TVD Live Shots: Telluride Bluegrass Festival, 6/21

TELLURIDE, CO | 2:25PM: It’s not a visit to Telluride without exploring a bit, so today is devoted to just that. Good thing I’m able to stream the Koto Community Radio live feed from TBF. That station is the best for real! Molly Tuttle is on the Telluride Bluegrass Festival stage right now and sounds even more impressive than she looks on paper: she was was the first woman to win the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Guitar Player of the Year award in 2017 (and then won it again in 2018!). I grab a late lunch at a local staple: the Grilled Cheese a la cart. The brie and apricot is as delicious as I remember.

3:15PM: The Telluride farmers’ market is a solid one. Bountiful flower bouquets, local artisans, $20 tubs of goat cheese, and simply gorgeous looking produce are just a few of the sights.

4:05PM: I’m en route to Mountain Village courtesy of Telluride’s free gondola and the view is breathtaking—literally. At 10,535 feet elevation, I’m short of breath.

5:45PM: Walking in to TBF I hear the end of the Tim O’Brien Band. I also discover that the dumpling stand is delicious.

7:00PM: The Lake Street Dive crowd is rowdy. People are hooting and hollering and a few are stumbling in to one another. “It’s witching hour!” I hear a man exclaim to his friend.

7:52PM: Lake Street Dive’s set focuses on their hits but also included several fun covers ranging from Shania Twain to The Staples Singers. They end strongly with Hall and Oates’ “Rich Girl.”

9:07PM: As usual Béla Fleck is weird, trippy, mesmerizing. His Flecktones are equally captivating—especially brothers Victor and Roy Wooten. I lay back in the grass, look up at the blanket of stars and let the music take me to outer space.

11:03PM: “This is our favorite place to play music on the planet,” Paul Hoffman of Greensky Bluegrass tells the equally ecstatic crowd. It’s a particularly poignant evening for the band, he explains, “because more than 10 years ago we won the Telluride Band Competition.” Now as headliners, “it feels like the first time.”

11:53PM: Greensky’s light show is the best of the weekend. It’s jamband-esque and even as I sit back at my rental, the lights and music dance across the mountain skyline, offering a lovely conclusion to day two.

LAKE STREET DRIVE

BELA FLECK AND THE FLECKTONES

GREENSKY BLUEGRASS

TELLURIDE BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL, FRIDAY, JUNE 20, 2019

TELLURIDE, COLORADO

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