Boulder-based quintet Monocle Band takes the mysticism of Colorado and the richness of Americana, then opens up the door to diverse influences, including electric guitar and piano while staying true to its established bluegrass/folk roots. Their broad Americana sound will please fans of both old and new music. Their latest CD, The Clearing, is the evidence.
The band’s core is quite literally the perfect marriage of the daughter of a musical Colorado family who honed her voice in choirs, and guitarist and disillusioned academic Bill Huston. Marie and Huston started writing songs together, capitalizing on her vocal talent and his raconteur’s eye for character. The sound of the Monocle Band was solidified by the addition of Dave Weinand (upright bass), Emily Rose Lewis (fiddle), and Todd May (drums).
“Lora Lee” is a perfect example of their partnership. Bill Huston told Elmore: “‘Lora Lee’ draws from one of the classic themes of bluegrass music: unrequited love, probably the second most common bluegrass theme after death. Musicians are dreamers at heart who often fumble their way through romantic relationships and the main character of “Lora Lee” is no different. His heart has been captured by a girl incapable of answering his pleas for her love, a fleeting muse whose family also rejects our narrator as “uncouth, unclean, and unread.” It’s a hopeless situation, but, in classic bluegrass style, the song itself sounds joyful. This purging of life’s sorrows through upbeat song has a long tradition and led us to the found footage in this video. We see generations of hard scrabble mountain folk picking, dancing, and singing away their troubles. And, a mysterious woman whispering sweet nothings in some of the musicians’ ears…”
Learn more about the band HERE
See more videos HERE
See Elmore’s review HERE
Stream The Clearing HERE