Marcus Mumford details new Mumford & Sons album, Colorado ties, Salida Music Festival
Mumford and Sons played to a sold out crowd at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Tuesday, August 28, 2012 to kick off their two night stand at the historic Colorado venue.
Before returning to England in 2007 to start the biggest folk-rock band in the world, Marcus Mumford was working as a soccer coach in Denver.
"You can tell you're in Colorado when you're in Colorado," Mumford said. "I loved living in Denver because I loved that feeling of always having the mountains in your view. To some people it's like having the ocean."
This was before Mumford & Sons returned for its first Colorado show at The Falcon (now Moe's Original BBQ) in 2008. And it was before the band headlined Telluride Bluegrass Festival — an event that would later serve as inspiration for the one-off, two-day music festival that Mumford & Sons announced it is throwing in Colorado later this year.
The Colorado edition of Mumford & Sons'Gentlemen of the Road Stopover will be held in the small city of Salida, population just over 5,000, on Aug. 21-22, the band revealed on Monday. Curated by Mumford & Sons, the fest will bring the Flaming Lips, Dawes, Jenny Lewis and more, along with an expected 35,000 concertgoers.
The site selection process ends with Mumford and his band, where they're looking to capture the spirit of Telluride.
"Telluride is a wonderful and unique festival and the people who book it put so much love and care and attention into making the town a whole part of the festival," Mumford said. "People are encouraged to immerse themselves into the local culture." After looking at a number of locations in Colorado, Mumford said that Salida was the most welcoming to the big event they had planned.
"You have to look at so many different factors, you have to become somewhat of a wedding planner," he said. It's at these Gentlemen of the Road Stopovers — along with appearances at national festivals — that Mumford & Sons will get some of its first feedback on its third album, "Wilder Mind."
Through what Mumford calls a natural change, the band shied away from acoustic instruments in recording sessions for "Wilder Mind." The band's sound will feature electronics, synths and drum machines rather than thumping kick drums and banjo. "It's when we play songs from 'Sigh No More' and the crowd is really excited and then we play songs from 'Wilder Mind' and everyone leaves — then we will probably know the reaction," Mumford joked about how fans could take the change. There was no single turning point that caused the band decided to ditch the acoustics, Mumford said. The group was on the same page and moving in that direction.
"We're not out to make a big statement about acoustic music because we still enjoy all that stuff. We just have a wider taste than that as a band," Mumford said.
Media outlets have called the change "going electric," perhaps a nod to Bob Dylan at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival. "It's kind of a lazy way of referring to it," Mumford said. "We've always plugged in and we've always been loud. We just have different looking and different sounding instruments now. They're still our songs. I want to be judged on my songs, not on the sound we make because that sound will hopefully be changing and progressing as we change and progress as people. The songs are the markings along that journey."