DENVER, CO — Palooza is back! The 7th Annual Tellerpalooza is set for Saturday, May 15, at The Mercury Café, 2199 California Street, in Denver. Proceeds from this night of local music and fun support Teller Elementary (DPS) in the Congress Park neighborhood. Festivities will begin at 4:00 p.m. with a performance by Teller’s own student band and last into the night with bands of local and national acclaim sharing the stage.
A distinct theme is shaping up for this year’s lineup—rocker parents. Of the bands listed below, four are
headed up by current or future Teller parents. Credit for the musician parent trend can be attributed to
Tom Hagerman of DeVotchKa, parent of a Teller student when the band headlined Palooza in 2007.
Featured local Denver bands will include:
The Swayback – Critically acclaimed in Denver and nationally, this “genre‐defying quartet draws from a range of influences,” (thesunsetstrip.com), from 1980s New Wave to 2000s synth‐rock blends (gigbot.com). The Swayback “recalls The Velvet Underground if they were forced to share a cell with a codeine‐addled Danzig and fed a steady diet of Factory Records (SPIN magazine).” Bassist and lead vocalist, Eric Halborg, is a future Teller parent. http://www.theswayback.com/
Joy Subtraction – Described as “a hearty slab of progressive yet heartwarmingly old‐school art‐core” by Westword, Joy Subtraction churns out high‐energy, punk‐influenced hard rock for fans of the two Blacks—Sabbath and Flag. Lead guitarist, Abe Brennan, is a Teller parent. http://www.myspace.com/joysubtraction
The New Distractions – The melancholy and introspective sound of The New Distractions beckons with its edginess and texture. This newly‐formed band features soulful vocals complemented by expressive and distorted guitar, keyboards, bass and drums. Lori Trautwein, lead vocalist and keyboardist, is mom to three Teller students. http://www.myspace.com/thenewdistractions
What Happened Saturday ‐ If you took a touch of Bodeans guitar, added some Ben Folds Five piano, funky beats, and groovin’ bass, you’d have What Happened Saturday—a project that joins friends to explore the power of music to entertain and to bring audiences together. Lead singer, Justin Wedul, is a Teller parent. http://www.reverbnation.com/whathappenedsaturday
Mono Verde – Formed by musicians from Mexico, Dominican Republic, Venezuela, United States and El Salvador, this ensemble produces a revolutionary and spirited mix of reggae and Latin rhythms reflecting Spanish‐speaking cultures. http://www.myspace.com/monoverderoots
Roy Drabkin – Singer/songwriter, Rob Drabkin, brings together a voice, song structure and musicianship that step past the simple comparisons to Damien Rice, Dave Matthews and Jack Johnson. Mixing soul and folk with a style all his own, Drabkin makes his music something to remember. http://robdrabkin.com/
Olivia Rudeen – Former lead singer of The Panic, a Denver‐based alternative rock quartet, Rudeen transports an ever‐growing fan base with her emotional and intelligent songwriting, unique voice and soulful tributes to country, pop, blues, reggae and rock genres.. http://www.myspace.com/oliviarudeen
Dylan Yawger ‐ A Teller graduate, Yawger is a one‐man electronic hip‐hop jam band who is influenced by an eclectic mix of genres and musicians, from Bob Dylan to Notorious BIG to Daft Punk.
Conceived in 2004 by music‐loving Teller parents, Tellerpalooza has grown into this southeast Denver
elementary school’s biggest fundraiser. This is not your typical school fundraiser. The bands are homegrown with some edging toward national acclaim. Past music acts have included DeVotchKa, The Reals, The Autumn Film, Hobo Nickels, Reverb and the Verse, and Angie Stevens & the Beautiful Wreck.
Early in the evening, the stage features Teller student bands. Later, students head home to babysitters;
parents and fans stay into the night. “Supporting our DPS schools while taking in an impressive lineup of
bands is an unusual, but tantalizing, combination to many parents and local fans,” says Teller parent, Bryan
“Events like this bring so many benefits,” says Teller Elementary Principal, Jennifer Barton. “Our school and
students receive money to help support special school programming such as music, art, P.E., library
resources and Gifted and Talented; the funds also help to reduce student to teacher ratios.” Teller
Kindergarten teacher, Michelle Lang, who is one of the founders of Tellerpalooza and also the parent of two
Teller grads, echoes, “It is a real community event, but with an edge. We are thrilled that despite their local
and national acclaim, the bands are genuinely happy to support Teller and to serve as an inspiration to the
Along with the music will be other temptations, such as a limited‐edition compilation CD of songs
contributed by past Tellerpalooza bands including DeVotchKa, “Wall of Wine” drawings and other special
offerings. Kid‐friendly activities such as a talent show and magician, Gregg Tobo, will be centered in the
downstairs space all night long. Tobo’s astonishing magic transfixes viewers with a renewed perspective on
the world around us (http://www.astonishingproductions.com/).
Long known for championing sustainable methods and serving fresh, organic, local food, the Mercury Café
(http://www.mercurycafe.com/) will feature a special menu at Tellerpalooza.
Tickets are available on Teller’s web site (www.teller.dpsk12.org). A family 4‐pack is $60; single tickets are
$18 each. All tickets will be sold for $20 each at the door. Visit http://www.tellerpalooza.com/ or
@tellerpalooza for all the details!