Strings holiday shows next week in Steamboat | SteamboatToday.com

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Strings holiday shows next week in Steamboat

Country singer Kathy Mattea and clown Jim Jackson featured

If you go

What: Jim Jackson in “A Nose for Space”

When: 11 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday

Where: Sheraton Steamboat Resort

Cost: $10 for adults, $2 for children

Call: 879-5056; tickets available at href=”http://www…. “>http://www.stringsmusicfestival.com

What: Kathy Mattea

When: 7 p.m. Tuesday

Where: Sheraton Steamboat Resort

Cost: $40 for adults, $25 for children

Call: 879-5056; tickets available at href=”http://www…. “>http://www.stringsmusicfestival.com

If you go

What: Jim Jackson in "A Nose for Space"

When: 11 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday

Where: Sheraton Steamboat Resort

Cost: $10 for adults, $2 for children

Call: 879-5056; tickets available at href=”http://www…. “>http://www.stringsmusicfestival.com

What: Kathy Mattea

When: 7 p.m. Tuesday

Where: Sheraton Steamboat Resort

Cost: $40 for adults, $25 for children

Call: 879-5056; tickets available at href=”http://www…. “>http://www.stringsmusicfestival.com

— On her most recent recording and in shows like the one she'll play Tuesday for Strings Music Festival, country musician Kathy Mattea has learned that something very simple can be very powerful.

"It's more of a living room kind of feeling, so there's an intimacy to it, and there's a conversation with the audience that can be very intimate and very powerful," Mattea said about the acoustic setup she'll perform with her guitarist, Bill Cooley, for the holiday concert.

"Really, for me, it's a real visceral connection to the song itself. All the bells and whistles are gone, so it's clear which songs stand up by themselves," she said.

Mattea performs songs from her career as a heavily folk-influenced country singer and songwriter at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Sheraton Steamboat Resort. Tickets are $40 for adults and $25 for children.

A fundraiser after the concert features drinks and food by Sheraton Executive Chef Jon Demel. Tickets to that event, which is hosted by the Sheraton Steamboat Resort, are $50. Proceeds will go toward the 2010 Strings Music Festival season. Mattea will be on hand for the fundraiser.

Mattea is known for drawing all elements of American roots music into her songs, using folk, country, bluegrass and gospel influences to craft music that pulls the listener in. She's released 17 full-length records and won two Grammy Awards, one for Best Female Country Vocal for the song "Where've You Been," and another for Best Southern/Country/Bluegrass Gospel Album for the holiday-themed "Good News."

Her most recent recording, "Coal," is composed of Mattea's folksy renditions of old, simple and striking mining songs that get back to her West Virginian roots. The record gets back to Mattea's bluegrass days at the start of her 25-year career, she said.

"In many ways, it's come full circle. I started in a folk tradition sitting in a circle playing songs, and it was really about the camaraderie and the synergy of the whole thing. … And in many ways, that's what I'm doing now, except the level of musicianship has gone higher," Mattea said.

Mattea said she plans to perform her favorite holiday songs during the concert Tuesday. Among those favorites is "Mary, Did You Know?" which was the centerpiece track of the Grammy-winning "Good News"; and the Scottish song "Christ Child's Lullaby" from the same album.

Family concerts Monday

Colorado Springs clown and circus performer Jim Jackson will take on the questions of space and flying through it in two family concerts Monday.

The program, "A Nose for Space," is set to live, original music by Benjamin Pratt. Performances are at 11 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday at the Sheraton Steamboat Resort. Tickets are $10 for adults and $2 for children.

Jackson's program is designed for all ages and runs for about 45 minutes with about 10 minutes of audience interaction after the show, said Jennifer Shea, Strings Music Festival marketing and development director. The two showings offer families an entertainment option during the busy holiday season, Shea said.