Jefferson Starship ready to rock as headliner of Craig’s Whittle the Wood |

Jefferson Starship ready to rock as headliner of Craig’s Whittle the Wood

Andy Bockelman
Jefferson Starship, pictured, will be the headlining band of the 16th annual Whittle the Wood Rendezvous Saturday. Three Colorado groups, Dixie Leadfoot & The Chrome Struts, Gone Before They Got Here and Steve Thomas Band will also perform Friday and Saturday.
Courtesy Photo

The town of Craig will be rocking this weekend, no doubt about it.

As part of the 16th annual Whittle the Wood Rendezvous and the 11th annual Bear River Young Life Car Show, four bands will be hitting the area.

Dixie Leadfoot & The Chrome Struts

Denver rockabilly act Dixie Leadfoot & The Chrome Struts will be the first group to take the stage at 4 p.m. Friday in Loudy-Simpson Park as the sound of chainsaws in the air changes to that of some energetic tunes.

The trio was in Craig for last year’s Whittle, and singer Suzannah Harris said the band — complete with new drummer Joe Clark — are looking forward to being back.

“It’s a great town and great organizers who brought us here,” she said.

Dixie Leadfoot will also be performing two sets Saturday at the Young Life Car Show, which runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in downtown Craig, with the group playing in Alice Pleasant Park.

Gone Before They Got Here

Americana band Gone Before They Got Here will follow at 6 p.m. Friday. Hailing from the Front Range, the ensemble consists of a lot of strings, including fiddle, mandolin, bass and more.

Guitarist/banjoist Mark Miller said their specialty is “a little bit country, a little bit bluegrass,” leaning toward the latter, providing both well-known material and original songs.

“We all come from different backgrounds,” he said, noting that everyone in the band brings a wealth of experience, creating a one-of-a-kind sound.

The band also played in Craig last fall as part of J.W. Snack’s Summer Concert Series.

“Craig is a town that loves its music,” Miller added.

Steve Thomas Band

The era of Reaganomics and big hair will make a comeback as Denver’s Steve Thomas Band brings their covers of 1980s names such as Bon Jovi, Rick Springfield, Journey, Poison, Loverboy and more.

The crowds have multiple opportunities to see this group, with shows free of cover charge from 8 p.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday at J.W. Snack’s or the big day back at Whittle the Wood, taking the stage at 3 p.m. Saturday.

Guitarist and vocalist Steve Thomas said the group strives to be as close in tone as the acts they emulate.

“People say we sound just like the records,” he said.

Jefferson Starship

This year’s headlining band for Whittle the Wood is none other than Jefferson Starship, which promises decades of material beginning at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, from the days when 1960s precursor Jefferson Airplane brought psychedelic hits like “Somebody to Love” and “White Rabbit” to the nation’s ears, as well as 1970s songs like “Miracles,” “Jane” and many more.

What won’t be on the setlist, according to Paul Kantner, one of the group’s founding members, is anything produced by the spin-off band known as Starship.

The long history of the band, its many incarnations and dozens of members means the Jefferson timeline has attracted fans of all walks of life, Kantner said, though the thrills of a live show are the same as they were 40 years ago.

“We play the same songs, but we elevate them and explore them in places where they haven’t been before,” he said. “The combination of sound, voices, guitar, keyboard, all that, the way that combines to form some magical element and causes emotional updoing astounds me still.”

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or

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