There isn’t a shortage of music culture or talent in Denver. We have garnered a reputation for a rich and deeply artistic scene that spans many genres. The leading ladies are among the brightest gems in our Mile High City, delivering powerhouse vocals, emotionally relatable lyrics and consistently charged performances. To honor Women’s History this month, here are some of the most accomplished ladies in music, easily among the crowning jewels of our eclectic and diverse culture.
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Angie Stevens is much more than a musician, singer or songwriter. She is an artist in the truest sense, painting a beautifully colored and emotionally vibrant landscape with her music. She draws from a painful past and real life experiences and colors them with musicianship and artistry that is unparalleled. She is nationally acclaimed, having original songs featured on HBO, CMT and in Eddie Bauer stores.
It’s easy to argue Hazel Miller has one of the most distinct and influential voices in Colorado, with vocals as brilliant as her career is extensive. A seasoned performer, she has been singing blues, jazz, pop and gospel for more than 24 years in our state. In 2008, she was named one of the 150 people that make Denver a better place to live by the mayor himself. She has shared the stage with Big Head Todd and The Monsters and opened for or sung with the likes of The Temptations, James Brown, James Taylor, Buddy Guy and many more.
Sara Anderson, Esme Petterson and Genevieve Patterson of Paper Bird
The Colorado famous and nationally acclaimed band Paper Bird is lady fronted, and those ladies happen to be as classy as they come. Producing an upbeat blend of folk and roots to create their own version of Americana, the overall sound soars on the wings of their vocals. Along with the strength of their voices, Sara, Esme and Genny actively add creative genius in songwriting and performance to the seven-member group formed more than five years ago. Their third studio album entitled “Rooms” was released February 19, 2013, and to celebrate, the band will be hosting an album release party March 22, 2013 at the Oriental Theater.
Marie Litton of Pretty Mouth & Lil Thunder
No stranger to the local spotlight or heartache, Marie Litton brings some of the most soulful and emotional artistry to the stage in Denver. After fronting the very successful band Ghost Buffalo for five years, she parted ways and reinvented herself at the helm of two distinct eclectic bands, Pretty Mouth and Lil Thunder. Described as “emotionally dense and musically fragrant,” the reiteration of Marie’s artistry is marked by the beauty of rebirth and the healing of scars. Her sound and ability in both bands prove she is as deeply talented and as respected in the industry as she is progressive and capable of sustaining a career on a national stage.
Neyla Pekarek of The Lumineers
Neyla Pekarek was the first cellist to respond to the a Craigslist ad placed by two recently displaced and determined New York musicians. The duo came to Denver with only a trailer full of instruments and two suitcases. The addition of Neyla was mutually beneficial to the now nationally acclaimed group. While she expanded her skill set to include proficiency on both the mandolin and piano, she also served to soften the rough edges of the original founding duo. The result of the fusion equated to a spark that generated a Gold certified album and solidified their relevance and career in the music industry. The Lumineers launched their career playing at local hotspot The Meadowlark and landed on an international stage at the Grammys with two nominations, one for Best New Artist, the other for Best Americana Album.