Dork Mansion

Dork Mansion Productions is a Denver, CO-based music hub.  

FODM Ep. 12: KILTRO

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“Kiltro” means “stray dog” in Chile.

It’s a touch-in-cheek name for a band founded by half-Chilean, Denver-born musician Chris Bower Castillo. With his bandmate Will Parquell, Kiltro plays a unique and modern blend of Chilean folk music inspired by Chris’ years-long stint as a tour guide in the Bohemian port city of Valparaiso, Chile. NOTE: Be sure to listen to the end for a special *BONUS* track.

FODM Ep. 11: Shelly Rollison

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Shelly Rollison is busy.

Last month, Shelly wrote, recorded a released a new EP, Human to Human. When we spoke in August, this project was just a dream, but Shelly Rollison makes shit happen. Chris sits down with the Denver-based singer-songwriter to talk songwriting, inspiration, and going all in on the music business.

FODM: Season 2 Premiere w/ David Burchfield

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It’s OK, it’s alright.

After a near death experience years ago, singer songwriter David Burchfield did some reevaluation. He decided to get back into music in earnest, and it’s turning out pretty well so far. David is the first interview of the new season of the podcast, and it coincidentally coincides with the launch of his new Kickstarter, raising funds for a forthcoming full-length due next year.

FODM Episode 9: Kenzi Everitt

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It's UMS season!

For the last 18 years, Denver's Baker neighborhood has hosted a weekend music festival call the Underground Music Showcase (UMS). When I moved to the city in October 2013, people were still talking about that summer's fest. This year, over 300 bands will play over 25 venues, and Kenzi Everitt is responsible for booking and scheduling a good chunk of those acts.In addition to working with UMS, she writes songs and plays guitar for her band Kinesics and runs Lady Cactus Publishing.

FODM Episode 8: Brianna Straut

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"All the things you could have, would have...

"But never had the heart to try," sings Americana singer-songwriter Brianna Straut, who seems to channel in equal measure Bonnie Raitt and fellow Texan-Janis Joplin. In this season 1 podcast finale, Brianna talks about finding the heart to make the leap from weekend warrior to professional musician. We also talk about her work with Denver stalwarts Bison Bone and Tomahawk Fox.

New CS DeWitt EP out September 13

Chris DeWitt, the founder of Dork Mansion and front dude for Boat Drinks, has a new solo EP out this fall under the name CS DeWitt.

While Boat Drinks is a more rawkus affair, the entirely self-produced EP 1 represents a shift to a more nuanced, measured approach that emphasizes vocal performance, harmony, and lyrical directness. Lead single "Louisiana" represents this shift both musically and thematically-- with shimmering guitars, organ, and stacked harmonies, the song explores family, love, and the fear of losing through the lens of a childhood in the swamp. 

The album will be officially released on 9/13 with a show at Barfly Denver, featuring a super group including members of Los MochochetesGrayson County Burn BanJenny LaJoye, and Bear and the Beasts

Stay tuned!

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Friends of Dork Mansion, Ep. 7: Alyssa Maunders (Down Time)

 Photo by Veronica Lee

Photo by Veronica Lee

Alyssa Maunders is the singer, songwriter and guitarist for the Denver-based indie rock band Down Time. 

The band formed in 2016 and quickly cranked out a set of melody-drenched songs they've described as a mix of "the Velvet Underground and Frankie Cosmos." I'd add a tinge of Little Joy, as well, as that band's elegant simplicity and infectious groove shares much with Alyssa's crew. Down Time has one EP under their belt, the fantastic "Good Luck!" EP, out now on Denver's GROUPHUG record label.  In their short tenure, the band has built a great deal of momentum, becoming a fixture in many of Denver's rock clubs.  See them in June open up for buzz band Snail Mail. 

Friends of Dork Mansion, ep. 6: Austen Grafa

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"There's beauty in the details." 

That's one thing that's clear with Austen Grafa's music.  As the singer-songwriter for "campfire country" outfit Grayson County Burn Ban, Austen writes songs that are by turns hilarious, touching, and prescient. He calls on everything from high school parties to social media etiquette to get to larger truths about the human experience in 2018. In a funny way.  Listen more here!

Friends of Dork Mansion, ep. 5: Joshua Randy Abeyta

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How did you get here?

For Joshua Randy Abeyta, of the Denver-based Chicano funk band Los Mocochetes, the answer to that question is as clear as it is complex. In this episode, Josh goes deep on how tragedy and wrong turns led him to a life dedicated serving his community through art.  His music blends influences ranging from East Coast hip-hop, midwest doo-wop, and southwest rancheras. Check out more music from Los Mochochetes here. 

Friends of Dork Mansion, ep. 4: Erika Ryann

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Erika Ryann is tired of the bullshit.

The singer-songwriter, born and raised in Colorado, has made an outsized imprint on the Denver music scene, performing in a host of groups ranging from her own dark, brooding solo project to the cosmic country of US Tygers.  In this episode, Erika talks about the power a community can have when they decide to work together and cut the crap. We talk about the music she grew up with in the foothills of the Rockies, her songwriting process, and how songs written a decade ago can evolve and deepen in meaning.  We start the conversation with a solo performance of her song, "the Last Rodeo."