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Michael Kirkpatrick / Press

“Being named as 2014’s Telluride Troubadour is just the latest honor for Kirkpatrick, a modern-day minstrel who sings about nature, dreams and sensuality while generally accompanying himself on acoustic guitar and mandolin. He was named Best Male Singer-Songwriter for two successive years by the Fort Collins Musicians Association, while The Colorado Sound named his latest release, Key to My Cage, “Best Folk Rock/Singer-Songwriter Record of 2013.”

“Fort Collins' own Michael Kirkpatrick is the winner of the Telluride Bluegrass Festival's 2014 Telluride Troubadour Contest, which is kind of a big deal. This prestigious award spotlights one talented individual from across the country who excels in songwriting, stage presence, and musicianship. The winner is awarded a spot on the main stage at the festival in addition to cash, prizes, and critical acclaim. Michael got to share the stage with Yonder Mountain String Band and Del McCoury and rumor has it that John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin was in the audience rocking out to Kirkpatrick's signature sound of mandolin madness”

“Denver musician Michael Kirkpatrick came to the stage after Yonder’s set as the winner of the Telluride Troubadour Contest, for which he was presented a new custom-made Shanti guitar inlaid with the words “Telluride Bluegrass” at the 12th fret. “I think Path is the song that won it for me,” he said later. “It’s about rediscovering spirituality, and is written from the point of view of someone Jewish or Muslim or Catholic finding a different path.””

“Key To My Cage only reinforces the level of influence and contribution that Kirkpatrick has provided throughout the music scene of Northern Colorado and demonstrates his remarkable multi-instrumental versatility. The charisma contained in Kirkpatrick’s shows is difficult to ignore, both as a solo artist and as the frontman of The Holler”

“Perhaps no other Northern Colorado artist can claim the notoriety of a one Michael Kirkpatrick. If you ask somebody for a bluegrass concert recommendation in Ft. Collins they will likely steer you to his band, The Holler!—which is completely disconcerting because although he does play mandolin (not ukelele) the similarities end there. I suspect some day I’ll get a call from 20th Century Fox asking me to consult for his biopic about what they will hopefully call “the NoCo years.” I suggest that title because Michael’s life in this community has seen him rise from playing guitar in bands and throwing parties in barns to performing on multiple instruments, building a stellar solo set, leading bands, arranging, playing studio sessions for national artists, and all the while camouflaging his operatic performance training, an asset that makes him an ideal contemporary showman.”

“You can't go partway on a mustache. It can't be subtle or modern; and if you try to be ironic about it, you'll come across as a douche. Fort Collins, Colo. musician Michael Kirkpatrick, wisely, has made his most glorious of handlebar mustaches into his calling card and logo, and I'll be damned if he doesn't pull it off.”

“The frontman for Fort Collins band The Holler! quit his job of 15 years as a professional river guide. After 10 hours on the river, Kirkpatrick, 35, would hit the stage sunburned, dehydrated and with his vocal chords raw. “It has nothing to do with hating your day job, it has everything to do with loving the music so much that you cannot stay away from it,” he said.”

“Holler! lead singer Michael Kirkpatrick has the deep, earnest voice of an anthropomorphic brontosaurus that has popped out of children’s book to teach kids about the dangers of playing with matches. Those qualities, combined with his clear diction and the sometimes thoughtful, sometimes silly lyrics combine to make his voice the first thing you notice about Road to Gemini, a debut record. ”

“The Holler!’s latest album, Gratitude, is just plain good. The sweet harmonies and laid-back songs could only have come from a group so closely connected with the landscape of Colorado. The group’s songwriting is second-to-none, creating a diverse album that holds quick to its mountain roots. There is some subtle magic going on here as The Holler! swiftly and thoroughly draws you in with their one-of-a-kind lyricism and finger-pickin’ goodness. ”

“Though traditional Appalachian bluegrass structures and melodies play a role in The Holler!’s music, the band is hesitant to limit themselves with a “-grass” tag. True to the “folk music without boundaries” ethos, they incorporate a variety of elements, from Celtic and rock to a bit of reggae. “I think what we’re trying to say with the name ‘folkadelic’ is that it’s folk music without boundaries,” Kirkpatrick characterizes The Holler! as “minstrels,” writing about contemporary issues, even politics, but in a way that leaves the door open to multiple interpretations. ”