Daily Archives: December 16, 2016

2017 JAS Aspen announces initial lineup

1-3. JAS Aspen 2017 will take place on Sept.   On Friday, the organization released the initial lineup for the festival, the furthest ahead of time they’ve shared their list of bands. Tickets to the event go on sale Dec. MST via jazzaspensnowmass.org. Image provided by JAS Aspen. Last year, JAS Aspen brought Stevie Wonder, The Killers, Duran Duran and Train to the tiny resort town. On Sept. JAS Aspen 2017 will feature Maroon 5, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats and Keith Urban. The organization plans to announce the rest of the bill in early 2017. for their annual Labor Day festival. 1-3, nonprofit organization JAS Aspen will once again bring a heap of high-profile bands to Snowmass, Colo. 19 at 9 a.m.

John Denver’s old Aspen-area home sells for $2.75 million

This story was first published on DenverPost.com Public records show Kilfinnan LLC, controlled by local couple Denis and Kelly O’Donovan, paid $2.75 million for the 570 Johnson Drive property. By Rick Carroll, The Aspen Times
The new owners of the Aspen-area home originally owned by John Denver have no plans to raze and replace it with a new one. That’s according to Jim Bineau, who along with his wife, Anita, represented the buyers of the home. Read the rest of the story at The Aspen Times. 8 by the Pitkin County Clerk and Recorder’s Office. John Denver’s former home and guesthouse have been on the market since last summer. The home has a total heated area of 6,849 square feet with five bedrooms and 51/2 baths, property records show. The asking price is $10.75 million, and a Dillon man is aiming to raise the funds to create a center for peace talks. Jim Bineau said the couple plan to renovate the home, which originally was built in 1972 and remodeled in 1985. The guest residence was not sold as part of the deal, which was made public Dec.

Meet Trev Rich, Denver’s first great hip-hop hope

Like Rich said, Denver is a consumer city. Those three weeks turned into a recording and publishing deal with Cash Money. But Flobots notwithstanding — they’re closer to an alt-pop group that happens to rap — Trev Rich is Denver’s first-ever breakout hip-hop artist. “He’s not even close to being able to beat me in a battle,” Taylor said, “but his pen game … nobody writes the way he writes. The second that Trev Rich signed his recording contract with Cash Money Records, he’d become something more than just a Denver rapper. “Denver is about to be on the map.”
The city has had a handful of musicians cross over into the mainstream recently, like folk rockers The Lumineers and soul revivalists Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats. I was like ‘Oh my God, I gotta go home!’ ” 
Between the headphones, Rich prefers introspective music to club bangers, a thread that, if pulled, leads through his upcoming Cash Money mix tape debut (titled “To Make a Long Story Short,” out Dec. Flexing his fast pen, Rich wrote 50 songs in a month and a half, which he pared down to 13 for “To Make A Long Story Short.” The album is, like Rich, promising, laid back and, most characteristic, thoughtful. 19. “His music is universal to me.”
“I feel like somebody from Denver probably would take offense to that,” Rich said. He was now the Denver rapper. “I would channel all of that aggression (into poems). That’s the one pressure he puts on himself. He swings familiarly low on songs like “Boys Don’t Cry” and “Lies,” but changes lanes just as often. Artists prize its warmth so much that they move from cities with better music scenes to bask in it. He doesn’t go out often, and even less so since the deal, which has turned him into a walking photo op. “Sometimes I wish he would change a bit,” laughed Squizzy Taylor, Trev’s childhood friend and DJ. Cole, spitting steady over a sample-based track that could swallow lesser flows. Sitting opposite Rich in a sub-freezing art gallery in RiNo, he’s both what you would and wouldn’t expect from Denver’s first entry onto the national hip-hop stage. “He’s gonna talk to anybody, and he’ll talk to you for hours. That day turned into three weeks. On “To Make A Long Story Short,” he’s a stylistic chameleon. On “Vapors,” for example, Rich lurches in on the sort of queasy R&B rhythm that artists like The Weeknd and Drake popularized, head hung: “We should tie our souls in a knot / we should stomp holes in the earth until there’s holes in our socks.”
“Those songs are my favorites,” he said. “But our scene is budding right now — it isn’t established.”
After catching the national scene’s eyes — “I’m representing myself with this project,” he reminded me —  Rich wants them to follow him home. When I have a beat that’s down tempo, I really gotta zone in to make it my best and leave it on the page.”

Related Articles

Premier: Watch Denver’s H*Wood build an “Empire”

Trev Rich shares Cash Money debut album title, release date

That’s not to say that Rich’s music is always blue — or occupies any one headspace for long. While she didn’t approve of Rich listening to hip-hop — “She was so strict,” he laughed — she let Rich rap her phone’s voice mail greeting when he was 11, putting him on well before any blogger or radio DJ. Sitting up, you can just see the top point of his neck tattoo, a blue-and-white triangle filled in with the Colorado flag’s trademark “C.”
“A lot …,” he said. “It worked,” Rich said. “The Way You Love (Interlude)” and “Vapors,” two slow-burning stand-outs from his pre-deal mix tapes, started off as written verse. Birdman told Rich he had two songs to impress him. When Rich’s parents divorced around that time, he welled with anger for reasons he didn’t understand. “That’s where I excel. “You’re gonna have to see.” “Trev rich is Colorado’s Jesus,” one fan tweeted. With the right beat, those poems became songs. But Denver’s music landscape, much like the city itself, isn’t a cutthroat place. So to be the first in my generation in this (rap) scene … .”
He trailed off. And humble as he may be — only the sparkling watch tucked under a loose hoodie sleeve would hint that he’d just signed with one of the biggest independent hip-hop labels in the country — he knows it. Then another. We’re a consumer town. “When people hear music,” he said, “10 times out of 10, they aren’t gonna be like, ‘You’re from Denver?’ They’ll be like, ‘What the hell is in Denver?’ ” 
Rich laughed. “It was dope — if you want to take a thousand pictures of me in the club because you like what I do, how can I say no to you? As such, it’s not only embraced outside influence, but in many ways, been defined by it. That’s why a lot of people love him.”
Despite that, Rich is low key. He racked up hundreds of freestyle battles in the lunchroom and, to hear him tell it, only lost once. Denver rapper Trev Rich’s Cash Money Records debut, “To Make A Long Story Short,” comes out Dec. While trap track “Hit the Button” shows off Rich’s hook writing and sounds like Future sans auto-tune, “Outro” finds him a shade away from J. I went from this angry, bad kid to a happy teenager.”

Through high school, Rich kept rapping. He’s a happy dude, quick with a dap and never above talking to anyone. He took on the name Rockie in his late teens before switching to Trev Rich, his government name, when he started taking rap seriously in his early 20s, soon after he had his first child. Even if he’s now the hottest rapper in Denver since, well, ever, that still hasn’t changed. “I think the last time I went out, I took more pictures than I’ve taken in my entire life,” he said. That might be why it’s taken so long for Denver’s rap scene to get off the ground — brand-wise, being all things is dangerously close to being nothing. Rich fits that bill. Unlike cities like New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Detroit, Denver’s rap scene doesn’t identify with any one sound. “But not that many artists have broken out of here. But the camera flash was giving me a migraine. If anything, that’s what makes it what it is. But more importantly, he kept writing. You can hear it in other up-and-coming Denver rappers like AP and Trayce Chapman who, like Rich, are as proudly Colorado as they are the sum of their influences. Put me in the booth.’ “
That came in handy this summer, when Rich came face to face with Brian “Birdman” Williams, Cash Money Records’ co-founder, at The Hit Factory, the label’s Miami studio. It’s this versatility that positions Rich as a Denver paragon. Then he gave him another two. “There’s support for hip-hop in Denver, because all the big hip-hop artists come out here” and succeed, Rich said. “He told the engineer to put the songs on a CD that he could listen to while he was riding into town.”
The next day, Birdman offered Rich a day to record at The Hit Factory. 19) and all the way back to his first days as a writer. It was kind of like the gym. Photo: Helen Richarson for The Denver Post. From NWA to Too $hort, his dad loved West Coast rap, while his mom listened to East Coast rap. If you can’t rhyme — which Rich can — you can still posture your way to notoriety. He turned to poetry for relief. Rap likes attitude as much as aptitude. That, if anything, is his default, a hallmark vestige from Rich’s early poetry habit. The up-tempo tracks are easy to me, because I’ve done that for so long. “I would’ve never put him to Denver when I heard how he flows, how he raps,” Birdman said in an interview after Rich signed his deal. “S/o to Trev Rich,” another said. Most rappers take hours, but Trev listens to a song for 15 minutes and is like, ‘I got something. Cycling through his library of hype tracks, it can take you off guard. Rich’s earliest memory of rap was listening to it as a kid. It also explains why Birdman was so confused when he heard Rich’s music for the first time. “I played songs all damn night,” Rich said.

The fifteen best vinyl records for any collection

At bare minimum, put it on before your S.O.’s parents come over. The 29-year-old singer-songwriter sounds above love, looking down on it like a movie critic from the balcony, when she isn’t trawling for its scraps (“Shut Up Kiss Me Hold Me Tight”). If you can get your hands on the pricier Mobile Fidelity pressing, all the better. (Photo by Cyrus McCrimmon/The Denver Post)
Note: This is an updated version of a part of our vinyl guide, which was published in 2015. Famously recorded in a West Hollywood pool house, the album sounds remarkably intimate for how jovial it is, like Robertson and co were caught in a drunken sing-along with old friends. The vinyl pressing is a wonderful example of how the medium can breath life into the music. As thematically complex as it is, thanks to its slick funk, “Black Messiah” can score parties, a night of butt-touching or a star gazing session just as well as an evening in. If pressed, you can make a good argument for “Blood On The Tracks.” Not only is there nary a bad song in the bunch (“Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts” is a confusing inclusion against the album’s otherwise soul-wrenching grain), but from groove to groove, side A is flush with some of Dylan’s greatest songwriting achievements.   Unlike so many before and after her, Hill didn’t interpret soul music on “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill” — she invigorated it. A bad one, but still. 5 & 7,” Carlos Kleiber
Like jazz, the warm distortion of a vinyl record elevates the classical music listening experience. But if jazz is less an obsession than a piece of ambiance, it’s just as copacetic as a dinner-party soundtrack.   
Choosing a favorite record is like choosing a significant other. Fiona Apple, “The Idler Wheel…”
Released in a limited run of vinyl back in 2012, “The Idler Wheel” is hard to find and, like Fiona Apple herself, hard to figure. (And maybe leave it in the comment section so we can steal it.)
In light of that, we aimed for a list of musically unforgettable albums that are further elevated by top-notch production. “Blue Train,” John Coltrane
Jazz just works better on vinyl. Marling is as natural and prolific of a folk traditionalist as you like, but “Once I Was an Eagle” makes for the strongest introduction. That said, some genres are under-represented, as the format tends to work better for some styles (jazz, classical, acoustic) more than others. Few things sound as right as “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” pulled through a stylus. “Black Messiah,” D’Angelo
After almost 15 years, D’Angelo followed up “Voodoo” with another all-purpose masterpiece. “Peoples’ Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm,” A Tribe Called Quest
Because it’s often mastered flat and is drowned in stylus-rocking bass, hip-hop doesn’t always translate well to vinyl. Instead, we get Springsteen stripped down to his barest essentials, which ends up sounding a lot like an early Bob Dylan transported to a small town in the early 80s. “Pastel Blues” gives you all that and the galloping ten-minute jazz spiritual “Sinnerman.” If you’re only going to get one, no Simone album is as swaggering or top-down complete as this one. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get that 8-disk electronic drone set you’ve been dying to hear, but don’t be disappointed if it sounds unremarkable and doing 16 record-flips in one play through detracts from the experience. “Random Access Memories,” Daft Punk
Seeing how Daft Punk consciously embraced analog recording and performance in “Random Access Memories,” it’s no surprise that it shines on vinyl. On wax, it’s inflected with a subtle warmth and a good showing of dynamic range that’ll seat you squarely between the bass and drums. From the tiniest high-hat quiver to the exceptionally massive bass, the electronic duo’s obsessive attention to detail extends into this modern disco classic’s high-quality mastering. “When we were in love, I was an eagle and you were a dove,” she sings over the album’s roiling title track. This debut album by the now-legendary group isn’t packed with the hits of “Midnight Marauders,” but it has some famously rich instrumentals that show you can make powerful beats without an arsenal of sub-shaking laser bass. If we missed your favorite, please forgive us. In that tempo, the level of virtuosity is astonishing, thanks in no small part to a band that would go on to become apart of Art Blakey’s Art Messengers. Picking fifteen we can all agree on is impossible, so the omissions here will be as glaring to some as the inclusions. (Yeah, that “dun dun DUN DUN” one is on here.) Even if you don’t like classical, enough time with this record could change your mind, or at least instill a respect for the intricate musicianship that goes into making this sweeping music. Harps, clarinets, timpani drums — Hill insisted on retaining the “human element” of music on the album, and you can hear it on the record. You could easily tip “Sings the Blues,” Simone’s RCA debut that hears her in full jazz-standard mode (and her most predictable). In turn, she’s never been so grounded, in theme and, with a gnarly Gibson electric in hand, current. Drop the needle on a quiet night and you can practically feel the chill. (Kanye West is responsible for some of the best albums that you shouldn’t buy on vinyl.) Like so many A Tribe Called Quest albums, “Peoples’ Instinctive Travels” is almost more funk than rap, though. Tom Waits is in noir mode on “Nighthawks,” spinning yarns to an in-studio audience between jazz solos and narrative asides. Even a friend you normally respect and consider kin is liable to have wildly different, head-scratching taste. Angel Olsen, “MY WOMAN”
The heart of Angel Olsen’s “MY WOMAN” is distended and ripped, coursing blood in thick arcs of guitar. The songs are the reason it’s sold more than any other record in history–aside from “The Lady in my Life,” it’s almost all classics–but it’s also a significant piece of music history to own, a knowable touchstone in dance, R&B and pop history. “Nebraska,” Bruce Springsteen
“Nebraska” is far from the norm of Springsteen albums. What “Pastel Blues” may lack in foxtrot fodder, it makes for with range. “Highway Patrolman” is so affecting that they made a movie out of it. “Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. One a song like “Everything is Everything,” you’ll recognize the chandelier-shaking melodies from the heyday of Aretha Franklin, slid over the hard snap of nineties hip-hop rhythm and Hill’s formidable rapped verse. In the style of hard bop, Coltrane and his band play an almost harried form of the genre, like they’re late to catch a bus that’s just blocks away from the studio. Through the right speakers, it’s as if you’re there with him, dodging cherry stems and caterwauling along to “Better Off Without a Wife.”

“The Band,” The Band
Go figure that it took a Canadian band to make the best Americana rock album of all time. It’s one of those albums that makes the most sense as a record. “Blood on the Tracks,” Bob Dylan
“Another Side,” “Blonde on Blonde,” “Self-Portrait”…well, maybe not “Self-Portrait.” But it’s impossible to pick just one Bob Dylan album. Nina Simone, “Pastel Blues”
There is no single definition of a classic Nina Simone album. If nothing else, the picture of Jackson holding a baby tiger on the back cover alone is worth admission. The album starts with four tracks that blend into one fluid reflection. Lauryn Hill “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill”
Yeah, “Doo Wop (That Thing)” is on here, but that’s only the steeple of Lauryn Hill’s grand cathedral of a debut album. In no particular order:

The fifteen best vinyl records for any collection. “Nebraska” is among the most intimate albums we’ve ever heard. It’s the rare live album that benefits from its crowd, as Waits works the room like a seasoned stand-up. Laura Marling “Once I Was an Eagle”
If you haven’t heard of Laura Marling, it’s as understandable as much as its a shame. Though only 26, Marling has been performing professionally for a decade, first as a member of Noah and the Whale, and then under her own criminally underrated singer-songwriter project. On a turntable, it gives you a depth of listening that you just can’t get out of laptop speakers. “Nighthawks at the Diner,” Tom Waits
This is a relatively deep cut, but a worthy inclusion to any record collection. Between the anguish of “Every Single Night” and the ecstasy of “Hot Knife,” the album’s bookends, the music whips from tribal revival to throat-shredding singing in rounds. Conceived originally as a demo tape, there are no triumphant horn sections or pantomime-worthy electric guitar riffs in earshot. There are nerdy takeaways here for aficionados–the saxophonist’s signature “Coltrane changes” make their first recorded appearance on the album. It’s captivating — harrowing and gorgeous, often at the same time — and ranks high among those special albums in one’s collection that refuses to resign itself to background music. Despite the title, Simone does more than just the blues here, and does the blues in many more hues than one. From her straight-forward jazz-pop roots, Apple forges an electric menagerie of songs that pop and smolder in fits. A handful of Beethoven’s crowning achievements feature, many of which you’ll recognize. Tom Waits’ “Nighthawks at the Diner” is one of the ten records you should own. While it’s cruel to reduce the entire genre to one piece, Kleiber’s take on Beethoven’s 5th and 7th symphonies is a singularly impressive recording. Like magic, it can turn the dirtiest den into a drawing room at the drop of a stylus. Like classical, there is no definitive jazz album (although some might disagree with Miles Davis’ “Kind of Blue”). On wax or otherwise, it’s as remarkable as it was then (it won the Grammy for Album of the Year in 1999) as it is today. “Thriller,” Michael Jackson
It’s self explanatory, but “Thriller” is an essential album for any collection, period. The so-called Brown Album features The Band’s best-known numbers that even your dubstep-obsessive neighbor could join on the choruses of if the spirit moved him. For its kind, “Blue Train” is hard to beat. Consider the emotional breadth between the aw-shucks “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out” and “Strange Fruit,” one of the most shattering songs ever written, a distance that strains the limits of the genre.