Carbondale welcomes cowboys of a different kind |

Carbondale welcomes cowboys of a different kind

Stina Sieg
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Courtesy photo

CARBONDALE, Colorado ” When you think of West Texas, what do you imagine? Maybe it’s open skies, brown plains, perhaps a scene from “No Country For Old Men.” Or maybe you hear the soulful, slightly twangy, decidedly indie rhythms of the Thrift Store Cowboys. Started in Lubbock back in 2000, the group consists of several folks, most in their 20s, many who have known each other their whole lives. There’s Colt Miller on guitar and accordion and his brother, Clint, on bass. Kris Killingsworth plays percussion and sings. Cory Ames is on the guitar and Rhodes Chroma keyboard, with Amanda Shires on fiddle and vocals. Daniel Fluitt sings, plays guitar and writes for the band.

During a Tuesday interview, most of the band members passed the phone around as they traveled down the road in their van. Now on tour, they were headed for a gig in Portland, Ore. By Sunday, they’ll be playing more than a 1,000 miles away, in Carbondale.

So, what’s with the name? According to Daniel, one of the band’s past members was at a Hank Williams III concert when he spotted a guy with tattoos down his arms and a hat with a barbed wire band on his head.

“He said, ‘That guy’s a thrift store cowboy.’ We took it from that. The name kind of stuck.”

Describe your sound. What are you trying to say? Kris: “Well, I think a lot of it just comes from the openness in West Texas in general. There’s a lot of openness in our music. We try to express where we’re from.”

“I don’t know if we really have a message per se, but if you grow up in West Texas, you have to create ” or else you go crazy.”

What drew you guys together? Kris: “The bass player and I lived together. And the singer, Daniel ” we’ve known each other since we were five. We used to play together. Daniel met Cory and Amanda at college.”

“There’s not a whole lot of musicians (in Lubbock), so the style has changed a lot since we first started playing together.”

Why do you love music? Cory: “Oh, sometimes I don’t. But, oh, I don’t know. It’s something you can’t get with another art form. Especially live music is so much better than anything recorded.”

Do you have any musical heroes? Clint: “I kind of like the stage presence of certain bass players, like Flea. They put something to entertain in there. They don’t just stand there. One of my heroes growing up was the Old 97s.”

“And of course my dad. He used to play his guitar like all the time since we were growing up.”

What’s the most important thing in your life?

Daniel: “At least right now, music, just playing music, just getting out in front of a lot more people. That’s what I’m focused on.”

Colt: “Um, I’m not really sure. Let’s see. I’m not really sure. I guess to not stagnate myself, to have more experiences.”

“Music makes me happy.”

Kris: “Since I’ve been 13, it’s been music. It always comes first.”

“Yeah, music. I also like to cook.”

Cory: “Um, well, music right now. It’s what you’re doing. You get to be with your friends and go and meet more people. Second to that, I’d say my martial arts skills. Third to that, castle building. I’ve got a lot of balls in the air.”

Clint: “I would say, just friends and family. Just sharing everything with them. The guys in the band are probably my best friends in the whole world, and that means a lot to me. I wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world.”

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