If you are in downtown Evergreen on a Thursday night for open mic at The Ice House or for sushi night at the Wildflower Café, you may run into Patrick Dethlefs. Whether he is playing a song or listening to other locals, eating a bowl of squid salad and sushi roll or serving customers breakfast on a weekend at the Wildflower, he is a familiar, welcome face. Evergreen is replete with many special individuals who have been around the musical scene for many years. Patrick represents one of the younger musicians in our mountain community who is contributing to the musical ambiance that makes it so nice to live in Evergreen.
“I listen to hardcore (metal) every now and then to remind me of who I am.”
Someone who has just met Patrick might be surprised to hear this sentence from him, but is it certainly a piece of the musical force that he comes from. Patrick used to come home and find his dad playing and singing in their house. He would tell his dad he sounded like Cat Stevens and ask him why he didn’t play music professionally. His dad bought a recorder and they would create future set-lists. Patrick was going to concerts and festivals when he was just three years old. He recalls listening to The Allman Brothers at Red Rocks playing a jam on “Jessica” and asking his dad when the song was going to end.
When he joined Band in the sixth grade, Patrick dropped the trumpet just as quickly as he picked it up because it didn’t quite suit him. He would play around on his neighbor’s electric bass and got intrigued about an electric guitar set. Once he got the set he felt he, “wanted to be in a pop-punk band. I listened to Christian pop punk, and NO-FX. Eventually I listened to hardcore and scream-o music.”
These days the sound of Patrick’s music is not so much screaming and metal as calming guitar and a beautiful voice singing words that seem far beyond his years. Musicians that are influencing him at the moment include Jackson Brown, the Fleet Foxes, Jay Tillman, Ray La Montagne and local artist Nathaniel Rateliff.
Patrick received the Best Teen Songwriter Award from Swallow Hill Music in Denver in 2009. He also was awarded Best Song as well as Best Performance.
Patrick lives in Kittredge and is currently playing shows around Colorado and the Four Corners. A few years ago you would have heard him playing in a three person band with other younger locals wittily named The Bluegrass Quartet. This kept new audiences wondering where the other band mate was. A new project he is a part of, Eye and The Arrow, comprised of folks living near Evergreen, will be touring in several locations in Colorado and a show in Taos, New Mexico in mid-late November. The band is working on a CD that they hope will be ready for the tour.
The Tacoma, WA native also plays banjo, fiddle and mandolin “lightly” he adds. When asked what his dream instrument would be to build he responded, “ I’d just build a pedal steel guitar and already know how to play it.”
Check out Patrick’s personal blog to stream songs, see photos and catch show dates. http://patrickdethlefs.com/