Opera House: Marley, Montoya & Ellis, No. Mississippi Allstars, 3/6,3/7 & 3/9

Telluride’s Sheridan Arts Foundation presents Stephen Marley live at the historic Sheridan Opera House on Wednesday, March 6, 2019. Doors open at 7 p.m.; show time is 8 p.m. Tickets are $50 general admission standing room on the floor; $60 reserved seats in the balcony.

Coco Montoya and Tinsley Ellis are live at the Opera House on Thursday, March 7, 2019 as part of their Blues Rock Titans Tour. Doors open at 7 p.m.; show time is 8 p.m. Tickets are $30 general admission standing room on the floor; $45 reserved seats in the balcony.

North Mississippi Allstars are live at the Opera House on Saturday, March 9, 2019. Doors open at 8 p.m.; show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $45 general admission standing room on the floor; $60 reserved seats in the balcony.

Tickets and additional event information are available at sheridanoperahouse.com or 970.728.6363 x5. (A $5 ticketing fee is charged at all ticket outlets + another $1 fee which goes directly to Mr. Marley’s Ghetto Youth Foundation for that show only.)

Please scroll down for a taste of the talent in action.

Stephen Marley:

Eight-time GRAMMY-winning musician Stephen “Ragga” Marley comes to the Opera House for an acoustic performance in support of his latest EP One Take: Acoustic Jams.

Marley beautifully deconstructs both his father Bob Marley’s songs (“Small Axe,” “All Day” and “Easy Skanking”) and his own (“Mind Control” and “Revelation Party”) in raw and uninhibited fashion on the EP. This jam session, recorded in Marley’s living room, will come to life on the road and give fans the rare opportunity to digest his melodic hits in an authentic, stripped-down form. In addition to vocals, Marley plays guitar and percussion. He is backed by the rich instrumentation of Javaughn Bond (bass), Ranoy Gordon (guitar), Nicholas Laraque (saxophone and clarinet) and Craig Taylor (bass, drum and percussion).

“When you share songs in their natural form, you hear them differently, so I just followed my spirit in making the choices of what songs fit this acoustic vibe,” Stephen Marley tells Billboard.

Ticket purchasers can upgrade their experience to include a meet & greet for an addition $125 per person.

The meet & greet includes entry to the private reception, songs from an exclusive, unreleased new acoustic EP, a limited-edition Acoustic Tour poster and a commemorative photo with Marley. All funds from the $1 fee at checkout and the meet & greet go to support Marley’s Ghetto Youths Foundation.

The Ghetto Youths Foundation is a non-profit organization created to provide a helping hand — to support the fundamental needs of underprivileged people everywhere. The foundation is dedicated to creating social change and equity, with a focus on providing opportunity to young people, seniors, and families from compromised communities and challenging situations. For more than two decades, the Family of the legendary Bob Marley — artist, prophet, world-renown messenger of peace and equality — have very quietly and humbly created life-changing, innovative, and impactful outreach initiatives across the globe. Today, the Ghetto Youths Foundation proudly carries on this legacy of giving through charitable works and programs. From subsidized meals for seniors in Jamaica, to school scholarships for students in Ethiopia, to helping teen mothers in America, the work of the Foundation is about providing universal opportunity.

Today, Trenchtown, Jamaica, is the site of some of the Ghetto Youths Foundation’s most exceptional work. This unique and vibrant community is known for producing some of the greatest artists in the world, including Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Peter Tosh and Toots Hibbert, yet 100% of the population still lives below the poverty line. Opening its doors in 2019, the Ghetto Youths Foundation Homework Center is the first of its kind in the heart of Trenchtown – a sanctuary and safe haven supporting learning and personal achievement, providing mentorship and opportunity and fostering hope. More than 400 young people each month will have free access to the Homework Center.

“Education is the pathway to freedom, and every child deserves the opportunity to walk down that path,” says Stephen Marley.

Coco Montoya & Tinsley Ellis:

The old Willie Dixon adage, “blues is truth,” perfectly describes the searing, contemporary blues-rock of world-renowned guitarist and vocalist Coco Montoya. Taught by the “Master of the Telecaster,” Albert Collins, but with a hard-edged sound and style all his own, Montoya mixes his forceful, melodic guitar playing and passionate vocals with memorable songs, delivering the blues’ hardest truths.

Montoya earned his status as a master guitarist and soul-powered vocalist through years of paying his dues as a sideman with Collins (first as a drummer) and then with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, before launching his solo career in 1993. Five years of constant touring with Collins and ten years with Mayall turned Montoya into a monster player and dynamic performer, who has released eight solo albums—including three for Alligator between 2000 and 2007—and has played at clubs, concert halls and major festivals all over the world. Guitar Player says Montoya plays “stunning, powerhouse blues with a searing tone, emotional soloing, and energetic, unforced vocals.”

With his latest album Hard Truth, Montoya hits the highway, playing his heart out night after night for fans hungry for the real thing. Still an indefatigable road warrior, he continues to pack clubs and theaters around the world and brings festival audiences to their feet from New York to New Orleans to Chicago to San Francisco.

Across the globe, Montoya has performed in countries including Australia, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Norway, England, Brazil, Argentina, Spain, Ecuador, Italy, Poland, Russia, and the Czech Republic. Vintage Guitar says, “Coco just keeps getting better and better…rockin’ blues with guitar that cuts straight to the heart of the matter. His guitar playing is funky and blistering; it’s perfect. Whatever he plays, he does it with fire and passion rarely seen in this day and age.”

Since his Alligator debut 30 years ago, Southern blues-rock guitar wizard, vocalist and songwriter Tinsley Ellis has become a bona fide worldwide guitar hero. The Chicago Sun-Times says, “It’s hard to overstate the raw power of his music.”

In 2018, Ellis made his triumphant return to Alligator Records with a powerful new album, Winning Hand. Armed with his signature molten licks, melodic riffs and rousing, intense solos, Ellis, as his legions of fans will attest, is among the blues world’s best-loved, hardest working and most well-travelled statesmen. He has performed in all 50 United States as well as in Canada, Western and Eastern Europe, Australia and South America, earning legions of followers with his guitar virtuosity, passionate vocals and memorable original songs.

Also revered as a guitarist’s guitarist, with famous friends including Derek Trucks, Warren Haynes, Oliver Wood, Jonny Lang and members of Widespread Panic, Ellis is called upon to sit in and jam.

“A musician never got famous staying home,” he says.

Born in Atlanta in 1957, Ellis was raised in southern Florida. He discovered the blues through the back door of British Invasion bands like The Yardbirds, The Animals, Cream and The Rolling Stones as well as Southern rockers like The Allman Brothers.

Over the course of his career, Ellis has shared stages with Stevie Ray Vaughan, Otis Rush, Willie Dixon, The Allman Brothers, Leon Russell, Son Seals, Koko Taylor, Albert Collins and many others. Whether he’s on stage with his own band or jamming with artists like Buddy Guy, the Tedeschi Trucks Band, Gov’t Mule or Widespread Panic, the man always plays with grit, soul and unbridled passion. Back home on Alligator Records with his new album and a massive live tour in the works, Tinsley Ellis is ready to prove again that whenever he picks up a guitar, he’s playing with a winning hand.

The music continues with an AfterSHOW in the SHOW Bar with Space Between the Shadows.

An acoustic, electronic duo from Durango, Colorado, Space Between the Shadows blends soulful folk and digital sounds to share the interconnectivity of the human experience. The AfterSHOW is free and open to the public with ticket purchasers for Coco Montoya and Tinsley Ellis receiving priority entrance.


North Mississippi Allstars:


North Mississippi Allstars are back promoting their 2017 album Prayer for Peace.

Founded in 1996 by brothers Luther (guitar and vocals) and Cody Dickinson (drums, piano, synth bass, programming and vocals), the now venerable band are entering their third decade with perhaps the most vital album of their career.

Recorded in studios across America during North Mississippi Allstars’ 2016 tour, Prayer for Peace sees the Dickinsons weaving their bred-to-the-bone musical sensibility with unstoppable energy, rhythmic reinvention, and a potent message of positivity, family, and hope. As ever, songs like R.L. Burnside’s “Long Haired Doney” and the impassioned title track pay homage to the country blues legacy while simultaneously pushing it into contemporary relevance with fatback funk, electronic innovation, slippery soul, and pure unadulterated rock ‘n’ roll.

“This is a very exciting time for North Mississippi Allstars,” Cody says. “There’s been this explosion of creativity lately and it’s encouraging that for a band who has been around for twenty years now, our music is as vital and fresh as ever. It’s like the opposite of burnout — I can’t explain why but it feels totally brand new again.”

“The blues is not children’s music,” Luther says. “We get better at it, the older we get. We’re so fortunate to be able to do it.”

Prayer for Peace continues the burst of inspiration begun with 2013’s Earth-shaking World Boogie is Coming. That album, the band’s seventh studio recording, proved the planetary sensation its title promised, with The Guardian simply declaring it the North Mississippi Allstars’ “best yet.”

Though they had been making music together all their lives, World Boogie is Coming saw the Dickinsons advance as a true artistic partnership, striking a wholly democratic balance between Luther’s raw, organic aesthetic and Cody’s passion for electronics and programming. The album was followed by a remarkable run of extracurricular efforts, including solo projects, collaborations, soundtrack contributions, and documentary film production. 

Prayer for Peace now affirms North Mississippi Allstars’ own unique place in the American musical tradition, simultaneously master curators, expert revivalists, and forward-thinking pioneers.

“Now it’s time to hit the road,” Luther Dickinson says. “Get to work and spread the word. We recorded this one in the spirit of our twentieth anniversary. Now we’re looking towards our twenty-fifth. Twenty years is alright but twenty-five is monumental.”

“This is a new beginning for North Mississippi Allstars,” says Cody Dickinson. “This revitalizing cascade of creativity and explosion of music, it’s just been incredible. And I feel like we’re just getting started. There’s a long beautiful road ahead of us. We’re only just now hitting our stride.”

The music continues with an AfterSHOW in the SHOW Bar with AJ Fullerton.

Raised as an only child in the mountains of rural Western Colorado, Fullerton was brought up surrounded by numerous styles of music including rock, folk, bluegrass, roots and blues. His biggest musical influences ended up being found in his parents’ collection of classic rock & blues records.

Playing solo, and in local bands throughout his mid-teens, by age 19 Fullerton was playing full-time supporting his rapidly developing solo career. His style of playing falls somewhere between the finger picking and slide of country roots music and the groove-based, uptempo sensibilities of blues and rock & roll.

Fullerton has played such events as the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN., the Telluride Blues & Brews Festival, the Clarksdale Juke Joint Festival, Bohemian Nights New West Fest, and The Durango Blues Train. Playing on average 200-250 shows each year, Fullerton is often hailed as “The Real Deal” and is frequently described as one of the hardest working young musicians on the scene.

The AfterSHOW is free and open to the public with ticket purchasers for North Mississippi Allstars receiving priority entrance.

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 Industries.

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