MELTDOWN ON THE MESA
SATURDAY, AUGUST 18, 2018
Join the Durango Bluegrass Meltdown crew for a day of incredible bluegrass, camping and fundraising as well as a chance to enjoy the wide open spaces of Durango Mesa Park, Meltdown style. Saturday, August 18, 2018. Gates open at noon on Saturday, and the music begins at 1pm. Local and Regional bluegrass bands will perform in the beautiful open space hosted by the Durango Bluegrass Meltdown.
1:00 – 1:45 PM: Six Dollar String Band
2:00 – 2:45 PM: Smelter Mountain Boys
3:00 – 3:45 PM: People We Know
4:00 – 4:45 PM: Lost Souls
5:00 – 5:45 PM: StillHouse Junkies
6:00 – 7:00 PM: La La Bones
7:30 – 9:00 PM: Ginny Mules
9:30 PM …. Picking and Camping
Ticket Info: Tickets are $25 and include parking and camping. Tickets are available in advance at Animas Trading Company, online, and at the gate on the day of Meltdown on the Mesa. Kids 12 and under are free!
Gates open at noon on Saturday, 8/18, Music starts at 1:00 PM, and the event closes at noon on Sunday, 8/19.
Parking is limited and on first-come first-serve basis. There is a small parking area, and road parking available. Please carpool whenever possible. You may come and go from the festival, feel free to only join us for the day or stay overnight!
Camping is welcome and encouraged. Tent or car camping only. No trailers or camping vehicles larger than 20 feet. No open fires allowed, propane fires only.
Food and Beverage: There will be at least two food vendors at the festival. Feel free to bring any food or beverages to the festival, avoiding glass containers.
Seating: Bring a chair, tarp, blanket, canopy to sit on and/or under while enjoying the music.
Reduce our impact!
We are trying our best to make this a zero waste festival. Please bring as many compostable, reusable, or recyclable cups / plates / containers as possible. We will have composting, trash, and recycle available for disposal.
Food and Beverage:
At least two vendors will sell food at the festival. Feel free to bring any food or beverages into the festival. Please avoid glass containers.
Bring a chair, tarp, or blanket to sit on while enjoying the music.
- No Dogs
- No Glass
- Car or Tent camping ONLY
- Please smoke ONLY in designated smoking areas
- No fires unless propane fueled
2018 Line Up
“Holy friggin’ harmonies! It’s almost distracting how good the vocals are on the Ginny Mules debut release” (Marquee Magazine, 2016). Recognized as finalists in the renowned Rockygrass Festival band competition in 2017, Ginny Mules are setting sail, and charting a course that is all their own. Drawing from varied elements of American music and heritage, each member brings their own blend of Appalachian music, Blues, Folk & Bluegrass to the table. The end result sounds a lot like BLUESGRASS, with a focus on tight vocal harmonies and the raw, bluesier elements that give Ginny Mules their distinctive sound. According to Copple, “it’s like Bluegrass with a little extra stank on it.”
With their debut, self-titled album from 2016 garnering weekly spins on Bluegrass radio programs near and far, The Mules are setting their sights on a sophomore release full of original songs, scheduled for 2018! It’s sure to follow the same roadmap as their debut, which includes signature instrumental work and unique original songs that carry the “high lonesome sound” into a new era.
The band first began to coalesce when, Liz Forster (guitar and vocals) met Keenan Copple, the band’s banjo and slide guitar player at a Denver music store in 2013. The pair began playing music together almost immediately. Weekly jam nights with Keenan, Liz and Phil Hanceford (mandolin and vocals) materialized, and the trio began the epic quest for a bass player. On a friend’s recommendation, they called on Carbondale native, Sheena Gruber. Forster says, “We caught a lucky break with Sheena. She plays terrific bass, looks and sings like Bonnie Raitt, and is a great fit for us vibe-wise.” Rebekah Durham (Juilliard grad and former member of San Fermin), joined the band in 2016 and rounded out the official lineup of Ginny Mules with her incredible 5-string fiddling and original songwriting.
With 4 out of 5 Mules writing songs for the band, and 5 out of 5 Mules working collaboratively on arrangements, their sound really is unique – though they do draw frequent (and flattering) comparisons to The Steeldrivers for their hard driving, bluesy and fiddle-forward stylings. Ginny Mules have shared the stage (or festival lineup) with many of their friends and heroes alike – including: The Steeldrivers, Wood and Wire, The Traveling McCoury’s, Rapidgrass, Della Mae and Mipso (to name a few). Keep an eye out for these Mules as they venture out of Colorado and make their way to your town. As they like to say…Giddy up! #mule2ride
La La Bones is a five-piece bluegrass band that draws inspiration from the wild landscape and western history of southwestern Colorado. Rooted in Durango with a vocal arsenal shared by two women and three men, La La Bones delivers a diverse, original, and dynamic bluegrass sound. The ensemble features Tommy Frederico on banjo, Jimi Giles on bass, Kathy Hilimire on fiddle, Scott Roberts on mandolin, and Kyle Siesser on guitar.
Born in a distillery in Durango, CO, StillHouse Junkies play a delirious, head-spinning mixture of original roots, blues, funk, swing, and bluegrass music. With all three band members sharing vocal duties and swapping instruments, the Junkies conjure a wide range of tonal landscapes that pay tribute to the iconic sounds of Gillian Welch, the Allman Brothers, Tim O’Brien, the Wood Brothers, John Hiatt, and countless others while breaking new musical ground with their genre-bending original material.
Lost Souls plays an intriguing mix of old and new country, bluegrass, swing and American folk tunes. This trio keeps it tight, singing many a tale of cowboys, dogs, horses and the outlaw west, with shared vocals and fine picking. They have played in the Durango area for about two years and were proud to be part of last fall’s Meltdown on the Mesa. This is the second year they will play together at the Durango Bluegrass Meltdown.
Don Cooke has travelled a long road as a musician and, for over 40 years, has played rock, bluegrass, country and swing. As a Lost Soul, he deftly moves between fiddle, guitar, and mandolin to help keep the band’s repertoire surprising and fresh. Marc Katz hails from New York and has been picking guitar from a young age. For the last 7 years, he has focused solidly on mandolin and moves between the two instruments with ease, lending rock and blues-influenced guitar licks as well as sweet mando leads and rhythm in the best bluegrass tradition. Charlotte Overby plays the double bass and sings a lovely harmony part. She has played bass for in a number of string bands and with an 8-piece klezmer band—and was inspired and taught by Mitch Jayne and Forrest Rose, two of the best. She hails originally from Columbia, Missouri but has lived in the West for more than a decade.
People We Know
Originally a collective of musicians from Durango and Northern La Plata County, People We Know has solidified into a core group of musicians. Featuring members of existing Durango groups The Outskirts and The Fellowship of the Strings, the group brings a new take on string music. They explore the limits of bluegrass covers, while taking a new approach to the genre in their original compositions.
The band, comprised of Alex Forsthoff, Jeffrey Berman, Aaron Cooklin, Jim Figora, and Mark Walser, will take you on a musical ride from all ends of the bluegrass spectrum. A show will go from up-tempo, foot stomping, hollering bluegrass, to slower ballads from the heart. Join us!
Smelter Mountain Boys
Smelter Mountain Boys are a new bluegrass collaboration in Durango featuring some familiar faces and some new ones. Most notably Corey Clark whose voice and songs beckon to bluegrass music origins and roots. After some time with Clinton Gregory Bluegrass Band out of Nashville, TN, Corey Clark moved to Durango, CO and quickly met some local pickers who all saw an opportunity to fill a void of more traditional bluegrass, apart from the progressive sounds so pervasive in Colorado today. Corey formed the Smelter Mountain Boys with Brendan Shafer of Six Dollar String Band on banjo, this project lets Brendan focus on bluegrass style 3 finger picking. Steven Labowskie on bass (formerly of the Scrugglers) who is playing his 1946 Kay bass instead of the washtub he’s known for. Pete Donahue on mandolin was raised on Colorado bluegrass and the festival circuit. Together the boys play play a highly energized traditional style of bluegrass chock full of high lonesome vocals
Old Time music enthusiasts count themselves among a small subculture within the acoustic genre. With similar instrumentation although often pre-dating bluegrass, old time can be characterized by unique regional styles that draw from influences ranging from Africa to western Europe and even indigenous America. The Six Dollar String Band has been a mainstay of old time music in the four corners for six years and consists of Tony Holmquist playing fiddle; Stephen Sellers, bass; Robin Davis, guitar; and Brendan Shafer, clawhammer and fingerstyle rolling banjo. The band is celebrating the release of their newest recording, ‘Mayday’, a vinyl-only album documenting musical spaces and sounds collected on-site in Mayday, Colorado at the mouth of La Plata canyon.