Viva Lyons! A Celebration of Community with The Infamous Stringdusters 9.13.14

Bohn Park
Lyons, CO

Words & Video By Nicholas Stock (Fat Guerilla Productions)
Photos By Nicholas Stock & Kevin Hahn (Split Open & Shoot)

As a resident of Northern Colorado the memories of the scars that were carved into the hillside by the biblical flooding of just a year ago are still very fresh in my mind. Roads, houses, and cars were pushed aside like playing cards on a wet table. The tranquil St. Vrain was transformed into a mile wide torrent that destroyed everything in its path. Residents could only stand by and watch as everything they knew was simply washed away. Now with just a year gone the town of Lyons is a community well on its way to revitalization.

Colorado United is the state organization set up to aid in flood recovery. September 13th marked Colorado United Day, which was a day of service for residents to lend a hand in Lyons, Jamestown, and other affected communities. Oskar Blues and their Can’d Aide Foundation worked with other local breweries and The Infamous Stringdusters to host a fundraiser to end the day with Governor John Hickenlooper. The festivities began around 5:00 PM with a chat with the Governor. He introduced The Stringdusters before he hopped up and played alongside local Dave Tiller and superstar Mary Chapin Carpenter on a rousing rendition of “Sittin On Top Of The World."

Set One: Blue Night,
Sittin On Top Of The World*, Night On The River.
Well, Well,
17 Cents, How Far I’d Fall, Rivers Run Cold, Like I Do,
Sugartown**, Travelin Teardrop Blues, After Midnight > Fork In The Road Jam

Set Two:
 Try Try, In God’s Country, Piece of Mind,
 Colorado, Red Fox, All The Same, Long & Lonesome Day,
 Gettin’ Down The Road, Once You’re Gone, Summercamp, Walkin’ On The Moon, When The Night Comes Around, Let It Go, Up On Cripple Creek, Machines

Encore: It’ll Be Alright, One More Bridge

*w/ John Hickenlooper, Dave Tiller & Mary Chapin Carpenter
**w/ Benny “Burle” Galloway

The Stringdusters have been committed to Colorado for some time and this show proved just that. Both Pandolfi and Hall both call this state home now. Viva Lyons was a spotlight of the indomitable spirit of Coloradoans. Giving fans a full two set show of superlative bluegrass with a side of sit ins was just what the doctor ordered. Songs like “Night On The River” and “Rivers Run Cold” nodded at a theme, but with the sense of the celebration firmly engrained in the delivery. The sun began to dip basking the valley in a warm, golden glow. The beer tents poured prodigiously as each cup sold would aid in the rebuilding that was still left to do. Mr. Benny “Burle” Galloway appeared and performed “Sugartown” with the Dusters. The “After Midnight” into “Fork In The Road Jam” set the crowd on fire. It was a massive sing-along followed by an equally impressive dance party. They took a short break before returning for the sequel.

The Infamous Stringdusters continued to slay the crowd for the entirety of the second set. They are always entertaining, but they seemed to be playing with a real passion on this particular night. Each member was impressive, but as a single entity they are unsurpassed. They opened with a bouncy, but beautiful “Try, Try” that featured some impeccable vocals from Travis Book and some jaw-dropping fiddle from Jeremy Garrett. The crowd again joined in on “Colorado,” a powerfully stunning ode to this great state.

“It's so damn good to know there's something time can't change, Oh Colorado.” (Lyrics from Colorado)

The ‘Nashville Wunderkids’ continued to wow the locals with tight songs like the somber “All The Same” and the Hall sung rager “Gettin Down The Road.” “Summercamp” off their lastest album Let It Go was a blend of perfectly placed harmonies and excellent picking lead by Travis Book. The song built into a shred fest before they skillfully dove into a version of the Police’s “Walking On The Moon.” The Infamous Stringdusters also treated us to a bluegrass breakdown version of The Band’s “Up On Cripple Creek.” They closed the second set with “Machines.” They gave us a two-song encore with “It’ll Be Alright” into a very appropriate “One More Bridge.” With the support of Oskar Blues, The Infamous Stringdusters have been a ‘bridge’ by bringing their style of virtuoso bluegrass to a town that has faced an unimaginable adversity. Lyons has emerged stronger and more united than ever, but the work isn’t done. Check out the Colorado United website for information on how you can get involved.

This was an absolutely perfect night on the hill. The Infamous Stringdusters may be the best bluegrass band touring today. Their commitment not only to their craft, but also to their fan base, is inspiring. I look forward to their next adventure in Colorado.

Nicholas' Photo Gallery

Kevin's Photo Gallery


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