[click "Play" to listen to Tim O'Brien's conversation with Susan]
Telluride is on a first-name basis Tim O’Brien. He’s been here for so many Telluride Bluegrass Festivals, so many nights at the Sheridan Opera House as well. We all know by now, Tim O’Brien is an entire rhythm section unto himself. And a bandleader, songwriter, vocalist and mentor to boot. We know Tim’s sound by heart, a hybrid of country, folk, bluegrass and swing often described simply as “Americana.” Music with a comfortable, comforting old slipper feel. But with Tim as the filter, everything old comes out new again.
The long arm of Tim should be in evidence at the 37th annual gathering of Festivarians: He (along with Bluegrass regular Bryan Sutton) plays on Nora Jane Struthers’ eponymous debut album, and Nora Jane is a contender both in the Troubadour and Band contests. The Dixie Chicks recorded Tim’s songs and two of them are in town, but in new guise: Marty Maguire and Emily Robinson are now the Court Yard Hounds. And Sarah Jarosz, who opens 2010 Telluride Bluegrass Festival Thursday morning, 11:30 a.m., is a featured vocalist on Tim’s latest release Chicken & Egg.
And that’s what’s new. Tim O’Brien is now 56 years old. Chicken & Egg, a thematically-linked 14-song suite, represents a long look at life from the rear view mirror. Chicken & Egg is Tim’s lucky 13th solo album, available to the rest of the world on his own imprint, Howdy Skies, on July 13. The good news is Festivarians get first dibs over the Telluride Bluegrass weekend.
The Tim O’Brien Band closes Thursday, 10:30 p.m. – midnight. Tim also holds a meet and greet/performance Saturday, June 19, 11 a.m. at his friend David Lamb’s Telluride Music store. It’s a chance to get up close and personal with a performer everyone feels they know anyway.
To learn more about Chicken & Egg, click the “play” button and listen to Tim’s podcast.