(Head For The Hills | Photo Courtesy of Parallel 44)
Parallel 44 Presents Head for the Hills at Volcanic Theatre Pub with local support Honey Don’t on Wednesday February 16th. Come out and get your feet stomping with newgrass singer song writers from Colorado! These guys know how to get their twang wound up into your soul. Tickets are $12 adv. / $15 door for this ALL AGES show. Doors open at 8pm and Head for the Hills goes on stage at 9:30pm. Thanks to our loyal sponsors at The Source Weekly& Cascade Alchemy.
Potions and Poisons is the fourth album of original music from Head for the Hills, the Colorado based post-modern bluegrass outfit of Adam Kinghorn, Joe Lessard, Matt Loewen and Sam Parks. There’s no reinvention of the wheel here—no computer programmed banjo rolls or digitally arpeggiated fiddle lines. Instead we find Head for the Hills at the peak of their powers of musical alchemy, building little worlds of sound from the detritus of bluegrass, jazz, hip hop, folk and soul. Potions and Poisons is a look at the darker side of love, lust, and life; an examination of our affinity for and aversion to the things that make us fragile but human. Recorded at home in Colorado with the band’s go-to engineer, Aaron Youngberg (Cahalen and Eli, Martha Scanlan, Grant Gordy and Ross Martin), the record features appearances from Bonnie Paine (Elephant Revival) on vocals and washboard, Erin Youngberg (Uncle Earl, FY5) on vocals, and a lush string section. Potions and Poisons is the most Head for the Hills record yet, and in the great tradition of bluegrass (and soul and folk and old time music), it delivers some bitter pills, but the ten new original songs are more than a survey of the human condition. This is reflective but buoyant music, restorative and full of vibrancy.
Head for the Hills prides itself on defying expectation, turning neophytes into converts and genre purists exploratory listeners. Remaining true to the roots of bluegrass while simultaneously looking to it’s future prospects, the band makes music that reaches into jazz, indie rock, hip hop, soul, world and folk to stitch together cutting edge songs that bridge the divide between past and future acoustic music. More than a decade in and after thousands of miles, hundreds of performances, a handful of independently released records, 4 times awarded Best Bluegrass in Colorado via Westword Magazine, and one new mandolin player—Head for the Hills is at their absolute peak, firing on all cylinders and winning the hearts and minds of audiences everywhere they go.
Head for the Hills have been bringing their music to audiences from the Telluride Bluegrass Festival to South by Southwest and a multitude of stages in between—including Summer Camp Music Festival, High Sierra Music Festival, RockyGrass, DelFest, Northwest String Summit, Blue Ox Music Festival FloydFest, Strawberry Music Festival and many more. The band has been featured on NPR Ideastream and eTown, co-released beers with Odell Brewing Company and Sanitas Brewing, charted on the CMJ Top 200 (Blue Ruin, 2013 and Head for the Hills, 2010), and was featured by CMT – Edge, who said; “Head for the Hills’ Blue Ruin effortlessly matches integrity against innovation.”
Honey Don’t is the musical union of Bill Powers and Shelley Gray, perhaps better known as one half of the Paonia, Colorado based old time-bluegrass band, Sweet Sunny South.
Their music is acoustic and based in the folk tradition. They draw from their bluegrass and old-time background but also inject some country, blues and a little swing. The songs are catchy and engaging, funny, sad, lonesome and uplifting. Most of the songs are original, but select covers and traditional tunes are part of their repertoire as well.
Bill describes himself as a writer first and foremost and all the while that Bill has been writing songs for SSS and otherwise, Shelley has been right there by his side working out arrangements and adding her bass and smiling voice to the mix. Honey Don’t is the harmonious result of their long-time partnership. Bill and Shelley’s comfort on stage and with one another creates an endearing vibe that comes shining through the music. The term “laid back” has come up often in describing that sound. Many of the songs have a wonderful sweetness and dreaminess to them but some get right down and rock too so there is something for everyone’s tastes.
High Mountain Hayfever A Prarie Home Companion, Boulder and Fox Theaters, The Durango Meltdown, Four Corners Folk Festival, Moab Folk Festival, Rockygrass, Silverton Jubilee, Flagstaff’s Pickin in the Pines, Wintergrass in Tacoma Washington and many, many more. These folks are pros and know how to entertain and although Honey Don’t is a new group on the scene the individuals know their way around the craft.