NedFest hosts top Colorado, international artists

NedFest1By Jeffrey Smith
The Nederland Music and Arts Festival returns to the banks of Barker Reservoir for three days of music, art, food and microbrews, Aug. 26-28. The annual family-friendly gathering has been hosting some of the music world’s top performers since its formation 18 years ago, and this year is no different. “International treasure” Taj Mahal headlines the festival which also includes performances by Paper Bird, Kyle Hollingsworth, Roosevelt Collier, Bill Nershi, Melvin Seals, Steve Kimock, Jeff Chimenti, Keith Mosley, Tony Furtado and many more. Find the complete line-up online.

NedFest is not only known for booking top Colorado and nationally touring talent, its celebrated for its intimacy. The entire festival is contained to the Jeff Guercio Memorial Baseball Field at 151 East St. at the far eastern edge of town. With a capacity of 2,000 people, fans are never more than 200 feet from the stage.

The family-friendly nature of the event is another draw. A children’s activity area is perennially popular since children 12 and under are admitted free. There’s even a special price for teens. The local food, brews and mead, as well as the unique, hand-picked vendors and artists are another beloved aspect of NedFest.

NedFest staff have made a commitment to continually improve the festival’s “zero waste” goals and have provided bins for recyclables, compostables and trash. The use of Styrofoam by vendors is also prohibited. Event sponsor Indian Peaks Spring Water offers free spring water to fill reusable water bottles.

Camping is available for an additional fee in Chipeta Park, across Boulder Creek from the festival grounds on Friday and Saturday nights only. No single night passes will be sold and campsites must be cleared by 3 p.m. Sunday.

2016-baseballNedFest kicks off Friday, Aug. 26 at 6 p.m. with the Kyle Hollingsworth Band featuring the keyboard player from String Cheese Incident. Playing music for over thirty years, Kyle Hollingsworth has established himself as a “formidable and versatile music talent, with the ability to contribute, collaborate, compose, and communicate on a number of levels and within a vast spectrum of musical environments.”

Steve Kimock & Friends, featuring Jeff Chimenti of Dead & Company and Ratdog, take the stage at 8 p.m. A master of improvisation, Kimock has been inspiring music fans with his transcendent guitar speak, voiced through electric, acoustic, lap and pedal steel guitars. Bassist Bobby Vega and vocalist Leslie Mendelson are also in the band.

A full day of music awaits on Saturday, Aug. 27. Tony Furtado, an evocative and soulful singer, wide-ranging songwriter and virtuoso multi-instrumentalist, begins the day at 12:15 p.m. Fletcher’s Grove, known for its high-energy shows, follows at 2 p.m. The band mixes a fierce rhythmic foundation, dual
guitar solos, and an Appalachian tinged mix of genres that makes standing still nearly impossible.

Roosevelt Collier’s Colorado Get Down takes over at 4 p.m. Collier is a peddle steal player steeped in the Sacred Steal movement and plays blues, funk soul and gospel. He built his reputation alongside his uncles and cousins in The Lee Boys. Joining the band on hollow-body guitar, Nershi is known for his work with the String Cheese Incident and Emmitt-Nershi Band.

Melvin Seals and JGB, who take the stage at 6 p.m., will revive the spirit of the Jerry Garcia Band with Seals’ powerful, high-spirited, Hammond B-3 organ sounds. The keyboardist spun his magic with the Jerry Garcia Band for 18 years and helped pioneer and define what has become “Jam Band” music.

TajMahalThe Taj Mahal Trio turn in a headlining performance at 8 p.m. One of the most prominent and influential figures in late 20th century blues and roots music, Taj Mahal began his career more than four decades ago as an American blues artist. He has broadened his scope to include music representing virtually every corner of the world including West Africa, the Caribbean, Latin America, Europe, the Hawaiian Islands and more. Joining him in the are drummer Kester Smith and bassist Bill Rich.

The festival’s third day, Aug. 28, begins with Colorado Bluegrass Music Society Young Pickers at noon. TAARKA, which plays “masterfully deep Americana and Gypsyjazz string band music” is led by the husband-and-wife team of David and Enion Pelta-Tiller.

Keith Moseley and Friends, featuring national flatpicking guitar champion Tyler Grant of Grant Farm, perform at 4 p.m. Moseley is well-known as the bass player for String Cheese Incident. Kevin “Money” McHugh, the keyboard player from Grant Farm and drummer Christian Teal will also be playing in the band. Expect a set of Moseley’s SCI tunes and some “fun covers.”

Beginning at 6 p.m., Denver’s Paper Bird wraps up the festival with its indi-folk, baroque, pop mix. The band is known for playing in odd meters and having three lead singers. Their sound is described as vintage and timeless. Several more “tweener” acts will play short sets in between the main acts each day of the festival.

Tickets are on sale online. A three-day pass is $135 in advance or $150 at the gate. Two-day passes for Friday and Saturday are $90 while Saturday and Sunday passes are $95. Since-day Friday tickets are $40, Saturday single-day tickets are $55 in advance and $65 at the gate. Sunday single-day tickets are $45.

When the music is done at the festival, head to area venues for several late-night options. On Friday, Aug. 26, the Stage Stop in Rollinsville helps kick off the weekend of a special burlesque performance and Champagne Charlie at 7 p.m. Very Nice Brewing hosts Many Mountains and Los Cheesies play the Pioneer Inn. The Caribou Room hosts the “official” after party with a yet to be announced act.

After the festival on Saturday, Aug. 27, check out Junko Beat at the Stage Stop, Steepland String Band at Very Nice Brewing, New Family Dog at the Pioneer Inn and Gasoline Lollipops at Rocky Mountain Oyster Bar. Another “official” late night show will take place at The Caribou Room, as well, featuring Coral Creek with Special Guests Bill Nershi & Roosevelt Collier.

Big Thompson Flood plays the Stage Stop Sunday, Aug. 28, at 2 p.m. while Ravin’ Wolf plays at Very Nice Brewing.

Jeff Guercio Memorial Baseball Field is located at 151 East St. in Nederland. Visit or find them on Facebookfor more information.

Originally published in the August 2016 issue of the MMAC Monthly


Friday, August 26

  • 5:30 pm Gates Open
  • 6:00 pm Kyle Hollingsworth Band
  • 7:30 pm tweener TBA
  • 8:00 pm Steve Kimock and Friends featuring Jeff Chimenti
  • 10:30 pm Late Night at the Caribou Room: TBA

Saturday, August 27

  • 11:30 am Gates Open
  • 12:15 pm Tony Furtado
  • 1:30 pm tweener TBA
  • 2:00 pm Fletcher’s Grove
  • 3:00 pm tweener TBA
  • 4:00 pm Roosevelt Collier’s Colorado Get Down feat. Bill Nershi of String Cheese
  • 5:00 pm tweener TBA
  • 6:00 pm Melvin Seals and JGB
  • 8:00 pm Taj Mahal Trio
  • 10:30 pm Late Night at the Caribou Room: TBA

Sunday, August 28

  • 11:30 am Gates Open
  • 12:00 pm Colorado Bluegrass Music Society’s Young Pickers
  • 1:30 pm tweener TBA
  • 2:00 pm Taarka
  • 3:30 pm tweener TBA
  • 4:00 pm Keith Moseley of the String Cheese Incident, and Friends, featuring Tyler Grant of Grant Farm
  • 6:00 pm Paper Bird

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