WYOmericana Caravan Coming to a Stop Near You - Wyoming Magazine


WYOmericana Caravan Coming to a Stop Near You


The noise has increased steadily the last couple years. But, unless you know where to look, and listen, there’s a good chance you haven’t heard it. That sound — emanating from bars, garages and backyards — is great music, made by folks from the Cowboy State. Wyoming might not have the reputation as a place producing a lot of noteworthy musical talent, but the state is in the middle of a renaissance of sorts, with more outstanding bands and musicians than ever before.

sneaky pete and the secret weapons

The WYOmericana Caravan is ready to pull the veil off. For the fifth straight year, the tour will make its way to venues across Montana, Utah, Idaho and Wyoming, introducing fans to exceptional, underrated local acts.The Caravan started in 2013, the brainchild of Screen Door Porch bandmates Seadar Rose and Aaron Davis. The idea was simple: Get two bands or musical acts to join Jackson-based Screen Door porch on a tour of the Rocky Mountain West. But, of course, it was more than that. “I felt like Wyoming does not get any sort of cred for the musician scene,” Rose explained. “At the time — we started playing in 2012 — we felt like there was just a lot of great music being created in the state, and we wanted to move it to a larger audience, a larger platform.”

Initially, the plan was to hit the road outside the state. But once other performers signed up, Caravan organizers realized they needed to make stops in Wyoming. And have they ever! The last four years have been filled with sold-out shows and electric atmospheres.

These aren’t your grandfather’s concerts. The bands generally play shorter sets, and then the performers get together for various collaborations. The melding of voices and sounds is Rose’s favorite part of every Caravan. “It makes the energy of the show just that much more magical,” she said. “It just reverberates around the audience and our show.”

The name WYOmericana Caravan obviously invokes a folksy theme, but that’s not necessarily true of this year’s tour, since the lineup includes a groovy addition to two more rootsy acts. Sneaky Pete and the Secret Weapons and The Littlest Birds will join Screen Door Porch in 2016. Coming from Jackson Hole, Sneaky Pete and the Secret Weapons channels original music through a self-described “lens of hazy funk and unending groove, all witnessed and interpreted from the peaks and valleys of the Rocky Mountains.” Rose said Sneaky Pete was an obvious choice as a band making original, cool music in a style that is not exactly commonplace in Wyoming. These tunes are sure to get people dancing and having fun.


Don’t let the name fool you about the next performer. The Littlest Birds is actually a solo act, and a damn good one at that. Sharon Martinson, with a hauntingly beautiful voice and innate grasp of traditional music, is reinventing Americana banjo music with a progressive-meets-old-time sound. The Littlest Birds comes from Laramie.

Screen Door Porch is well-known to many Wyomingites. The band’s third album “Modern Settler,” in fact, was voted the No. 1 album of 2015 by Wyoming Public Radio listeners. If you’re not familiar, though Screen Door Porch brings a country-blues sound described as grooving, electrified porch music. Rose combines her vocals with Davis for a distinct male-female energy. Between Davis, Rose and two other bandmates who more often than not make a quartet, you could hear acoustic/resonator/electric/slide guitars, banjo, mandolin, harmonica and kazoogle, backed by a powerful rhythm section. Oh, and Rose said Screen Door Porch would be playing some new material at Caravan stops.

In case you’re not picking up the vibes, these are shows you won’t want to miss. Regardless of your musical tastes, WYOmericana will have music you enjoy. And even if you know the bands and their albums like the back of your hand, the collaborations and handpicked, outstanding sets will make you want to hear more. So ditch the sweatpants and Netflix and come on out! You might just hear your new favorite band. “I think it’s a really special time for music in Wyoming,” Rose said. “We’ve got our finger on the pulse. The creative process is growing in magnitudes right now, and people are really starting to take notice. So I think we’re taking a part in something special.” For more information or to purchase tickets, visit http://www.wyomericana.com/.


WYOmericana Caravan 2016 schedule

5/5/16 — Laramie, Wyoming; Gryphon Theatre, 8 p.m.

5/6/16 — Cheyenne, Wyoming; Atlas Theatre, 8 p.m.

5/7/16 — Laporte, Colorado; Swing Station, 9 p.m.

5/12/16 — Lander, Wyoming; Lander Bar, 8 p.m.

5/13/16 — Victor, Idaho; The Knotty Pine, 9:30 p.m.

5/14/16 — Salt Lake City, Utah; The State Room, 9 p.m.

6/1/16 — Jackson, Wyoming; Town Square Tavern, 9 p.m.

6/2/16 — Missoula, Montana; The Palace, 9 p.m.

6/3/16 — Whitefish, Montana; The Great Northern Bar, 9 p.m.

6/4/16 — Bozeman, Montana; The Filling Station, 9 p.m.

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