Artist Interview: Mountain Standard Time
While attending the inaugural Groove Music and Arts Festival in Georgetown, CO this month I had the chance to catch up with Mountain Standard Time’s guitarist Stanton “Stan” Sutton to talk about this great up and coming group from Colorado.
If you haven’t heard of MST yet you can find out more at http://mstband.com/
DubEra: Could you tell me a little bit about how Mountain Standard Time got their start?
Stan: Well we are currently around the 2-year mark with this lineup. We went through our growing pains and unfortunately had to switch out a few members, but ultimately the band started up in Nederland, CO. The music scene up near Nederland used to be insane! We all happened to cross paths up in Ned, there used to be live music nearly 7 days a week and with so many bands coming through the front range we ended up meeting at different shows.
How would you describe MST’s sound to someone who has never heard you guys before?
We kind of like to think of it as layers. We start with bluegrass in the foundation with the essential beats and strumming, then a lot of the songs call for other styles other then bluegrass. We try to not be restricted throughout the writing process, so whatever the song calls for once we start working on it we will try to adapt to it. Whether it’s funk, progressive, or something more composed song by song it changes, which is why we are called “freegrass” so we aren’t locked into one specific style. We all bring our influences together to have a no name chameleon genre.
How does the band put together your setlists?
We have a rotation; so one person writes it then the next night someone else writes it. It keeps things fresh because we all have our own ideas. It works like our air mattress rotation when the hotels aren’t the best. Lately we have been prepping all the material that we plan on recording in the next calendar year, mostly focusing on about 30 songs that we want to be prepared for that studio setting.
Recently MST put together a kick-starter to raise money for recording equipment, how did that go?
It went better then we could of anticipated. We beat our goal by a few thousand dollars to help get the equipment we needed. The way the industry is set up now you can’t rely on record sales for an income, because everyone gets their music for free whether its from illegal downloads or any of the many other outlets you can stream music from. It’s just the way that the industry has evolved and we wanted to stay with the curve of the industry. To put out a good album when your restricted by time sometimes your looking at spending up to $20,000 for one disc that becomes obsolete within the first 2 months that you release it. At that point, we aren’t made out of money, so we were trying to think about a reasonable way to break the mold.
When do you think some of this new material will be released?
We actually start tracking next Friday. Later this year we have a release planned for the fall and we are hoping to either have another one by the end of this year or spring of 2015. We have over 100 songs ready to go; right now the only issue is the time and money. We cant afford to just jump into the studio and record all day, but we nearly have 10-15 albums worth of material; so we want to put out 2 discs a year. The more content you have out, the more you can catch people’s attention.
What’s next for MST?
Well we just finished our month long residency at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom in Denver, and we are looking forward to be playing at Railroad Earth’s Hangtown Halloween Ball. After that we are starting to work on a tour based around our fall release.
That sounds great Stan; we are looking forward to watching MST grow. Thanks for sitting down with us.
No problem man, thank you!