Sat · February 9, 2019
Doors: 8:30 pm/ Show: 9:15 pm(event ends at 12:45 am)
THE ANIMAS CITY THEATRE – MUSIC
TICKETS: $10.00 – $12.00
StillHouse Junkies is a one-of-a-kind creative project born out of the collective passions of three individuals with very different musical backgrounds. With chops and stylistic leanings ranging from classical to West African, blues, bluegrass, and swing, Fred, Alissa, and Cody came together around a shared goal of bringing sounds and grooves to their fans that fall outside of simple genre distinctions. With all three band members trading vocal duties and a collective command of nearly a dozen instruments, StillHouse Junkies paint with a rich tonal palette that pays homage to their musical heroes while forging their own artistic path.
Born out of a long-standing weekly residency at a local distillery, StillHouse Junkies have quickly become a staple of Durango’s rich local music scene, establishing a solid fan base through multi-hour performances that feature soaring group improvisations, novel re-imaginings of covers from the likes of Caleb Klauder and Bill Withers, and intimate vocal-driven ballads. With strong writing and arranging skills shared by all three members, the Junkies have also built up an eclectic multi-set catalogue of original music that reflects their diverse interests and creative inclinations. Their songs run the gamut of human emotion and experience: disenchantment with the pace of modern living, dealing with adversity in its many forms, mortality and aging, and story songs that imagine reality from the perspective of a member of the Lewis and Clark expedition; a small-town bartender; a lonely miner; an imperiled cattle driver. They pay tribute to the remarkable diversity of both the Four Corners area of the Southwestern US and the country as a whole, probing below the surface of everyday life to find the themes that unite us all as Americans and citizens of the world.
In March 2018, StillHouse Junkies entered the studio to record their debut album, Over The Pass, a collection of 12 original songs. This effort represented the culmination of over a year of constant writing, gigging, rehearsing, and planning and was accompanied by appearances at festivals and venues throughout Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah.
In addition to their strong focus on first-rate musicianship, tight, intricate song arrangements, and soulful vocal performances, StillHouse Junkies are also seasoned performers with a gift for engaging audiences of all ages. There is no frontman or woman in this group: all members contribute equally to crafting and delivering fun, quirky stage banter, song introductions, and impromptu interactions with fans and each other. With backgrounds that include nearly forty years of collective experience in teaching, coaching, volunteering, event coordinating, international and domestic travel leadership, and wilderness guiding, the Junkies are uniquely well-suited to managing the rigors and challenges of gigs large and small and to the day-to-day work required to maintain an active, devoted fan base.
Russick Smith’s music is steeped in the emotional remnants of his motley, spirited adventures; whether recording at Woodstock studios or sailing the high seas on traditionally rigged ships. Described as “a smart, dynamic musician who is doing everything right,” the cellist and multi-instrumentalist walks between sentimental acoustic arrangements and modern electronic landscape.
With a formal education in cello and electric bass, Russick Smith’s foundation bridges contemporary and classical music drawing inspiration from artists such as Air and Edgar Meyer. His interests and recording work have led him to supplement his instrumental repertoire with mandolin, banjo, concertina, double bass, guitar, and other various keyed and string instruments. Smith’s productions are also bolstered by a background in audio engineering. After graduating from the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences, Smith moved on to cut his teeth as an assistant engineer working under Grammy-winner Justin Guip and platinum-selling engineer John Siket as well as assisting sessions with producers such as David Baron and Paul Stacey. Outside of music, his extracurricular activities prompted Chris Robinson (Chris Robinson Band, The Black Crowes) to characterize him as “a real-life action man.”
Using his diverse background, Smith engages audiences by seeking out non-traditional roles and locations for his music. In his piece “Music for the Birds”(2016), Smith took his cello off the ground and into the trees to perform a solo set framed by the changing Colorado aspens. In the fall of 2017, Smith expanded that concept with violinist Karen Lauffer and mandolinist Kevin Larkin for “Tree-O” (2017), which the Denver Post called a “don’t-miss promise”. “Runoff Reverie”(2017) and “A Small Concert on a Tiny Island”(2016) set Smith in the middle of a river playing to his audience on shore. He has performed alongside artists spanning genres from the likes of veteran goth rocker Peter Murphy to modern dance troupe Frequent Fliers. In 2016, Smith won “Best In Class” for his looping performance at the Vertex Musical Championships and first place as a duo with troubadour Cody Wayne at KSKE’s Country Music Showdown. Smith has been featured on television in Denver’s KDVR ‘Everyday’ show, on radio stations KYSL and KLNX, and in print articles for the Summit Daily and Explore Summit Magazine. Festival appearances include Bohemian Nights at New West Fest, WAVE: Light+Water+Sound, iAM MUSIC Fest, Breckenridge International Festival of Arts, Vertex, Guitar Town, Copper Country, and Festival in the Clouds. He has been spotlighted at the Colorado Creative Industries Summit and been a presenter at the Colorado Music Convergence. Smith has also appeared with national storytelling organization The Moth as a Mainstage timekeeper and hosts a monthly Songwriter’s Circle in Breckenridge, Colorado.
He is currently recording a full-length album of original chamber compositions on traditional bluegrass instrumentation.