TheBigWonderful Spring Weekend @ THEBIGWONDERFUL

TheBigWonderful is back May 5-7!

TheBigWonderful Spring Weekend @ THEBIGWONDERFUL

Fri, May 5, 2017 - Sun, May 7, 2017

Doors: 4:00 pm / Show: 4:00 pm

$5 - $59

This event is all ages

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Friday:

4-6 Cinco De Mayo Happy Hour, 4-10 Main Stage Music (Drew Emmitt Band headliner)

 

Saturday:

12-6 General Admisison, 3-6 Beer/Spirits Festival, 6-10 Main Stage Music (Jeff Austin & Friends headliner)

 

Sunday:

12-6 General Admission

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Jeff Austin
Jeff Austin
"When I'm writing a song, it's not about the hot licks, it's about the voice and how it can be showcased from song to song," says musician Jeff Austin. His focus is on transporting his audience by way of his vocal: "It's the direct communication with the crowd — not just asking them how they're feeling, but bringing something out of them." For Austin, the act of speaking to people through his art really means using his voice.

The career of the Colorado-based artist has already seen him break through jam and bluegrass scenes, play stages from The Fillmore Auditorium to Red Rocks Amphitheater, and outdoor events like Telluride Bluegrass Festival and Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival, among many others. But with the launch of his solo career in 2014, Austin is now building on the foundations of previous ventures while honing his own sound and charting new courses.

"I've learned a lot from the people I've played with," says Austin who has shared stages with such luminaries as Del McCoury, Jerry Douglas, Sam Bush, Earle Scruggs, Jon Fishman, and Phil Lesh. And it's artists such as these who have helped crystalize Austin's idea of what he wants to do as he moves forward with his eponymous project. "From both the rock side and the bluegrass side," he explains, "I've learned a lot about song structure, solo ideas, playing with guts, and being who you are."

Although he considers the Jeff Austin Band his primary focus, the mandolinist and singer is also known for embracing collaborations. In 2004, he released a full-length album with Chris Castino (The Big Wu) that featured guest appearances by Noam Pikelny, Darol Anger, and Sally Van Meter. Just two short years later in 2006, Austin teamed with Keller Williams and Keith Moseley to record a live album of bluegrass takes on Grateful Dead covers. The project, released under the name Grateful Grass, benefited the Rex Foundation. And most recently, Austin revived 30db - his project with Brendan Bayliss of Umphrey's McGee.

In truth, Austin only began playing the mandolin a few years before co-founding progressive bluegrass outfit Yonder Mountain String Band, a group with whom he parted ways in 2014. And, picking prowess aside, Austin has always considered his voice to be his first instrument. He was drawn to singing from a young age, pursuing musical theater in high school and college. That passion is still evident in his approach to song craft.

Austin draws from those varied roots and readily admits to still loving musicals, being fascinated by Madrigal singers, and tuning-in to a wide range of vocal powerhouses. He channels all of these influences into his solo career, while also seeking personal innovation. For his newest project, Austin sought out musicians on the cutting-edge of the acoustic and jazz music circles. Artists proficient in theory and technique, but not afraid to lend themselves to some "far-out arrangements." The result is some of Austin's most structured, yet exciting, compositions to date with an approach that fits within his own evolving journey and personal motto, "The work continues."

Although there is a strong undercurrent of momentum and innovation that course through Austin's newest project, there is also a connection to the past with the bandleader revisiting selections from his back catalog. Offerings include "Dawn's Early Light," "Snow in the Pines," and others dating back to the 1990s. What matters, Austin points out, is that those songs evoke strong emotional responses both from the audience and himself. Played by this new ensemble, those songs feel revitalized and fresh.

When it comes to dynamics and structure, Austin taps the variety of sounds and styles he's absorbed from theater, jamming, nearly twenty years of performance, and his love of experiencing live music as a fan. It's that inner concert enthusiast that binds him to his own audience and a powerful exchange between the stage and the crowd. "I hope they take with them exactly what I hope they leave with us," he says. "And that's inspiration."
Drew Emmitt
Drew Emmitt
Revered as one of the most energetic and innovative mandolin players on the jamband/newgrass scene today, Drew Emmitt’s “inestimable talents” (An Honest Tune) don’t end with just the instruments that can be picked. Holding the wheel steady on acoustic and electric slide mandolin, acoustic and electric guitar and mandola, Emmitt’s superlative storytelling and versatile vocal abilities are incomparable. Following a decade of success with Leftover Salmon, Emmitt released his first solo effort, Freedom Ride, drawing on the talent of peers John Cowan, Peter Rowan, Sam Bush, Ronnie McCoury, Vassar Clements, Stuart Duncan and Randy Scruggs. Critics and fans loved the collaboration and Emmitt relished the chance to record with some of the giants with whom he’d shared festival stages. “It's amazing,” he said, “it's like walking in a dream….Standing on stage next to Sam (Bush) is pretty indescribable.” After touring as the Emmitt-Nershi band with Billy Nershi of The String Cheese Incident for the past few years and making several reunion appearances with Leftover Salmon, Drew Emmitt's solo work is rejuvenated and once again taking the contemporary, live gig, fresh every-time approach to bluegrass music.

Following a decade of success with Leftover Salmon, Emmitt released his first solo effort, Freedom Ride, in 2002 drawing on the talent of peers John Cowan, Peter Rowan, Sam Bush, Ronnie McCoury, Vassar Clements, Stuart Duncan and Randy Scruggs. Critics and fans loved the collaboration and Emmitt relished the chance to record with some of the giants with whom he’d shared festival stages. “It's amazing,” he said, “it's like walking in a dream….Standing on stage next to Sam (Bush) is pretty indescribable.” In 2005 he followed up with Across The Bridge, an equally impressive effort showcasing Emmitt’s bluegrass chops and songwriting talents as a straight-ahead bluegrass man. After touring as the Emmitt-Nershi band with Billy Nershi of The String Cheese Incident for the past year and making several reunion appearances with Leftover Salmon, Long Road finds Emmitt rejuvenated and once again taking the contemporary, live gig, fresh every-time approach to bluegrass music.
Andy Thorn
Andy Thorn
Plays Banjo in Leftover Salmon
Rob Drabkin
Rob Drabkin
The music of Rob Drabkin is spirited in nature, light from the heart and rocking on the six-string acoustic. The 70's style afro is as unavoidable as his ubiquitous grin, but it's his music that's put him on national tours and landed him sets at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in his hometown of Denver, Colorado. Rob and his band have become a force in the live scene, touring nationally as headliners and supporting acts such as John Butler Trio, Trevor Hall and Big Head Todd & The Monsters. Rob's full band performances are high-energy blending improvisation and rock while retaining an earnest singer/songwriter background.
Dead Phish Orchestra
Dead Phish Orchestra
The Deadphish Orchestra is a quartet of Colorado musicians who, above all, are close friends who have played together for many years. They had played Grateful Dead songs together, and they had played Phish songs together. But they got to wondering what would happen if they tried to merge the music of these two bands, the Granddaddies and Daddies of the jamband scene.

While these two bands have their surface similarities, most fans realize that their actual musical styles are quite different. The Grateful Dead are an earthy, folky, bluesy band where Phish is sharper around the edges–funky and more aggressive. But both bands have an improvisational approach to their live shows, and it is in that spontaneity where the magic really happens.

The guys in DPO have posed themselves a unique challenge in merging the two styles. Setlists end up with segues that look like Divided Sky > Morning Dew > Divided Sky, or Help > Slip > Frankenstein. Or how about Mike’s Song > Stella Blue > Weekapaug Groove. Or even stranger, like My Friend, My Friend of the Devil…or It Must Have Been The Roses Are Free. You can see that between the vast repertoires of the two bands, the possibilities are endless.

It’s just about as much fun as humans are allowed to have.
Caribou Mountain Collective
Caribou Mountain Collective
Caribou Mountain Collective is a quartet from Nederland, Colorado. Their extensive
original repertoire channels the rich traditions of both Appalachia and Colorado bluegrass. Their original lyrics and instrumental compositions present unique facets into americana. C.M.C. represents the next step in an ongoing revolution of roots music.

Though only together for two years, the C.M.C. has already established a strong presence in the music scene. Dobro player Allen Cooke was awarded first place at the 2013 Rockygrass dobro competition. Bassist Curly Collins brings his remarkable stage presence and industry expertise from his five years with Mountain Standard Time. Etienne Cremieux, having studied at Berklee College of Music and played extensively on both coasts, brings a decade of bluegrass fiddle experience with a uniquely driving and highly energetic style. Guitarist Miles Perry masterfully embodies the mountain heritage in his catalog of original works. Their instrumental expertise shines through Miles' songs to present a captivating new approach to a classic sound.

2015 has started out to be a big year for CMC. They played two opening sets for the Jeff Austin Band (Denver and Boulder) and recently played an opening set for the Wood Brothers. They played multiple sets at WinterWonderGrass in Avon, CO in February and look forward to a packed summer of traveling including stops at ROMP, Grey Fox, and RockyGrass.
Selasee & The FaFa Family
Selasee & The FaFa Family
Born in Accra, Ghana, Selasee grew up exposed to the colorful and energetic sounds of Highlife Music. With this exposure Selasee created his own style—a unique blend of Reggae, West African Highlife and American Pop music. Threading together English and West African lyrics for a bright and captivating sound.

Growing up in Accra, he realized his passion for music and gained a good understanding on music’s effect on people. Performing at school, church and being around his elders, Selasee developed and cultivated his musical talents. In 1995, he formed the African Pop group Makuma thus releasing a self titled album “Makuma.” In 1996, Selasee formed a gospel group called Heart To Heart who in 1997 recorded a debut album “Love For All” followed by “Heart To Heart.”
In 2003, Selasee immigrated to the US where he continued to aspire on his solo career. During this time, Selasee signed on with Running Dreams Records under management with Sean Cassidy. In 2005, Selasee recorded his debut album “Run” on Running Dreams Records. That same year the title track “Run” won first place in the World Music genre of the International Song Writers Competition. The Tracks “Run” and “Makuma” were also featured in the 2006 FIFA Soccer and 2007 Cricket video games by EA Sports.

In 2006, Selasee performed at MIDEM 06’ in Nice, France and MUSEXPO 06’ in Los Angeles, California. In 2009 he was honored by The Independent Music Awards winning the "Best World Fusion Song" award.

In 2010, Selasee recorded and released his latest album named “African Gate” on Black Eye Watching Label. In 2013, Selasee embarked on a new album being produced by the legendary Aston "Family Man" Barrett of Bob Marley & The Wailers—Bob Marley's Music Director. This album will also include special appearances by the Legendary Frankie Paul, Anthony B as well a number of up and coming reggae artists. The album is due to be released in the later part of 2014.
On the touring circuit, Selasee has shared the stage with reggae legends Steel Pulse, The Wailers, Third World, The Mighty Diamonds, Don Carlos, Barrington Levy, King Yellowman, The Melodians and Anthony B. .
In his own words—“Humility is power!”
That Damn Sasquatch
That Damn Sasquatch
That Damn Sasquatch is comprised of musicians with a variety of musical interests and instrumentation, allowing the band to cross genres of music including and not limited to bluegrass, country, blues, cajun/zydeco, and jazz. With a balanced, progressive, and traditional approach their sound is truly their own. .
Burn It Blue
Burn It Blue
Burn it Blue is an acoustic trio of multi-instrumentalists with roots in bluegrass, old‐time, Celtic, country, jazz, and rock & roll. Featuring John Bush on guitar, mandolin, fiddle, and vocals; Shaun Nicklin on banjo, dobro and vocals; and Francisco Prado on double bass and vocals. The band became friends at jams in the small but vibrant bluegrass scene of Golden, Colorado and formed in 2014.
Entertaining audiences with a fast-paced, exciting and humorous live show, Burn it Blue combines original music with covers of traditional and modern popular songs for a unique interpretation of the string band genre. The band’s insightful, honest, and catchy songs are executed with intensity and feature inspiring instrumental breaks and improvisation. With an extensive repertoire of songs and instruments to work with, Burn it Blue isn’t afraid to take risks and every performance is a one of a kind experience!
Acoustic Mining Company
Acoustic Mining Company
Acoustic Mining Co. has a distinctive, unique sound to their songwriting and arranging that stands out...reminds me of bands like Yonder Mountain or New Grass Revival...they surpass imitation on this disc with their exclusive sound. - Pow'r Pickin
Venue Information:
TheBigWonderful
4400 Fox St
Denver, CO, 80216