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Join us this evening for a marvelous opportunity to experience the music of a world-class bluegrass band. It’s springtime in the Rockies, and while birds gather to sing joyful songs, Pagosans will gather to enjoy the exuberance of bluegrass music in full bloom when Jeff Scroggins and Colorado take the stage at the Ross Aragon Community Center tonight at 7:30 p.m.
Advance tickets for $12 are available at the community center. Tickets at the door are $15. Young people 18 and under are admitted free. For more information, call the community center at 264-4152.
“Jeff Scroggins and Colorado have a wonderful emotional intensity that immediately grabs the listener,” said bluegrass icon Tony Trischka. “Though well rooted in tradition, they can also stretch the boundaries without taking them to the breaking point. Taste and technical brilliance abound. The bands’ vocals are smooth and inviting and the arrangements are inventive. Give these guys and gals a listen and you’ll be amply rewarded with their rich musical tapestry.”
One of today’s premier masters of the five-string banjo, Jeff Scroggins is renowned for his exquisite sense of melodic phrasing and drive. Scroggins grew up in rural Oklahoma listening to his grandfather, J.M. Cary, perform old-time country music and hearing the fiddling of his great uncle, Oklahoma fiddle legend Ace Sewell. From there, Scroggins charted a successful path in bluegrass leading to this electrifying band from the Rocky Mountains — one the finest contemporary bluegrass bands in the business.
Lead singer Greg Blake’s strong vocals are delivered with old-style bluegrass style and conviction. Blake was born in West Virginia and from there acquired his love for bluegrass and mountain music. Influenced by Bill Monroe, Flatt and Scruggs, Doc Watson and others, Blake began playing guitar and singing at age 7. Blake was won numerous awards for both his singing and guitar playing.
Bassist and vocalist K.C. Groves is a recording artist and founding member of the popular old-time band Uncle Earl, which played major festivals in the U.S. and toured extensively abroad, gaining fans and musical cohorts such as Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones, who produced one of the band’s CDs.
Fiddler Annie Savage’s vivaciousness and versatility have developed through 30 years of performing bluegrass, classical violin and concert harp. She began her career in the music business when she was only 8 years old. “The fiddle has always been my language,” said Savage. “I started playing the fiddle when I was two. I learned to play music kind of like I learned how to talk — through listening to a lot of other people around me do it.” Annie has a strong background in music education. Besides enjoying a rigorous performance schedule, she teaches orchestra at a school in Lafayette, Colo.
Aspiring young musicians will be interested in hearing and seeing Tristan Scroggins, still in high school and a virtuoso mandolinist and prolific concert performer.
“Tristan Scroggins is an exciting one to watch,” said Savage. “Not only does he represent the authentic process of the passing of the music down from one generation to the next through his work with Jeff, but he is also a prodigy along the lines of Mark O’Connor and other bluegrass greats who started young and grew up inside the tradition. Tristan fully understands what defines traditional bluegrass and he is stretching its boundaries, without taking them to the breaking point. Concert goers love Tristan’s original compositions, which tend to give a nod to Bill Monroe while incorporating elements of jazz, funk and Afro-grass.”
The Ross Aragon Community Center presents Jeff Scroggins and Colorado in collaboration with Elation Center for the Arts. Special thanks to The Pagosa Springs SUN, event sponsor, and to production specialist Jeffrey Heintzlman.