Strange Brew: Dragondeer


When Dragondeer first performed at Blues and Brews in 2014, the Denver-based band was definitely on the cusp of big things. Returning this year and kicking off the festival with their performance Friday morning, you could say that the band is well on its way to realizing their potential.

Since their 2014 appearance, Dragondeer has shared the stage with Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats, Drive-by-Truckers, Hot Buttered Rum, Leon Russel and Steel Pulse. In March of 2018 they released their first full length album, If You’ve Got the Blues, described as “reminiscent of early Led Zeppelin, The Black Keys, and electric Taj Mahal.” The Denver-based band has grown quite the following in the city and recently planned the ultimate home-coming show at Red Rocks Amphitheater.

Dragondeer consists of Eric Halborg, (lead vocalist, guitarist, harp player, harmonica), Cole Rudy, (pedal steel guitar, Carl Sorensen, (drums) and Casey Sidwell, (bassist). It was Halborg’s brother-in-law that had the connection and gave their demo to Mark Howard. Howard, who has produced records by legendary artists such as Bob Dylan, REM, The Tragically Hip and Tom Waits, brought the band out to Topanga Canyon west of Los Angeles and, in a classic Howard move, put the band up in a house that would become their home and recording studio.

As described by Halborg, “Howard’s claim to fame were these “mobile recording setups, [where] you lived where you were recording.” With equipment in every bedroom and the band playing in the common area, Howard told Halborg, Sorensen, Casey and Cole that they had “three swings at it, and then we’re moving on to the next song.” This incredibly unique recording session was, for Dragondeer, “challenging, but exciting to be creating in real-time. The process was super organic.”

Dragondeer will play the main stage in Town Park Friday September 14th at 12:00 P.M.

Heidi Sarazen