August 19 will be a red-letter day for the Faded Travelers band, Twin Creeks Brewing Co. and the Town of Vinton. Faded Travelers will be releasing its debut album “Restless Souls.” Twin Creeks will be sponsoring the inaugural Creekfest, which organizers hope will become an annual event in downtown Vinton.
Twin Creeks co-owner Andy Bishop says the brewing company has been tossing around the idea of a summer music festival for a while. They wanted to do an album release party and that “snowballed into Creekfest.”
They had considered a street party in downtown Vinton, but eventually realized there was a perfectly good stage at the Farmers’ Market just out their back door where they could showcase the brewery, Faded Travelers, and the burgeoning Vinton music scene all at once, “highlighting all that Vinton has to offer.”
Creekfest is scheduled for August 19 on the market from 5 to 10 p.m. Admission to the family friendly event is $5 with no charge for children 12 and under. This first mini-festival will resemble the familiar Mingles on the Market with music on the Market Stage, food and beverage vendors, and bring-your-own seating. The Twin Creeks taproom will be open and accessible to the Farmers’ Market as well. Bishop said they will be serving their most popular craft beers and premiering a special release as yet unnamed– possibly to be named after a song on the new album.
Bishop and the band members said that when they contacted Angie Chewning at the Vinton Area Chamber of Commerce and Vinton’s Special Programs Director Mary Beth Layman, “they were all over the idea– the town is always supportive and eager to add events.”
“We are very excited about the collaboration of Twin Creeks Brewing Co. and Faded Travelers, along with other bands and vendors, promoting good things ‘INVinton’,” said Chewning. “Basically, they asked us to help them out with an event for the album release for Faded Travelers. Twin Creeks had talked about having an annual event and this was a great way to kick it off.”
Faded Travelers will be headlining the festival, playing the entire album. The band will be joined by Josh Marlowe with Rhinestone Twang and Mason Creek.
Twin Creeks is becoming well known not just for its craft beers but for the performers on its Music on the Dock stage. All the Creekfest bands have performed at Twin Creeks previously except Rhinestone Twang.
The Faded Travelers band officially formed in late 2015. Its reputation is quickly growing; in April, the group headlined a show at the Harvester Performance Center in Rocky Mount where the members were described as “rising stars in Southwest Virginia.”
Members of Faded Travelers include Brent Dickerson (lead guitar and mandolin), Andrew Nicely (vocals, keys, and guitar) Mitch Ferguson (pedal steel guitar, Dobro, and harmonica), Kevin Van Dyke (drums and percussion), and Austin Nicely (vocals, bass, and saxophone).
All the songs on “Restless Souls” are originals, written collaboratively. The musicians say they are “just trying to sound like Faded Travelers, not anyone else,” with their music.
In fact, everything about the band is done by Faded Travelers so far, except for mixing and mastering (by Omni Studios in Nashville), from their music to their artwork to their merchandise design, booking, and marketing.
They recorded their album at their recently completed recording studio on Lee Avenue in downtown Vinton. They have established their own recording label– Railroad Town Records– in an effort “to have control and to have a voice” in creating and producing their own music.
Railroad Town Records, formed earlier this year, “is the home of Faded Travelers and Josh Marlowe and Rhinestone Twang– a record company in pursuit of real music for real people.”
The band members said they are delighted to be releasing their album in conjunction with Creekfest. They have developed a following at Twin Creeks, which opened for business in 2016 about the time Faded Travelers was gaining traction on the local music scene.
“Restless Souls” will be available at Creekfest and online through the typical sources of iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, Amazon, and through links on their website. There are 13 songs on the album.
The first track is their classic “Any Which Way the Wind Blows,” followed by “Lead and Lace,” “Firefly,” “Yesterday’s Man,” “Leave My Thoughts Alone,” “Time We Lost,” “Thunderbird,” “Vagabond,” “Cowboy and Gypsy” (with Josh Marlowe), “All That’s Left of Me,” “Last Call,” “Days of Seger,” and “Wolves.”
The band met Josh Marlowe by chance one night at Twin Creeks, “instantly clicked,” and have performed together several times since. In fact, Dickerson from Faded Travelers wrote the first two lines of Marlowe’s upcoming “Midnight Cigarette” which will be available in mid-August.
They “have the same vision, just a smidgen different enough to notice, but the same styles and ideas–similar enough to play together but not be monotonous,” with the result that they “can tap into each other’s followers.”
Marlowe describes himself as “as country as country gets.” He comes from Dry Fork in the Martinsville/Danville area. He says at an early age, he was “into country music” influenced by a neighbor who was a fan of true country. He says discovering Ricky Van Shelton “changed his life;” he “wanted to be him.” He says his goal is to “make original music, but keep the roots of country in the ’50s and ’60s style alive.”
The Rhinestone Twang band is made up of Marlowe, Alex Young, Jonathan Reynolds, Jacob Harbour, and Waylane Nunley.
The Mason Creek band, described as “bluegrass titans,” was founded in 2015 and features Gary John, guitar and vocals, Shannon Wheeler, fiddle and vocals, Glenn Scaggs, bass and vocals, and Brandon Dickerson (Brent Dickerson’s brother), banjo and vocals. They host “Good Times Thursdays” jam sessions at Twin Creeks.
At Creekfest, Mason Creek will perform for about 45 minutes; Marlowe for about an hour; and Faded Traveler for almost 70 minutes, performing their whole album live “from top to bottom.” Plus, there will be some collaboration on songs with all three bands.
Food vendors at Creekfest include Hamm’s Fine Foods, Stacey’s Grill to Go, Giardino’s Pizza, Bubbs BBQ, and Pomegranate Restaurant and Gathering Place. ID wristbands will enable guests to purchase beer tickets for up to five 16-ounce pours.
Information on Creekfest will be updated on the Twin Creeks Brewing Co. Facebook page and website up until the event.
Bishop said there is fortuitous news about Twin Creeks. Business is booming and they will be doubling the number of tanks from three to six. They are now distributing their signature beers, now on tap at Dr. Pepper Park, at a restaurant in Clifton Forge, at the Vinton Mingles on the Market, and at the EventZone Party in the Park events.
They now have nine employees and have hired Tyler Phenes as head of marketing.
“I am delighted Twin Creeks Brewery and Faded Travelers are planning a top-notch event,” said Mary Beth Layman. “Faded Travelers will be releasing their album and performing some awesome originals. Mason Creek is an experienced and very enjoyable bluegrass band. Josh Marlowe and Rhinestone Twang will round out the program with real country music. The group of organizers have a great combination of event and music experience. I hope everyone will come out and listen to the fantastic talent we have in Virginia’s Blue Ridge and ‘INVinton.’”