For its annual end-of-year toast to the end of one year and a an excited bear hug of the year ahead, the Sweetwater Music Hall is welcoming in Leftover Salmon, a widely renowned band that has stuck around for 30 years and has left a legacy during that time. It marks them as a truly special, once-in-lifetime type band.
Few have done all that and had as much fun as Leftover Salmon. Since their earliest days as a forward thinking, progressive bluegrass band who had the guts to add drums to the mix and who was unafraid to stir in any number of highly combustible styles into their ever evolving sound, to their role as a pioneer of the modern jam band scene, to their current status as elder-statesmen of the scene who cast a huge influential shadow over every festival they play, Leftover Salmon has been a crucial link in keeping alive the traditional music of the past while at the same time pushing that sound forward with their own weirdly, unique style.
They’re playing three nights at the Sweetwater – Dec. 29-31, with special guests like David Nelson and Maria Muldaur.
In their fourth decade as a band, Leftover Salmon continues to create new music in the studio, including the most recent release Brand New Good Old Days. The latest album shows that Leftover Salmon is still proving it possible to recreate themselves without changing who they are.
The band now features a lineup that has been together longer than any other in Salmon history and is one of the strongest the legendary band has ever assembled. Built around the core of founding members Drew Emmitt and Vince Herman, the band is now powered by banjo-wiz Andy Thorn, and driven by the steady rhythm section of bassist Greg Garrison, drummer Alwyn Robinson, and dobro player & keyboardist Jay Starling.
The current lineup is continuing the long, storied history of Salmon which found them first emerging from the progressive bluegrass world and coming of age as one the original jam bands, before rising to become architects of what has become known as Jamgrass and helping to create a landscape where bands schooled in the traditional rules of bluegrass can break free of those bonds through nontraditional instrumentation and an innate ability to push songs in new psychedelic directions live. Salmon is a band who for more than thirty years has never stood still; they are constantly changing, evolving, and inspiring. If someone wanted to understand what Americana music is they could do no better than to go to a Leftover Salmon show, where they effortlessly glide from a bluegrass number born on the front porch, to the down-and-dirty Cajun swamps with a stop on Bourbon Street in New Orleans, to the hallowed halls of the Ryman in Nashville, before firing one up in the mountains of Colorado.