Tony Furtado headlines Breckenridge town party |

Tony Furtado headlines Breckenridge town party

KIMBERLY NICOLETTIsummit daily news

BRECKENRIDGE – Today, Breckenridge throws its town party in style.The historic town kicks off summer with a Bluegrass Bash from 4-9 p.m. at the Riverwalk Center. Tony Furtado’s band, Open Road, headlines the event. The band has been touted as the future of bluegrass.After Furtado picked his way and made a name as a 19-year-old banjo prodigy, Furtado decided the instrument limited his options, so he became an equally skilled slide guitarist.Later he realized his fingers couldn’t express his musical possibilities, so he reinvented himself as a singer and songwriter.His album, “These Chains,” released last year, bears witness to the transformation.The disc features nine self-penned songs that display Furtado’s stylistic breadth and emotional depth, and 12 of the 13 tracks show off his tenor. In March, he released “Bare Bones.” Furtado wrote, performed and recorded on the spot most of the tracks. Plus he engineered the album. Translation: He has no problem constantly evolving.”I’ve always been into playing a lot of different types of music,” Furtado said on his website. “When I was mainly playing banjo, I would study everything from old Charlie Parker records to traditional Irish music to trying to figure out ways to play blues on the banjo.” After he mastered blues on the banjo, he realized he didn’t know enough about rock and pop to play the slide guitar as he desired. To remedy the problem, he started buying a bunch of albums – from Jackson Browne, Tom Petty and John Hiatt to David Lindley, Richard Thompson and Bruce Cockburn.”It took a long time for it to start to internalize,” he said.Because of his diverse influences, he eludes most attempts to pigeon-hole his music, or his fans.”The audience is really diverse, from kids who want to rock out to older folkies,” Furtado said. “But I think it’s basically people who appreciate good tunes.”And that’s exactly what makes him perfect for Breck’s town party.The party also acts as a gathering place for the town photo, which SharpShooter Imaging will shoot at 6:45 p.m. from atop the Red, White and Blue Fire Protection District ladder truck. In addition, the Breckenridge Public Art Commission will dedicate the town’s latest art piece, “Gone Fishin’.” A Kidz Zone offers a petting zoo and Mountain Top Children’s Museum activities from 4-7 p.m.Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, visit Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or at

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