Playing Around: Black Rose 

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Free" and "bluegrass." Individually, they're two of the best words in the English language, but combined, you have a phrase that can change lives. All right, perhaps not lives, but at least a day in the life of a sleepy little neighborhood just east of downtown. The Middle Shooks Run Neighborhood Association is one of only a few local associations sponsoring any community get-together like this, and they've been doing it for three years.

This year's headliner is Black Rose, the very well known quartet comprised of bassist Dick Carlson; fiddler and vocalist Hope Grietzer; mandolin and guitar player Charlie Hall; Greg Reed, also on mandolin, guitar and vocals; and Mickey Stinnett on dobro, banjo, and other stringed instruments. The diversely talented group is highly respected for their original, energetic take on bluegrass, swing, country, Gospel and every other musical style pleasing to the ears of an acoustic music lover. Without abandoning tradition, the band can infuse life into just about any tried, tired and true bluegrass selection. It's this talent, paired with the enthusiastic dynamic between group members, that wins Black Rose praise and awards. In 1995, the band took first place up at the Rockygrass Bluegrass Festival, and was voted Most Promising Bluegrass band in the Rockies by the Colorado Bluegrass Music Society in 1997.

Beyond making its own music, the band works diligently to bring new artists to the area through the non-profit Black Rose Acoustic Society. In the old log cabin community building in Black Forest, the Society presents affordable, down-home open stages and concerts with high-level acoustic talent such as Tish Hinojosa and Cheryl Wheeler.

Black Rose will bring its Saturday night community dance--style vib outside this weekend, to the gazebo in North Shooks Run Park. Admission is free but the hat will be passed to defray expenses. Bring your blankets, lawn chairs, kids and maybe some fried chicken; the show begins right around 1 p.m., rain or shine.


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