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Provo’s Growing Musical Diversity Attracts Touring Artists

Continued genre development is attracting more artists to Provo with greater frequency.

By Zach Collier

It’s always good to have bands from out of state roll through town. This summer, we’ve been fortunate to have the likes of Rocky Votolato, Perspective a lovely hand to hold, Faun and a Pan Flute, Great States, and others pass through. This short list of touring artists alone exemplifies the musical diversity that is beginning to develop as the Provo music scene begins to specialize.

Rocky Votolato performed last week at Velour Live Music Gallery. A singer/songwriter from the Pacific Northwest, Votolato is no stranger to Provo. In 2006, he played a show at Velour with Father John Misty, Damien Jurado (who locals might recognize from BYUtv’s Audio Files), and Brinton Jones. Having worked with members of The Get Up Kids and Death Cab For Cutie, and placed songs in popular television shows like The OC, he represents the style and quality of music locals have come to expect from shows at Velour.

[Related: Read our interview with New Mexico’s Great States.]

It’s an established fact that artists who have performed at Velour have gone on to achieve national and international success. Velour also regularly books artists from out of state, inviting them to come mingle with local talent. Consequently, Velour’s sound has long defined Provo’s music.

But individuals from the Provo Punk Collective and The Medusa Collective are beginning to create spaces for artists of alternative genres. These efforts are attracting additional musicians from all over the United States to Provo who otherwise may not have stopped through. Perspective, a lovely hand to hold played to a crowd of 30-40 devoted fans at a Provo Punk Collective show at Muse Music last July. It was a pretty impressive turnout for an emo/math rock band from Nashua, New Hampshire who had never made Provo a real focus on their tours before.

Studio Studio Dada welcomed several artists to Provo this summer as well, with one of them being Faun and a Pan Flute. A 9-piece avant-classical ensemble, they were right at home amidst musicians like Alyssa Pyper, Stephen Cope, and Stuart Wheeler who use orchestration to blend conventions of classical composition with contemporary folk. Studio Studio Dada has also created a space for international music as well. They hosted the Buenos Aires-based Las Piñas last march.

Emo, punk, classical, avant-garde, international. A continuing development of the scenes associated with these genres will help spread the name of Provo abroad in new circles, thereby attracting more artists to Provo with greater frequency.

Tomorrow, September 10th, Provo has the pleasure of welcoming the Phoenix Arizona-based Mimelight to our city. Made up of Clifton Peotter, Dion Didomenico, Taylor Goodman, and Jesse Palmer, the indie rock group hopes to win new fans in the valley through their “blend of bite and beauty.” They’ll be playing alongside Crooked Feathers and Sonnen at Muse Music. Tickets are $7 at the door. Doors open at 8PM.

Make sure to like Mimelight on Facebook, and check out the music video for their song “Hiroshima” below.

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