Loading...
Home2019-05-06T16:29:38+00:00

Keeping Music Alive — One Child at a Time!

Rhythms on the Rio is hosted by the South Fork Music Association.

SFMA is a volunteer and non-profit organization that provides musical instruments
and lessons, free of charge, to children throughout the San Luis Valley.

Lineup

Photo Gallery

Camping • RV • VW Bus

“Rhythms On The Rio is now my favorite festival. On the banks of the Rio Grande River, grass field camping and all night campsite picking circles, what’s not to love?”

Lineup

Jay Cobb Anderson (vocals, lead guitar, harmonica) / Kellen Asebroek (vocals, rhythm guitar, piano) / Mimi Naja (vocals, mandolin, electric & acoustic guitar) / Jeff Leonard (bass) / Tyler Thompson (drums, banjo)

On their fifth full-length, Watching It All Fall Apart, Fruition transform pain and heartache into something truly glorious. With their songwriting sharper and more nuanced than ever before—and their sonic palette more daringly expansive—the Portland, Oregon-based band’s full-hearted intensity ultimately gives the album a transcendent power.

“The songs are mostly breakup songs,” says Asebroek. “There was love and now it’s gone—we fucked it up, or some outside circumstance brought it to an end. It’s about dealing with all that but still having hope in your heart, even if you’re feeling a little lost and jaded.”

In a departure from their usual DIY approach, Fruition teamed up with producer/mixer Tucker Martine (My Morning Jacket, The Decemberists, First Aid Kit, case/lang/veirs) to adorn their folk-rooted sound with delicately crafted elements of psychedelia and soul. Showcasing the sublime harmonies the band first discovered during an impromptu busking session in 2008, Watching It All Fall Apart also finds Fruition more fully embracing their rock-and-roll sensibilities and bringing a gritty vitality to each track. “We’ve been a band almost ten years now, and we’re at the point of being comfortable in our skin and unafraid to be whatever we want as time goes on,” Anderson notes.

Recorded in ten days at Flora Recording & Playback in Portland, Watching It All Fall Apart came to life with the same kinetic urgency found in Fruition’s live sound. “It’s kind of an impossible task, this idea of transmuting the live energy into something you can play on your stereo, but I feel like this record comes close to that,” says Asebroek. At the same time, the band pursued a purposeful inventiveness that resulted in their most intricately textured work to date. “Tucker helped us push ourselves to create something that glistens in subtle little ways that you might not even pick up on at first,” says Asebroek. “We got to play around with all this analog gear and these weird old keyboards we wouldn’t ordinarily use, like a bunch of kids in a toy store where everything is free.”

On lead single “I’ll Never Sing Your Name,” that unrestrained creativity manifests in a fuzzed-out, gracefully chaotic track complete with sing-along-ready chorus. Built on brilliantly piercing lyrics (“And all those kisses that you were blowing/Somehow they all got blown right out”), the song echoes the album’s emotional arc by painfully charting the journey from heartache to acceptance. “It’s about going through a breakup, moping around, and then finally getting to the point where it’s like, ‘Okay—I’m done with feeling this way now,’” says Anderson.

Throughout Watching It All Fall Apart, the band’s let-the-bad-times-roll mentality reveals itself in ever-shifting tones and moods. On the stark and sleepy “Northern Town,” Naja’s smoldering vocals channel the ache of longing, the track’s twangy guitar lines blending beautifully with its swirling string arrangement. One of the few album cuts to have already appeared in Fruition’s setlist, “There She Was” sheds the heavy funk influence of its live version and gets reimagined as a shimmering, soulful number documenting Asebroek’s real-life run-in with an ex at a local bar. Meanwhile, “Turn to Dust” emerges as a weary but giddy piece of psych-pop chronicling the end of a failed romance. The song’s opening lyric also lends the album its title, which partly serves as “a commentary on the general state of the world today,” according to Asebroek. “Even if you’re mostly an optimistic person, it’s hard not to feel down when you look at all the insanity happening right now,” he says.

While those unflinchingly intimate breakup songs form the core of Watching It All Fall Apart, Fruition infuse an element of social commentary into songs like “FOMO” as well. Written on the Fourth of July, with its references to wasted white girls and cocaine cowboys, the mournful yet strangely reassuring track unfolds as what Anderson calls “an anti-party party song.”“It’s about one of those situations where you said you’d go to party but you really don’t want to go, because you know it’s going to be the same old bullshit,” he says. “The song is a call to defuse that guilt in your brain.” And on the sweetly uplifting “Let’s Take It Too Far,” the band offers one of the album’s most purely romantic moments by paying loving tribute to music as solace and salvation (“But don’t you worry ’bout dyin’/’Cause there’s no better way to go/We’ll sing until we’re out of honey/Then pour the gravel down our throats”).

From song to song, Fruition display the dynamic musicality they’ve shown since making their debut with 2008’s Hawthorne Hoedown LP. Through the years, the band has evolved from a rootsy, string-centric outfit to a full-fledged rock act, eventually taking the stage at such major festivals as Bonnaroo and Telluride Bluegrass (a set that inspired Rolling Stone to praise their “raucous originals filled with heartfelt lyrics and stadium-worthy energy”). Following the release of 2016’s Labor of Love, Fruition again made the rounds at festivals across the U.S., prompting Rolling Stone to feature the band on its “8 Best Things We Saw” at DelFest 2016.

In choosing a closing track for Watching It All Fall Apart, Fruition landed on “Eraser”—a slow-building, gently determined epic delivering a quiet message of hope in its final line: “Let it help you heal.”“Because there’s so much heartbreak on this album, we wanted to end on Kellen singing that last line very sweetly,” explains Anderson. “The whole point of having all these sad songs is helping people to let those emotions out—and then hopefully when they get to the end, they feel a little better about everything they’ve gone through along the way.”

website: www.fruitionband.com

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band

Celebrating over 40 years since their founding in 1977, New Orleans-based Dirty Dozen Brass Band has taken the traditional foundation of brass band music and incorporated it into a blend of genres including Bebop Jazz, Funk and R&B/Soul. This unique sound, described by the band as a ‘musical gumbo,’ has allowed the Dirty Dozen to tour across 5 continents and more than 30 countries, record 12 studio albums and collaborate with a range of artists from Modest Mouse to Widespread Panic to Norah Jones. Forty-plus years later, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band is a world famous music machine whose name is synonymous with genre- bending romps and high-octane performances.

Roger Lewis – Baritone Sax/Vocals Kevin Harris – Tenor Sax/Vocals Gregory Davis – Trumpet/Vocals Kirk Joseph – Sousaphone

TJ Norris – Trombone/Vocals Julian Addison – Drums Takeshi Shimmura – Guitar

The History of the Dirty Dozen Brass Band

In 1977, The Dirty Dozen Social and Pleasure Club in New Orleans began showcasing a traditional Crescent City brass band. It was a joining of two proud, but antiquated, traditions at the time: social and pleasure clubs dated back over a century to a time when black southerners could rarely afford life insurance, and the clubs would provide proper funeral arrangements. Brass bands, early predecessors of jazz as we know it, would often follow the funeral procession playing somber dirges, then once the family of the deceased was out of earshot, burst into jubilant dance tunes as casual onlookers danced in the streets. By the late ’70s, few of either existed. The Dirty Dozen Social and Pleasure Club decided to assemble this group as a house band, and over the course of these early gigs, the seven-member ensemble adopted the venue’s name: The Dirty Dozen Brass Band.

website: www.dirtydozenbrass.com

From a source deep, abundant, and pure the river flows.  It’s there on the map, marking place and time. Yet, the river changes as it remains a constant, carving away at the edges, making new pathways, gaining strength as it progresses forward.  The Travelin’ McCourys are that river.

The McCoury brothers- Ronnie (mandolin) and Rob (banjo) – were born into the bluegrass tradition.  Talk about a source abundant and pure: their father, Del, is among the most influential and successful musicians in the history of the genre.  Years on the road with Dad in the Del McCoury Band honed their knife-edge chops, and encouraged the duo to imagine how traditional bluegrass could cut innovative pathways into 21st century music.

“If you put your mind, your skills, and your ability to it, I think you can make just about anything work on bluegrass instruments,” says Ronnie.  “That’s a really fun part of this- figuring the new stuff out and surprising the audience.”

With fiddler Jason Carter, bassist Alan Bartram, and latest recruit Cody Kilby on guitar, they assembled a group that could take what they had in their DNA, take what traditions they learned and heard, and push the music forward.  In fact, the band became the only group to have each of its members recognized with an International Bluegrass Music Association Award for their instrument at least once. There were peers, too, that could see bluegrass as both historic and progressive.  Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees The Allman Brothers Band, improv-rock kings Phish, and jamband contemporary Keller Williams were just a few that formed a mutual admiration society with the ensemble.

The band played the Allman’s Wanee Festival, and guitarist Warren Haynes’ Christmas jam- an annual holiday homecoming of Southern music.  An early-years jam with the Lee Boys was hailed by many as the highlight of the evening, and with the video catching fire online, earned a legion of new, young fans of their supercharged combination of sacred steel, R&B, and bluegrass.  There were unforgettable collaborations with country smash Dierks Bentley, and onstage magic, jamming with titans String Cheese Incident and Phish, cutting an album with Keller (Pick), and creating the Grateful Ball- a tribute concert-turned-tour bridging bluegrass with the iconic music of the Grateful Dead.

“That’s something that’s part of us being who we are,” says Ronnie.  “It comes, too, with us plugging in. It gets louder, for sure. We can’t be another version of our dad’s band.  It wouldn’t make any sense for us to do that.”

Their concerts became can’t-miss events, whether headlining historic venues or as festival favorites, drawing the love and respect of a growing fanbase craving their eclectic repertoire.  At the 2016 edition of DelFest, an annual gathering of the genre’s best aptly named for the McCoury patriarch, the band delivered the take-away highlight. Rolling Stone called it “a sublime combination of rock and bluegrass, contemporary and classic, old and young.  The best set of the festival…” The river was going new places, getting stronger. It was time to re-draw the map.

“We’ve tried to pick songs we think people are going to enjoy,” says Ronnie.  “Something we learned from our dad is that a good song is a good song. It can be done in any way.”

So arrives the long-awaited, self-titled debut album from the quintet.  A brilliantly executed set overflowing with inventive style, stellar musicianship, and, of course, plenty of burnin’ grass, the 14-song collection is a true culmination of their decades-long journey.  From the headwaters of Bill Monroe and the waves of Jerry Garcia to a sound both rooted and revolutionary, soulful and transcending that belongs only to the Travelin’ McCourys.

“The album definitely shows what we’ve evolved into as a band.  And, it’s a pretty good representation of what’s happening with the whole genre,” says Rob.  “The old bluegrass material is something I love but it’s been done many times. We’re forging ahead with our own sound.  That’s what you have to do to make it all work.”

website: www.thetravelinmccourys.com

The work continues…

These words have never rung more true for Jeff Austin.

After almost twenty years of live creation and endless joy seeking Jeff has returned to the scene with a new found sense of passion. Sharing the stage each night with a band of like-minded adventurers he attacks each performance with a fire and desire to move and shake everyone in sight.

Each show stands as a statement.

A statement of music…

A statement of connection…

A statement of just how joyful each moment can be.

From note to note…song to song…these musical warriors set out to turn each ear in a way never heard before.

The path is set.

The energy is undeniable.

Because with each new step The Jeff Austin Band takes…

The work continues.

website: www.jeffaustin.com

The Travelin’ McCourys and Jeff Austin Band present The Grateful Ball!
 
The Travelin’ McCourys and the Jeff Austin Band team up for a set of Grateful Dead songs, the two groups will take the format on the road for a batch of shows together this winter! Each night of the Grateful Ball Tour will consist of a full set from both groups, followed by a show-closing collaborative set by both bands playing the music of the Dead.
The Grateful Ball – The Travelin McCourys and Jeff Austin Band bring a THREE SET night of music, with the third set featuring both bands combined to jam the Grateful Dead songbook and take the songs to new and thrilling heights.

Thirty years ago, Kyle Hollingsworth set out on a career in music. Since then, with a wealth of desire and an abundance of ability, Hollingsworth has established himself as a formidable and versatile music talent, with the ability to contribute, collaborate, compose, and communicate on a number of levels and within a vast spectrum of musical environments. Today, as a member of acclaimed jam masters The String Cheese Incident, Hollingsworth is revered by both peers and fans for his ability to write and perform in a mosaic of styles, from rock to classical, ragtime to bebop. Playing in SCI has allowed him unrestricted access to the world of music, and has bestowed on him the kind of fearlessness a composer needs to flirt with such disparate genres. Those who’ve seen SCI know that they can jerk from funk to bluegrass on a chord change. “In the jam world, where there are no set ways of doing things, we’re not afraid to move in and out of genres,” he says, “and because of that I’ve learned to be creative, not only onstage but in the studio. I can get on board with something pretty quickly. You have to.”

While his versatility and quick-study nature have become his signature skills with SCI, they have also proved tremendously helpful on stage during collaborations with a bunch of major acts, including Paul Simon, Bruce Hornsby, Bob Weir, Little Feat, and banjo master Bela Fleck. One summer he toured with Phil Lesh in a band that also included Steve Kimock, John Molo, and Warren Haynes. In the summer of 2008 he spent the summer touring with the Mickey Hart Band. This group featured Mickey Hart,George Porter,steve kimock and many others. In another amazing highlight, Kyle also toured with Mike Clark in a band that starred nearly all the original Head Hunters.

These gigs prove that Hollingsworth is as unafraid to step out of the limelight as he is to step into it. “When I play with these performers it’s about showcasing them, to support the main role in the best possible way. Seasoned musicians can be tasty and laid back, too!” Kyle’s first solo album release in 2004 reflected his jazz tastes. Titled Never Odd or Even, Joshua Redman and Robert Randolph guested, among others. Never or Odd or Even was the recording Hollingsworth had always wanted to make since he was a kid. In addition to his jazz influences, the album’s music demonstrates Kyle’s ability to seamlessly fuse genres.

website: kylehollingsworth.com

From their origins as a jam/party band in Indiana, The Main Squeeze, has been weaving the veins of Rock, Funk, Blues, and R&B into modern song stylings. Now LA-based and with three albums under their belt (last one being 2017’s Without A Sound), festival appearances from KABOO to Bonnaroo, and features from Billboard and Rolling Stone, they are of turning over a new sonic leaf this year.

The Main Squeeze released their newest single, “Fancy Clothes” on January 18th. Following in the wake of the release of “It Ain’t Me” last October, these two singles mark the start of something new and fresh for the Indiana-to-Chicago-to-Los Angeles transplants. The singles play up the modern dance-pop vibes of Bruno Mars and Charlie Puth – while channeling the swag, grit and soulful sounds of 70s bands like The Rolling Stones and Sly and the Family Stone. Produced by Teddy Roxpin “Fancy Clothes” is a tongue in cheek dance track that reflects the spotlighted LA culture in which The Main Squeeze lives.

With a rich touring history including opening slots for The Roots, Jane’s Addiction, D.R.A.M., Mac Miller, Aloe Blacc, and Umphrey’s McGee, The Main Squeeze are launching into a new musical orbit with plans for a fourth LP in 2019.

Vocals/ Corey Frye

Guitar / Max Newman

Keyboards / Ben “Smiley” Silverstein

Bass / Rob Walker

Drums / Reuben Gingrich

website: www.mainsqueezemusic.com

Bill “Hershey” Nershi is a founding member and acoustic guitarist for The String Cheese Incident, from Boulder, Colorado. The String Cheese Incident took a break starting in the summer of 2007, but the band got back together in 2009. Nershi is currently active in multiple projects, including SCI, Honkytonk Homeslice as well as a project with Leftover Salmon mandolinist Drew Emmitt, known as the Emmitt-Nershi Band.

website: www.facebook.com/billnershi

Bill “Hershey” Nershi is a founding member and acoustic guitarist for The String Cheese Incident, from Boulder, Colorado. The String Cheese Incident took a break starting in the summer of 2007, but the band got back together in 2009. Nershi is currently active in multiple projects, including SCI, Honkytonk Homeslice as well as a project with Leftover Salmon mandolinist Drew Emmitt, known as the Emmitt-Nershi Band.

website: www.facebook.com/billnershi

Gasoline Lollipops is a Colorado band that combines the sincerity of dirt-floor folk with the energy and rebelliousness of  punk. It’s an all-new incarnation of alt-country that’s both high energy and heartfelt, like the American highway’s soundtrack.

Denver Westword awarded Gasoline Lollipops “Best Country Artist” in 2016, and the group – which released the debut album Resurrection in February 2017 and followed it with Soul Mine just 11 months later – won the 2014, 2015 and 2017 Colorado Daily reader’s polls for “Best Boulder Band.”

The GasPops have shared stages with such respected artists as Lucero, Dale Watson, Todd Snider, Slim Cessna’s Auto Club and others. They’ve also been on the bills of numerous great live-music festivals, including Divide Festival; Salmonfest Alaska; NedFest; Bohemian Nights @ New West Fest; the Denver Post’s Underground Music Showcase; BrewGrass; YarmonyGrass; Higher Ground Music Festival; Westword Music Showcase; Empire Americana; FoCoMX; Frozen Dead Guy Days; and the highly anticipated Grandoozy Festival.

CLAY ROSE: Vocals / Acoustic Guitar

DONNY AMBORY: Electric Guitar

BRADLEY “BAD BRAD” MORSE: Upright and Electric Bass

KEVIN MATTHEWS: Drums

website: www.gasolinelollipops.com

Three bandmates. Fourteen songs that blur the lines between hard-edged country, rock & roll, and all the gritty sounds in between. 3, the newest album from Cody Canada the Departed, is proof that there’s strength in numbers.

3

The band’s first record as a lean power trio, 3 shines a light on the core ingredients of Canada’s sound. There’s plenty of amplified crunch, Red Dirt twang, roadhouse-worthy guitar riffs, story-based songwriting, and the familiar rasp of Canada’s voice — an instrument that’s been sharpened by years of raw, redemptive shows. Working with producer Mike McClure, the band tracked their new material during breaks in an otherwise busy touring schedule, approaching the recording sessions the same way they’d approach a live show.


“The idea was to get into the studio and simplify things, remaining as true to a three-piece as possible,” says Canada, who pulls triple-duty as the lineup’s frontman, songwriter, and lead guitarist. “If you really want to leave your mark, it’s all about the songs, not how many people you can cram into the studio.”

website: thedepartedmusic.com

WHISKEY, CHICKENS AND FUN

Hailed as “the hottest band in the Wasatch” by the Intermountain Acoustic Music Association, Pixie and The Partygrass Boys is composed of lifelong professional musicians drawn together by a common love of bluegrass and skiing in the Wasatch. Featuring soulful, often harmonic vocals and solid strings and rhythm, this tight-knit crew was born out of the belly of a warm cabin after a long day on the slopes- drinking whiskey and singing into the night. With a high energy sound and a love for silly outfits, they travel the land spreading the gospel of whiskey, chickens, and fun for everyone.

Vocals, Ukulele / Katia “Pixie” Racine

Fiddle,Vocals / Amanda B. Grapes

Upright Bass / Zach Downes

Mandolin, Vocals / Ben Weiss

Guitar, Vocals / Andrew Nelson

website: www.pixieandthepartygrassboys.com

Funkalicious Rockin-Roots. Funk meets Rock, Pop meets Hip Hop. Elder Grown combines the freedom of improvisational Jams with their Captivating, Original songs. From the First Song to the Fourth Hour, Elder Grown encourages you to break down your idea of genre and tempo with your hips and heartbeat. A personal Pandora station, Elder Grown rollercoasters listeners through seamless, rule-breaking sound.

Switching instruments mid-song, you never know who is going to sing or play what next. Join Elder Grown and journey into the unrecognizable familiar.
The band

Josh “Brew” Hoffman- Guitar, Vocals, Keys, Bass

John “Cheeks” Hoffman- Bass, Vocals, Guitar, Keys

Paul “Pabs” Hoffman- Drums, Vocals

Sam Kelly- Saxophone, Vocals

Brandon “Branch” Clark- Keys, Vocals, Guitar, Bass

website: www.eldergrown.com

Bluegrass has become a mainstay in Colorado. The music of the mountains speaks to us and we can feel it in our souls. When a band like Wood Belly comes along to channel it, the sky is the limit. Led by a pair of prolific songwriters, their songs are carefully and collectively crafted to ring out with honesty and passion.

Wood Belly blends traditional bluegrass with modern songwriting and whether you’re spinning your partner around or hanging on every word, the result is the same. You’re left smiling and wanting more. 2018 has been an exciting year as the group released their debut album, “Solid Ground” and won the prestigious Telluride Bluegrass Festival band competition.

Wood Belly was born when Chris Weist (Mandolin) met Craig Patterson (Guitar) and Chris Zink (Dobro) at the Rockygrass Festival in 2015. Within a year, they had teamed up with Aaron McCloskey (Banjo) and Taylor Shuck (Bass) and the music immediately fell into place. Since then the band has played at an ever-expanding list of great venues including the Mishawaka amphitheater, the Fox Theater (Boulder), and Cervantes (Denver). Their festival resume includes the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, Rapidgrass, the Durango Bluegrass Meltdown, the Keystone Bluegrass and Beer Festival, The Wyoming State Bluegrass and BBQ festival, Snowygrass, Grapes and Grass, and more.

website: woodbellymusic.com

Shaky Hand String Band was founded high in the heart of the Rocky Mountains.  The bands free spirited personalities are inspired from the mountain town lifestyles in which they live. It’s heard in their original lyrics, and felt in their high-energy feel good licks.  The bands fresh approach to old time tunes and modern jam band music captures the hearts of new fans everywhere they go. Steadily growing a fan base from touring, and their first album “Two Miles High,” Shaky Hand String Band is quickly filling a niche in the fast evolving music industry. Dirt stomping and catchy lyrics are the heart beat of Shaky Hand String Band.

Members consists of Jess Rose Moidel (fiddle), Patrick O’Halloran (banjo), Todd Webster (mandolin), Nick Beato (bass) and Loren Zyniecki (Guitar).

website: shakyhandstringband.com

Starting out at a 3 piece guitar ,banjo and bass trio in in the midwest (2014) this ragtag group of pickers quickly sparked interest in the bluegrass/festival scene.

Blending bluegrass,roots,folk and original song writing they have preformed at festivals including John Hartford memorial fest, Muddy Roots , Summer camp music festival, Sugar creek, and have supported acts like Jeff Austin band , Dela Mae , The Steeldrivers , Nitty Gritty Dirt Band , Larry Keel and many more superstars of the Bluegrass family.

Now relocated in beautiful,scenic Durango Colorado they have quickly recruited some of the ares finest talent and are on a conquest to spread their fresh ,foot stomping ,original sounds across the southwest mountains and high desert already booking and touring in this 2019 festival season. Look out for them!

website: /www.facebook.com/woodland.remedy

“Maggie Rains and the Crooked Keys took the stage and delivered an energetic, high quality performance.”
—Sharon Brown – Headwater Coordinator

Tracy J Reynolds, known professionally as Maggie Rains is a native of Colorado and sings with a soulful deep and rich sound. She is an accomplished vocalist that brings to life a new blend of blues, jazz androck to make the components of her new EP Anathallo shine for the masses. MAGGIE RAINS & Crooked Keys is a seven-piece, Blues-Rock cover band with a few originals that is based out of Southern Colorado building quite a following in southern CO.

website: maggierains.com

Hailing from Del Norte, Colo., Grayson Erhard’s style leans heavily on the technically complex tap-slap style of percussive guitar often paired with moving, airy vocals. Erhard often feels the pull between performing as a musicians’ musician and the hook writing world of pop, creating a sound that weaves between complement and contrast. This unique tension, combined with Erhard’s experience sharing the stage with Stevie Wonder, has led to Erhard’s viral success and a sound that both complements and contrasts his various styles.

Songs like “Manifest” and “Tapestry” showcase Erhard’s ability to stand on his own, organically, and represent beacons of the kind of musician Erhard strives to be.

While he daylights as a computer programmer, Erhard’s music showcases his authentic, organic style, honed since his childhood in the southern Colorado town of Del Norte—a rural community of 1,800 people on the western edge of the San Luis Valley. More commonly known as “The Valley,” it’s a section of Colorado hot with alien observatories and cosmic undertones. Here, in isolation, Erhard ground out a sound that is entirely his own, but this small town was no place to pursue a music career or develop his budding interest in programming, driving him to the Front Range.

However, after moving to northern Colorado, he quickly experienced culture shock. The oversaturation of fake news, politicking and the constant distraction of this new environment drove him to the extent that he needed to write music relentlessly. Hence his standout piece, “Manifest”, was born, a cultural narrative that laments our dependence on social media and its propensity to overwhelm our lives. “Manifest / your world is your reflection,” Erhard sings in its video, surrounded by televisions and computers that flicker with images of then-president Barack Obama, Kim Kardashian and infomercial detritus. Written in part to assail the internet, Erhard’s song was championed by it. In November 2016, “Manifest” shot to nearly 1 million views from Facebook and YouTube in its first week, with an appearance on Reddit’s front page.

Recently following the viral success of “Manifest”, Erhard was finishing an abbreviated cover of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition” to a small audience at a music trade show called NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) when Wonder himself approached the stage. Baffled, Erhard apologized to him for not knowing the lyrics to the second and third verse.

The rest is viral history.

“I’ll teach you the words you don’t know,” Wonder said, and over Erhard’s knotty guitar playing, the two launched into an impromptu duet. The crowd grew exponentially and proceeded to watch through their phones. The next day, Erhard was in Rolling Stone, taking calls from Good Morning America and appearing on major television networks all across the globe. The media attention from that second strike of viral lightning allowed Erhard to resign from his day job to pursue music full time.

Ironically, with the help of his computer programming background, Erhard has been able to capitalize on the importance of social media by building a web presence and community around his music, pushing his message of authenticity via the channels that challenge it. Erhard’s newest collection of music, EARTHSHIP, came to life inside of a Taos, NM earthship with co-writer, Bannigrin. The songs span from folk rock to hard rock and feature a style of guitar playing that’s never been placed in those genres before, percussive fingerstyle. EARTHSHIP consists of five full-band tracks; and in honor of the fans that have been with him from the start, a stripped-down acoustic version of each song will accompany the release.

website: graysonerhard.com

Stay Tuned! More Announcements to Come!

Items of Interest

VW Bus Camp

What goes better with a music festival than a VW Bus Campout? 3 days of camping on the banks of the Rio Grande in a designated Bus Camp AND 3 days of national touring artists for [...]

Yoga on Saturday and Sunday

Saturday & Sunday by YogaDurango: Free classes on Saturday & Sunday morning for festival-goers and artists. Saturday & Sunday: 9:30-10:30am—Morning Yoga Start your day right with this 60 min all-levels Yoga class. Feel refreshed and restored [...]