A weekend with MOM: Music on the Mothership
Music on the Mothership was one for the books. We started our amazing journey surrounded by mountains on the mesa of Taos Mesa Brewery Friday, June 1st with a major fire warning spanning from Santa Fe to Taos, but that didn't stop the music. Our day began with Rising Appalachia, these two women know how to get a point across through their beautiful folky vocals and lyrical justices. We then ended our night a bit early with the Antibalas. What a magical and one of a kind way to end it at that. When immersing oneself into the vibe of this group it becomes very prominent that afrobeat and funk are two major influences. Their lyrics speak of meditation and prayer and how important these are on the path to righteousness. The Grammy winning horns section is not one to skip on, if you ever get the chance to submerge yourself in this group's tunes, do it!
Saturday we started our day off with the much anticipated Shook Twins. They had many memorable times during their set, one being when they were singing "Awhile", Laurie Shook sure knows how to rock out on a banjo. They do something that has the folk vibe but also some sort of soul that leaves you begging for more. These two may be playing banjo one minute, yodeling the next and then beatboxing to end it all. They were accompanied on stage by names such as Niko Slice and Joe Craven. Such beautiful souls. Covers of "Son of a Preacher Man" were played all weekend and theirs was, by far, my favorite.
We then stumbled upon Banshee Tree in the Space Lounge. This band is one of a kind, think Swing music, meets funk and electronic; a one of a kind child of groove. Definitely will be keeping them on my radar.
Our next very anticipated band was Rapid Grass. They played covers of "Take Me Home, Country Road" and "This Must Be The Place". They surely are the epitome of mountain music. They have mastered something that bands try to do for years; the chemistry this group has with each other along with the complete fluidity their instruments share is something some bands, especially bluegrass, aren't capable of establishing.
Our night was coming to a close, but not without jamming to Railroad Earth followed by The Infamous Stringdusters. Railroad Earth's set list consisted of originals like "Happy Song", "Captain Nowhere" and covers of Tom Waits', "Cold Water". Railroad Earth is a band that just happens to play rock on acoustic instruments. With that being said, their songs are always something so special and so contagious to all sorts of music lovers.
The Infamous Stringdusters are unlike any other bluegrass band. Their picking skills are so in sync. They started their set off with their song "Light and Love" and what a great one it was to describe the light and love we experienced throughout the whole weekend of Music on the Mothership.
If Saturday gave any inclination to how Sunday would be, we were in for an exceptional day. Taos was in an extreme drought and, sure enough, Sunday there was rain. We must have all been doing a rain dance on Saturday, because, oh how joyous it was to see rain in such a dry time.
Sunday we started our day with Assembly of Dust, they sang one of our favorites "Second Song". They play songs you can sing along and dance to live or not. They have pristine transitions in between songs and the integration of the keyboard is pretty phenomenal.
We then had the pleasure of witnessing Melvin Seals and The JGB in the Space Lounge, due to the rain it had to be moved under cover. In my opinion, this was one of the best ways to experience the songs of The Grateful Dead, Jerry Garcia, Smokey Robinson, and everything in between in a yurt with a couple hundred of your new best friends.
We then closed out our weekend with "MOM" with the highly anticipated Moe. Their set began with the perfect song to get the crowd up and moving, "Mar De Ma". They were then accompanied by Jason Barady on mandolin and Nick Piccininni on fiddle for their song "Mexico". That was one of the most memorable parts of the whole fest; they all jammed in unison. It was funny because after the rain the temperature dropped drastically and everyone was confused as to why their fingers all hurt so much from picking. Other songs of their set consisted of "Okay Alright", "Happy Hour Hero" and the encore was Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song".
Along with all the amazing music was that of the vendors. We had the pleasure of really enjoying the energy of the vendors, Colibrilla.
Another beautiful thing was the free range of music being played in every corner of the festival, not only on stage. The food, the art, the music, and the connections formed with one another were all one of a kind.
Music on the Mothership has a very unique vibe. You all feel as if you are a family. This may be from the small close knit community the grounds of Taos Mesa Brewery configured, or maybe just the fun loving people that this fest brings out, but we will definitely be back to visit sometime in the near future. Thanks for the love, beautiful tunes and scenery, Music on the Mothership. Our hearts are still over flowing with so much love.