Hey Hey, so I am closing out this run at Boulder Theater tonight, and I wanted to dig in a bit and reflect on some of my early SCI memories from this great venue.
I think it was here, where I first played music with String Cheese. I remember seeing them at the Fox earlier that year and being impressed. In fact, I was blown away by the “kid” on acoustic guitar. Not only by his playing, but also by the tone of his instrument. I had never heard an acoustic guitar sound so present and “real.” So later that year, when my band Durt was asked to open for them at the Boulder Theater, we all loved the idea.
I had been jamming with Kang and other local musicians (including Dave Watts) for a while, so we were familiar with each other’s playing. Durt was mainly a rock outfit and I was probably only carrying my Roland D-50 keyboard at that time. The sounds in this board were, to say the least, very ‘80s. So when the SCI boys asked me to sit in that night, I was super pumped, but a bit hesitant as to how my sounds would fit their vibe. I have no idea what I played. Probably “Bigger Isn’t Better “ and “Jellyfish.” Those were the first ones I learned. And I’m not sure how it came across, but I must have passed the audition because they asked me to hop on tour for a few more shows.
The String Cheese Incident – early press photo – outside The Fox Theatre – Boulder, CO
Since then, we have played almost every venue in the area from the Fox to Fillmore, but the Boulder Theater is one of the classic venues. And haunted or not, we always had a fun time playing here. This town has a great history of supporting live music and it seems to be a vortex for musical creativity. So many bands have gone on from here to become nationally known. There must be something in the water. And as for String Cheese, it was always nice to come back to Boulder after a long tour. It’s nice to come home.
Boulder has been my home now since 1993 and I have loved every year. It seems this area has been a hot bed for great music over the decades. String cheese is just one of the many bands that has been born from the creative forces in this area.
Hop On Tour is an interactive fan experience. Throughout The String Cheese Incident’s Roots Run Deep tour and Kyle’s kick-off shows in Colorado, Kyle will connect with fans via his Facebook page (www.facebook.com/kylehollingsworthmusic) and blog (www.kylehollingsworth.wordpress.com) to provide a behind the scenes look into life on the road as well as the craft beers and brewing that come into picture along the way. To top it off, fans will have the opportunity to win an invite to exclusive meet & greets and tastings with Kyle and others through various contests at select SCI shows. Stay tuned to Kyle’s Facebook page for regular Hop On Tour updates...
After a night of raging to the motet on Halloween, I woke up at 6:30am, hungover, and drove to Odell’s, in Fort Collins, to brew some beer for the Hop On Tour kick-off in November. Some good stuff going on here!
Making a vanilla porter will Odell Brewing. mmmmm.
Cleaning-up spent grain at Odell's.
Getting ready to add hops!
Turning random knobs at Dry Dock, while making Solstice Spice.
The kettle at Dry Dock Brewing Company. It's a clean machine.
Doing a little home brewing. Very tricky stuff!
Hop On Tour Kick-Off
Kyle Hollingsworth Band feat. Michael Kang
with Roster McCabe
11/18 Hodi’s Halfnote | Fort Collins, CO
11/19 Cervantes’ Masterpiece Ballroom | Denver, CO
Both shows will feature these two one-time-only craft brews – a vanilla porter from Odell Brewing & Kyle and Solstice Spice from Dry Dock Brewing & Kyle. Cervantes’ will also feature Hoopla Pale Ale from Boulder Beer & Kyle. In addition, all Kyle drafts (Odell, Dry Dock) will be FREE in Denver until 9pm.
Posted in Beer, Brewing, Kyle Hollingsworth, String Cheese Incident
Tagged Beer, Boulder, Boulder Beer, Brewing, Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom, Colorado, Denver, Dry Dock Brewing Company, Fort Collins, Hodi's Halfnote, Hoopla, Kyle Hollingsworth, Michael Kang, Motet, Music, Odell Brewing Company, Roster McCabe, String Cheese Incident
Damn…this was a serious summer. SCI rehearsals and shows in June and July (which were sooo much fun). Then I was out with my band for a spell, traveling around the festival circuit. And, in between, I was invited to participate a few unique lineups including a super group with Bill Kreutzman, Steve Kimock and George Porter. It was a lot of great music with not much sleep, but maybe its better that way.
On the beer front, it was big year as well. Kyle’s Brew Fest sold out again and was another successful benefit for Conscious Alliance. The beer I made with Boulder Beer, Hoopla Pale Ale, has been getting a lot of great reviews from all over the country. Get it while you can! Also it was fun to add my new Brewru Experience at festivals, discussing beer and brewing with fans – trying to connect the dots between my passion for brewing and my love of music.
And now I am psyched to be home with the fam for a few weeks. While at home, I‘ve been forcing myself to dig in a bit and do some more writing. As inspiration, I have been playing through the Beatles songbook. Man, they were great songwriters. Some of those chord changes come out of nowhere and the modulations are seamless. The melody drives everything on that stuff. Listening to this music gets my mind thinking in different directions.
So this fall is mostly chill. Though I do head out for a long weekend with my band September 8-11 in the Midwest. We are going to hit some new towns as well as a couple of festivals. The Macpodz will be joining us in Cleveland and Kalamazoo. I dig their stuff and I think it will be a good musical combination. Also, we are playing one of my favorite breweries: Bell’s. Yes! Great beer, great music. Yum.
And, of course, SCI is about to rev-up again for another big run of shows in December. And this time it’s a real tour. Like “get-on-the-bus-and-roll-” style. It’s going to be awesome! Stay tuned for more on this on upcoming blogs
But for now, I’ll just enjoy the last weeks of summer. Sitting on the porch, drinking a beer and writing songs.
See you out there.
In case you missed it, I did a “remix” of an argument we had on the road this summer. My band, KHB, had just finished a gig deep in the mountains of West Virginia. So at 4am we started driving around looking for our hotel. Tensions started running high as we came to the conclusion that we were hopelessly lost. I recorded some of our banter and then auto-tuned it and added music. Check it out (Beware it does contain some “moonshine-induced” mature language).
Posted in Beer, Brewing, Kyle Hollingsworth, Music, String Cheese Incident
Tagged Beer, Beer Festival, Bill Kreutzman, Boulder, Boulder Beer, Brewing, Colorado, George Porter, Hoopla, keyboardists, keyboards, Kyle Hollingsworth, Music, Steve Kimock, String Cheese Incident
Festival Season is here!! And now with “the rapture” out the way, it looks like it’s going to be quite the Summer. With Cheese back at Bonnaroo and then Electric Forest, it will for sure keep me busy for the majority of the summer. Then I continue forward with lots of unique musical formations and events.
From collaborating with Steve Kimock to jamming with George Porter and Bill Kreutzman, plus doing clinics on beer and home brewing, it is going to be a diverse few months. But I’m looking forward to the challenge. Also, my band KHB will be working hard this summer. We’re heading to Electric Forest as well as local and national touring. Including my 2nd annual Kyle’s Brew Fest here in Boulder, Colorado.
In case you missed it last year, Kyle’s Brew Fest is a unique brew event, benefiting Conscious Alliance, that not only showcases great beer, but also the art of the brewing process. Ultimately it connects my passion for music and my love of brewing (I’m even considering making a beer on stage while I play). Last year’s Brew Fest sold out show was a blast and helped to raise awareness and money for conscious alliance. Boasting over 25 breweries and great tunes, please join us again this year. We will be drinking, talking and singing beer all for a great cause. Hope to see some of ya out there…
But for the next few weeks I’m being sequestered into the school of SCI rock. Back at it, we are digging in and spending time together making sure that every show we do is an unique “Incident.” From testing-out new stuff, to the ever-lasting search for the perfect cover, it’s always a challenge and a relief to be back with friends.
See you soon.
In preparation for Brewfest I am making sure we have enough Hoopla Pale Ale ready, check out the video.
Posted in Beer, Brewing, Kyle Hollingsworth, Music, string cheese, String Cheese Incident
Tagged Beer, Beer Festival, Bonnaroo, Boulder, Boulder Beer, Brewing, Colorado, Denver, Electric Forest, Electric Forest Festival, keyboardists, Kyle Hollingsworth, Music, String Cheese Incident
Here I am sitting at home again after a few whirlwind weeks. It’s so wild to go from being a musician on stage in front of lots of people one day, to doing dishes and laundry the next. Quite the dichotomy going on in my life. Honestly though, I really enjoy the split Kyle universes. At times I am able to be home and spend time with the family, but I also get the release of playing music. And for me it’s not necessarily just the playing of my instrument, but it’s the addiction of performing on stage. I find sometimes I miss the energy I get from being in front of people. Yeah I know, kind of weird, but it’s like I was wired to be an entertainer.
Even from a young age I was a clown. From performing as a magician at the family dinners, to doing local musicals and TV shows. I always wanted to get up into the lights. And at age nine I decided that I wanted to be a “rock star.” I would practice singing in front of the mirror with the brush and even pretend to answer questions from Rolling Stone. But at some point I realized I needed to actually play an instrument to be a rock star and since I was already taking piano lessons at that time, that made the most sense. Certainly not as cool as guitar, and definitely not as rocking, but I enjoyed it. And I got attention…ahh, I guess that’s what it was all about.
So I dig this strange life. And I am able to balance “dad” with “stage guy” pretty well now. Although sometimes I still find myself singing in the mirror with a brush, but at least this time I am doing it with my daughter.
I am heading out to my favorite coast again with my band, KHB. We are hitting Bellingham, Seattle, Portland and Lake Tahoe, this Thursday through Sunday. It’ll be nice to get on the road again and play some club dates (and drink great beer!). See ya in the Northwest this week!
Also, I have included a link to a tune, “Rosie,” that was played for the first time at the SCI Winter Carnival shows. I did a bit of a remix to it and added some new elements as well. Check it out, I hope you enjoy.
Posted in Kyle Hollingsworth, Music, string cheese, String Cheese Incident
Tagged Bellingham, Colorado, keyboards, Kyle Hollingsworth, Lake Tahoe, Music, Northwest, Portland, Seattle, String Cheese Incident, West Coast
Ok, ok, so it’s my birthday, don’t rub it in. And now that I am more than twice Justin Bieber’s age, I am starting to feel the years. But at least we have matching haircuts. The bowl cut will never die!!!
Actually, things are going pretty great. I have been busy for the last few months writing tunes and playing music. I did some cool shows around town with my band, KHB. We opened for Umphrey’s at the Fillmore, in Denver, and that was a blast. They are such a great guys and it’s always a pleasure to hang with them. But, honestly, it was my wife’s birthday so I got a bit buzzed and ran around the Fillmore dancing and screaming. So I didn’t get to much time to hang. I think I remember having a had a good time though.
But then there’s now and I am deep in rehearsals with SCI. With only a week left before the big 1st Bank Center Cheese shows, we are getting pumped. We are digging into some of the older material that has not been played in a while, but also breaking out some new tracks. It’s going to be awesome, it’s always a bit challenging to just jump back in it and that’s why we spend so many weeks preparing. It’s not about learning the chords to “Howard” again, it’s more so about jamming together and getting the magic back. It’s never lost, but just needs to be dusted off a bit.
See you there.
And make sure to catch KHB in the Northwest next month:
04.07.11 Wild Buffalo | Bellingham, WA -w/Acorn Project
04.08.11 Nectar | Seattle, WA -w/Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad
04.09.11 Bossanova Ballroom | Portland, OR -w/Acorn Project and Jesta
So here we are at the final keyboardist. As I look at this list I see so many amazing players. And although I had to choose the ones that made an impact on my playing I have so many more that I admire. From Red Garland and Brad Mehldau to Chester Thompson and Matt Rollings, there are so many great musicians out here. And, of course, my college teacher ,Greg Hatza, had a big influence on me and helped me get started on my journey so many years ago. And I thank him for that…
#1: Herbie Hancock
So yes, every keyboard player is expected to cite Herbie as an influence. And with good reason, he is sooo the man. I first found him in college after my piano professor turned me on to Speak No Evil (a Wayne Shorter album). Of course I had heard of Herbie from the Eighties hit “Rockit,” but the earlier Miles Davis side of him was so was so soulful. Every note had so much feel and intention. And although in college I was studying all the greats, such as Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, Bud Powell, etc., I kept coming back to Herbie. The live Miles Davis 1964 discs Four & More + My Funny Valentine were constantly playing in my room. It was, and remains to be, one of my favorite recordings of all time. There is great compositional improvisation on that record, so much musical intuition between the players. It wasn’t until later that I discovered the Headhunters’ records. This was another level for me as well. Not only funky playing, but also that tone coming from the Rhodes was something I had to have. Herbie’s feel is always at the center of his playing whether a piano, Rhodes or Clavinet. He was a great inspiration for me.
12/10 Cervantes’ Masterpiece Ballroom | Denver, CO – KHB feat. DJ Logic & Liza Oxnard w/The Nu Classics plus signature beer by Kyle and Boulder Beer
12/11 Hodi’s Half Note | Fort Collins, CO – KHB feat. DJ Logic & Liza Oxnard w/the Nu Classics plus signature beer by Kyle and Boulder Beer
12/12 Avery Brewing Co. | Boulder, CO – KHB plus signature beer by Kyle and Avery Brewing and much, much, more! – SOLD OUT!
Posted in Beer, Brewing, Hoppy Holidays, Kyle Hollingsworth, Music, string cheese
Tagged Avery, Avery Brewing, Beer, Beer Festival, Boulder, Boulder Beer, Brewing, Colorado, Denver, Fort Collins, Herbie Hancock, keyboardists, keyboards, Kyle Hollingsworth, Miles Davis, Music, String Cheese Incident