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July, 2016:

Sundays at Six presents The Richmond Brothers — July 31

The Alamosa Live Music Association presents The Richmond Brothers on July 31st, as Sundays at Six continues in Cole Park, Alamosa. The brothers – Don, Ed, and Jim Richmond – will be releasing their latest collaborative project, their CD, “Seems Like Only Yesterday,” at Cole Park this Sunday. The CD came about as a “family thing,” so friends and family would have a record of the brothers’ musical abilities. Join us for a rousing concert!

The Richmond Brothers grew up surrounded by music. Their mother Anne McIsaac and father Ed Richmond were both professional singers in the Chicago music scene of the late 1930s and early 1940s before marrying and eventually settling in Alamosa. Father Ed Richmond taught vocal music at ASU and the kids were expected to participate in choir and/or band throughout their school years.

Music stuck for youngest son, Don Richmond. Don has made a career right here in Alamosa, performing with his early bands from the age of 15 including his 17-year tenure with Tumbleweed, and on into his current band the Rifters. In addition, Don established a recording studio in 1990 and about two years ago started a record label, Howlin’ Dog Records, with partners David Clemmer, Jana Pochop, and Don’s wife, Teri McCartney.

Jim has played professionally for all of his adult life as well. Many Alamosans will remember his popular band, the Tennessee Hat Band. When the band split up, Jim earned his teaching certificate in physics and just recently retired from a distinguished teaching career. But Jim never quit playing and has performed as a multi-instrumentalist with many Texas troubadours such as David Allen Coe, Rusty Weir, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Jack Ingram, and Tommy Alverson. He continues his musical career with his popular Ft. Worth, TX, band, Three Fools on Three Stools.

The middle brother, Ed Richmond, chose a different path career wise, but has just as beautiful a voice and just as much a love for music as his musical brothers. Ed recently retired from his work in high tech manufacturing and computer network administration. Fans will remember his beautiful voice on the first Richmond Brothers release, “Roots and Branches.”

Sundays at Six is a free outdoor concert series in Cole Park, Alamosa. Concerts start at 6 p.m. Check out this year’s lineup. In case of bad weather, go to ALMA’s website and Facebook page to find out about cancellations or change of venue.

 

Sundays at Six presents The Black Lillies — July 24

The Alamosa Live Music Association proudly presents The Black Lillies on July 24th, as Sundays at Six continues in Cole Park, Alamosa.

The genre-mashing Americana band hits the road with their critically praised CD Hard to Please.

The Black Lillies’ new album Hard to Please (Attack Monkey/Thirty Tigers) has been racking up the accolades since its October 2015 release. Rolling Stone Country hailed it as “country music with a soul-rock infusion, supported by smart songwriting and tight musicianship” while American Songwriter praised the “soulful mix of upbeat Americana and tender ballads that makes the album a rejuvenating fourth release.” Pop Matters declared that the Knoxville group created “an authentic sound that’s guided by their best instincts,” and called the CD their “most confident set yet.”
Hard to Please stands as the Black Lillies’ most varied set of music. The ten-song set opens with the title track’s unexpected twangy funk and rolls on with the fierce country rocker “That’s the Way It Goes Down,” the Southern-style soul Contreras/Brady duet “Mercy” and the horn-fueled “The First Time,” on which Brady handles lead vocals. The disc deftly balances introspective numbers like “Desire” and “Bound to Roam” with the boot-scootin’ country tune “Dancin'” and the rockin’ on-the-road rave-up “40 Days.” The Black Lillies’ musical breadth is best captured in “Broken Shore.” This entrancing song ebbs and flows as a wild fiddle and psychedelic-like guitar lines lead listeners on a harrowing journey inspired by Contreras’ grandfather fighting in the Battle of Iwo Jima.
The band has built their grassroots popularity by taking their music to the people. They have been averaging 200 gigs a year since forming in 2009, playing small clubs as well as big festivals like Bonnaroo, Stagecoach and the Americana Music Festival. NPR’s Ann Powers made the group one of her top picks at 2014’s SXSW and no other independent band has played the prestigious Grand Ole Opry as many times as the Black Lillies have.
The album’s musical evolution will be reflected in the group’s concerts as the Black Lillies have grown into a six-piece with lead guitarist Mike Seal (Jeff Sipe Trio, Larkin Poe), bassist Sam Quinn (the everybodyfields) and pedal steel man Jonathan Keeney (Robinella) joining the core trio of Cruz Contreras, Trisha Gene Brady and Bowman Townsend.

ALMA “Builds Community through Quality Live Music.” For more information like ALMA on Facebook or go to www.almaonline.org.

Sundays at Six is sponsored by Comfort Inn & Suites, Valley Motel, Movie Manor, Arby’s, Super 8, IHOP, KRZA, City of Alamosa, Alamosa Local Marketing District Board, The Crestone Eagle, Myers Brothers Truck & Tractor, Alamosa Home, Body Tune Up, KW Farms, SLV Health, Colorado Health, Treasure Alley, Rio Grande Savings & Loan, 1st Southwest Bank, Valley Wide Health Systems, Alamosa State Bank, Jay Meyer State Farm Insurance, SLV Federal Bank, SLVREC & Ciello, and 2016 ALMA Members.

Sundays at Six is a free outdoor concert series in Cole Park, Alamosa. Concerts start at 6 p.m. Check out this year’s lineup. In case of bad weather, go to ALMA’s website and Facebook page to find out about cancellations or change of venue.

 

Sundays at Six presents Antonio Lopez & Emily Robinson — July 17

The Alamosa Live Music Association presents Antonio Lopez with Emily Robinson on July 17th, as Sundays at Six continues in Cole Park, Alamosa.

With influences as vast and wide as the San Luis Valley from where he originates, fifth generation Coloradan Antonio Lopez is a noteworthy artist in the state’s flourishing music community. Nashville-based recording artist Tyler James describes Antonio’s music as “raw and beautiful…two traits any young songwriter should strive for.” Garnering comparison to artists such as Amos Lee and Ryan Adams with his earthy-modern-folk, Antonio’s latest project consists of three EPs, each being recorded in a different locale with a different producer and set of musicians; Alamosa, CO where he grew up, Minneapolis, MN where he recorded his debut album, and on the front range where he now resides. The second installment in the series, Cloud 9000 Vol. 2: The Alamosa EP, was released in February of this year. Antonio Lopez’s tune Simple Life is the theme song for the Morning show on KRZA radio and he has collaborated with artists such as Don Conoscenti and Daniel Valdez.

Emily Robinson, who will be opening for Antonio, also released her debut album, “Mongolia Queen,” in February of this year. With a clear, sweet voice, Emily Scott Robinson will leave you breathless with songs that are both heart-wrenching and dark, playful and surprising. She writes with raw lyrical power and authenticity, enchanting audiences with an intimate performance every time. In May 2016, Emily won the Grassy Hill New Fold Competition at Kerrville Folk Festival. She also received an Honorable Mention in this year’s Troubadour Contest for the Telluride Bluegrass Festival. In 2015, she won first place in the “American Songwriter” May/June Lyric Contest, as well as Honorable Mention in the Rocky Mountain Folks Festival Songwriter Showcase. She is currently touring full time, living on the road with her husband in their RV, writing and performing across the Country.

ALMA “Builds Community through Quality Live Music.” For more information like ALMA on Facebook or go to www.almaonline.org.

Sundays at Six is sponsored by Comfort Inn & Suites, Valley Motel, Movie Manor, Arby’s, Super 8, IHOP, KRZA, City of Alamosa, Alamosa Local Marketing District Board, The Crestone Eagle, Myers Brothers Truck & Tractor, Alamosa Home, Body Tune Up, KW Farms, SLV Health, Colorado Health, Treasure Alley, Rio Grande Savings & Loan, 1st Southwest Bank, Valley Wide Health Systems, Alamosa State Bank, Jay Meyer State Farm Insurance, SLV Federal Bank, SLVREC & Ciello, and 2016 ALMA Members.

Sundays at Six is a free outdoor concert series in Cole Park, Alamosa. Concerts start at 6 p.m. Check out this year’s lineup. In case of bad weather, go to ALMA’s website and Facebook page to find out about cancellations or change of venue.

Sundays at Six presents Western Centuries — July 10

The Alamosa Live Music Association presents Western Centuries on July 10th, as Sundays at Six continues in Cole Park, Alamosa. Round up a country band and an early R&B group with three lead vocalists, weave in a hefty amount of vocal harmony and witty turns-of-phrase, and let ‘em rock out like The Band. The sound of roots music mavericks Western Centuries sits at these crossroads, and their debut album Weight of the World introduces a band as skillful in their musicianship as they are innovative in their writing. With upbeat, barroom dance numbers, lilting, introspective tunes of heartbreak, and everything in between, the album strikes an oft-strived-for but rarely achieved balance between genre-busting experimentation and thoughtful continuity.

Comprised of Seattle-based country musician Cahalen Morrison, jam band veteran Jim Miller (co-founder of Donna the Buffalo), R&B and bluegrass-by-way-of-punk rock songwriter Ethan Lawton, pedal steel player Rusty Blake, and bassist Dan Lowinger, Western Centuries are clearly a diverse bunch. The band is collaborative in nature, but they are – albeit subtly – helmed by Morrison. After years of performing in prominent roots duo Cahalen Morrison & Eli West (whose music made fans of Tim O’Brien, Jim Lauderdale, Dirk Powell, and BBC Radio’s Bob Harris along the way), Morrison formed and led the band Country Hammer, made up of members who have mostly crossed over into Western Centuries.

Produced by Bill Reynolds (Band of Horses) and recorded in his Nashville studio, Weight of the World features three different songwriters and lead vocalists (Morrison, Miller, and Lawton); the result is a sound that deftly defies neat categorization. Yet the album doesn’t come off as scattered. Instead, it feels like the natural confluence of the band’s wide-ranging influences, laced together by the interconnected histories of the musical styles at its foundation, and by its writers’ commitments to imaginative songwriting.

The progressive, almost psychedelic nature of the album’s lyrics infuses the 12-track record with a distinctly modern sensibility. Sure, there’s ample pedal steel and plenty of country telecaster twang, but Western Centuries elevate these neo-traditional two-stepping tunes into transcendental, rootsy rock ‘n roll doused think-pieces.

Upon first listen, Weight of the World provides all the familiar satisfaction of traditional country lyricism – rife with simultaneously hilarious and heart-breaking one-liners, tales of hitting the bottle and scraping bottom, and so on – but these songs yield new and deeper meaning with every listen. Each songwriter brings his own flair to Weight of the World, but there is a deeply literary approach to the songwriting woven throughout. The metaphors cleverly extend on, sometimes for an entire song as with Lawton’s “Off the Shelf” — a love song written for a bottle of booze.

While its lyrics are impressively layered with meaning, Weight of the World will appeal to just about any fan of roots music; the album certainly showcases the band’s great range and ability to blend influences ranging from early rhythm and blues, all the way to straight up country. But it’s also marked with a profound ingenuity – the type that feels instinctual rather than intentionally labored for, the kind that continues to flourish and snake into new realms as time wears on. This is just the beginning for Western Centuries, and it’s not likely their creative well is going to dry up any time soon.

Western Centuries will release Weight of the World via Free Dirt Records on June 3, 2016, and will tour the USA this summer and fall in support of their new release. For more information on Western Centuries, visit their website, http://www.westerncenturies.com/.


Sundays at Six is a free outdoor concert series in Cole Park, Alamosa. Concerts start at 6 p.m. Check out this year’s lineup. In case of bad weather, go to ALMA’s website and Facebook page to find out about cancellations or change of venue.