taste of Fort Collins- June 9th-11th

The 21st annual Taste of Fort Collins includes headliners St. Lucia, Gin Blossoms, Plain White T's, & Waterloo Revival this year. Tickets are only $5-$10 and the fest is hosted at Civic Center Park in Old Towne. Get out and get down! More info on their website.


Country Jam- June 15th-18th

Grand Junction will host Country Jam’s 26th annual four-day fest this year. Kenny Chesney, Jason Aldean, and Thomas Rhett top the headliners list of the 30+ artists that will play to your boot kickin’ desire. Surrounded by the red rocks of GJ, this festival annually hosts some of the biggest names in country music, and clearly this year is no different. More info at this link.


Sonic Bloom Festival- June 15th-18th

If you like electronic music, there’s no better place to be than Colorado’s Sonic Bloom Festival. Happening at Hummingbird Ranch in Spanish Peaks Country, the weekend will feature performances from Gigantic Cheese Biscuits, The Polish Ambassador, The Floozies, and a huge array of electronic beatmasters. The festival will also feature yogis and movement leaders, as well as interpretive artists. And did we mention the visuals? Full lineup here.


Telluride Bluegrass Festival- June 15th-18th

Telluride Bluegrass Festival celebrates its 44th year this summer. Jason Mraz, Norah Jones, Dierks Bentley with The Travelin' McCourys, and Brandi Carlile top the fest’s 2017 list. We can tell you from experience that last year was magical and we even met some our favorite musicians at (where else?) the Port-a-Potties. More info and tickets here.


Van’s Warped Tour- June 25th

Believe it or not, we attended this event back in 2015 after not having been since high school. Yes. Though much has changed since what was arguably Warped Tour’s heyday (moshing is now frowned upon), this is a fest that still has a cult following and still makes its way around the US. Attila, Bowling for Soup, CKY, & Futuristic top this year's bill- grab the full listing here.


Westword Music Showcase- June 25th

Denver’s alt weekly newspaper will host more than 100 live acts at their annual summer celebration this year. With Shakey Graves, The Revivalists, Cut Copy, Bob Moses, COIN, Arizona, and a long list of local acts, this will be one to clink a summer beer to and enjoy. Don’t miss out on Westword’s fantastic Friday night. Local artists should be announced soon; voting is open. More info on their website.


Central Rockies Old-Time Music Association (CROMA) Festival-

July 5th-9th

CROMA's 2017 festival at Parrish Ranch features a great old-time music lineup, workshops, nightly dances, open jams, classes for kids, open stage times, and couples dance workshops. Artists at this year's fest will include Eddie Bond and the New Ballards Branch Bogtrotters, The Ozark Highballers, Jesse Milnes and Emily Miller, and The Musky Dimes and Lansford and McAlister. Get full details and tickets here


The Ride Festival- July 8th-9th

Beck will headline The Ride Festival this year, another Telluride fest that is sure to get you groovin’. Ben Harper, Kaleo, The John Butler Trio, and Colorado favorite Rose Hill Drive will all keep your summer-chill vibes in check at this one. Full lineup here.


The Underground Music Showcase- July 27th-30th

One of our absolute favorite weekends of the summer is Denver’s The UMS due to its focus on local artists, and all the fun that comes along with wandering around the South Broadway venues hosting the three-day event. Benjamin Booker, Red Fang, & Esme Patterson are headlining this year, but we're more stoked on this massive list of local artists (a crazy amount of which we've covered in the last year). Get tickets here. More deets on our announcement link.


Rockygrass Festival- July 28th-30th

Bluegrass, bluegrass, and more bluegrass. That’s what Rockygrass in Lyons is all about! Sam Bush Bluegrass Band, The Del McCoury Band, and The Infamous Stringdusters are already confirmed for this year’s pickin’ celebration, so get your tickets now. More artists at this link.


ARISE Music Festival- August 4th-6th

Colorado’s ARISE is back for its fifth year at Loveland’s Sunrise Ranch, and features seven stages of live music, yoga, workshops, theme camps, art galleries & installations, a children’s village, speakers, and films! Some of the top billed artists for 2017 include Atmosphere, Tipper, and Ani Difranco. Get more details at our announcement link.


Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest- August 11th-13th

Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest is a FREE, recurring, three-day music festival held every August in the historic downtown of Fort Collins. CAKE has been announced as one of the headliners with more TBA- keep up with the full lineup here.


Velorama Colorado- August 11th-13th

Following the Colorado Classic bicycle race, Colorado’s newest festival Velorama will take place in Denver’s RiNo Neighborhood this summer. Wilco, Death Cab For Cutie, The New Pornographers, Saint Motel, and La Santa Cecilia are the bands announced so far, and you don’t have to bike in the race to partake in the party! Tickets for this new fest here.


Rocky Mountain Folks Festival- August 18th-20th

Last year, Rocky Mountain Folks Festival proved to be much more than a music festival. Bringing together local artists for songwriting workshops and more, the Lyons, CO fest created an awesome artistic community that still managed to showcase great national acts too. Gregory Alan Isakov, Lake Street Dive, and Rhiannon Giddens have already been announced for this year’s fest; full schedule and list of acts here.


Jazz Aspen Snowmass- September 1st-3rd

We don’t know how Maroon 5 is jazz, but they are headlining the JAS Labor Day Weekend festival this year. Colorado favorite Nathaniel Rateliff & The Nightsweats, Lake Street Dive, and Keith Urban will also have performances at the Snowmass event. JAS has a smaller June event too, which will feature John Batiste & Stay Human, Michael McDonald, and Earth Wind & Fire. Details on both events here.


Telluride Blues & Brews Festival 

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Telluride Blues & Brews Fest has Bonnie Raitt, Steve Winwood, TajMo at the top of their bill this year. You can get your grand brew tasting on for three days with these artists and more, plus there is a lot of availability in ticket options, so you can schedule your own fest experience. Get more info here


Festivals of The Past

We'll miss you Vertex.

We'll miss you Vertex.

Wondering what happened to some of your other favorite Colorado festivals? Bass Center moved to New Jersey this year, Divide Music Festival has been postponed until 2018, Groove Festival’s web presence has been replaced by this Japanese site making us question everything, Mad Decent Block Party went to India (yes really), Riot Fest Denver will not return due to Sean McKeough's death, and Vertex (which we freakin’ loved) was sadly cancelled, but we’re praying it comes back to life with full zombie mayhem next year. Fingers crossed fellow festheads.


Make sure to keep up with our festival coverage all season on BolderBeat’s dedicated fest page!

-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.

Festival Life In The Eyes Of A Taco Slinger: The Adventures of Super Heady Tacos

By: Sierra Voss

There is such a thing as a magical taco and it’s found deep within the heart of Colorado’s music festival scene. And after having experienced said taco for myself, I needed to know the secrets of this fantastic festival food. So I sat down with Bradford McDevitt, the creator of McDevitt Taco Supply (Super Heady Tacos), and Jesse Torrey, a chef of the taco goods and veteran in the festival taco slingin’ business. Check it out:

How did this whole taco adventure begin?

Bradford: Five and a half years ago, I applied for a permit to cook and sell tacos on Pearl Street Mall in Boulder, CO. My application made the top three that year, and was entered into the final cook off. I got one of the two available spots, and since then, it’s been a natural progression into music festivals.

How did you come up with the name 'Super Heady Tacos'?

Bradford: It’s a 13th century term meaning intoxicating or overwhelming. In the late 90s, the term was adapted to the marijuana culture; we have adapted it to taco culture.

Bradford McDevitt. Photo Credit: Tobin Voggesser 

Bradford McDevitt. Photo Credit: Tobin Voggesser 

What was your first music festival experience with the taco truck?

Bradford: Four years ago, in 2012 we went to Country Thunder. We don’t do that festival anymore. People who love country music are the worst humans on earth, in terms of how they treat vendors.

Jesse: Desert Rocks was my first festival with the Super Heady Taco crew.

How many music festivals did you do this year?

Bradford: This summer we did 10 festivals. Arise, Beanstalk, Divide, New West Fest, Riot Fest, Sonic Bloom, Summer Camp, and Vertexto name a few. In 2013 we did 20 music festivals. We hit the scene really hard, literally going from East Coast to West Coast. We did the big ones too, like Bonnaroo and Coachella.

Jesse: Yeah- it was 20 festivals in seven months. That's like 25,000 miles of traveling and slingin’ tacos. Basically, [we traveled] the circumference of the world within the continental U.S.

Bradford: Yeah after that we decided to mostly stay in Colorado. This state offers so many amazing festival opportunities. Plus, it's just more cost effective.

The taco light at the end of the festival tunnel. Photo Credit: Tobin Voggesser 

The taco light at the end of the festival tunnel. Photo Credit: Tobin Voggesser 

What are the best and worst parts of working a music festival?

Bradford: Interacting with new people all the time who constantly praise our food, atmosphere, energy levels and staff is one of the best parts. Everyone we deal with is on vacation, so everyone is in a great mood.

Jesse: You absorb people’s elevated energy levels at festivals. My lows are in between [gigs], waiting for the next music festival.

The Taco Tent. Photo Credit:  Sierra Voss

The Taco Tent. Photo Credit: Sierra Voss

What is the craziest music festival story you have for me?

Jesse: It happened this year at Summer Camp. Monday morning I woke up for loadout. Loadout days are hard; you are exhausted and everything is dirty and chaotic. Like, you literally just served 10,000 tacos out of a mobile kitchen. So that morning, I was riding a razors edge from maintaining my sanity. I started loading out, and there was literally a six foot long snake under our garbage can in the kitchen. I’m from Boston. I don’t know what poisonous snakes look like. All I knew was that this snake was huge and, like, coming after me. For an hour I tried to kill this thing with a 10-inch prep knife and a sledge hammer. It was like a battle royal. So I’m in this frenzy, a total manic moment: I can’t let this snake go ‘cause I’m thinkin’ he's gonna hide under something and I’m gonna pick that something up to put it away, and he is gonna get me! In my mind, after 80 hours of slinging tacos, I decided it was me or this snake. I love animals, but it was on. I finally whacked it. I cut its head off to bury it because I thought it was venomous. But before I buried the snake, I put it in a container and asked guests if they wanted snake breakfast tacos...

Long story short, that's the difference between working in a kitchen versus a music festival mobile kitchen. You have to be able to wrestle a six foot long snake to be a festival taco slinger.

Denver Riot Fest Taco Slingers: Levi Patton, Daniel Ward, & Jesse Torrey. Photo Credit:   Sierra Voss

Denver Riot Fest Taco Slingers: Levi Patton, Daniel Ward, & Jesse Torrey. Photo Credit: Sierra Voss

What’s the coolest thing about being a part of the Super Heady Taco team?

Jesse: There have been hundreds of taco slingers that have worked festivals with us from coast to coast. People have gotten married as a result of slinging our tacos. We don't just sling tacos, we provide people with a good time.

Bradford: You become a music festival name. Super Heady Tacos has become known as the secret third stage. We thrown on tunes, light up our disco ball, and get down. One guy came up to us at Divide Music Festival and said, “Dude you just put on a better show than Cake!”

So the next time you're at a Colorado music festival, have your taco cake and eat it too! Find this secret third stage, because I guarantee you will find delicious tacos, laughs, and a good time. And if you’re festivaled out for the season, don’t fret! Keep an eye out for a Super Heady Tacos restaurant location coming to Boulder early next year in the Meadows on the Parkway area on Baseline and Foothills. Peep Super Heady Taco's menu here

-Sierra

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

Hiatus Kaiyote Dropped New Music at Vertex Festival This Weekend

By: Sierra Voss

Vertex Festival’s final day started off with lots and lots of coffee. Two days of festin’ had really taken a toll on my body. I was literally unable to stop dancing during Saturday night’s last two sets, Lettuce and Odesza. But once the caffeine set in, I began counting down the hours until my most anticipated band of the festival, Hiatus Kaiyote, took the stage.

Nai Palm of Hiatus Kaiyote.

Nai Palm of Hiatus Kaiyote.

Every now and then, a band comes along that lives within its own reality of creating, and it’s as if their songwriting, lyrical composition and genre styling is other worldly. And that’s Hiatus Kaiyote, a group that cannot be defined or placed into typical music categories or stereotypes. Each one of the band’s songs bends genres and take you on a journey of various meters, dynamic harmonies, polyrhythms, and melodic exploration.

Simon Mavin of Hiatus Kaiyote.

Simon Mavin of Hiatus Kaiyote.

Hiatus Kaiyote was formed in Melbourne, Australia in 2011. The band is made up of members Naomi "Nai Palm" Saalfield (vocals/guitar), Paul Bender (bass), Simon Mavin (keyboards) and Perrin Moss (drums/percussion). Hiatus Kaiyote independently released their first album, Tawk Tomahawk, in 2012. In 2013, their song "Nakamarra, was nominated for a Grammy for Best R&B Performance. The band released their second album, Choose Your Weapon, in May of 2015. Their song "Breathing Underwater", from that album, was then nominated for Best R&B Performance at the 2016 Grammy Awards.

Nai Palm.

Nai Palm.

Lead singer Nai Palm is a strong, creative force. She walked onstage last night wearing a badass sparkle leotard, a glitter shawl, and rocking a sweet Michael Jackson earring. The tone of her voice was stunningly smooth and silky, with moments of raspy lower tones that gave me goosebumps. Her abilities to use her voice as a percussive instrument were possibly even more impressive than her effortless tone. She is clearly well studied. Artists that drop melody lines like her have to be immensely well versed in Jazz music theory, with a deep understanding of diatonic, whole-tone and octatonic scales.

Perrin Moss of Hiatus Kaiyote.

Perrin Moss of Hiatus Kaiyote.

There were times I stood entranced, watching HK as I desperately tried to take in every element and layer of their music. As much as your body wants to groove with them, dancing to their songs can prove to be rather challenging. There were Latin vamps, swinging breakdowns, full stops to progressive rock beats, and R&B baselines throughout their set. And just when Nai Palm was mid-syllable of a word or a note, the song would transition in and out of meters. Can you “drop into” their crazy rhythmic interplay? I was tired, and I’m sure I looked completely crazy dancing to their tunes, but I enjoyed every second of it.

Hiatus Kaiyote at Vertex Festival.

Hiatus Kaiyote at Vertex Festival.

Hiatus Kaiyote dropped two news songs on us at their Vertex show during their afternoon set. As far as I remember, they did not introduce them with titles, but here’s to hoping they release them as singles this year. The two mystery tracks were some of the best in their set.

Watch a live performance of Hiatus Kaiyote's "Molasses":

Finally, the band's mid-afternoon set started to come to an end. When Nai Palm announced the band had two songs left, the crowd began chanting, "Ten more songs! Ten more songs!" Between their performance and the crowd's clear connection with the band, I felt like this was actually an act who deserved to be a headliner at this festival, as opposed to their Sunday afternoon spot time.

Hiatus Kaiyote is a band I have a deep respect and appreciation for in what they’re choosing to share with the world. I recommend them to anyone who wants to explore contemporary/ future soul music because the members of this band are creative forces, true scholars, and masters of their craft. Their set was a major Vertex highlight, and you should definitely check out their music here.

-Sierra

All photos per the author for BolderBeat. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Vertex Day Two Ripped & Roared

By: Sierra Voss

Day two of Vertex came creeping in slowly. The campgrounds were quiet as people emerged from their tents and began to cook breakfast. The tent city here actually has a really nice community vibe about it, and Vertex has pulled in a truly amazing crowd, which is a huge bonus for the overall festi experience of the weekend. Everyone has been respectful and nice, and all about gettin’ down and dancing. Plus festi gear has been on point. I saw some pretty awesome outfits throughout the day, including ladies running around with light-up capes, countless animal costumes, creative signage, lots of light-up jellyfish umbrella things and my personal favorite, a “so hot right now” Mugatu sign.

Music didn’t start Saturday until about 2pm, which felt a bit late for a weekend day. To beat the heat, festiva-goers made their way to “The Beach” to hang out. “The Beach” is basically a little pond surrounded by sand, but,that didn’t stop people from swimming and playing beach volleyball.

Graham Nash.

Graham Nash.

It was another incredibly diverse line-up on Saturday. Main stage acts switched from EDM artists like Classixx to legends like Graham Nash. My personal favorite performances of the day were The Revivalists, Graham Nash, Lettuce, and Odesza. The Revivalists really took me by surprise. These guys really do know how to rock, and are extremely talented musicians. Their latest album doesn’t do them justice. Frontman David Shaw literally had enough energy during their performance to power the entire festival. He couldn’t stand still and frequently made epic leaps down and up between the stage and the monitors in front of the audience.

The Revivalists.

The Revivalists.

The day hustled on by, and before I knew it the sun was setting and Lettuce was taking the stage. The first song Lettuce played seemed extremely electronic compared to their normal sound. I got super nervous they were going to stray from their classic funk vibes to try to cater to the festival crowd. Luckily, they came ripping in with their second song and got right on down to their dirty funk roots. Game on! It was the perfect pick me up before the last set of the night.

Odesza.

Odesza.

Last night’s closer was Odesza, and he was the perfect ending to an epic eleven hour day of non-stop music. The coolest part of his set was when he brought up the CU drum line. The level of excitement on the students’ faces as they played was unreal. My friend, a CU grad, said she couldn’t help but feel like a proud mama bear as she watched them play with Odesza.

Houndmouth.

Houndmouth.

Alright that was day two of Vertex. Spirits are high, bodies are sunkissed, and the first set of today has already begun...

-Sierra

All photos per the author for BolderBeat. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Opening Day at Vertex Music Festival

By: Sierra Voss

The first day at Vertex had cars lined up as festival-goers excitedly filled into the camping grounds. It was definitely a get-to-know-your-neighbor situation, as tents were lined up directly behind each personal car. It wasn’t long before the field rapidly became a tent city. Flags were raised, and pool floaties were blown up and mounted on top of cars. Humans started to play lawn games in any space left untouched, as we patiently waited for the first bands to take the stage.

Big Wild.

Big Wild.

Which brings me to the lay of the land. There are three main stages on the festival grounds, and when you first enter the Vertex gates, you stumble upon a pretty heady little world. There is a cottage simply filled with balloons, a shed were women offer to wash your clothes for you with washboards (random and weird), and a nap tent. It all feels somewhat reminiscent of Electric Forest.

Fruition.

Fruition.

When it comes to the music, the band Fruition took the first big main stage around 2PM. The vibe was pretty mellow during their set, and remained so until later in the night as festival-goers slowly trickled in and explored the grounds. Things really started to pick up when Anderson Paak took the Cottonwood Parlor main stage. He put on an awesomely energetic show, hopping down to dance on the monitors and bouncing all around the stage. Paak rocks a pretty sweet septum piercing and has a smile that will make yah weak in the knees. He ended his performance rippin’ it behind his drum set.  

You definitely have to remain flexible and open to different vibes at this festival. The musical lineup for the weekend is incredibly diverse, and jumps from hip hop to bluegrass to EDM, all within the span of a day. Right after Anderson Paak, the band Dawes took the stage. Dawes was a 100% different musical vibe than Paak, but they laid down an equally impressive set.

My personal favorite shows of the night were Alabama Shakes, Jai Wolf, and Gramatik. Each artist crushed it, but Alabama Shakes really slayed. Lead singer Brittany Howard ripped out some powerful notes that filled my entire body with soul. It was beyond epic watching her belt out tune after tune.

Alabama Shakes.

Alabama Shakes.

It was an impressive first day for the start of Vertex Music Festival. I am now sitting here bright and early on day two, watching festi-goers yoga it up. And yes I said watching, not participating. It’s gonna be another rad day of music. Round two let’s go…

-Sierra

All photos per the author for BolderBeat. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Denver's Other Worlds Play Vertex Festival This Weekend

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Americana. Psychedlia. And Rock’n’Roll. That’s the combination of sounds you’ll hear from Denver five piece Other Worlds. Formed in 2014, and originally known around these parts as “Secret Band”, Other Worlds boasts the talents of Colorado music scene artists Alex Johnson (drums), Ben Waligoske (guitar/pedal steel/vocals), Jonah Wisneski (vocals/guitar), Logan Muckler (bass), and Phil Johnson (keyboards/vocals).

Other Worlds.

Other Worlds.

Though they’ve been writing and performing since their formation, it wasn’t until this year that the group released their debut album, Weather Patterns. Recorded at Evergroove Studio in Evergreen, CO, the nine-track release was mixed by Logan Muckler (Emerson Recordings), and mastered by Grammy-winning David Glasser (Airshow Mastering). Weather Patterns showcases the talents of every member of Other Worlds, with its driving guitar riffs, rolling percussion, smooth bass grooves, and echoing vocals. It’s a strong debut from a local band that is definitely worth checking out.

Preview Other Worlds’ Weather Patterns here.

Other Worlds’ next gig is actually at Vertex Festival this weekend, so get tickets for that here if you haven’t already! Other Worlds plays La Hacienda stage on Friday, August 5th at 2PM. Make sure to check out Weather Patterns, and keep up with Other Worlds’ other happenings here!

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on twitter and instagram.

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

Five Arstists You Should See at Vertex Festival This Weekend

By: Annie Kane

Buena Vista’s inaugural music festival, Vertex, is bringing some huge acts to its majestic landscape.

Vertex Festival, presented by Madison House and AEG Live, is scheduled to bring a variety of big name artists from both blues rock (Alabama Shakes) to electronic (Odesza) genres to the recently rehabilitated ranch surrounded by 14ers in the mountain country of Buena Vista. But the killer lineup doesn’t end after the big names. Many of the smaller artists chosen that are placed on the third tier of the lineup still have huge musical credibility to their name, and most definitely should not be skipped over. Here are our top five must-see acts from that portion of the lineup:

Dawes

California-based rock band Dawes bring their approach to raw old-school touch to their sound. Their vintage feel is a result of recording their live sessions on an analog tape, and inspiration from one of the most classic bands of all time, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Their rich sound will echo beautifully Vertex’s grand venue.

Ryan Hemsworth

Ryan Hemsworth is an explorative DJ raised in Nova Scotia. Despite only releasing singles since his last album in 2014, Alone for the First Time, Hemsworth has been riding a wave of fame this year. With access to a computer, it is easy for most anyone to become a producer, but it is rare for someone to be able to truly create art from simple beats. Ryan Hemsworth has this talent. His sound mixes misplaced voices, sometimes even whispers, into deep, twinkly, and ecstatic beats to create something that is like Pop Rocks for your ears. His set will be filled with all sorts of good vibes.

Hiatus Kaiyote

Hiatus Kaiyote has dubbed their genre as “future soul”. One short listen, and you can tell that this self-identification is spot on. Nai Palm, the frontwoman of the band, has a full voice reminiscent of Amy Winehouse that when combined with drums, keyboards, and sci-fi space-like sounds creates something you’ve surely never heard before. They’ve collaborated with fellow Vertex artist, Anderson Paak, along with Q-Tip, and have opened for the revered Erykah Badu. Nai Palm tells the Wall Street Journal that their music isn’t “genre specific… If you have enough different influences, it becomes a hybrid of your own. The collective viewpoint defines us." Catch their box-breaking set on Sunday.

Big Wild

We caught up with Jackson Stell, the brains behind the name of Big Wild, while he toured through Denver earlier this summer. Read our interview with him here, and peep a recap video of his show at the Larimer Lounge here. Big Wild is a DJ worth seeing live. He does not sit behind a computer, press a spacebar and then continue to vibe out to his own music; rather, Stell switches between his laptop, drums, keyboards and even an acoustic drum set-up. East coast native and California transplant Stell mixes a variety of super fun sounds into his songs, along with remixing a variety of well known songs, such as “Show Me Love” by Hundred Waters feat. Chance the Rapper. Big Wild had everybody dancing at his show in Denver, and he’s guaranteed to make you move at Vertex too.

BadBadNotGood

Recent collaborator on Kaytranada’s latest album, BadBadNotGood has been making big waves in the hip-hop community despite being a jazz-focused ensemble. The group, consisting of Matthew Tavares (keyboards/synthesizer), Chester Hansen (bass) and Alexander Sowinski (drums), have already worked with Tyler, the Creator, Frank Ocean, Wu Tang’s Ghostface Killah and Mick Jenkins. Their shared love of jazz and hip-hop led them to reinterpret famous hip-hop songs, which has attracted the attention of big name artists. BadBadNotGood is one of those almost-underground voices that is driving an  innovative change in music. Check out their song with Future Islands’ Samuel T. Herring, “Time Moves Slow”.

See the whole lineup for Vertex Music Festival here.

-Annie

Connect with me on twitter and instagram.

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

"Yes Lawd!": Anderson Paak is on an Other-Worldly Level & He's Coming to Colorado's Vertex Festival

By: Annie Kane

With all the odds against him, Anderson Paak’s career has turned into something dreams are made of.

Anderson Paak at his recent Red Rocks performance.

Anderson Paak at his recent Red Rocks performance.

Despite changing his name from Lovejoy to Anderson Paak, the artist behind both monikers hasn’t moved away from his initial philosophy: turning a negative past into beautiful and inspiring music, and calling forth love and compassion from those who listen to it.

A lot of Paak’s inspiration behind his musical method was recently revealed in an interview with Pitchfork, where he discussed two painful memories: one of his father beating his mother, and the other of his father’s death after serving a 14+ year prison sentence. The trials and tribulations in Paak’s life don’t end there, but these hardships certainly serve as a point of reference for the size of the hurdles Paak has had to overcome. Paak’s mother, on the other hand, dedicated herself to raising him and taught him to transform his hardships. Paak speaks on this in his song “The Season | Carry Me” in which he calls out repeatedly, “Mama will you carry me?”

Paak on the kit.

Paak on the kit.

Paak has surely made it his goal not only to redefine himself, but also to create impactful music that can affect multiple genres. Listening to one of Paak’s albums will take you on a journey through the culture of music yesterday, today and tomorrow. His recognizably raspy and charismatic voice carries through over jazz, R&B, trap, funk and experimental rock. Paak recently told Noisey, “People have said I couldn’t do songs with all these different genres, with all these different artists. It made me wanna break the rules.” And break the rules he has.

Listen to Anderson Paak's album Malibu:

Paak’s latest album, Malibu, begins with a soulful R&B tune, “The Bird” and before you’re ready for it, he jumps right into a completely new vibe with “Heart Don’t Stand a Chance”. The jazzy, drum-driven introduction to this song is reminiscent of Kendrick Lamar’s 2015 album, To Pimp A Butterfly. Malibu continues to ebb and flow in various directions, teleporting listeners from 80s skate rinks in “Am I Wrong”, to futuristic clubs in “Parking Lot”, and finally to a dreamy jazz lounge in “Room In Here”. The entire album is laced with samples of old recordings of interviews, documentaries, and advertisements too, keeping your ear intrigued. This release proves that Paak has mastered his craft, and is bringing the 21st century music culture with him as he pushes creative boundaries.

Paak with The Free Nationals.

Paak with The Free Nationals.

Just last month, we caught Anderson Paak and The Free Nationals’ recent show at Red Rocks with Bryson Tiller, and can personally guarantee that he will give one of the liveliest performances you will ever see. Paak grooves on stage with a dance style just as unique as his music, and fearlessly jumps over his drum set to drive the beat of his songs while incredulously still singing and rapping. Anderson Paak is on an ethereal level that doesn’t come around often. Which is why we recommend you buy your tickets to Vertex Festival in Buena Vista, CO now! The festival is scheduled for the weekend of August 5th-7th, and Paak is at the top of our must-see list on the lineup. We’ll be covering the festival, so stay tuned, and in the meantime, get your tickets to Vertex here.

-Annie

Connect with me on twitter and instagram.

All photos per the author; embedded tracks per the artist featured and those credited.

BolderBeat's Guide to Colorado's Summer Music Festivals 2016

By: Claire Woodcock

It finally feels like summer, so let's fest. 

We know you want to hit the festivals on our list. 

We know you want to hit the festivals on our list. 

It’s festival season, which has all of us here at BolderBeat elated. Press kits are flying, and we want you to be as on the curve as we are! So here are our top picks for Colorado’s summer music festivals:

Project Pabst May 20-21

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Nightsweats at Denver's Project Pabst. 

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Nightsweats at Denver's Project Pabst. 

Project Pabst was a wild success,” were Zach Dahmen’s words in retrospect of the festival that rocked Denver a few weeks ago. We brought you exclusive coverage on Best Coast, TV on the Radio and more in our feature of the event. Relive that time Charles Bradley almost did the splits and The Violent Femmes helped us blister in the sun with our photos per Ian Glass.

Sasquatch Music Festival May 27-29

Kurt Vile at Sasquatch.

Kurt Vile at Sasquatch.

BolderBeat had a press invitation to Sasquatch Music Festival this year, so we threw down content on The Cure, Disclosure, Florence and the Machine, M83, Grimes, Sufjan Stevens, Purity Ring, Kurt Vile And The Violators, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Nightsweats, and more! Take a scroll through our pictures right here and read over our recaps of the awesome weekend. It wasn't in CO folks, but it sure was awesome.

Sonic Bloom Festival June 16-19

The 11th annual Sonic Bloom Festival is coming up soon! This year, SB is at Hummingbird Ranch, nestled in the heart of Spanish Peaks country. The weekend will feature performances from Bonobo, Tipper, and a huge array of electronic beatmasters. The festival also features a crazy lineup of yogis and movement leaders, as well as interpretive artists.

Telluride Bluegrass Festival June 16-19

Telluride's Bluegrass Festival has been a massive success for 43 years. 

Telluride's Bluegrass Festival has been a massive success for 43 years. 

Telluride is known as one of the best festival spots of the west, and Telluride Bluegrass Festival has been keeping that notoriety alive for 43 years! The festival dates fall on the weekend closest to the summer solstice, giving you the longest day of the year to wander from set to set. Guests this year include Ryan Adams, Neil Finn, Emmylou Harris, and more!

Westword Music Showcase June 25

Summer in the city at Westword's Music Showcase. 

Summer in the city at Westword's Music Showcase. 

Denver’s alt weekly newspaper will host more than 100 live acts, most of which are Colorado-based. Denver band 888 is slated to play one of Westword’s main stages, while Cold War Kids, Matt and Kim, and New Politics front a lineup sure to make this year’s showcase a success.

The Ride Festival July 9-10

Views on views at Telluride's Ride Festival.

Views on views at Telluride's Ride Festival.

The Ride Festival, another Telluride fest, is one of the first live music/camp combos of the summer. Since 2012, this festival has firmly established itself in rootsy rock vibes. This year’s headliners include Pearl Jam and Cage the Elephant.

The Divide Music Festival July 22-24

divide-2016-lineup.jpg

Divide in Winter Park is a new music festival in Colorado this year. Its lineup boasts performances by Bleachers, Cake, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes, Kid Cudi, Miike Snow and more! Festival perks include hiking, biking and yoga for festival-goers.

The Underground Music Showcase July 28-31

For many Colorado musicians, UMS is one of the biggest festivals of the summer. Performers on the national scene include San Francisco garage rockers Thee Oh Sees. Go celebrate over 100 local performers making it happen in CO's music scene at this Denver setup!

Bass Center July 29-30

Bassnectar is bringing a massive show to CO.

Bassnectar is bringing a massive show to CO.

California’s Bassnectar first brought Bass Center to Colorado in 2010; this festival is the traveling circus of electronic music. The Bassnectar tour travels with its own custom sound rig, and headlines some of the most noted venues in the country. Acts this year include Flux Pavilion, Flying Lotus, Wu-Tang Clan, and Lupe Fiasco. You can check it out in Commerce City, and there are two camping villages for the hardcores: “The Shire” and “Narnia”.

Vertex Festival August 5-7

At its core, Vertex is diverse music, outdoor adventure, and artful fun in beautiful Buena Vista, CO. Alabama Shakes and Odesza are two of the headliners, to give an idea of the range of performers on this lineup. We’re covering press at Vertex, so expect lots of info to hit our site over the summer on this one!

ARISE Music Festival August 5-7

Nighttime shows at Arise rule. 

Nighttime shows at Arise rule. 

Here’s another festival that is Colorado heavy. ARISE will take place at Loveland’s Sunrise Ranch again this year, and features seven stages of live music, yoga, workshops, theme camps, art galleries & installations, a children’s village, speakers, and films!

Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest August 12-14

Did we mention this fest is free?

Did we mention this fest is free?

Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest is a FREE, recurring, three-day music festival held every August in historic downtown Fort Collins. Local faves DeVotchKa and The Fray are headlining this bad boy, and there's a ton of other great local acts playing too. Check out the lineup here!

Rocky Mountain Folks Festival August 19-21

BYOBlanket to Rocky Mountain Folks Fest.

BYOBlanket to Rocky Mountain Folks Fest.

The Rocky Mountain Folks Festival is happening in Lyons, CO, a mountain town 15 miles north of Boulder that NPR’s All Things Considered once described as “the Nashville of the Rockies”. The festival recently added The Decemberists and Conor Oberst as national acts to their local lineup.

Riot Fest September 2-4

BolderBeat couldn’t be more excited to wrap up the summer festival roundup with Denver’s Riot Fest & Rodeo in September. With national acts like Sleater-Kinney, The Misfits and Yo La Tengo, to name a few, Riot Fest will be an explosive ending to the upcoming sunny summer of music!

Make sure to keep up with our festival coverage all summer on our dedicated fest page!

-Claire

All photos per the festivals featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.