The sounds and images of Telluride's 35th feel like they were just yesterday: Darrell Scott opening the Festival with his inimitable "Colorado, I need healing;" John Oates joining Sam Bush on Saturday night for a reggae/bluegrass take on "Maneater;" Paolo Nutini and one of his bandmates jubilantly dancing arm-in-arm across the Shellman Memorial stage; the Colorado sky filling with the white specks of hail during the Duhks and marshmallows during the Swell Season.
We can go on and on. But we'd have to mention every single set of music: from Yonder Mountain String Band's kick-off to the spectacular closing set from the House Band. We'd have to mention the McCoury Boys at the Sheridan, the screenings of Béla Fleck's Throw Down Your Heart, and the Elks Park collaborations with Tim and Brett, Darrell and Tift. And we'd have to control the goosebumps, the spine tingles, and the deeper emotions that made this 35th gathering of Festivarian Nation pure magic.
We'd love to hear your thoughts about the entire experience. Take a minute to complete our quick online survey, and you'll be entered to win a pair of tickets to next year's Festival. We look closely at every comment from every Festivarian as we work to make next year's Festival even more unforgettable.
Congratulations to this year's contest winners: Telluride Troubadour Nathan Moore (whose main stage performance included a song he wrote the night before in the campground) and band contest winners the Blue Canyon Boys (who we've already invited to perform on the Telluride stage next year).
CMT wrote on their Telluride blog: "I have never heard the word 'sustainable' so much in my life." We're proud to say that we held true to our Sustainable Festivation Manifesto. We served over 10,000 gallons of free local water; reusable water bottles were visible from the stage to the tarps; reusable cups, bags, and utensils were the norm; and the campgrounds set a new standard for festival camping.
Congratulations to the winners of the 1st Annual How Green Is Your Grass? Campsite Challenge... Camp Run A Muck in Town Park. We received impressive entries from nearly every Festival campground and the leave-no-trace ideals were markedly evident on Monday after the pack-out. Thanks to everyone who made this possible.
While most of the 35th Anniversary merchandise sold-out at the Festival, you can still order this year's collector poster - featuring the mandolin birthday cake. Order at shop.bluegrass.com - as always, we charge no shipping or handling on any orders.
We know many of you listened to the live audio stream of the Festival - some from as far away as Australia! If you enjoyed the stream from KOTO, we'd love to hear your thoughts. Email your story to firstname.lastname@example.org - how it worked for you, where you listened from, and whether we should continue this in the future.
One cure for the post-Festival blues is to stay connected with your Festivarian family. The Festivarian Forum is abuzz with discussions about every aspect of this year's Festival. If you've been a lurker, now's the time to introduce yourself and become a part of this warm, friendly community.
The other cure for Telluride Bluegrass withdrawal is another Festival. Tickets and camping are still available for our mid-August summit of the song: the Rocky Mountain Folks Festival (August 15-17) – shop.bluegrass.com or 800-624-2422. Amos Lee, KT Tunstall, Nanci Griffith, Jakob Dylan, Dar Williams, Josh Ritter, Greg Brown, and many many more, alongside the St. Vrain River in Lyons.
As we prepare the Ranch in Lyons for the sold-out RockyGrass festival in a few weeks (July 25-27), there just isn't enough music in the air. To remedy that, we've invited guitarist and 3-time Grammy nominee William Eaton to the Wildflower Pavilion at 8pm, Thursday, July 17. The genius guitarist and guitar builder will be joined by flutist Claudia Tulip; violinist Allen Ames; and fresh new talent: singer-songwriter, Ty, for a musical journey through desert landscapes and improvisatory soundscapes, original music and song-stories. Advance tickets ($10) are available now at shop.bluegrass.com or 800-624-2422.
Finally, during his stirring Telluride set, Arlo Guthrie mentioned that his father's remarkable life has been made into a musical. That musical, Woody Guthrie's American Song, is being presented this summer in Boulder as part of the 51st season of the Colorado Shakespeare Festival. "Unerringly a thing of beauty" writes the Denver Post in their recent 4-star review of the show. Our friends at the CSF are offering a 20% discount off orchestra section tickets (subject to availability and some restrictions) to Festivarians throughout the summer. Simply present your wristbands from a Planet Bluegrass festival or give the discount code BANDZ8 at the box office. We'll see you there.