March 2013 will mark eight years that Great American Taxi (GAT) has been touring across our land offering musical rides with their Americana flavored bluegrass, rock and country sound. Born of a charity event in 2005 the band was assembled for a one-of performance when someone accidentally named the band. Now with three studio albums (“Streets of Gold”, ”Reckless Habits” and “Paradise Lost”) and a thousand performances under their belt, The Great American Taxi is still rolling strong.
Keyboardist Chad Staehly elaborates on the band’s first show, “We were only supposed to be a band for one show. It was for a rainforest action group benefit show. The rainforest action group from CU Boulder had reached out to me to put a band together with Vince for a benefit show at the Boulder Theater. I think that was March 10, 2005. And then the band got accidentally named for the one show. And now over a thousand shows later, here we are.”
The band’s “Great American Snowball Tour 2013,” kicked off in Alaska and continues tonight at the 320 South in Breckenridge. The tour, offering eight Colorado dates, will visit Crested Butte, Breckenridge, Boulder, Denver, Vail, Fort Collins and Steamboat Springs.
Every GAT show is different and unscripted. Fronted by entertainer, storyteller, vocalist and guitarist Vince Herman of Leftover Salmon fame, the band seems to draw its momentum and inspiration from the audience. “Most nights there’s not a set list.” Said Staehly, ”We like to let the environment and the audience and everything kind of dictate what we play. We love to leave the door open for sweet little moments. Whether it’s a train going by or someone yells out a song that they want to hear, or whatever, we really like to leave the door wide open for those sorts of things to happen.”
GAT plans to work on another studio album later this year and will be recording some of the Colorado shows for a possible live album. “We’re going to be live tracking three of the shows in Colorado that we hope to turn into a live release,” said Staehly. “I would think by the end of the year we’re going to start working on a new studio album.”
Born out of Boulder GAT really enjoys performing for Colorado audiences. ”Everyone except Jim, our guitar player, has been around the Colorado area for a good twenty years.“ said Staehly. “You know there’s a lot of friends and family that get up for the shows, and we get to play at home there. Everyone played in other projects before Taxi. So you start adding all those things together, and they create a really cool community of people that gather together for a Taxi show.”
For more information visit www.greatamericantaxi.com.
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