Denver’s Underground Music Showcase (UMS) features over 150 acts from all over the nation. The festival, now in its 22nd year has a number of changes. We’re spotlighting 2 of them, and the artists involved here..
Youth on Record was founded in 2008 with the mission to designs and implements strengths-based, music-centered programs intended to equip young people from historically under-resourced communities with the skills needed to find success in life by advancing their academic success, increasing their economic opportunities and career skills, and strengthening their community connections and networks. This year Youth on Record took a 49% interest in UMS. As part of that they’ve brought their own signature events to UMS including:
Impact Show July 30, 2022 – New to UMS this year, the Impact Show is part of a festival-wide focus on supporting mental wellness and the prevention of substance misuse among musicians and an anticipated 10,000 festival attendees. The inaugural show will feature the Seratones, A funk-soul-rock band from Louisiana that marries spirituality, protest, Black feminism, and Afrofuturism.
Youth on Record will also have Impact Days preceding UMS on July 27 & 28, 2022 from 12-6 MST at Youth on Record.
A two-day intensive hosted by Youth on Record and open to all musicians and artists participating in the UMS, Impact Days will serve as an industry-focused kick-off for the festival. Artists, music industry and community leaders will provide skill-sharing workshops, networking, professional development, and wellness coaching opportunities to local and emerging artists. Focused on artmaking, Impact, and Economic Opportunity, Impact Days are designed to build the foundation for institutional resources that will serve musicians, artists, and the creative industries for years to come.
Dozens of industry and arts leaders will host panels, workshops and coaching sessions; industry and arts leaders will be paid for their time. During the pilot year, the event is free to all participating artists. Between sessions, participants will be invited to participate in “care” practices including yoga, access to mental health resources, sober bars, and healthy foods.
Black Fret is a nationwide membership organization with chapters in Austin, Seattle and now Colorado. Black Fret’s goal is to create a global network of connected communities, all supporting their local music economies. And in the process of creating this network, provide opportunities for our Black Fret bands to travel between cities, playing bigger gigs and being paid for shows they would not have had the opportunity to otherwise.
Recently Black Fret Colorado announced its 2022 Black Fret Awardees. The inaugural Black Fret Awardee artists were nominated by local industry experts and founding members in Colorado. They represent a broad spectrum of musical genres and reflect the depth of Colorado’s remarkable talent. They are:
Seratones recently announced their latest album Love & Algorhythms, out on April 29th via New West Records. Today, the Shreveport, Louisiana-based band, fronted by the gospel-trained powerhouse frontwoman and activist A.J. Haynes, share new single “Two of a Kind.”
Of “Two of a Kind,” Haynes notes:
The lyric “both of your eyes” refers to the spiritual eye and the material field of vision, both gazing toward the cosmos for signs to guide the human journey on planet Earth. The rest of the lyrics came to me after a beloved friend shared with me their pansexual identity, an identity with which still they seem to struggle. This vulnerability, this invitation into a trusted space helped me truly reflect and interrogate my own wants, needs, and desires, thereby realizing and actualizing my own queerness. Living my truth, and holding them in love, honors our collective humanity.
James Baldwin, who I cherish as queer divine ancestor, says that “Love is where you find it–you don’t know where it will carry you.” In the face of institutions that would rather he not exist beyond their violently restrictive white imaginations, he dared to love himself and protect his peace. The song ends in dancing ecstasy, mirroring how James Baldwin taught me to love freely, tenderly, and without apology.
SERATONES TOUR DATES
Mar 15 Austin, TX – Paste Magazine Showcase @ The Pershing (4:30pm) +
Mar 15 Austin, TX – Highroad Touring Showcase @ Cheer Up Charlies (11pm) +
Mar 16 Austin, TX – All Together Now – The Current Radio/Sheros @ Hotel Saint Cecilia +
Shreveport, Louisiana’s Seratones—fronted by the gospel-trained powerhouse frontwoman and activist A.J. Haynes—have returned with the announcement of their third album Love & Algorhythms, out on April 29th via New West Records. Seratones dive into the joyful struggle to find pleasure in a world designed to destroy you on Love & Algorhythms, which was produced by Paul Butler at Sonic Ranch Studios in Texas.
Along with the album announcement comes Love & Algorhythms’ celestial burst of a lead single, “Good Day.”
Today, they also announced a string of spring tour dates including stops at SXSW and June tour dates with Fitz and The Tantrums and St. Paul & The Broken Bones.
SERATONES TOUR DATES
Mar 5 Denton, TX – She Rock 2022 Festival
Mar 15 – 20 Austin, TX – SXSW
Apr 23 Waverly, AL – Standard Deluxe Festival
May 7 New Orleans, LA – JAZZ Fest – New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
May 13 New York, NY – WFUV Party at City Winery Pier 57
Jun 1 Asheville, NC – Rabbit Rabbit *
Jun 3 Nashville, TN – Ascend Amp *
Jun 4 Wilmington, NC – Riverfront Amp *
Jun 5 Richmond, VA – Meadowbrook Park *
Jun 7 Burlington, VT – Shelburne Museum Green *
Jun 8 Portland, ME – Thompson’s Point *
Jun 10 New Haven, CT – Westville Bowl *
Jun 11 Asbury Park, NJ – Stone Pony *
Jun 12 Bethlehem, PA – Steelstacks *
*notes dates with Fitz and The Tantrums + St. Paul & The Broken Bones