Preview: Mountain Sun benefit at Boulder Theater

Boulder’s Mountain Sun Pub and Brewery is turning 20, and the Boulder Theater is hosting a fundraiser Feb. 1 with some of the biggest names in funk to celebrate.

Doors for the Mountain Sun Funky Good Times Benefit open at 8:30 p.m. at the theater. All proceeds will benefit KGNU, Boulder County’s non-profit community radio station.

Denver funk band Liebermonster will open the show, followed by the Pearl Street All-Stars featuring George Porter, Jr. on bass, Kyle Hollingsworth on keyboard, Adam Smirnoff on guitar, Art Edmaiston on saxophone, Dennis Marion on trumpet, John Statton on drums and Kim Dawson performing vocals.

Porter, Jr. has been a staple in funk music since the late 1960s, when he was a founding member of the New Orleans band The Meters. With The Meters, Porter changed the landscape of funk music, playing four-hour shows that drew heavily on improvisational jamming. He has played with a wide array of musicians, including the Rolling Stones and Paul McCartney.

“He’s really awesome on stage, he follows solos really well and he gives people their time to shine,” said vocalist Dawson. “As big a presence as he is, he respects everybody so much that he’s like, ‘Yeah, you do your thing right now and I’ll just be over here, loving it.’ He’s got a really good energy and he brings a lot of history, which is something that only happens when you play with a veteran like him.”

Accompanying Porter is Kyle Hollingsworth of Boulder’s own The String Cheese Incident.

“Kyle is an excellent player,” Porter said. “He has a lot of spirit and he’s at home playing to hometown fans. It’s Kyle’s gig, we kind of build this stuff around him. We get all these great players together, but they all come because of Kyle.”

The collaborative effort continues with guitarist Smirnoff, of the prominent funk band Lettuce; Edmaiston and Marion, the horn section of Mofro; Statton, the drummer for Tiny Universe; and Dawson, who sings with The Motet.

“When it’s people that you know pretty well, it’s cool because it’s kind of like you are making good music with your family,” Dawson said.

The show is 21+ and costs $25. For more information, visit Boulder Theater’s website.

 Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Luke Ilardo at

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