The Boulder-based musician "Fatman" Banner plays today at The Boathouse Pub. A fan of old-time songs from the 1920s, Banner said he likes to address life and love in his original songs.
- Friday, January 30, 2009, 10 p.m.
- The Boathouse Pub, 609 Yampa Street, Steamboat Springs
Since he moved to Boulder from Pennsylvania 10 months ago, "Fatman" Banner has been paying his dues on the Colorado music scene.
Slowly building a Front Range fan base with his slice-of-life, Americana-influenced songwriting, Banner sings about life and love, war and peace, whiskey and beer in an easygoing vocal style that makes his songs hard to resist.
Tonight, he'll have his first official Colorado mountain town gig in Steamboat Springs, with a show at The Boathouse Pub. In a phone interview, Banner said former Steamboat local and fellow Boulder Talent Agency musician Holden Young helped him set up the performance.
Banner talked with 4 Points about singing songs from another time, finding a place for Pink Floyd in his music and going after big ideas on stage.
4 POINTS: There's a line in your Web site bio about "singing traditional folk songs from a simpler time." What does that mean?
"FATMAN" BANNER: I've been studying stuff from the '20s and '30s, a lot of Mississippi John Hurt. It's old, old, old, old school, and people don't really hear these songs any more. So that's why I'm learning them and playing them.
4 POINTS: What do you like about those songs?
FB: They're just really great tunes from way back. It's just one guy and one guitar, and the song has it all, right there.
4 POINTS: How is that style different from the original songs you do?
FB: With my own stuff, I go Americana with a background of Pink Floyd.
4 POINTS: What does that mean?
FB: It reminds me of like singer-songwriter-type songs, so Americana, basically. But I love Pink Floyd, so there are subtle nuances in there of kind of a Pink Floyd style.
4 POINTS: How does that work?
FB: Pretty good. It's all in the delivery, you know.
4 POINTS: Musically, how does that style fit in with Americana music?
FB: It's nice and slow and it's not hard to play, so that's what makes it easy to blend in. And the chord structures are a little bit similar - not like really tight similar - but loosely similar, so they don't clash at all.
4 POINTS: In the songs you write, what themes are you going after?
FB: Just life, and love and any big idea that I feel is important to write about. But life and love, those are the two main ones.
4 POINTS: When you go at a big idea like that, how do you get at it? Do you go for stories or observations?
FB: Basically, it's just my own take - my own personal observations, and my own take on life and my own feelings about it.