Hip-hop festival hits Vail Valley Saturday
Vail Valley CO Colorado
VAIL VALLEY, Colorado –Who said an Irish pub in Colorado’s Vail Valley can’t host hip hop? Finnegan’s Wake in Avon will host its first hip hop show on Saturday.
Monty Ambriz, who performs as Native, will headline at Finnegan’s with D.J. Dominic Deadbeat. The duo are from Fort Collins, Colorado. Other performers are Sweet Leaf, Aklock, and Qbala.
The free show will start at 8 p.m.
“We’ve never done a hip hop show, let alone one with different acts, and i’m really excited about it,” said Michael Welle, Finnegan’s general manager.
We were able to grab a few words from Native earlier this week.
1) Vail Daily: Where did you get the name Native?
Monty Ambriz: Just because I’m a native Coloradan, is one of the reasons I’ve had it. I was born and raised in Fort Collins. Also, I am half Native American … so I kinda pulled it from both of those.
2) How did you get started with this whole music thing?
Ambriz: Well I probably started about the age of 14, just kind of freestyling … when I was about 18 or 19 I started entering freestyle battles, and I won a few and lost many. But it definately got me started on that kind of route.
About the age of 20, 21, I started to see a lot of the MCs starting to write music, and starting to lay down tracks and stuff, so that kind of got me encouraged to start doing that. From there I pretty much just started writing music and layed down my first album last year. It’s called, “Unorthodox Message.”
I have a second one coming out this fall. It’s just me and a DJ. His name is Dominic Deadbeat. He makes a lot of my beats as well. I’ve been with him for about three years.
3) With what specific genre would you identify your music?
Ambriz: I think a lot of indie music influences me, but I’m not really sure what kind of genre we are. I think how we’ve been doing music lately is almost a new type of hip hop. We’re mixing in a lot of old Mexican music, and a lot of oldies and stuff like that.
We definately try to keep it kind of classic though, with kind of that old hip hop underground that me and my friends have grown up on.
4) How would you describe the atmosphere of your show? What can people expect this Saturday at Finnegans?
Ambriz: I love performing, performing is probably my favorite part of hip hop. I mean, I love writing music and I love recording. But the performance is really where … an artist expresses themselves, and how they actually wrote the songs. My performances are usually the better part of my hip hop. The atmosphere can be very ecstatic, especially with the type of groups I’m bringing up.
5) How many original songs do you have now?
Ambriz: Oh, I would say I have about, probably 40 to 50 original songs. I have a lot of new songs, and then there are also quite a few old songs that didn’t make the last album and are just kind of laying around.
6) Can you tell me anything about the other groups that will be playing with you this Saturday?
Ambriz: There’s a group called Sweet Leaf, which consists of Eye Cue and Emily, and they’re on a lot of my tracks as well. They’re a group from Loveland, Colorado, and they’re a really good duo.
The second group that’s coming up is Qbala … she’s out of Loveland as well. She’s a great performer, not to mention a great MC and lyricist. She’s a good freestyler.
Next is Aklock, who’s similar to me. He’s pretty much a solo artist, and he’s definately a real indie type of performer, he’s that type of scene. He’s definately got real Sage Francis type of feel … He’s an amazing studio MC as well.
7) How did you meet all these guys?
Ambriz: We actually just wound up coming together. We’ve been doing a lot of shows separatley down here together for so long. We’ve been in Denver, Fort Collins, Colorado Springs – basically the front range.
And up and down this area we’ve been kind of fighting for shows, until we kind of just decided we should try to work together, instead of working against each other. Ever since then we kind of sparked a friendship, all of us. We all kind of hang out now, and we all make music together.