The DakhaBrakha show at Taos Mesa Brewing last Tuesday was—hold on while I dust off my thesaurus—spectacular, euphoric, exhilarating, life-changing. It wasn’t a show, it was the rapture. I’m gushing, of course, but if you were there, you know what I mean. If you weren’t, I’m sorry for your loss.
It was clear DakhaBrakha was having a great time as well. I wondered how often they experience a throng rush the stage, climb the tables, and heave and billow for an entire show, so I asked Roots and Wires’ John Henderson if they told him what they thought. Henderson said they loved it.
“They said that in the Ukraine the young people get their music but that in Europe and the US it’s usually old folks. They liked our mixed crowd.”
Like any Taos crowd, it was indeed mixed: young, old, brown, black, white, clean-cut, inked, combed, dread-locked and bald. The Taos mezcla is one of the many things that make Taos such a great place to live. I’m amazed how many times I say out loud to myself what an amazing place Taos is.
I’ve said it on mountain tops and chairlifts, at theater productions, the Eco Park and sunset, and on many occasions, at music shows produced by Roots and Wires.
“In many ways we just had our best year,” says Henderson, who, with Roots and Wires partner Jerry Schwartz, will lay low for a while. They’ll be back with shows in January and February. There will be others, and they’re working on two more big free shows in Seco this summer. For the record, the Seco shows are produced by their not-for-profit “subsidiary,” Arroyo Seco Live.
The next two confirmed Roots and Wires shows are:
Friday, January 31, 2015
Recently discovered (or rediscovered) 82-year-old Mississippi Hill Country gospel bluesman Leo “Bud” Welch, who just cut his first album at age 81.
February 20, 2015
Mardi Gras and Carnival Party, which Henderson describes as “New Orleans meets Brazil.” Indian Mardi Gras band Cha Wa—think “funk with feathers”—shares the bill with Nation Beat, a mix of Brazilian maracatu drums and New Orleans second line rhythms.