Avoid a nightlife La Niña
who think Santa Fe’s music scene leaves much to be desired, here’s a dare: spend a week in Durango or Pagosa Springs in September looking for decent live music that doesn’t have the word “blues,” “jam,” or “folk” attached to it.
After just six days of hanging out in two popular southern Colorado powderhound towns during the snowless season and looking for a good live show, I’m here to tell you: we have it pretty damn good here by comparison. Now, that doesn’t mean there isn’t always room for improvement. Variety is the spice of life, and some Santa Fe venues need to add a few dashes of it to their weekly performance schedules, and fast.
It’s officially the start of the shoulder season after the 2010 Santa Fe Wine & Chile Fiesta makes its last toast on Sunday, Sept. 26, and I can’t imagine bar and club owners serving up heaping goblets of same-ol’ same-ol’ are going to keep the locals interested much longer after that. A few newer show promoters booking uncommon local and touring talent should be commended for keeping the Santa Fe music scene lively and interesting.
There seems to be some serious stagnation among well-established independent show promoters and in-house performance bookers. To these folks, I implore you: step aside and give the new garde a chance to prove themselves. They have a more sensitive finger on the pulse of what Santa Fe’s ears crave, and they can draw in different crowds, increasing the likelihood that those crowds will return to establishments for something fresh and exciting. Trust me: one glance at most performance schedules assembled by proprietors and longtime promoters in this town and it’s easy to discern that most of them are out of — or quickly losing — touch with their patronage. On the upside, for them, there’s always Durango in September.
— Rob DeWalt