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String Cheese Incident’s 25th Year Anniversary Run at Red Rocks

String Cheese Incident’s 25th Year Anniversary Run at Red Rocks


July 25th, 2019

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Night One – Insane Opening Night for The String Cheese Incident Weekend at Red Rocks

SCI is an American band started in 1993. The members include Michael Kang, Michael Travis , Bill Nershi, Kyle Hollingsworth, and Keith Moseley, and, in 2004, Jason Hann was added on. The band gives off a electronic bluegrass vibe, with a dash of rock. They even add some jazzy psychedelic sounds into the mix. They are very diverse with their sounds, and this is why people go nuts over them! They are absolutely astonishing to see live, especially at such a special venue like Red Rocks.

The String Cheese Incident put on quite the performance Friday night. The energy of the crowd was insane. We were all absolutely emerged into what the band was feeding us. We asked Brent Hansen, a veteran Cheesehead, as it was his 100th show seeing SCI, what he thought about the night. He had this to say: “I thought it really set the pace and the stage for a magnificent 3-night run. From the first note of them opening with “Little Hands,” the energy in the crowd was palpable. The set list for the night really exemplifies why I love them – they’re able to adeptly play polyethnic/poly-genre shows – from jazzier numbers like “Mouna Bowa”, and “Freedom Jazz Dance,” to Bluegrass rippers like “Black Clouds,” folk ballads like “Windy Mountain,” and classic covers (which are often better than the originals) like “Ophelia” and “Ramble On.””

Exempt and Photos by: Ash Daniels

Night Two – A Trip Into Space

Night two of String Cheese’s three night run started off with a brief rain delay. Stormy weather rolled in, but this allotted for the lovely experience of running for shelter and chatting with other members of the SCI family. As the weather cleared the venue quickly filled up, people were eager to shed the rain gear and get their bodies moving.

The night started with Keller Williams, the “One Man Jam Band,” who wasn’t a solo act as the whole SCI crew took the stage to back him up. Playing their collaborative album Breathe in full, William’s signature vocals with SCI’s unforgettable instrumentals, melded into a truly unforgettable first set.

Photos by Lee Potter

Set two felt like a truly classic String Cheese set. The weather had cleared, and the lasers and lights were blasting. A few short showers here and there, but the precipitation only added to the night. The set started with “You’ve Got The World,” with Kyle wearing a truly retro get up, and blasting a nasty Keytar Solo. Finishing up with “Rollover” and “Colliding,” the set had the entire amphitheater wiggling around.

Photos by Lee Potter

During the final set SCI paid homage to their roots with “Colorado Bluebird Sky,” and kept the fire roaring with “Jellyfish,” aided by Bruce Hornsby, a three piece brass section. Finally a node to the 50th year anniversary of the Lunar landing went into a rendition of the fabled “SPACE JAM!,” which includes the tracks below:

“Lunar Landing Jam > Close Encounters Jam > Star Wars Title Jam > Cantina Jam > Imperial March > Star Trek The Next Generation > Star Trek Theme > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Rollover.”

Photos by Lee Potter

Night Three – Never Miss a Sunday Show

The third night of SCI started off with the Del McCoury Band, 3 generations of band members playing together and gracing us with the sweet sounds of Bluegrass. Jamming with an acoustic guitar, mandolin and banjo, they picked their way into the hearts of the entire crowd.

Photos By Reda Ruokyte

During the first set Kyle lead the crowd into a funky jam of “One Step Closer> Get Tight,” sung by Keith, and had a great Bluegrass/Country feel. This set included two new songs- “Manga” and “Into the Blue.” “Manga,” a drum heavy song composed by Jason Hann and “Into the Blue,” composed by Kang. The biggest highlight of the first set was Del coming back out and giving us “High on the Mountain Top,” as well as “Lonesome Fiddle Blues” after SCI, and the entire crowd sang a ballad of Happy Birthday for his 80th trip around the sun.

Photos By Reda Ruokyte

Set two started with the amazing young dancers of Celtic Steps, and the song “River Trance,” a fiddle heavy Irish-inspired jig that had the crowd pumped up and ready to dance in the unpredictable rain during second set. They definitely brought the smiles across the entire Amphitheatre. As everyone was putting on their rain jackets and bracing for the huge drops, the show continued with “Looking Glass> Just One Story.” The beats got faster and the rain turned it up a notch, but the crowd braced it all and kept on grooving. The clouds surrounded, thunder and lighting billowed above us as Cheese finished out the set with another jam/fiddle heavy song – “Hi Ho No Show.”

Photos By Reda Ruokyte

As the rain started to settle, the show ended with an encore of “Shakin’ The Tree and brought the warm feels back to Red Rocks after hours of cold rain. We all left feeling the love after a crazy 5 night Colorado run with SCI.

Except and Photos By Reda Ruokyte

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