Swallow Hill Presents RootsFest 2009

Swallow Hill is pleased to present the third annual RootsFest on Saturday, March 28, 2009. Headlining this year's festival are bluegrass legends Hot Rize, multi-Grammy winning singer/songwriter Shawn Colvin and acclaimed guitar virtuoso Leo Kottke.

RootsFest is Swallow Hill's largest annual event. Formerly known as the Denver Folk & Roots Music Festival, this event is held in one of America's best acoustic venues, the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, located in the Denver Center for the Performing Arts complex in downtown Denver. Past headliners include Taj Mahal, Bruce Cockburn and Nanci Griffith.
It's like a birthday bash, in a sense, for Swallow Hill's 30th birthday-a great deal of quality entertainment for an unbelievably affordable price.

Hot Rize, featuring Grammy award winner Tim O'Brien, Bryan Sutton, Pete "Dr. Banjo" Wernick, Nick Forster, delivers a high energy and unique sound that is appealing to fans both young and old. As the band approaches their 30th year in the bluegrass history book, Swallow Hill approaches their 30-year birthday as a nonprofit organization serving the roots music community in March 2009. As they celebrate milestones together, they also celebrate a history together as members of Hot Rize have had long connections to the Swallow Hill community. Tim O'Brien got his start at Swallow Hill and our recording studio, Sawtelle Studio, is named in honor of original Hot Rize member, Charles Sawtelle, who passed in 1999. It's perfect that they come together to celebrate with great music at RootsFest.

Multi-Grammy-winning artist Shawn Colvin has inspired a legion of young artists to take up the art of song crafting. A masterful storyteller, her songs are full with tenderness and empathy, and peppered with pop hooks that garner mainstream appeal. Now based in Austin, her latest release, These Four Walls, is filled with 12 powerful songs and has been called a "beautifully crafted project" by Dirty Linen magazine.

Innovative acoustic guitar virtuoso Leo Kottke's fingerpicking is sure to sound amazing in the Opera House's finely crafted sound qualities. Having survived a series of personal obstacles including partial hearing loss and tendon damage to his hand, Kottke has emerged to become one of the most masterful of modern guitar players. His performances are captivating, coupling his playing with monologues that range from strange to humorous. Unconventional in style and composition, he pushes boundaries and inspires with his art, which ranges from blues to jazz to folk and beyond.

"We're very excited to have such a stellar lineup for this year's RootsFest, " says Tom Scharf, Swallow Hill's Executive Director. "It's like a birthday bash, in a sense, for Swallow Hill's 30th birthday-a great deal of quality entertainment for an unbelievably affordable price."

A nonprofit arts organization, Swallow Hill relies on this event to maintain their funding from the Scientific & Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), which is based on both monetary and attendance thresholds. RootsFest has become the flagship of Swallow Hill's fundraising efforts. In one evening audience members can experience the best in world-class roots music that mirrors what the organization offers year-round in their production of more than 200 concerts.

Helping people make and enjoy music since 1979, Swallow Hill Music Association is one of the largest nonprofit institutions of its kind in the United States as a source for folk, roots and acoustic music. With more than 2, 300 members, Swallow Hill provides a place to celebrate music that is rarely heard elsewhere in the Rocky Mountain Region. Three concert venues house more than 200 performances a year, featuring some of the world's great artists as well as up-and-coming new talent. Swallow Hill's Julie Davis School of Music offers classes for every interest, skill level and member of the family. Each year, a faculty of 60 instructors provides training to more than 4, 000 students. A Tier II member of the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), Swallow Hill has been named one of the Top 25 Movers & Shakers in Arts & Culture by the Rocky Mountain News, has won both the Mayor's and Governor's Awards for Excellence in the Arts and countless "Best of Denver" awards, has been recognized by the North American Folk Alliance, and is one of the most sought-after venues by folk and roots performers in the country.

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