Whether it’s a full seated concert in the Civic Centre, an outdoor performance in the Spirit Square, or a nighttime band playing in a pub, music is part of the culture here in Golden.
The community jam sessions, however, could be described as the heart and soul of that music culture.
“My first jam ever was right here on the stage in Taps,” said Paul Desgranges, who might be more commonly know as Pablo Euphoria. Since his first performance on the Taps stage nearly five years ago, Pablo has begun working as a host, among others, at the weekly Thursday night jam session.
Like so many people, Pablo was passing through and got drawn into the community.
“I got out of the truck and said ‘I’m going to check out this town.’ I’m still here.”
Although there were many reasons to get pulled into a place like Golden, the ski hill being at the top of that list, it was also the culture of music in town that he found intriguing.
“The Taps jam night was huge, I remember coming here and there were lines every Thursday, people couldn’t even get in,” he said. “It was crammed from the front to the back, everyone was dancing, and there were so many people jamming.”
In his five years here, Pablo has seen its popularity go up and down, although he says the music has gotten stronger. Over the years there have been so many musicians who have called Golden home, giving the scene a special vibe.
“There was such a high class of musicians here.”
The Wolf’s Den restaurant, although newer to the scene, also holds an open jam session on Sunday afternoons, hosted by local musician John Jenkins.
“It starts earlier and it ends earlier, so it’s a totally different feel than at the pubs. It’s perfect for families, there’s a lot of blue grass, blues, sometimes even trumpets show up,” said Pablo. “That scene is really blooming, you actually see people who have come from other places just to check it out.”
The popularity of the jams goes in cycles, especially from season to season, but Pablo is optimistic this winter will bring some new life into Golden music.
“We have so many great musicians here, but at times it’s getting a little repetitive. I’d like to see some new faces coming out, I’m looking forward to what this winter brings,” he said.
It may be nerve-racking getting up on stage for the first time, but according to Pablo, all you need to do is bring three songs.
“We’re not professionals doing this…anyone new wanting to try it out, just bring three songs. Whether you’re good or bad, it doesn’t matter, you still get three songs. That way we can build a better community around it,” he said. “I’d love to see some new jammers this year.”