From Small Town Lights to Center Stage

The Patti Fiasco photo by Cynthia Wilson
The Patti Fiasco photo by Cynthia Wilson

Kicking off the new year, the Patti Fiasco will perform the ‘Love Fest’ at Washington’s with their longtime friends MAMA LENNY AND THE REMEDY on FRIDAY, JANUARY 25. Members of the Patti Fiasco include Ansel Foxley dobro, Alysia Kraft lead vocals and guitar, Dee Tyler lead guitarist, Niles Mischke bass and Peter Knudson, drummer. The band got its start on the small town stages in Wyoming but they have become one of Fort Collins most sought-after performers.

The Patti Fiasco photo by Cynthia Wilson
The Patti Fiasco photo by Cynthia Wilson

Alysia Kraft says, “We’re celebrating community— especially a community that has a badass ladies both behind the scenes and on the stage. I started out as a fan of their band, but got to know the ladies of Mama Lenny and the Remedy as people… and particularly… as women… living their politics, using their platform to speak about their truths, and empowering all the ladies around them (onstage and off).”

 

The Patti Fiasco managed ten years of successful music making together through all the challenges of life. A band is like an intimate relationship and they have been creative together and put out music that is eclectic and appealing to a span of generations. The first moments of that band are when Alysia knew she found her calling. She put her mouth up to the microphone and the feelings radiated the room, the feelings of finding her calling and knowing she was born to perform.

The members of Mama Lenny,  Laniece Schleicher, backed by Crip Erickson (drums); Ben Prytherch (bass); Greta Cornett (trumpet);  Annie West (saxophone/backing vocals); Kenneth Monks (guitar);  and Kelly Keeler (backing vocals), saw this too and invited the Fiasco to join FoCoMx.

Greta was leading FoCoMa and organizing FoCoMx at the time and recognized the talent of The Patti Fiasco. From the beginning,  the Fiasco was Mama Lenny’s favorite band, even the bass player Ben designed his own fan shirt and sported it anytime Patti went on stage. That propelled The Patti Fiasco to take up roots in Fort Collins and make it their musical home.

Alysia says, “My best friends are the ladies I’ve met through music. They’re my ride-or-die best, best friends. I realize how rare and precious those connections are… and I’m grateful for those super awkward moments I spent like a little kid following them around until we were friends. It’s hard shit being a woman in the music industry. Especially a woman who’s not really easily objectified and sold as some kind of package. But there’s nothing stronger than that solidarity you find in other women who are going to write songs and play music no matter what.”

Fast forward to today and both of the bands have evolved so much that they will play before their devoted Fort Collins following. Gone are the days of the vacant venues. The two female fronted bands will rock the town and celebrate a city of music they were integral in supporting and growing. They will celebrate 10 years of playing together, supporting each other,  and living life together in this town as musicians.

The love fest will celebrate the friendships, the families created, all the shows they attended and supported each other and basically all the trials of life. It is a testament for Alysia to play alongside such an influential band as Mama Lenny. She has opened for Bon Jovi this year, played before Blonde, played with Big Theif and Shovels and Rope. But this show means the most to her because it is with the people who built the firm foundation of music in her life.

Mama Lenny and the Remedy recalls the tradition of the sexy, soulful songbird backed by a band that looks as good as it sounds. Fronted by the startling vocal and emotional power of They have been noted as one of Colorado’s breakout bands. Mama Lenny and the Remedy has opened for internationally renowned acts Alison Kraus and the Union Station, The California Honeydrops, JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound, and the English Beat, and are widely recognized as one of Colorado’s breakout bands. 

The music community is strong in Fort Collins. It is a place where a band can learn how to really be a band and also feel big community support. There are so many resources available to bands just starting out to bands that want to level up and expand their reach. The Patti Fiasco has been on both sides of the coin.

Kraft shares a bit of her knowledge to anyone coming on the scene, “My advice to anybody starting out is to get brave and reach out to the ladies that really inspire you. Just find a way to be around them. I’ve had life-changing conversations with Laniece (of Mama Lenny and the Remedy) in the ten minutes of conversation we managed uninterrupted after the last couple Lovefests. I bought an electric guitar after sitting in a room listening to Bevin Luna and Jen Korte jam and wanting so badly to rock like that. I’ve fallen in love with and been transformed by music that I never would have listened to thanks to Erin Roberts (Porlolo), Staci Foster (Whippoorwill) introduced me to Hill Country campfire folk jams that inspired me to the kind of writer who could hold my own in those circles. Just being included, invited, and encouraged has been the best gift given to me. I always to try to extend that to rad ladies I meet. “

 

 

 

 



 

About Cynthia Wilson 119 Articles
Cynthia Wilson is a multimedia journalist with a Masters in New Media Journalism and a Bachelors in Journalism with a minor in Music Theory and Composition. She has a grassroots digital publication, Argento Studios. She is a content producer and co-founder of The Nashville Music Masters. She was the social producer for Green Mile Films, PR for Women’s Grand Prix at the US Pro Challenge, and Chief Relationship Officer for technology company Studio Hyperset. She is a music journalist, freelance writer, and digital content producer.

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