If the Mount Rushmore of progressive bluegrass mandolin players is ever built, Drew Emmitt’s image will be on it alongside fellow legends like Sam Bush and David Grisman, who he channels every time he steps on stage. Emmitt got his start at an early age in his hometown of Boulder, Colorado taking lessons from Hot Rize’s Tim O’Brien. He soon joined the progressive bluegrass group The Left Hand String Band, and remade the band through his desire to combine rock ‘n’ roll and bluegrass.

This combination provide an exciting and explosive sound and led to The Left Hand String Band becoming one of the most popular bands in the region. They regularly played some of the most prestigious bluegrass festivals over the years including Telluride and RockyGrass. Campground jams and occasional sit-ins with Vince Herman’s Salmon Head’s at those festivals, eventually led to a merging of the Salmon Heads and The Left Hand String Band for a 1989 New Year’s Eve show and the birth of Leftover Salmon. Since that New Year’s Eve show, multi-instrumentalist Emmitt has been the perfect foil for Herman, serving as a steadying influence for the band, acting as its primary songwriter, and forging a musical partnership entering its third decade.


Since being drafted from the Emmitt-Nershi Band to join Leftover Salmon, Andy Thorn’s powerful, driving, banjo picking has helped carry the band to new heights. Despite his young age, the North Carolina native brings a wealth of experience to the banjo seat in Leftover Salmon. Thorn first began playing banjo at age 12 after purchasing one at his neighbor's yard sale and has not stopped picking since. After high school Thorn moved onto the University of North Carolina where he earned a degree in Jazz Guitar and played in seminal local band Big Fat Gap, which has a long history of graduating players into bigger bands.

From there he moved to Colorado and joined The Broke Mountain Bluegrass Band, which included Anders Beck from Greensky Bluegrass and Travis Book from The Infamous Stringdusters in its lineup. The band was only around for a brief time, but they won the 2003 RockyGrass Bluegrass Festival Band Contest. That same year Thorn won the RockyGrass banjo contest. Despite the wave of attention that followed, the band soon broke up as they all begin to move onto other bands. Thorn moved back to the East Coast and joined flatpicking legend Larry Keel’s band. His time with Keel was brief as he was then recruited to fill the empty banjo spot in the Emmitt-Nershi Band, which led to him joining Leftover Salmon in 2010.


It’s possible that by now you know I play guitar with Yonder Mountain and it’s what I’ve been doing since the band’s inception in 1998. But I’ll bet you didn’t know that as of of July 2015 all my years in Yonder is equal to all of my years of education. That’s Kindergarten through 12th grade and 4 years of college. I started playing guitar in 1986 which is 2 years before Jake Jolliff was born. I feel old, but not really. I was mostly interested in what Greg Ginn of Black Flag was doing at that time, but a few more years into it I found myself learning Jimi Hendrix and Jimmy Page licks in addition to Metallica riffs. It was around that time my good buddy introduced me to the Grateful Dead and their accompanying medicinal herbs. I took a sharp, but very mellow left turn into Folk music including Bob Dylan, Neil Young and eventually, Old & In The Way. Bluegrass charged me in the way Hardcore and Punk did, particularly on the fast songs. I recall a friend giving me a mix tape my senior year at UMass that included some Doc Watson and Norman Blake. As much as I loved what those guys were doing on the guitar, I was drawn to Jerry’s banjo playing from Old & In The Way and so I bought a banjo at a pawn shop. In 1996 I attended RockyGrass in Lyons, CO and saw Scott Nygaard when he was a part of Tim O’Brien and the O’Boys. This was the first time I’d ever really seen anyone flatpick and realized I had a new goal to work towards. In the spring of 1997 I saw the David Grisman Quintet at the Warfield in San Francisco and bought the first self-titled album which features Tony Rice on guitar. I was hooked. When I think back to when I was 13, I never in a million years could I have predicted my future. From Punk Rock to Bluegrass? You’re damn right. And I couldn’t be happier to share the stage with my fellow bandmates. I love what I do and will never take it for granted. Thanks for listening and see you out there.


Music and escapism go hand-in-hand.

A concert or an album can unlock another world, if you let it. The Motet respect and revere this time-honored phenomenon. Fusing fiery funk, simmering soul, and improvisational inventiveness, the Denver, CO seven-piece—Lyle Divinsky [vocals], Dave Watts [drums], Joey Porter [keyboards], Garrett Sayers [bass], Ryan Jalbert [guitar], Parris Fleming [trumpet], and Drew Sayers [saxophone]—have continually provided an escape for listeners over the course of seven full-length albums since 1998, including their latest release Totem and with an upcoming 2018 release.

“When you’re listening to us, I want your mind to be taken away from wherever you are during the day and into some other place,” states Dave. “It’s all about that.”

After quietly building a diehard and devoted following, 2016 represented a watershed year for the musicians. They welcomed Lyle and Drew into the fold and released Totem. For the first time, The Motet sold out the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheater—the holy grail venue of their hometown—cataloged on Live at Red Rocks. The group locked into an unbreakable groove.

“We’ve never been a band that just blew up overnight,” Dave goes on. “We’ve been very tenacious about our movement forward. We’ve been through many different iterations throughout the years. Right now, it feels like we’ve got the lineup that’s making an impression on our scene. Lyle is the perfect match for us. He’s got musicality and this raw energy we all resonate with. He ignited this spark to put work in and write inspiring music.”

“We want to take people on a journey,” Lyle leaves off. “In order to go on a journey, you have to participate. You can’t just simply let it happen around you. You have to give yourself into that journey. Everything is open. You’re free to be yourself. You’re free to go on that adventure and journey. We want to be the catalyst for listeners to understand themselves and the world around them.”

“This is a family,” concludes Dave. “We’ve got each other’s backs. We’re doing this, because we love to be around each other and create together. We’re committed to working together because we appreciate and respect what we have to say and provide the music world and our community.”

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