Tranceblues Festival & Jam Workshop

Tranceblues Festival & Jam Workshop

  • When: November 5, 2016 Time: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Where: eTOWN HALL / 1535 Spruce Street, Boulder, CO 80302
  • Cost: $25 - 70 Plus Applicable Service Fees
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Tranceblues Festival & Jam Workshop

Tranceblues Festival & Jam Workshop

Children under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

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All Saturday events are held at eTown Hall in Downtown Boulder (1535 Spruce Street).

Workshop participants will join with Mr. Taylor and the Visiting Artists for both the morning and afternoon sessions. The evening performance will feature the Visiting Artists. Participants will find a wide variety of dining options available for lunch and dinner in Downtown Boulder.

Saturday Night:

Evening Performance with Otis Taylor the Visiting Artists and Select Participants 7-9PM

The highlight of the weekend will begin at 7PM as Mr. Taylor, the Visiting Artists and select participants take the stage at eTown Hall for the evening performance. Evening-only passes include audience admission to the performance. During the workshops, Mr. Taylor will invite some participants to bring their instruments and join him on stage during the evening performance. All workshop participants will be admitted to eTown Hall for the performance.

With Otis Taylor, it's best to expect the unexpected. While his music, an amalgamation of roots styles in their rawest form, discusses heavyweight issues like murder, homelessness, tyranny, and injustice, his personal style is lighthearted. "I'm good at dark, but I'm not a particularly unhappy person," he says. "I'd just like to make enough money to buy a Porsche."

Part of Taylor's appeal is his contrasting character traits. But it is precisely this element of surprise that makes him one of the most compelling artists to emerge in recent years. In fact, Guitar Player magazine writes, "Otis Taylor is arguably the most relevant blues artist of our time." Whether it's his unique instrumentation (he fancies banjo and cello), or it's the sudden sound of a female vocal, or a seemingly upbeat optimistic song takes a turn for the forlorn, what remains consistent is poignant storytelling based in truth and history.

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Mato Nanji, was born and raised on the Yankton Sioux Reservation in South Dakota. Mato's father, the late Greg Zephier, Sr., was a well-known and highly respected spiritual advisor and spokesperson for the International Indian Treaty Council. In addition to this leadership role, he was an accomplished musician and a member of the musical group, The Vanishing Americans. Formed by Greg and his brothers in the '60's, The Vanishing Americans toured nationally and shared bills with such legends as Bonnie Raitt. Mato was exposed to Greg's vast collection of blues records by legendary artists such as Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan and B.B. King. Consequently, Mato embraced and began utilizing his own musical talent at a young age. With the experience, love and wisdom of their father to guide them, Mato, his brother, sister and cousin formed the band Indigenous while in their late teens.

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Marcella Simien is in the core of Memphis tradition- different roots influences in idiosyncratic and unexpected ways. She is one of the most interesting artists to emerge on the Memphis scene in years.” -Chris Herrington, GoMemphis, Memphis Commercial Appeal. What does a smile sound like? Hailing from Lafayette, Louisiana, Simien grew up onstage with her father, two- time GRAMMY award winner Terrance Simien. In 2009 she moved to Memphis to attend the Memphis College of Art. In no time she was back onstage, delighting audiences with a sound born from fusing elements of her Creole heritage with the angelic grind of Memphis soul. One detects in Simien’s music subtle yet devastating touches of the Memphis and Muscle Shoals sounds infused with the fingerprint of her Creole ancestors—that now laughing, now sighing Zydeco accordion and exhortations in shouted Creole French. Throughout, Simien’s voice, an instrument fierce and galloping with dignified pleading, floats above the music’s cradled melee like a night star, fondly reminding us of a mysterious past while at once exciting us with the romance of the uncertain future.

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Cassie Taylor hails from Colorado and arrived on the music scene of Memphis is 2009. Combining a compelling mix of music, theater, fashion and modeling into her repertoire, Cassie is an ambassador of blending the arts. Cassie is the daughter of renowned bluesman Otis Taylor and toured in his band for seven years as bassist and backup vocalist. She takes her passion for the blues seriously by serving on the board of directors of The Blues Foundation. Staking a claim as a musician in her own right, her songwriting is a new kind of blues which explores the trials and tribulations of a twenty-something woman. Using pop vocals and deeply-rooted blues bass lines, Cassie is leading the new generation of blues artists.

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Anne Harris is a singer-songwriter, fiddler and indie recording artist whose "songs frequently sound born of a spiritual awakening" (Chicago Tribune.) Her "original sound and voice" (Bruce Hornsby) channels influences "from Celtic to African to American folk/rock" (Chicago magazine.) "Gravity and faith," the latest of her four studio records, exudes a revealing honesty and deep-rooted strength, with her signature, fiddling and string arrangements comprising a compelling sonic embrace. Anne is thrilled to be performing with Otis Taylor for selected tour dates.

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Larry Thompson is a highly acclaimed drummer in great demand as a performing and recording artist. He has worked in many different genres of music and has performed in almost all music venues including the blues with John Mayal, John Lee Hooker and Elvin Bishop, heavy rock with Tommy Bolin, Wall of Windows, and Body House, live radio and Television shows like E-Town on National Public Radio, classical shows with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, the CSSO featuring Steve Barta and Wind Machine with The National Repertory Orchestra.

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Todd Edmunds is a bassist and sousaphonist from Augusta, Georgia. He has performed in a wide variety of musical situations. His exposure to the blues circuit came as a five year stint as full time bassist for Jason Ricci & New blood. He is a life long student of music with a foundation in jazz.

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Brian Juan grew up in Vernon, New Jersey and has played keyboards with dozens of Front Range acts since moving to the Colorado in 1996.  He's played arenas with jam bands while dressed as a robot, salsa danced badly while touring the country with a dozen people in an RV, backed up a handful of international recording artists, and worked as a comedian in an all-request piano show.  He is also a 2014 graduate of the University of Colorado School of Medicine and a practicing Family Physician.  Dr. Juan is finishing residency, planning a wedding, studying for his boards, moving to the suburbs, and raising an increasingly terrifying but consistently awe-inspiring teenage daughter.  He has appeared on stage and in the studio playing Hammond Organ and piano with the Otis Taylor Band since 2003.

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Rex Peoples most recently awarded Best Blues Singer by Colorado Blues Society 2014.Singing since age 2 and professionally for over 35 years.A singer, song writer, educator and nationally known recording artist. In addition to teaching at The Music Lesson Place, Rex also teaches at Golden Music Center. A member of the Colorado Blues Society and Blues in the Schools educator for over 12 years.

One of the sweetest voices here in Colorado belongs to vocalist Rex Peoples. I first met Rex as part of African Wind when they performed at an acoustic festival the Phoenix Blues Society produced back in 2006, so Rex and I go way back. He and his amazing band, X Factor, just got back from Memphis, representing the Colorado Blues Society at the IBC, and they were able to record a killer record, Fried Food / Hard Liquor, in time for the big event. It’s smooth as silk so let’s give it a spin.

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Andy Sydow at twenty-five years old has already a lot to talk about his young music career. He has become widely respected in the local Colorado scene for his richly detailed songwriting, blistering slide guitar playing and surprising boogie-woogie piano chops. He has opened for luminaries Tab Benoit, Delbert McClinton, Dick Dale, Samantha Fish, Dave and Tommy Malone, Chris Duarte, Tinsley Ellis, Bob Margolin, and Johnny Hickman (of Cracker). He has also toured nationally with his band and played at festivals including Jazz Aspen Snowmass and Snowy Range Music Festival. He has been nominated several times for Colorado Blues Society Members Choice Awards for his songwriting and piano playing.

Sydow graduated from Holy Family High School in Broomfield, CO in 2009 and then went on to study piano at the University of Colorado at Denver. Upon graduation, he began playing at a dueling piano bar in downtown Denver as well as playing residencies in Cherry Creek and Aurora. At the end of 2013 he began teaching private lessons and group ensembles at Castle Rock Music. Currently, Sydow still teaches at Castle Rock Music and has a full tour schedule with his band. He can also be seen several times a month playing solo piano at the Summit Steakhouse in Aurora. His newest release, A Little Messed Up is set to release before the end of 2016.