Living in a mountain town, you hear and read the descriptions of the bands that come and go.
A large percentage of the time, you hear the word quintessential more times than you can count.
“Quintessential Mountain Music, Quintessential String Band, Quintessential Bluegrass Band” are all labels used far and wide.
I’ve been guilty myself. What does it mean? Hard-telling. A lot of words attempt to capture music that fits in with the culture that is high-altitude living.
Trout Steak Revival, long friends of Chaffee County and Buena Vista, is definitely no stranger to being put in the box of “Quintessential Mountain Music.”
For those of us who head to The Lariat for a 10 p.m., show the last day of August, this group of five offers an experience that expands on what it means to cherish our sweet mountain life.
Quintessential: “Embodies or possesses the essence of something.”
Encompassing a truthful human experience combined with folk, indie, bluegrass and roots in Americana, Trout Streak Revival has lived through the valleys and the peaks in learning, loving and living as a band with individual lives, jobs and geographic spots.
On the trail of their newest studio album, “Spirit of the Sea,” the band is a molded, melded and united front.
They’ve won first place at The Telluride Bluegrass Festival Band Competition, claimed an Emmy for a soundtrack and they’ve been called “The Best Bluegrass Band” multiple years by Denver’s Westword magazine.
“Spirit of the Sea” expands Trout Creek Revival’s repertoire beyond Colorado’s bluegrass without leaving behind the communal nature of the band’s origins,” according to their website.
With Bevin Foley on the fiddle, Steve Foltz on the guitar and mandolin, Casey Houlihan on the bass, William Koster on the guitar and dobro and Travis McNamara on the banjo, Trout Steak Revival is excited to return to The Lariat stage to share the new and celebrate the old.
“It feels like a home away from home,” said Foltz.
Chaffee County pulls at the heartstrings of all the band members, and they all have connections to the valley.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if we all lived here eventually,” said Houlihan.
No doubt, Trout Steak’s shows at The Lariat and The Ivy Ballroom pull quite the crowd, Campout for the Cause and venues in Salida (most notably longtime supporters at Elevation Brewery), so the feeling is mutual.
“They’re part of the community. It’s all part of the same vibe, the same frequency, the same culture and spirit that The Lariat is trying to bring in,” said Court Johnson, co-owner of The Lariat.
“The last time Trout Steak played at The Lariat, I snuck up onto the back of the stage to check out the room, and I was struck by how happy, how downright joyful the crowd was,”
What Court and Robbie Johnson have created at The Lariat helps bring bands like Trout Steak Revival into our town.
“Court has really put Buena Vista on the map for music. They have a top-notch sound system, and they take care of the bands,” says Houlihan. “They are both music lovers, raised their kids listening to live music and know what it takes to make a band comfortable.”
There’s a long-term, memorable impression left after playing The Lariat.
“This goes a long way when you’re on the road – a good bed and good food go a long way,” says Houlihan.
The band is excited to be a part of a wild music weekend in Buena Vista.
With Seven Peaks going on a few blocks away, this acoustic string band plans to fit right in to the quintessential mountain music weekend, quenching the souls of those dancing to the songs, and sharing in the joy of getting to be right here, right now, which is the best definition of mountain music.
Trout Steak Revival takes The Lariat Saturday at 10 p.m. Tickets are $20.