@ Oak Creek Brewing Co.
12:30 p.m.: Rhythm Keepers (Sedona, AZ)
James Turner and Baba Vusi Shibambo are The Rhythm Keepers.
Shibambo grew up in South Africa during Apartheid. A Zulu, “Shibambo” translates into English as “Guardian of the Skins.” The Shibambos were esteemed for their position as caretakers of the Zulu tribe’s animal skins for clothing and most importantly for their drums. Under his mother’s tutelage, he started playing drums at an early age. During Apartheid, Shibambo’s music became a vehicle for cultural awareness and freedom of expression. In South Africa he formed the band Azumah, which performed for Nelson Mandela and subsequently toured with the stage production, Ipitombe, performing worldwide for over 10 years playing to audiences in Israel, England, Ireland and other African and European locations.
In 1993 Shibambo was invited to come to the United States to be part of the Northern Arizona University’s World Peace Festival. Since then, he has penned, choreographed and directed his own stage productions that have been commissioned by the South African Arts Council, the Arizona Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. Shibambo teaches Zulu culture and drumming in school systems in California and Arizona. In 2001, Shibambo was given a grant from the Arizona Commision of the Arts and the National Endowment of the Arts to support the production of his African musical, “Noqhonono” which toured in Arizona schools for six years.
Sedona-based musician Turner began his bass playing career at the age of 13, playing with countless bands including Grammy winning artist Al Green, Memphis based Rufus Thomas, Carla Thomas and The Ovations. James’ big brake came at age 19 when he was chosen to play with Al Green on the Grammy Award-winning albums “Truth In Time,” “The Lord Will Make a Way,” “Al Green: Live from London,” and “Al Green: Live from Tokyo.” In addition, James expanded his repertoire to reggae with Sedona’s The Rhythm Keepers and Louisiana’s Henry Turner Band. James’ most recent production, eace and Love, by The Rhythm Keepers: features the Sedona Red Rock High School Choir, under the guidance of Courtney Yeates, released in February.
1:30 p.m.: Adam Smith (Phoenix, AZ)
Singer-songwriter Adam Smith is a natural. Born in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, raised in Cloverlick, Ky., and discovered on the streets of Nashville, Tenn., Adam is self-taught and naturally inspired to create his moving, original music.
Picking up the guitar and teaching himself to play around the age of 18, he eventually began performing regularly at open mic nights in Knoxville, Tenn., all the while eking out a living working odd jobs. Following his dreams, he soon made his way to the sidewalks of Nashville, singing for passersby and peddling a 5-song CD he’d manage to record some months earlier.
Adam’s continuing journey led him to the inspiring state of Arizona. Beautiful landscapes and a connection with the artistic and spiritual nature of communities like Sedona and Jerome, as well as major progressive metropolitan markets with tremendous support for the arts like Phoenix, fueled him towards new creative heights and allowed him to expose his music to the masses.
His debut album “Another Way To Get To Heaven” was released in the spring of 2010 to rave reviews, an autobiographical soundscape of songs representing his continuing desire to create and connect with the world around him.
From his home base in Arizona, Smith has toured and performed for audiences all across the nation, sharing his music at events where he interacts with all his fans directly.
In addition to catching one of his captivating live shows (where he signs CDs for all of his fans), Adam Smith’s music is available on iTunes, Amazon.com, and other online retailers. He also continues to create visual art, and several pieces and paintings have been on display in galleries throughout the Southwest.
2:30 p.m.: Saith (Sedona, AZ)
Saith (Näthan Saith Gangadean) was born and raised in the Philadelphia area, exposed to many styles of music growing up. The landmarks of his musical passion were always related to the power of music as a message.
At three years old, We Are The World made a deep impression. At 9 years old, Black or White awakened a passion to sing it loud to the world. At 11 years old, he found his inner rocker with Nirvana, STP, Green Day, Offspring, and Aerosmith. At 12 he asked his parents for piano lessons as he discovered how it can evoke such powerful emotions, influenced by such artists as Danny Wright and George Winston. By 14 he began teaching himself guitar. At the same time, he was awakened to the power of music as a message via the Forest Gump soundtrack which ignited his interest in the revolutionary music of the 60′s and 70′s. This is when he discovered John Lennon’s Imagine in his parent’s record collection which was the birth of his conscious desire to create powerfully pertinent music. The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, the Police, and later on Seal, Peter Gabriel, Jamiroquai, Bjork, Daft Punk and more recently, Michael Franti played huge roles in awakening Saith to the unlimited Power of Music. He began writing songs in 2000.
Shortly thereafter, Saith left College at Temple University where he was majoring in Theatre and moved to Sedona, Arizona to fully pursue his spiritual growth and discover his musical voice. Over the last 10 years, while teaching Yoga and guiding Sedona visitors on the magical land of Sedona, Saith has accumulated much experience performing live, both in solo and in band settings in numerous kinds of venues all over the country and to all different audiences with overwhelming positive response. He took classes online at Berklee College Of Music to learn song production, engineering, and music business.
Saith has also produced with industry veterans such as Gardner Cole, Michael Lattanzi, Tim Pierce, and Ramy Antoun. Saith landed his first record deal in 2005 which generated his Alternative Pop Rock album, Step Outside, which was released the summer of 2008. After leaving that record label in 2009, Saith entered the Northern Arizona Singer/Songwriter Competition and won 1st place and has since recorded his new single “Now’s The Time” with Michael Lattanzi. This song took home first prize in the 2010 eSongwriter Competition.
3:30 p.m.: Alex Ogburn (Sedona, AZ)
Alex Ogburn is from Birmingham, Ala., and comes to Sedona with 20 plus years performing and writing experience. Well versed in a variety of styles, he takes a song and makes it his own with heartfelt sincerity.
Winner of the 2008 APPLAZ Northern Arizona Singer/Songwriter Competition and a local favorite of the Sedona music scene, Ogburn performs regularly throughout the Southwest. He is currently writing and co-producing his up upcoming CD, “Satellite Shoes,” a blend of blues and ballads written in a storyline fashion.
“It’s an offering of my own little acoustic-based rock opera”, Alex explains. “I’m using tunes I’ve had in the mix for a while and adding new ones to paint a picture of a performing songwriter’s life.
In the process I find myself venturing out from conventional songwriting, allowing more creative room to play with and see what happens.”
4:30 p.m.: Redland (Sedona, AZ)
In 2005, a year before Random Acts of Coffee’s closing, an interesting friendship began. One with unrecognized future. One with melodic potential equaling that of Simon & Garfunkel, Bread, or Stills & Nash. A solo singer-songwriter collided with a textured vocalist only to begin a friendship, but to move forward into a project. A workshop of song writing. Therapy with a new approach; discovery of a magical chemistry only to inspire revised life. Both parties in transition encouraged originality, and invited reflection and release.
For vocalist Nathan Trujillo, multiple years of travel and exposure ran into a hiatus away from the big city and struggle. His strong need for creative expression has led him on a soul searching journey to write and connect with people with like minds. “Finding the right band or musician to work with is like finding the right relationship,” Trujillo said. “There has to be this intangible but unmistakable connection that you can’t explain, but it’s there. And through this, great music is created. I am lucky to say that I have made this connection but only a few times in my life, so when it happens, it’s golden, and it must be cherished and nurtured.”
Practically born playing an instrument and singing, Jason Kevin Moehlman has felt called to invent himself through music. Performing with family throughout his childhood, and later searching for himself through writing songs, he now continues forward anticipating success.
“Redland allows me to venture deep into a friendship by conjoining it with my passion,” Jason Kevin said. “I see Nathan and I surrounded with what we both love; the sounds of our dreams, and a duality unmatched.” After exploration of floating creativity, Jason land on continuum.
After years of exploring compatibility, the obvious revealed; Nathan and Jason started to take things seriously. Putting together projects alongside the band only encouraged the duet. Now, with joint effort they write music. “Any way that we can do what we love together is what it’s all about. What’s more fun than that?” Now after recording an album and pushing toward the same goals together, Redland is ready to impress. A name birthed out of presence and pure drive, Redland brings past and present to the stage. Join them in their friendship, join them on the journey.
5:30 p.m.: TKLB? (Tempe, AZ)
TKLB? is from the future. You are defenseless against our superior minds and our advanced weaponry. Surrender yourselves!
TKLB? is a psychedelic dub step duo from Tempe, comprised of Kalen Lander and DJ Stowner.
6:30 p.m.: A Life of Science (Phoenix, AZ)
A Life of Science is anything but a standard band concept. Based on sonic experience and gripping storytelling, their 3 album concept series, produced by Larry Elyea (Jimmy Eat World, Eyes Set to Kill), takes the listener on an unforgettable journey through the subconscious in a future setting, as told by the man responsible for the apocalypse as he sinks to his death. This multimedia project takes the following forms.
A Life of Science is a Phoenix-based electronic rock band known for their diverse and intricate style, as well as their concept-based multimedia album, The Apneist, which was released in 2009.
The band was formed in 2006 by vocalist James Keenan and guitarist Zakk Geist. They incorporate various influences including progressive rock, hardcore, electronica, postpunk and pop rock into their sound.
A Life of Science began in the summer of 2006 when longtime friends Keenan (vocals/bass/synth) and Geist (guitar/screams/programming) found themselves back in their hometown of Phoenix, after moving away for college.
They recruited Keenan’s friend from Northern Arizona University, Scott Passamonte, to play guitar. The three then auditioned drummer Angel Garcia to complete the band.
In the fall of 2007, A Life of Science self-released a self-produced EP, consisting of four songs, called the A Life of Science EP. The EP was tracked at the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences in Mesa, Arizona, and at the band’s home studio in Phoenix.
A Life of Science recorded The Apneist, a concept album, in the summer of 2007 with producer Elyea, who described the album as “One of the most challenging and enjoyable records I’ve done to date. This record is a rollercoaster ride into uncharted territories of sonics and emotion.” The band also released their debut comic book, The Apneist Issue #0, in Fall 2009 at the Baltimore Comic Con. Additional comic books, a film, a novel, and more projects, based on the story of The Apneist, are currently in production. In March 2011, A Life of Science returned to the studio and recorded the second and third albums of the trilogy. Their lineup this time around consisted of only Keenan and Passomonte, with help from drummer Ben Anderson (Digital Summer, Comfort for Change).
7:30 p.m.: Snake! Snake! Snakes! (Phoenix, AZ)
From the start of City On Fire, the first track on the self-titled EP by Phoenix based Snake! Snake! Snakes! you hear that the new act has started with a deeply mature sound. The songs are epic, moving and captivating. The swirling lush guitar sounds, dramatic string arrangements and moody vocals draw comparisons to Arcade Fire, Joy Division and Interpol. For the last year Snakes! have been playing around Downtown Phoenix’s dynamic Art scene playing art galleries, bars, and clubs perfecting their sound and solidifying a line up. The year of tinkering and obsessing over sounds has lead to a stunning debut.
The EP was produced by Bob Hoag at Flying Blanket Recording in Mesa AZ. Bob is best known for producing records for The Format, Dear and The Headlights, and Joel Plaskett as well as playing drums in The Love Me Nots, The Go Reflex and The Ataris. The EP is coming out as one of the first releases by the new alliance between Arizona labels Common Wall Media and Modern Art Recordings. The Snakes! plan to begin touring to support the EP in the fall.
The EP so far has been doing a great job Charting #23 on CMJ’s top 200.
8:30 p.m.: Red Light Cameras (Albuquerque, NM)
Red Light Cameras is a hot four-piece ϟIndieϟGarageϟPopϟ outfit from Albuquerque, N.M., that has quickly become the Southwest’s must-see-band with their energetic live shows.
The band is fronted by musical theatre actress Amanda Machon, and her powerhouse voice has been described as “what Tina Turner and Janis Joplin would have produced if they ever had a kid together.” (Israel Morales—examiner.com)
With Chris Walsh on guitar and husband & wife duo Barney & Kirsten Lopez on bass and drums, everyone agrees Red Light Cameras are “an aural breath of fresh air.” (Dan MacIntosh—Indie Music Reviewer Magazine)
Red Light Cameras’ groovy beats, quirky lyrics & catchy melodies have quickly caught the attention of local and international audiences. They are “currently taking the city by storm” (Charlie Cargo—Local IQ). When listening to Red Light Cameras you will hear sounds that are inspired by all styles of American music. “There’s much more going on here than noisy rock & roll. For example, “Got My Doubts” is a song balanced upon acoustic guitar and harmonica, while “Home” is a pretty, country-leaning track with slide guitar.” (Dan MacIntosh—Indie Music Reviewer Magazine) But don’t be fooled. Red Light Cameras can rock hard, too. With tracks like “Why” & “Convertible” it’s easy to see that this band “is built for speed.” (Dan MacIntosh—Indie Music Reviewer Magazine)
Red Light Cameras are known for their live shows because they obviously rock hard. As a group of accomplished performance artists, aside from the band, they are always guaranteed to put on an entertaining show.
9:30 p.m.: Slam poet Ryan Brown, a member of the the 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012 Flagstaff National Poetry Slam Teams, and 2008 National Poetry Slam semi-finalist, (Flagstaff, AZ)
Born twenty-three years ago in Phoenix, Arizona, Ryan Brown has been writing and performing poetry in Northern Arizona for nearly five years.
After discovering Flagstaff’s FlagSlam in 2007, Brown began writing poetry with a small group of like-minded young people, eventually taking over as the slam’s Slammaster in the fall of 2008. That year, the Flagstaff poetry scene saw features such as Gypsee Yo and Andrea Gibson hit Flagstaff stages for the first time, reinvigorating a slam community that pulled poets from Northern Arizona University, Sedona, and Phoenix to create one of the largest consistent poetry slams in Arizona.
After slamming at his first National Poetry Slam in 2008, Brown began to focus his writing more on the ideals of community, social networking, and the ever-cliché but always boundless topics of love, intimate relationships, and human connection.
Teaming up with Frank O’Brien on Flagstaff nationals teams in 2008, 2009, and 2010, Brown worked on herb and coffee farms in Hawaii in late 2010, eventually coming back to NAU to get an English degree with the class of 2012. The
FlagSlam took place at Sundara Boutique for the 2011-12 season, thriving in an all-ages scene that draws upwards of 75 people on a schoolnight, poets flocking from miles away.
Currently the Flagstaff Slammaster, Brown’s passion for poetry and poetic expression can be rivaled by his love of baseball, skateboarding, and patio conversations with a few good friends, or a couple of brothers.
He cites John Cartier, Frank O’Brien, Jessica Guadarrama, Aaron Johnson, and Josh Wiss as his biggest influences, both in poetry and in life, and would like to give a shout-out to his pug-terrier Pip, whom he passed on to another family before taking off to Hawaii.
9:45 p.m.: Dirty Lingo (Phoenix, AZ)
The deep and vivid manifestation of life, love, darkness, hostility, disapproval, and addictions, as witnessed and experienced by singer-songwriter and guitarist Mike Chapman, bassist and harmonizing vocalist John Hayden,
and drummer Adam Wolin.
Employing emotion filled lyrics that express the feelings of the band members, along with a large variety of melodies and hooks, a diverse audience is easily able to connect with Dirty Lingo.
Dirty Lingo has sold thousands of their original albums: “Pleasant By Being Rude” and “Junk Food Junkies”, they have developed an extensive fan base, play multiple shows per week, and are known throughout the Southwest. Dirty Lingo is also in the process of completing the recording of their third album
10:45 p.m.: Banana Gun (Phoenix, AZ)
Banana Gun’s wants to reach the largest audience possible. They are available for tours, festivals, and regional shows. Banana Gun is a hardworking, enthusiastic group, that performs with great energy. Regardless of the crowd or venue, people will dance to Banana Gun.
“Banana Gun’s live show is enriching and rewarding. Their gigs are pretty amazing and what’s more, the members of Banana Gun seem to have an amazing time doing what they do best, which is getting people dancing to their eclectic musical stylings.” – Mitchell L Hillman Journalist for Java Magazine, July 2012
Banana Gun has a diverse sound ranging from 70s rock, bluegrass, funk and R&B, which reaches a broad audience that loves to dance and sing along with the music.
Banana Gun is:
Ian Breslin – drums
Kevin Loyd – vocals and guitar
Nic Dehaan – guitar and vocals
Ross Troost – bass
Kyle Scarborough – sax and vocals
11:45 p.m.: Dry River Yacht Club (Tempe, AZ)
The last thing one would think of when it comes to Arizona would be yacht clubs.
Yet in the heart of the Valley of the Sun, the dry riverbed of the Salt River winds its way through the city.
If you follow it east straight to the waters of Tempe Town Lake, a yacht club most surely exists: a Dry River Yacht Club. Always alive and rocking, playing Gypsy western folk music, no amplification allowed.
A classical combination of bassoon, violin, tuba, accordion, and bass clarinet swirls through the air to get even the driest of glands to pour sweat and the most stubborn of booties to shake.
Garnet twirls and sings as if a gypsy transported from the 18th century, and Henri bangs on any percussion he can find: woodblocks, chimes, shakers, propane tanks – you name it – to keep the music’s heart beating.
Dry River Yacht Club compares stylistically to Sufjan Stevens, St. Vincent, and the Dresden Dolls, and vocally to Zooey Deschanel, Bjork, and Ani DiFranco.
There’s always soul-stirring, transcendental music happening at the Dry River Yacht Club. Acoustic symphony rock for a pirate’s rusty yacht … and they want you aboard.
12:30 p.m.: DJ Mikey Pro (Phoenix, AZ)
Mikey Pro has many musical talents and has been playing involved in music for over 13 years. His electropop band that he sings for, La La Lust has played out to thousands and He has DJ’d the most notable dance parties in Phoenix.
With a mix of Indie/Dance Music and Heavy Electro, Mikey Pro’s DJ set’s are always a party.
“Local DJs like … Mikey Pro … are all bringing their own eccentric touches to the Valley’s electro-music scene. Each DJ concocts their own infusion of mash-ups, electro, techno, funk and new-wave disco.
“The purpose is to make Arizona dance, and they generally succeed. This new arena for growth within the EDM community only increases with time.
“More and more events are beginning to pop up with the electronic community as the primary focus.
“The underground community of disc jockeys spreads its musical resilience to an eager audience.” – by Gabby Marshall – “Live and Otherwise: The Beat Goes On” in State Press Magazine.
@ Szechuan Martini Bar
Noon p.m.: KID ZONE
1:00 p.m.: Treasurefruit (Phoenix, AZ)
Phoenix-based desert rock trio Treasurefruit trails through the
theater of the mind like a peyote trip, stirring swing, western and
blues motifs in a sultry, female-fronted elixir.
Fresh and folky, swing and sultry songstress Anamieke hooked up with Matt Ventre, formerly of the 2Tone Lizard Kings and then swooped up Ehren and Adam from the recently disbanded Quixote.
Treasurefruit launched in the Spring of 2011 and have been playing shows around the valley ever since.
2:00 p.m.: South Mountain Witness (Phoenix, AZ)
3:00 p.m.: Japhy’s Descent (Tempe, AZ)
Japhy’s Descent is about planting seeds to watch our community grow.
Music has brought us & those around us so much joy, that we wish to share that love with the world around us. Brian, Martin, James & Travis wish to invite you to take the plunge into the wonderful world around you. Listen to music, laugh, play, love, share, experience the awe around you by simply being apart of it. Remember… “You can’t fall off a mountain”.
4:00 p.m.: Doctor Bones (Tempe, AZ)
Doctor Bones is an avant-pop mixture of new wave and punk, with an ear for dynamic tension, emotional swells, and dance inducing beats. Doctor Bones is a culmination of the pop lessons learned from The Cars, Talking Heads, Dead Kennedys, Joy Division, and Andy Kaufman.
A live show by Doctor Bones is an impassioned, energetic, and visually stimulating experience. Vocalist, Anthony Fama, puts him
self into a trance-like state, dancing, convulsing, and writhing while bassist, Jess Pruitt, and guitarist, Chad Stark engage the audience with a blur of long hair, beards and guitars. All the while vocalist/keyboardist/violinist, Hannah Bones serenades you with painful, sweet melodies over tight, dynamic grooves laid down by frenetic drummer Mike Vigil.
A Doctor Bones show ends with Anthony in a semi-conscious heap amongst the crowd, with everyone in the band heaving and sweating, drained of strength… the crowd wanting more and Doctor Bones slowly rising to give them one last dance.
Doctor Bones Is Jess Pruitt, Mike Vigil, Anthony Fama, Hannah Bones, and Chad Stark. They stopped doing a whole lot of other things so they could do awesome things for you. Because they love you.
5:00 p.m.: 4th annual HAIKU DEATH MATCH
What is haiku?
Haiku (俳句) is a form of Japanese poetry consisting of 17 syllables in three metrical phrases of 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables.
Japanese haiku typically contain a kigo, or seasonal reference, and a kireji or verbal caesura. In Japanese, haiku are traditionally printed in a single vertical line, while haiku in English usually appear in three lines, to parallel the three metrical phrases of Japanese haiku.
What is slam haiku?
Slam haiku used in a Haiku Death Match is far simpler: Use of three or fewer lines of 17 syllables. Slam haiku can be anything from a single 17-syllable line or simply 17 words.
What are the Haiku Death Match rules?
- Titles: Haikusters can read their haiku titles before they read the haiku. (This gives the haikusters technically more syllables to put the haiku in context, but the haiku itself must still be only 17 syllables. While this is not “pure” Haiku Death Match rules, it’s much more fun for the audience.
- Originality: Poets must be the sole authors of the haiku they use in competition. Plagiarized haiku are grounds for disqualification. We all love Matsuo Bashō, but he’s 300 years too dead to compete.
- On-page or memorized?: Poets can read from the page, book, journal, notepad, etc.
- Preparation: Poets can have haiku written beforehand or write them in their head while at the mic. As long as the haiku are 17 syllables, we don’t care how, when or from where the haiku originates.
- Rounds: Will be determined by the number of haikusters who sign up to compete.
- Quantity of haiku needed: Depends on the number of rounds. 30 haiku will likely be enough for poets who push rounds to the last haiku needed and go all the rounds, but 50 to 100 gives haikusters enough material to be flexible in competition. Most veteran haikusters have several hundred to compete with.
- Censorship: Adult themes and language are acceptable. There may be children present so you may have to deal with their parents afterward, but that’s your call.
- Register early: E-mail Christopher Fox Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org.
6:00 p.m.: Bhangra Fusion Dance
Bhangra Fusion Dance presented by Harmonic Heart supports your empowerment of self-love while uniting cultures and people from all walks of life.
Bhangra is a folk dance from Punjab, India, that was created by farmers as a way to celebrate the harvest season. Because of the vast dance experience Monica O Duarte has in learning various dance forms throughout her life, she teach a fusion of bhangra and other forms of dances such as salsa, cumbia, merengue, cha cha, hip-hop, free form dance and more. Her intention is to use this form of dance to support you in healing your body, mind and spirit. To help you get in touch with your feelings, your body and the messages it sends you everyday. To bring lots of joy into your life and to create a healthy community with people.
6:15 p.m.: Amitabha (Sedona, AZ)
Amitabah (Ah Mee Tah Bah) ~ is a powerhouse WorldBeat music group based out of Sedona.
This unique ensemble performs mostly original music and has placed its focus on developing it’s own signature sound, bringing together spiritually conscious messages with a WorldBeat blend of tribal rhythm, reggae, alternative, spoken word, trance, dance and free style improvisation that wraps you in a magic all its own!
Amitabah performs at concerts, parties, New Age festivals, peace festivals, weddings, corporate events and special events.
The band includes of seven well-known local musicians who represent a variety of cultures, backgrounds and influences speaking the global language of music.
The music is a compilation of rhythms and styles, each song draws the audience in with a unique groove as Amitabah’s full sound of percussion, upbeat rhythms and lyrics moves the mind and the body.
Hypnotic grooves and soulful lyrics takes you to the ceiling and beyond… a magical time of dancing and fun, delivering you safely back to your seat at the end of each performance.
7:00 p.m.: Slam poet The Klute, a member of the 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2006 Mesa National Poetry Slam Teams, the 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012 Phoenix National Poetry Slam Team, a two-time National Poetry Slam semi-finalist, and winner of the 2010 GumptionFest Haiku Death Match (Phoenix, AZ)
The Klute, aka Bernard Schober, competed at the National Poetry Slam six times, for the Mesa Slam Team in 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2006, and the Phoenix Slam Slam Team in 2008 and 2009, 2010 and 2012. He has led two of those teams to the NPS semi-final stage, ranking him among the best of the best nationwide. He was also the Mesa Grand Slam champion in 2005 and 2010.
Standing more than 6 feet tall and always bedecked in
a black trench coat, the Klute is hard to miss. When
poetry escapes his lips at full blast, he’s hard not to hear.
In an era when most artists and poets shy away from confronting politics, the Klute stands apart.
He has earned a reputation for in-your-face political commentary and over-the-top humor targeting Neo-Conservative politicians, crass laissez-faire commercialism and Goth subculture.
Originally from south Florida, The Klute writes almost exclusively in free verse, making his poetry conversational and relevant to even those who see poetry as something to avoid.
Standing more than 6 feet tall and always bedecked in a black trench coat, the Klute is hard to miss. When poetry escapes his lips at full blast, he’s hard not to hear.
The Klute has released three poetry chapbooks, “Escape Velocity,” “Look at What America Has Done to Me” and “My American Journey,” which prompted a cease and desist order from the attorneys of former Secretary of State Colin Powell.
“Despite the heat, [The Klute] wears a black trench coat almost everywhere he goes and if the setting permits, he’ll blast through enough slanderous commentary to make Andrew Dice Clay blush,” according to Phoenix 944 Magazine. “Today, his addiction for getting in front of the microphone and spitting out everything from a Dick Cheney haiku to a long-winded prose on race car driving to the late Hunter S. Thompson is as strong as his love for vodka and absinthe. If anyone’s seen ‘The Klute’ in action, they’d know it. If they haven’t, they must.”
7:15 p.m.: The Wiley One (Phoenix, AZ)
8:00 p.m.: White Lotus Belly Dance
8:15 p.m.: decker. (Sedona, AZ)
But he’s doing his best to change that.
decker. has self-released 3 albums off of his Arizona indie-folk label Mescal Porch Records, all while touring the western portion of the country incessantly. He and his band are presently working on their fourth, self-titled album “decker.” due for release this November.
decker. crafts songs which find profundity in their naked sincerity. Not quite rock, not quite folk, his acoustic-based psychedelic Americana balladry draws upon a variety of influences; from Leonard Cohen to Tom Waits, from Cat Power to PJ Harvey. Yet in the end, his music is unique and uniquely him, and that is his offering.
“…once again brilliant soul-searching music that explores the conflicts of his own mind and heart in a tight Americana format that defies genre pigeonholing.” – Mitchell Hillman, Java Magazine
Brandon Decker, the frontman of decker., is also GumptionFest’s music coordinator.
9:15 p.m.: Whiskerman (San Francisco, CA)
Frankenstein fusion of a simple folk backbone, rich classical core, wide-streching art-rock limbs and big jazz feet.
The youngest of three brothers and the son of two musicians, Graham Patzner didn’t have much choice. Starting on piano at age five and then moving on to violin, trumpet and guitar, the Whiskerman singer and front-man has cultivated a unique sound that is hard to pinpoint. His voice ranges from smoky to soaring, while his songs span a wide array of moods and genres, yet always remain soulful.
Behind him is a tight band that includes brother Lewis Patzner (Judgement Day, Devotionals) on cello, Will Lawrence on bass, Nick Cobbett on drums, and Charles Lloyd (Cash Pony) on guitar and sitar.
Collectively they form Whiskerman, and they are quickly becoming a force in the San Francisco Bay Area.
@ Heart of Sedona Coffeehouse
Noon: Brandi Jax
12:45 p.m.: Jay Allan (Sedona, AZ)
1:30 p.m.: Christian Jerman (Sedona, AZ)
2:15 p.m.: JV (Sedona, AZ)
3:00 p.m.: Phillip Robbins (Sedona, AZ)
3:45 p.m.: Bryant Vazquez (Flagstaff, AZ)
“No one has more heart than Bryant Vazquez and that’s why he is our [Yab Yum Music and Arts] Spirit Award winner this year . There are many narcissistic performers out there that feign humility. There are even more that make music for some reason other than making music. Bryant’s authenticity shines through in every performance. His unassuming nature and sincere commitment to music for the sake of music translates to heartfelt performances of inspired songs. Keep an eye on this one.”
By Mike McQuillian, senior staff writer of Yab Yum Music and Arts: “”Longing is defined as ‘strong, persistent desire or craving, especially for something unattainable or distant.’ But we don’t need a dictionary to tell us this. We’ve all felt longing at one time or another… for relief from pain, or a woman, or maybe a new life all together.
“Music can help alleviate longing. The silly bounce of your favorite 80s jam can make things seem a bit brighter.
“But sometimes we don’t want brighter. We just want to feel understood. Bryant Vazquez gets this. On Conscious, with a Thousand Sleepy Thoughts Untamed, his 2010 LP, Vazquez has created an album perfect for anyone who wants what they can’t have and needs some empathy.
“It’s easy to become wary of singer-songwriters with guitars. After so many musicians have tried (and failed) to work their love of Bob Dylan or Elliot Smith into their tunes, one becomes nervous about giving a new songwriter a chance. Thankfully, Vazquez works his love of songwriters past into his songs without sounding derivative.”
4:30 p.m.: Them Savages (Flagstaff, AZ)
“Them Savages is a two-piece band from Flagstaff that formed in July of 2009. Guitarist Joshua Be plays catchy riffs on his acoustic guitar while stomping the grounds of his native land. Throwing in vocals from time to time, Be’s energy is enough to entertain any crowd of any age.
“Coinciding vocalist Ben Velazco proves simplicity is key. While Velazco shouts his poetic tales, he keeps the beat with a floor tomb, shakers and a tambourine. No bass, no full drum set — just two friends making music bands like The Black Keys would be proud of.
“Them Savage’s album is raw and honest. Written during a summer spent in Flagstaff, the songs have the feel of a group of friends huddled around a campfire enjoying a cool summer evening. The lyrics are deep but relatable, and the music is simple, unlike a lot of current trends. The album is soaked with talent, and its recordings are impressive for its homemade creation, done by recording engineer Ryan Burian. Be said Them Savages’ musical influence stems from a wide variety of sources.” - Kate “The Mistake” Hinojosa, FlagLive
5:15 p.m.: Chimney Choir (Denver, CO)
“The trio has continued to refine its eccentric brand of Americana into something truly original. Borrowing from the musicians’ diverse backgrounds, and incorporating some experimental and progressive influences, Chimney Choir has become a band to watch in Denver.
“In fact, the best way to experience the threesome’s unique blend of traditional and out-there music is live, when traditional instruments are combined with suitcases, trash cans and even a ladder to create a sonic and visual performance unlike most you’ll see.” – Eryc Eyl, Denver Post
Kevin Larkin – mandolin, samples, percussion, harmonica, accordion, vocals
Kris Drickey – banjo, keyboards, guitar, percussion, vocals
David Rynhart – guitar, flute, piano, vocals