Opera House: Zoso & Orgone, 2/7 & 2/8
Telluride’s Sheridan Arts Foundation presents Zoso, The Ultimate Led Zeppelin Experience, live at the Sheridan Opera House on Thursday, February 7. ORGŌNE is live on Friday, February 8, 2019.
Tickets are $25 general admission on the floor; $35 reserved seats in the balcony for both shows. (A $5 ticketing fee is charged at all ticket outlets.) Tickets are for sale online at www.SheridanOperaHouse.com or by calling 970.728.6363 ext. 5. Donations to the Theater Seat Fundraising Campaign can also be made at www.SheridanOperaHouse.com.
During the months of February and March, the Sheridan Arts Foundation will take $1 from every ticket purchase to put toward its Theater Seat Purchasing Campaign. Despite routine maintenance the old Sheridan Opera House theater seats are no longer useable, so the Opera House is in the process of ordering replicas of the original 1913 seats. If the needed $99,656 to cover the cost of the chairs can be raised, the Opera House will have them installed by May 2019. To date, $24,000 is already in the bank. The $1 per ticket in the months of February and March will go directly to paying for the seats.
Scroll down for a preview of what’s in store.
ZOSO- The Ultimate Led Zeppelin Experience
Zoso – The Ultimate Led Zeppelin Experience formed in 1995 to perform the most accurate and compelling Led Zeppelin live show since the real thing. For Zoso, it is much more than just being a tribute band. It is about touching a golden era in music. Zoso embodies Page, Plant, Bonham and Jones in their spirit, tightly wound talent and authenticity.
Each band member has been carefully selected to portray both the appearance and playing styles of their Led Zeppelin counterparts. Over 18 successful years of touring, they have perfected their art. As one of the longest tenured Zeppelin tributes, Zoso’s 2400 live shows around the world, including a slot at Bonnaroo in 2003, have established them as the most traveled and successful band of its kind in the market.
Zoso’s live shows are not about simply playing the right notes, they are about aura and feeling, harkening back to the unique atmosphere Led Zeppelin created. It is in the way they play: each band member’s mastery of authentic vintage instruments coupled with spot-on vocals, guitar, bass, drums, and keyboards, plus a compelling stage persona and distinct Led Zeppelin sound, recreates the music, magic, and mystery of a Zeppelin concert including astounding visual imagery. The impact is so powerful band members constantly hear from young rockers they were the catalyst behind turning them into new, diehard Zeppelin fans.
The passion, musical ability, showmanship and precise attention to detail earned the band critical acclaim, name recognition and a loyal national following. The Los Angeles Times hailed the group as being “head and shoulders above all other Zeppelin tributes.” The Chicago Sun Times declared Zoso is “the closest to the original of any tribute.”
If you missed Led Zeppelin live in the 70’s or are looking to relive the “Hammer of the Gods” phenomenon, you must experience what the St. Petersburg Times describes as “the most exacting of the Zeppelin tribute bands in existence.”
For nearly 20 years ORGŌNE (a universal life force, pronounced or-gōne) has churned out gritty funk and soul recordings and toured relentlessly across the United States and Europe. Traditionally both the studio and live iterations of the band drew on a tight-knit collective of the West Coast’s finest funk and soul musicians—although founding members Sergio Rios (guitar/engineer) and Dan Hastie (keyboards) have been constant anchors. However, since late 2013, Rios and Hasite have been joined by Dale Jennings (bass), Sam Halterman (drums), and singer/lyricist Adryon de León to form a permanent nucleus.
Establishing a solid core of musicians was instrumental in creating such a cohesive, tight LP like the group’s 2018 release Reasons.
“It allowed us to develop trust and be vulnerable with each other,” says de León.
From the a cappella opening of “All Good Things” to the dance floor filler “Easy Love,” Reasons packs a punch. It’s as if the listener is transported back to those sessions in Joshua Tree, staying up late and jamming with the band. As a producer, Rios shines: “I’ve learned to stop being so precious about every little detail. It’s just art. Sketch your picture and move on.”
That immediacy, a sense of capturing moments, saturates Reasons. Take the second cut, “Hands.”
Rios’ rhythmic guitar figure kicks the tune off, perfectly syncing up with Halterman’s solid boogie beat, dense percussion, and Jennings’ fuzzed-out bass line. The verse brings down the dynamics (tom fills replace that driving beat), but de León’s urgent plea for “less talk, more action” keeps the energy high. The massive chorus drops in after 16 simmering measures and is pure joy. Hastie’s edgy synth line perfectly complements de León’s straightforward command: “Let your hands do the work.”
Trusting one another allowed the band to stretch beyond their traditional influences and summon a completely different set of musical heroes.
Starting in the mid 1990s* ORGŌNE cut their teeth on instrumental pioneers from the late 60s and early 70s like The Meters and Cymande. Alternatively, Reasons looks toward the late 70s and early 80s for its sonic palette. Hastie’s synth lines evoke Bernie Worrell in the Talking Heads and the rest of the rhythm section lays down a foundation built from the likes of Prince, afro-disco icon Kiki Gyan, The Cars, and more.
“It was a conscious choice to have a cohesive tone across the whole album instead of drawing from all types of eras,” Rios says. “It’s almost an interpretation of a memory of the music we all first heard when we were kids.”
Despite the new set of influences, ORGŌNE’s classic analog sound permeates Reasons. The writing sessions in Joshua Tree kick-started the project, but recording at their home base in North Hollywood, Killion Sound, was always the plan.
De León is front and center on Reasons, and she does not disappoint. Whether she’s evoking the deep soulfulness of Chaka Khan on “Hands” or the bedroom sweetness of Minnie Ripperton on “Whisper to Me,” de León’s versatile vocal performance firmly places her in the top echelon of soul singers today. The lyrics on Reasons—pulled from a dark brown leather journal de León has had for years—focus on relationships, self love, and politics. Musing on the 2016 election, de León searches for meaning and power within herself despite the troubled times:
We got fooled by the masterpiece
We’re part of his mastery
I’m blind but I’m seeing things
Looking for the light in me
Reasons is another solid step in a long and storied career.
ORGŌNE’s accolades are too long to list. ORGŌNE’s live show captivates audiences and packs dance floors—whether it’s on sold out headlining tours; sharing the stage with The Roots, Al Green, Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, and Galactic; or appearances at fests like Bonnaroo, New Orleans Jazz Fest, High Sierra, Bear Creek, and Jam Cruise.
The well-traveled band has released albums on Ubiquity, Shanachie, and Colemine Records and served as the studio band on hits like Alicia Keys’ “Teenage Love Affair” and Cee Lo Green’s Grammy-winning “Fool For You.”
Critics like NPR and Jambase don’t shy away from heaping praise on a group with “irresistible funkiness and ability to transcend genre” (LA Weekly).
After so many years together, the reasons to continue recording and touring, to push onward and upward, are abundantly clear to the members of ORGŌNE.
“I want people who’d never thought of this kind of music to be exposed to what we’ve put our hearts, time, tears, and joy into,” states de León. “I hope that we can accompany you on whatever trials you are going through and whatever happiness you find.”
Reasons was the first of a trilogy of albums released in 2018 and early 2019.
The Sheridan Arts Foundation was founded in 1991 as a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization to preserve the historic Sheridan Opera House as an arts and cultural resource for the Telluride community, to bring quality arts and cultural events to Telluride and to provide local and national youth with access and exposure to the arts through education. The Sheridan Arts Foundation is sponsored in part by grants from the Telluride Foundation, CCAASE and Colorado Creative Industry.
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