I wish I could name everything I get to play on my show as a BEST OF. I mean that. In the TEN years now that I’ve been doing this show, I am still blown away by the greatness of the music that comes from our state.
Let me first of all thank Dani Grant and the folks at the Mishawaka Amphitheater, and the folks at Oskar Blues Fooderies for supporting this show in 2016. I would not be able to do this if not for them and YOUR financial support.
I also want to thank everyone at 105.5FM, KJAC aka 105.5 The Colorado Sound for welcoming me as part of the family, and taking on my old show name. Host stations now include KJAC (Northern Front Range), KRFC (Northern Colorado), KDNK (Carbondale/Glenwood Springs), KOTO (Telluride), KSUT (Ignacio/Durango/Pagosa Springs), KZYR (Vail), KCMJ (Colorado Springs) and KLZR (Westcliff)
I started this show, and starting booking and promoting bands here, because I got tied of people saying “how come Colorado (Denver) can’t be like ______ (name your favorite ahem – Seattle – etc)” I mean, really. And even to this day members of my own family don’t know that certain high profile national level bands are from here. I have a lot of work to do still … so expect me on the air for another TEN years — AT LEAST!
Picking the BEST OF is not an especially easy task. I spend several hours a week just listening to music I receive to play on the show. I scan radio playlists from around the state. I scan charts including national and instate – like the Roots Music Report Colorado charts. I look to see who’s doing what, nationally, regionally and locally. I listen to my colleagues and peers in the “industry” here in Colorado. And I listen to the fans of the music.
My true hope is that you’ll discover a new band/artist to fall in love with and claim as a favorite yourself.
Here’s what got played in the BEST OF 2016 show.
The Best of 2016 PLAYLIST
Rob Drabkin “Someday” [single] (2016)
Coral Creek “Way Back” from Coral Creek (2015)
The Drunken Hearts “Want You Back” from Love & Thirst (2016)
SHEL “You Could Be My Baby” from Just Crazy Enough (2016)
Magic Music “Gandy Dancer” from Magic Music (2016)
Elephant Revival “Petals” from Petals (2016)
OneRepublic “Kids” from Oh My My (2016)
SuCh (Su Charles) “You (Icytat Vocal Mix)” [single] (2016)
Bonnie and The Clydes “Shiny and New” from Dear Somebody (2016)
Big Gigantic “The Little things” from Brighter Future (2016)
Space Orphan “Superphonic” from Shut Up About The Sun (2016)
The Motet “The Truth” from Totem (2016)
Wheelchair Sports Camp “Mary Had a Little Band” from No Big Deal (2013)
The Fray “Singing Low” from Through the Years: The Best of the Fray (2016)
Lumineers “Ophelia” from Cleopatra (2016)
Other Worlds “Sandfly” from Weather Patterns (2016)
Eros and the Eschaton “Rxx” from Weight of Matter (2016)
Grant Farm “Get in Line” from Kiss The Ground (2016)
FaceMan “Father Time” from Wild and Hunting (2016)
Brent Cowles “Cold Times” from Cold Times (2016)
Paper Bird “To the Light” from Paper Bird (2016)
Big Head Blues Club “Hidden Charms” from Way Down Inside (Songs Of Willie Dixon) (2016)
Ryan A. Fourt “Air Gun (Daisy’s Revenge)” from Big Slick (2016)
TRUSTED EAR SCENE REPORT
Thanks to my friend, and former Westword music editor Dave Herrera for launching TheTrustedEar.com and contributing news and information about the scene to us each week.
THE TOP 3 BEST OF …
After anguishing over leaving stuff out that I really liked, and thought deserved being noticed, I decided to present the TOP 3 releases in each category. Enjoy. Links go to playable media: YouTube in most cases.
PEOPLE’S CHOICE 2016
This one went back and forth feverishly between Bonnie & the Clydes and The Drunken Hearts, and the final tally made it a finish by single digits … so basically, they were pretty nearly tied when I shut down the poll … All in all, thanks to their fans we enjoyed the most robust People’s Choice Poll in years. Click on links to get to band website.
Bonnie & the Clydes – Dear Somebody
The Drunken Hearts – Love & Thirst
Faceman – Wild and Hunting
ALBUM/EP OF THE YEAR
The Lumineers – Cleopatra I didn’t like The Lumineers’ Cleopatra when it dropped. In fact, it took me several months of listening to it, and playing it on my show and at 105.5, before I “got it.” It is a stunning album of really well written folk-rock songs, that stands up well to anything from any prior era. It went #1 on the Billboard charts.
OneRepublic – Oh My My Call me a pop music junkie, but when it’s a good as OneRepublic’s Oh My My, I can never overdose. Easily one of the best collections of addicting pop/rock in recent memory. (edit jan 4) In particular I can’t seem to get enough of A.I. with Peter Gabriel.
Big Head Blues Club – Way Down Inside Todd Park Mohr and company, appearing as Big Head Blues Club, rip up the music of Willie Dixon, preserving not only the legacy of the original, but imbuing it with solid craftsmanship from some of our best in the Centennial state. (edit jan 4) Along the way they enlist the aid of Denver’s Erica Brown and a handful of blues legends.
SONG OF THE YEAR
SuCh (Su Charles) – You (Icytat Vocal Mix): No song this year has had as much of an impact on me as “You.” SuCh and Icytat won the 2016 All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) for this version of the song. If you want to catch her live, she’ll be appearing at Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox in Denver on Fri Feb 3. She is also getting ready to go into the studio to record a new album in 2017.
The Lumineers – Ophelia: When I first heard this song last winter I thought I was hearing a dropped track from the band’s debut. It grew on me. It’s also one of Colorado’s highest charting songs historically, peaking at #1.
Rob Drabkin – Someday: I’ve been a fan of Rob’s since meeting him at open stages in Denver over a decade ago. “Someday” is the song we’ve all been waiting for. It also appears to be his most popular single so far, reaching over 500,000 plays on Spotify.
ADULT POP/ROCK ABLUM/EP
ROCK/AMERICAN TRAD ALBUM/EP
VIDEO OF THE YEAR