Nights Out in Albany and Saratoga Springs, New York

Sam Bush Giving It His All at The Egg

Sam Bush Giving It His All at The Egg

My Mom and I laid low during the few weeks after my father passed away in March at our family home in Troy, New York. Then I said, “Let’s have some fun.”

After a few minutes of reflection, Mom said, “Yes, I’d like to break out and enjoy myself. Although don’t take too many pictures because officially I’m in mourning.”

The heck with old conventions–we’re no longer entrenched in the burdensome customs of the Victorian Age; Mom was long overdue for a little gaiety in her life. (I do, however, think there’s a lot to be said for the nineteenth-century tradition of wearing black for at least a year. It indicated to people ‘I’m vulnerable. Be kind to me.’ But I suppose that’s a thing of the past–people would just think we dressed very New Yorkish. Or Goth.)

So I checked out what was happening in the capital district area, the region that encompasses Albany, Schenectady and Troy as well as the event listings for Saratoga Springs, New York, the quaint old town just forty-five minutes north of us where I lived five years prior to moving to Colorado. Of course I zeroed in on what interested me the most in the Entertainment section of the Times Union; fortunately Mom and I have very similar tastes.

I snatched up tickets for a Sam Bush concert at The Egg in Albany and a book event featuring Augusten Burroughs, put on by the renowned Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga. Mom agreed to treat us to dinner and suddenly we felt excited about life again. With all the care-taking Mom did for Dad the past six months, there’s no doubt that these plans promised to buoy her back to more fun-loving days.

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18 Sep 2015, 3:03pm
Art & Culture Colorado Music & Dance Telluride Telluride Festivals:
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Comments Off on Telluride Blues & Brews in the Park and on the Radio

Telluride Blues & Brews in the Park and on the Radio

A Spectacular Setting for the Telluride Blues & Brews Festival

A Spectacular Setting for the Telluride Blues & Brews Festival

Greg Allman: One of this Year's Headliners

Greg Allman: One of this Year’s Headliners

ZZ Top: Another Headliner

ZZ Top: Another Headliner

This Year's Poster

This Year’s Poster

There are still some single day (for Saturday and Sunday) and juke joint passes left for the twenty-second annual Telluride Blues & Brews Festival that kicked off just hours ago! This is a fun-filled musical extravaganza well lubricated with good brews, wine and cocktails. OK, some coffee, too.

This world renowned festival takes place in an unparalleled setting in Telluride Town Park and the weather right now is fantabulous! Really gorgeous and it’s supposed to stay that way all the way through Sunday. If you’re anywhere near T-ride, c’mon down. If not, I highly recommend you earmark this crazy good event for next year; it will be happening the third weekend of September as always.

Either way, log onto KOTO.org right now to listen to the show. Yes, we’re fortunate to have Telluride’s homegrown radio station broadcasting Telluride Blues & Brews all weekend long. They’re conducting some great interviews as well, so tune in every day and I’m sure you’ll stay tuned well into the evening. Check out the lineup to find out about who’s playing. This year’s is one of the best, according to many.

I’m listening to the festival right now and am digging the driving beat. Hope you can get in on it, too.

For more on the Telluride Blues & Brews Festival, read Steve Gumble Brings Us Telluride Blues & Brews and More.

This Year's KOTO Team

This Year’s KOTO Team

Telluride Bluegrass Festival: Escapism at Its Finest

Oh Yeah!

Oh Yeah!

Yonder Mountain String Band

Yonder Mountain String Band and Sam Bush

Good Pickin'

Good Pickin’

Superior quality music, a stellar natural setting, sunny days, clear nights, fine fiddle playing, booze, the smell of weed wafting over the scents of barbecue, fried fish and garlic, old friends and new acquaintances, colorful costumes, lyrical ballads, savory eats, tie-dye tops, penetrating instrumental solos, strappy sundresses, bare foot dancing, shorts, face painting, straw hats, jamming, T-shirts of every ilk, color and message imaginable, a heart-stirring lonesome chorus, flip flops, hula hoops, a carnavale-like parade, dusty cowboy boots, melodious breakdowns as quick as an Irish reel. This is just a sampling of what makes the Telluride Bluegrass Festival so much fun and so mentally, physically and spiritually transcending.

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Ten Reasons You Should Take the Durango Blues Train

Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad

Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad

Blues on Board

Blues on Board

Oh Yeah!

Oh Yeah!

Me Sipping Wine Before Boarding

Me Sipping Wine Before Boarding

1. It’s more fun listening to music when you’re in motion than on solid ground.

2. The Durango Blues Train is put on by Steve Gumble, founder of the renowned Telluride Blues & Brews Festival; he and his staff know how to create memorable events. On the Blues Train, you can hop from car to car and rock on to great music from bands and solo acts from all over the U.S.

3. Not that you need an excuse, but this great train excursion gives you a reason to visit the fun-loving Western town of Durango, Colorado. Be sure to spend the night at either The Rochester Hotel or The Strater.

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12 Sep 2014, 1:35pm
Colorado Music & Dance Telluride Telluride Festivals:
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KOTO Broadcasts the Telluride Blues & Brews Festival to All

Telluride Blues & Brews Festival

Telluride Blues & Brews Festival

What are you doing this weekend?

We’re having some beautiful late-summer weather here in Telluride, Colorado and I’m going to be enjoying some great music throughout most of Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I might even be sipping some frosty beers. I’m going to take part in one of the best musical happenings in the world, the Telluride Blues & Brews Festival. And you can, too.

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13 Aug 2014, 1:55pm
Aspen Colorado Durango Music & Dance Telluride Telluride Festivals The Rockies:
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Steve Gumble Brings Us Telluride Blues & Brews and More

Steve Gumble

Steve Gumble

There was a story in The New York Times a few days ago about the proliferation of music festivals all over the world within this past decade. In North America, you can count almost 850 for this year alone. People are crazy about music festivals and the all-encompassing experiences they offer, and promoters and musicians have found them to be profitable enterprises.

Telluride Blues & Brews Festival

Telluride Blues & Brews Festival

But no one puts on a festival like Telluride, Colorado. Sure, I’m biased because I live here. But ask anyone and they’ll likely tell you the same. Plus, most of our great Telluride festivals—from music to film—have been around for decades. So I was thrilled to do a Travel Fun interview with Steve Gumble, founder of Telluride Blues & Brews, one of our beloved festivals, to hear his story, how he got this now twenty-one-year-old festival going and to listen to him reminisce about some of the most memorable moments from his shows.

Click the play button below to listen to Steve chat about this world-renowned festival as well as the Durango Blues Train and Snowmass Mammoth Fest, two other terrific musical happenings he recently took on.

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4 Aug 2014, 4:41pm
Music & Dance Telluride Telluride Festivals:
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Comments Off on Telluride Jazz Festival: Another Great Time in the Park

Telluride Jazz Festival: Another Great Time in the Park

Poncho Sanchez and His Band at Telluride Jazz Festival 2014

Poncho Sanchez and His Band at Telluride Jazz Festival 2014

Telluride is one crazy ride,” one of the guys in Poncho Sanchez’s band shouted to the crowd. I’d never heard that one before but it’s a good one—-our scintillating mountain town is one heck of a ride, especially at sunset during the Telluride Jazz Festival, the very moment when this musician expressed his exuberance about T-ride.

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24 Jul 2014, 11:21am
Arizona Art & Culture Music & Dance:
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Making Memories at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix

Inside the Musical Instrument Museum

Inside the Musical Instrument Museum

It has been almost a week that I returned from a wonderful nine-day trip with my mother to the Phoenix/Scottsdale/Carefree, Arizona area. We visited many fine establishments, so expect to see posts on this glorious, sun-drenched part of the United States in the upcoming months.

We shared such a special mother/daughter time that I’ve, of course, been missing her. Thankfully I have many photos, mementos and music to remind me of the times we had together. Yes, some fabulous music that I discovered has taken me right back there with mom.

Are you familiar with French gypsy music? I’m talking about swinging gypsy jazz, moody boleros and tangos à la Django Reinhart. It’s the music of Paris from 1910 through the mid 1920s. You hear it and you imagine a smoky nightclub scene in the City of Light as you tap your foot and swing to the zippy beat. We heard this music performed by Zazu, a local French orchestra of Phoenix, during the Bastille Day celebration concert at the Musical Instrument Museum. Quelle découverte! Experiencing this music and this stunning museum was one of the highlights of our trip.

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