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Former subway musician plays New Castle, Carbondale

Stina Sieg Post Independent StaffGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
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NEW CASTLE, Colorado Lipbone Redding doesnt just use his smoky, Southern voice to sing. He can make his mouth sound like a trombone or beat box, even.As he described it, hes a guitarist and a voicestrumentalist.But that just begins to explain all he does with his music.Originally from Pitt County, N.C., Redding has this honeyed thing going on in his songs. They sound like funk, rhythm and blues, groove and pop. They sound like pure, well, Lipbone.

What brought you to music? I used to be a subway musician in New York City. You know, music is a funny thing. There came a time in 1999 when I decided to just go for it as a street musician. I took my guitar down the subway, and I started playing music, and I realized I could make more money doing that, and I havent looked back since.His love for music, however, started a bit earlier thanks to disco.I heard disco records, my moms disco records, and that was it. I heard my first Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, and I wanted to be in a band. I wanted to play music. I think we all needed that. We all needed to shake our thing.Describe your sound. American. All-American music. But its funny because Ive traveled so much, and Ive got a lot of influences.My music and my influences are slightly anomalous (like India, South America) but I always classify my music as American, because we (Americans), we love to mash it up. Mix it up and mash it until its something new.In songs like Sixteen Tons, you make your voice sound like some sort of brass instrument. How are you doing that? How did you find out you could do that? You know I figured it out as a subway musician. It sort of erupted one night as a primal note. I realized I could wrangle that into something where I could express myself in a virtuoso or any type fashion. You know, I just like that. Where I could use my voice to sing, but I didnt have to use words, to use my voice to express something beyond words.I dont do much with my mouth. I sort of blow sideways through my lips and thats it. Al fresco, as they say.What are you trying to get across with your music? I dont mean to sound clich and corny but, you know, love each other, take care of each other and, you know, try to make each other happy. Thats a pretty simple philosophy I got, and like I said, I dont mean to sound too clich or hippie or anything. I just want to make people feel good, you know, think about things, maybe, from time to time.Do you have a favorite moment in your career so far? Thats really hard. A favorite moment in my career wow. I, you know, in general, I feel very fortunate to be able to do what I do, and I kind of take it or I try to take it all in stride. You know, sometimes its great, and sometimes its not so great. I dont really, I cant really think of any great, you know, great defining or high point of my career at this moment other than just Im lucky enough to do what I do everyday. So, waking up is a high point. Getting on stage is a high point. Connecting with an audience that Ive never met before is a high point.When you step out on stage, and youre in front of an audience, whats going through your head? Oh, Im like Oh, s – – -, am I really going to do this? (laughing). Or, you know, its different things on different days. Some days its like, oh man, I feel so good to just, after all the BS, you know, and after all the traveling and all the getting there, all the loading up the equipment and all the dealing with the, you know, the CDs and the record label stuff and all this stuff, its like oh my God, I finally get to play some music. Thank God. Thats usually what it is.Do you have any sort of, like, big hope for your future or the future of your band? Yes, I do. As a matter of fact, personally, I hope to get in front of as many people in my lifetime as possible, as a performer. You know, the more people whove heard me, the more fulfilled I think I will be. And that, artistically, I think I would like to, you know, always hone my craft and always hone my music, and I dont ever want it to be stale. I want it to always keep evolving.What would you say, these days, is the most important thing in your life? The most important thing in my life is to, uh, oh, (laughing) you ask the hardest questions. The most important thing in my life is probably to do a good show, that night, you know? And also to take care of my spirit I dont know what you would call it my spirit and, you know, to keep inspiration happening. To make good music, to keep that happening.


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