Kimberly Nicoletti
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December 8, 2011
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Blues, indie and hip-hop bar bands in Summit County

Who: Tequila Mockingbird

When: Tonight

Where: Alma's Only Bar (A.O.B.)

Where'd the name come from? Wendy's English literature degree and a lot of drinking when she and Dan and the band first started out (in 1996) may have had some sort of impact on the name. Plus we like wordplay.

Home base: Metro Denver

Type of music: 120-proof whiskey roots indie-rock - playful, sarcastic, thoughtful, genre-bending energetic originals that range from blues, to alt-country, to ska, to power-pop and beyond. Since 1996, we have worked hard to deliver our trademark infectious repertoire of original, catchy tunes and intelligent lyrics and stories steeped in American roots music.

If your music were a tangible item, what would it be, and why? A slinky. It bounces and springs and is fun to watch.

Why do people love ya? The band strives to make every moment as memorable as possible. For the members of Tequila Mockingbird, writing, recording and performing music is as essential to their existence as water is to a fish.

How do you keep it fresh? New songs, new shows, new friends, new adventures, new challenges. How CAN'T you keep it fresh? There is always a new goal and/or challenge, and there is always something new to figure out in this business.

What's the craziest thing you've done/weirdest experience? Off the top of my head, the weirdest and coolest experience we had playing was at an outdoor night time party where the cop helicopter circled the neighborhood trying to find the source of the music and hundreds of partiers and the lights lit up the stage like a UFO had shone down on us and it was the most beautiful, trippy and surreal song we even played. Of course, the party ended shortly thereafter. But it was inexplicably awesome.

Who: TKB

When: Saturday

Where: Motherloaded Tavern, Breckenridge

Where'd the name come from? It either came from everyone referring to us as "that killer band (TKB)," or it is the first initials of our names (Tim, Kevin and Bill). You be the judge.

Home base: Denver

Type of music: We like to refer to it as "blues on the edge," meaning that pretty much everything we do is blues based, but it's not cry-in-your-beer blues. It's jumpin', party stuff that makes ya wanna move. In a typical evening we'll play cover tunes by artists such as Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn, ZZ Top, Tab Benoit and others. It's "feel good" music.

If your music were a tangible item, what would it be, and why? A great massage. It feels good, and you always want to come back for more.

Why do people love ya? We play honest, fun music from the heart. What more could you ask for?

How do you keep it fresh? Even with the cover tunes, we put our stamp on them and make them our own. We are always willing to go where the music and the audience take us.

What's the craziest thing you've done/weirdest experience? Played a gig for the patients at a mental hospital. It was actually a lot of fun, but our main concern was that they wouldn't let us leave.

Who: Eliot Lipp

When: Saturday

Where: three20south, Breckenridge

Where'd the name come from? It's my own name

Home base: Brooklyn, N.Y.

Type of music: Electro funk

If your music were a tangible item, what would it be, and why? A warm jar of glowing ooze. It would change colors, and it would be impossible to open.

Why do people love ya? Because my beats have swag and my melodies are catchy.

How do you keep it fresh? I practice every day.

What's the craziest thing you've done/weirdest experience? I toured China a couple years ago. I drank liquor that tasted like dirt there and also watched gangsters gamble on a cricket fight. Crazy sh*t.

Who: Salem

When: Thursday

Where: Motherloaded Tavern

Where'd the name come from? Shalom and Salaam, both meaning peace

Home base: Breckenridge

Who are you? Salem has been touring nationally for six years at festival, club and action sports events from the group's home in Breckenridge. The band performs Todd Anders Johnson's socially-conscious compositions blending high energy hip-hop, jazz and neo-soul.

If your music were a tangible item, what would it be, and why? Deep pow on a bluebird day, cuz that's what we ride while touring the mountain towns throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Why do people love ya? The band has been traveling with Risan Project tours, which include Salem concerts, ski and snowboard film premiers and presentations from environmental organizations such as Protect Our Winters, the Nantucket Land Council and The Climate Project. The Risan Project is touring with the sponsorship of SunCore Solar, the world's first light powered cell phone technology and has begun performing select events on solar powered stages.

How do you keep it fresh? We keep lining up with the ski and snowboard industry while catching freshies.

Salem music is featured in: The 2010 "Tailgate Alaska: The Movie," the 2010 Teva Stand Up Paddling DVD, Contour HD trailers, HiroyukiYamada's 2009 "End of the Line," Warren Miller's 2006 "Off the Grid," the 2009 X Games After Party CD Compilation and the 2010 Bolder Boulder CD compilation. Salem has played at the biggest ski and snowboard events in North America like Tailgate Alaska, EXPN's Winter X 12 Games, the 48 Straight King of the Mountain in Sun Valley, the U.S. Freeskiing Open, the U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix, the U.S. Snowboarding VISA Cup, the Canadian Freeskiing Championships, the Breckenridge Spring Massive and Spring Fever, the Keystone River RunRocks and the Northface Masters of Snowboarding.

What's the craziest thing you've done/weirdest experience? We toured in a veggie oil-powered shuttle bus to Seattle and headlined on the Hempfest main stage for 10,000 people.

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The Summit Daily Updated Dec 8, 2011 11:09PM Published Dec 8, 2011 11:09PM Copyright 2011 The Summit Daily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.