HomeVibe Presents: The Contenders

HomeVibe Presents: The Contenders

Josh Queen, Jacob Russo

Thursday · August 13, 2015

7:00 pm

$12.00 - $15.00

This event is 21 and over

The Contenders (featuring Jay Nash)
The Contenders (featuring Jay Nash)
The legend Levon Helm said that if you give it good concentration, good energy, good heart, and good performance, the song will play you. If that’s true, then Jay Nash and Josh Day are well and truly played by the set of songs in their debut EP, “Meet The Contenders.” The collection breathes with musicality and grit in the tradition of heroes—The Band, Tom Petty, The Dead, Dylan. Thrumming and heady, with a steady heartbeat and a hint of honky-tonk, this EP speaks of wanderers and highways, lovers and losers, good times and missed chances,swimming pools and movie stars, all with a ferocity born of hard work and honed skill. Nash and Day have been players and poets for the better part of two decades; they have been making music, telling tales, drinking whiskey,and having fun touring together as The Contenders since 2012.
Jay Nash’s music is like the river that raised him—strong and deep, with a little bit of lullaby and a big damn current. Twenty years ago, he played loud in bars along the Saint Lawrence River, in the reaches of New York so far-flung they’re almost Canadian. For the last decade, he’s journeyed the US and Europe solo, selling over 60,000 records without ever putting ink on a conventional record deal. Now in the green mountains, the quiet cold of winter rarefies wit and musicianship into the kind of Americana that knows where it comes from.

Hailing from the sweet, sticky hill country of North Carolina, Josh Day brings a percussive virtuosity that shapes the music and supports the vocals. With shining creativity and fine-boned craftsmanship, Day has that special something that resonates with audiences and always feels like a party. Be it playing bluegrass with the Kruger Brothers, touring with Sara Bareilles, or drumming for Jennifer Nettles, Day keeps it busy and honest, just whatone would expect from a man who plays with so much heart.

Lady luck introduced Nash and Day at Room 5 in Los Angeles over a decade ago. They both loved The Band and whiskey, so the eventual collaboration was inevitable. Faithful disciples of Rock ’n’ Roll and musician’s musicians both, Nash and Day have given a big stage to their talents and drives with this debut EP, so pour a good glass, give a nod to your betters, and meet The Contenders.
Josh Queen
Josh Queen
When a chance encounter with a homeless man in a Denver parking lot left singer-songwriter Josh Queen thinking about how quickly people judge one another, a song was in the making.

There comes a time in every songwriter's life where the stories songs tell move from personal experiences to the things happening in the world around them. For this 28-year old songwriter, leaving the comforts of home in the Southeast was a catalyst for that change. The result is an introspective catalog of songs that examines the every day interactions people share and a reinvigorated passion for connecting with his audience.

Josh's love for music began at the ripe age of 12 in Aiken, SC, when he picked up his first guitar and taught himself how to play. After graduating from Clemson University, where he formed the band Upstart Jackson, Josh headed to Charlotte, North Carolina. While there, he established himself as one of the Queen City's most promising musicians, touring the Southeast with his band and recording two EPs, This Is Me Movin' On and A Life Less Deceiving. "Maybe," a single from the latter record, won Josh an Honorable Mention in the 2004 Billboard World Song Contest and was included on Alternative Addiction's Vol. 6 compilation disc.

In 2006, Josh relocated to Denver to chase his dream of being a songwriter. There, he has found his creative home, a new perspective on the world, and himself.

"Sometimes we need to be reminded that life is all about what we give back to each other," Josh says. "It's our struggles with those connections in life that make us who we are and shape the world around us."

Those connections are rife in nearly every one of Josh's songs, from the heartbreak of a loved one's illness in "Warm," the excitement of transformation in "Big Escape," or the turmoil of a friend's divorce in "Sideways." And then, there's the palpable guilt of "Strange Alibis," the chronicle of Josh's missed connection with that homeless man. Throughout, his songs capture the emotion and delicacy that play themselves out in life while the world continues to spin.

And while it spins, Josh writes.
Jacob Russo
Jacob Russo
Jacob Russo hails from the acoustic corn fields of Western Colorado, but has since embraced the atmosphere of life in the city in his recent home of Denver. Although he calls the Front Range home, musical explorations have taken him far and wide, helping craft his unique blend of rustic indie-folk. These experiences forged melodic stylings, bringing to mind soft-focus sunsets and felt-tipped sensibilities. Jacob's live performances are tinged with a sort of hopeless honesty found only in the most genuine of folk musicians.

"If you don't want to feel the wind on your face, be at a Baptist church on Sunday morning, or be transported back to a time when all was innocence and possibility you probably don't want to listen to Jacob Russo."
-Peter Himmelman

Jacob has shared the bill with folk artists such as Gregory Alan Isakov, SHEL and Caleb Hawley. He is a fixture of the Rocky Mountain Folk Festival, having participated in the Songschool for a number of years. Notable venues such as the Boulder Theater and Belly Up Aspen have hosted his musical performances. Music from his 2011 release "Start Again Somewhere" was used in "where the Yellowstone Goes", an environmentally-conscious documentary by visionary filmmaker Hunter Weeks. Jacob currently lives and records in a basement apartment on Capitol Hill, spending his days composing clever ditties from inside jokes and moth-eaten references to modern culture.
Venue Information:
The Walnut Room - Walnut Street Location
3131 Walnut St.
Denver, CO, 80205
http://www.thewalnutroom.com/