Front Row Podcast

What is the alchemy that makes music happen? What are the ingredients that go into its creation? Who are the tribe of people that create this sound?

Swallow Hill Music presents the world of music to through the varied people that make it happen. Teacher, performer and world traveler Martin Gilmore talks, plays and chats with luminaries of the music world known and unknown, seen and unseen. National performers, local songwriters, iconic instrument shop owners, managers, luthiers, sound engineers, and journalists are all brought into the conversation one at time to fill in the picture of how music is made, appreciated, and transformed.

You can stream the episodes below, or to download them please visit our LibSyn page.


N.B. Our host, Martin Gilmore, is on an adventure in Egypt. More podcasts to come when he returns stateside!

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Episode List

  • Episode 22, Jan 21 – Janet Feder & Conrad Kehn

    Denver has a cutting edge avant-garde music scene exploring the borders of conventional music. Martin is joined by two prestigious Denver musicians and composers versed in prepared instruments. Janet Feder is an acclaimed guitarist and “musical experimenter.” She has a bag of gadgets that expand her guitar into something unexpected, new and wonderful. Conrad Kehn teaches music composition at the University of Denver. For this episode, he found some things in his car and changed the piano into a collage of new sounds and depth. Martin, Conrad and Janet talk about the norms of music and art, what it’s like to push the boundaries of sound and what listening means. It’s an in depth discussion about something musicians often take for granted. Check out their websites: Enjoy!

  • Episode 21, Dec 19, 2014 – Pete Wernick

    Pete Wernick is one of the most famous figures in the bluegrass banjo community and a figurehead of bluegrass music. His career has spanned five and a half decades of bluegrass music. Martin sits down to talk to Dr. Wernick about bluegrass music, banjo, his role in the International bluegrass music association and Hot Rize’s new record ‘When I’m Free’. Enjoy! More to come in the new year.

  • Episode 20, Dec 12, 2014 – Strange Americans

    The Strange Americans were recently featured as one of CBS Denver’s top up and coming bands of 2014. They have a new record That Kind of Luster” that was released in September. Martin sits down with Trent Nelson and Matt Hoffman to talk about Strange Americans, composition and music theory degrees. Enjoy!

  • Episode 19, Nov 25, 2014 – David Thomas Bailey

    David Thomas Bailey and Martin have been friends since Martin moved to Denver in 2007. David is a notable guitarist who plays a really unique jazz style on a really unique 7-string guitar built by Greg German from Episode 16 (you can also hear some of his music on this episode). Martin and David talk about digital influence in the analogue world, composition and the band Faceman, which features David on guitar and bass…simultaneously…<a href=””>Check them out</a>!

  • Episode 18, Nov 12, 2014 – Dave Devine

    Dave Devine is an institution on the Denver Jazz scene. A true virtuoso and explorer of what guitars are capable of, Dave and martin talk about the divisions between academia and non-academic music…and what to do about it. Enjoy

  • Episode 17, Oct 20, 2014 – Patrick Dethlefs

    Patrick Dethlefs is a fantastic young Denver songwriter. He has a lot to say about songwriting, performing and music in general. Martin and Patrick dive in depth about the songwriting process and talk a bit about their long friendship.

  • Episode 16, Sept 9, 2014 – Greg German

    Greg German is an artist by trade. Not just an artist with guitars and sound, but a painter, and medical illustrator. His unique vision has brought the world some incredible and (dare I say it) revolutionary instruments. Martin has known Greg for almost ten years. They cover a lot about guitar design and building in this conversation. All while Greg works…he never stops.

  • Episode 15, August 7, 2014 – Courtney Hartman

    Courtney Hartman is the lead guitar player in the Grammy nominated bluegrass band Della Mae. Martin and Courtney have been friends since they were kids competing in fiddle contests. Courtney was a master picker way back then and now she is in one of the best up and coming bluegrass bands on the scene.

  • Episode 14, July 24, 2014 – Slam Nuba

    Slam poetry is a rapidly rising folk art, and Slam Nuba is at the forefront of the craft. With several national competitions under their belt, Slam Nuba will return to the championships in Oakland, CA this August to try to claim the national title again.

  • Episode 13, July 9, 2014 – Make Music Denver

    Martin sits down for a panel discussion to weigh the benefits and disadvantages of a formal music education against an apprenticeship method. The panel includes a cast of experts from varied backgrounds including Colleen Jackson, Steve Seifert, Dave Devine and Eric Thorin. “This was our first live podcast…I learned some lessons.” – Martin Gilmore

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