The Blog

Mayer Hawthorne Brings His Retro Cool to Denver This Week

Tomorrow night, put on your good Sunday slacks and a healthy daub of Brylcreem and come buy me a mint julep for the total throwback sounds of young Mayer Hawthorne, on his first Denver stop.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

The Larimer Lounge has one of the loudest paint-peeling sound systems in all of Denver, and I tend to see a lot of raw, thumping shows inside those brick walls -- whether it's the calisthenic melee of the Handsome Furs, the "secret show" with England's mega-power-poppers Supergrass, the facemelt of El Ten Eleven, or even a little set for me to DJ.

Tomorrow night, forget all that, maybe put on your good Sunday slacks and a healthy daub of Brylcreem and come buy me a mint julep for the total throwback sounds of young Mayer Hawthorne, on his first Denver stop.

Born and raised just outside Detroit, this whippersnapper (late-twenties) has come from a background of hip-hop and deejaying, and despite a lifelong affinity for the sounds coming out of his dad's old car stereo, he started making this doo-wop soul stuff just as a joke. Even the label heads couldn't believe this was new material when Mayer first played his demos for them -- even more amazing since he plays all the instruments, and recorded his swell songs at home in his bedroom.

Ever since I was wowed by how sublime vintage soul can sound on a live stage, I've been curious to try and see more shows in the genre. From releasing his first 7" on red, heart-shaped vinyl to covering M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes" in a San Francisco bar, Mayer's having some fun with it, and I'd imagine he'll bring the same tomorrow night.

I'm gonna try to buy him a drink (or a "drank," if you will) to see if we can get him a little more feisty and fiery in concert, crack through that pomaded sheen of imperturbability and let loose with some howls, a gyration or two (does he do that?) and other activities better suited to the Larimer Lounge. Come on out and have some fun.



A Strange Arrangement is out now on Stone's Throw Records.

For all of Mayer's tour dates and a free remix download, please visit Fuel/Friends.