“Wesley Schultz, 9, who wants to be an artist, said, ‘I spend a lot of time on my drawings and it turns out good ‘cause I’ve been practicing a lot.’” -The New York Times, 3/15/92
Twenty years ago, Wesley Schultz saw the future.
Back then, growing up in the New York City suburb of Ramsey, New Jersey, Wesley spent his days drawing side by side with his best friend, Josh Fraites. Today, as bandleader of The Lumineers, Wesley’s replaced his pencil with a guitar, his drawings with songs, and plays side by side with Joshua’s younger brother Jer- emiah. He still practices a lot, and it still turns out good.
But The Lumineers’ story didn’t come so easily.
It begins in 2002, the year Jeremiah’s brother, Josh, died from a drug overdose at 19. Amidst the loss and grief, Wes and Jer found solace in music, writing songs and playing gigs around New York. After battling the city’s cutthroat music scene and impossibly high cost of living, the two decided to expand their horizons. They packed everything they owned—nothing more than a couple suitcases of clothes and a trailer full of musical instruments—and headed for Denver, Colorado. It was less a pilgrimage than act of stubborn hopefulness.
The first thing they did in Denver was place a Craigslist ad for a cellist, and the first person to respond was Neyla Pekarek, a classically trained Denver native. As a trio, they began playing at the Meadowlark, a gritty basement club where the city’s most talented songwriters gathered every Tuesday for an open mic and dollar PBRs. Neyla softened Wes and Jer’s rough edges while expanding her skills to mandolin and piano. And so The Lumineers sound took shape; an amalgam of heart-swelling stomp-and-clap acoustic rock, classic pop, and front-porch folk.
In 2011, an eponymous, self-recorded EP led to a self-booked tour, and before long The Lumineers started attracting devout fans, first across the Western US, then back in their old East Coast stamp- ing grounds. Young, old and in-between, they’re drawn by songs like “Ho Hey” and “Stubborn Love,” Americana-inflected barnburners in the vein of the Avett Brothers and Mumford & Sons. They’re drawn by songs like “Slow it Down” and “Dead Sea,” slow, sultry ballads that suggest the raw revelations of Jeff Buckley and Ryan Adams. They’re drawn by the live Lumineers experience—a coming-together in musical solidarity against isolation, adversity, and despair.
The roots revival of the last few yeas has primed listeners for a new generation of rustic, heart-on-the- sleeve music—the kind that nods to tradition while setting off into uncharted territory. The Lumineers walk that line with an unerring gift for timeless melodies and soul-stirring lyrics. It will all be on display soon, on the band’s first full-length album, due in March.
Born out of sorrow, powered by passion, ripened by hard work, The Lumineers have found their sound when the world needs it most.
Wesley Keith - singer/guitarist
Jeremiah Fraites - Drums
Neyla Pekarek - cello/piano
The Lumineers EP (2009)
debut full Length coming in March of 2011
The Discovery of the Festival
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Denver's The Lumineers played to an over-capacity crowd at the Illiterate Magazine gallery and were ...Denver's The Lumineers played to an over-capacity crowd at the Illiterate Magazine gallery and were mentioned by many as "a discovery of the festival."
With skin and bones choral folk in the vein of Seattle's Fleet Foxes, The Lumineers are destined to play a larger stage at next year's event.
4 Star EP review
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The Lumineers is a seven-song triumph of melodic, lighthearted sounds that especially appeal to love...The Lumineers is a seven-song triumph of melodic, lighthearted sounds that especially appeal to lovers of Wolf Parade, TV on the Radio, and Kings of Leon (preferably before they reached MTV-billionaire status).
Live Show Review!
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The Lumineers' live show is probably the best facet of the band... There was hardly a soul in the ba...The Lumineers' live show is probably the best facet of the band... There was hardly a soul in the bar not singing.
The Queen City’s Most Promising Act in Recent Years
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The album is, compositionally, an unspoiled marvel. This project is a grand accomplishment. For th...The album is, compositionally, an unspoiled marvel.
This project is a grand accomplishment. For there is profundity in producing work this sophisticated, mature and at the same time, profoundly simple
Somewhere in every Lumineers song is a place where pure terror meets blissful wonder – the provenance of all our humanity. To this end, these are songs about everything bigger than us.
Brooklyn Transplants are, Top-To-Bottom, Full of Wisdom
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The Lumineers recently transplanted from Brooklyn to Denver, but don't let that inform your opinions...The Lumineers recently transplanted from Brooklyn to Denver, but don't let that inform your opinions. Wesley and Jeremiah do not sound like the wave-catching hipsters associated with New York's hippest borough. No, these two sound honest and unadorned. Their self-titled EP is seven songs of what we're going to call orchestral folk. There's a lot of that going around, but this is a little different. Let's go to track four — "Gun Song," a simple slow-burner marching in a straight line to its peak, adding relentless guitar and anchored by piano — and its payoff lyric: "And one day/I pray/I'll be more than my father's son." That would be enough by itself, but the disc is top-to-bottom with that sort of wisdom. These guys know what they're doing.
The Lumineers Play in Denver Now, Straight Outta Brooklyn
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The Lumineers just moved here from the insanely creative hotbed of Brooklyn, NY about 5 months ago, ...The Lumineers just moved here from the insanely creative hotbed of Brooklyn, NY about 5 months ago, and we’re ecstatic to have them. Musically, their seven-song, self-titled EP often approaches Radiohead’s signature quiet, tied-up desperation, then moves towards the Avett Brothers’ brilliance in composition and lyricism, and channels that through rhythms that often recall civil war marches.
The Lumineers; Raggedy and Ramshackle, Heartfelt and Human
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The Lumineers are a duo that moved to Denver from Brooklyn just four months ago. With all of the tal...The Lumineers are a duo that moved to Denver from Brooklyn just four months ago. With all of the talent we’ve lost to that way-hip locale in recent years, it’s delightful to see some migration happening in the opposite direction. The pair — formerly known as Wesley Jeremiah — make disarmingly simple, sincere music that’s as raggedy and ramshackle as it is heartfelt and human.
The Lumineers Floored the Crowd in Boston
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The Lumineers floored us with their ability to engage the infamously stationary Boston crowd when we...The Lumineers floored us with their ability to engage the infamously stationary Boston crowd when we saw them live.
The Lumineers on Daytrotter
The Lumineers on Daytrotter
Best of What's Next
The Lumineers on The Best of What's Next
The Lumineers @ Villians, Chicago
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Seeing The Lumineers live is like going on a great first date; it's rare. And wonderful. The comb...Seeing The Lumineers live is like going on a great first date; it's rare. And wonderful.
The combination of heart and humility this Denver trio bring to their performance makes them an undiscovered and untainted gem in the folk-rock scene. With lyrics sung just as honestly as they are written, to the heartbeat of percussion and pulse of cello and keys, The Lumineers have that intangible quality of sound the set them apart from anyone else. Their songs are searching but inviting. They sound of mountaintops and the South, heartache and triumph. They'll make you feel warm and lost at the same time. And they'll dare you not to stomp along.
"It's not about how you start, it's about how you finish," proclaimed Wesley Schultz, lead vocalist of The Lumineers as they ended their tour in Chicago Tuesday night at Villians.
The start in question was slow due to technical difficulties and sound issues (aka a bar with poor acoustics and noisy patrons) which prompted The Lumineers to unplug, jump off stage and treat the crowd to an amazing impromptu accoustic set in the middle of the bar. With Jeremiah Fraites manning the xylophone, the band had the crowd stomp-clapping, singing and cheering along to every melodic beat as they brought the house down and ended their tour with a sublime bang.
Between switching instrumments and stages, the band played an uplifting call and response set that included fan favorites 'Ho, Hey,' 'Stubborn Love,', 'Flowers in Your Hair' and a Talking Heads cover for good measure. Neyla Pekarek (cellist, vocals, etc) was all smiles as she stomped around in dangerously high heels as Jeremiah, (aptly named, and resembling a young, suspendered version of Woody Harrelson) constantly rotated behind the drums and stagefront, yelling, clapping and stomping with an energy that was contagious. Lead vocalist Wesley switched from piano to guitar as he poured his everything into the microphone. If Bob Dylan, Kelly Jones (of the Stereophonics) and Damien Rice somehow had a love child, it would be Wesley. His voice is powerful, yet raspy and belies a lick of southern heritage (they originally hail from the East Coast and now Denver).
They've been compared to the likes of Jeff Buckley, The Avett Brothers, The Head and the Heart and Ryan Adams but they have this incredible sound that can only be categorized as The Lumineers. This time next year their name will be used to help describe the next up and comers. From their first song to their last, it was easy to see why they made Paste's Best of What's Next issue and there's only more to come. Like that great first date, you don't want it to end.
If you know what's good for you, check them out now!
Check back in early 2012 for the release of their first full-length album and follow them on Twitter for updates!
The Lumineers Transform Villian's Into Their Own Concert Hall
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I am a true believer that music can change your mood for the better, and that’s exactly what happene...I am a true believer that music can change your mood for the better, and that’s exactly what happened this past Tuesday when I saw The Lumineers at Villan’s in Chicago. I was having “one of those days” when I received an email that said The Lumineers, were in Chicago for one night only. Having never given them a listen, I vowed to myself I would only go check them out if they had “it,” something that would shake me from my funk. I checked out their song “Ho Hey” and within the opening lines “(Ho!) I've been trying to do it right, (Hey!) I've been living a lonely life” I was hooked and knew I would be seeing these guys later that night.
Now Villian’s, a bar/restaurant, was not somewhere I had ever thought to see a show, but appreciated their attempt to make it work. During the opening acts, the sound was noticeably off not due to the bands themselves, but what appeared to be a problem PA system. The crowd had also taken notice and a couple music industry type folk made it a point to talk to the sound guy, a term I use loosely since it appeared to be one of his first times working here. Once some tables were moved and space was cleared in front of the make shift stage, I was able to get in a location where the sound wasn’t too bad.
The Lumineers, hailing from Denver, Colorado, took the stage and my night instantly became much better. An obvious comparison to Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros I feel is going to follow this band, but after the initial comparison it can be seen that this outfit is so much more. There is a country familiarity that brought to mind Langhorne Slim a favorite of mine. During the set apparently the sound issues were not only on our end, but also on the feedback that the band was getting on stage, it was non existent. Taking the matter into their own hands the band joined the crowd and played a couple songs on our level. Luckily those not there for the show were kind enough to stay silent through the songs to make it actually possible to hear. Their purely acoustic “Juliet” was aided by a crowd member holding the ever important glockenspiel. An accordion was being played from atop a booth hoovering above the crowd. Stomping and clapping ensued as this band showed their talent as musicians and adaptability to any given situation.
This band surged it to my top 5 most anticipated albums of 2012. While they have currently have an EP out, there is some emotion that is lost in the recordings. Seeing this band live is a great way to spend a night. Keep an eye out for possible shows in your area, or better yet they have an email list that will keep you updated. This is a band to see in that small time venue before they blow up.
The Lumineers Light Up the Tractor Tonight
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If we were to pick one non-local band that truly blew our minds this year it would be The Lumineers....If we were to pick one non-local band that truly blew our minds this year it would be The Lumineers. Seemingly out of nowhere this group from Denver, Colorado graced the stage of Neumos at the Capitol Hill Block Party (CHBP). We'd heard mumbles and whispers about this band in the months leading up to CHBP but of course kept our judgment well in check until we were able to see them for ourselves. Packing into a nearly full house with a group of sweaty, half-exhausted festival goers was well worth the effort. They have a sound that is familiar, yet unique at the same time. With a touch of jug-band and a lot of folk, these three musicians pack a wallop as they play practically every instrument you could conjure in the typical (and not-so-typical) pacific northwest folk-rock band. From vocalists using kick drums to keyboards and maracas to violas.
Somehow they grab your sub-conscious and will your body to move as you're innocently standing there listening to their performance. Even after having their gear stolen earlier this month in Los Angeles, the band is going strong and well into their first tour. What is really incredible about this group is their instant presence that you just can't ignore. Even without an EP to their name, they've already gotten some attention; they've most certainly grabbed ours.
Opening for these out-of-towners is Seattle's own Noah Gundersen. While he's somewhat new on the Seattlest Music radar, he's been a mainstay in the Seattle music scene for some time now. With his sister Abbey he's been wooing music fans of all ages from Q Cafe to Columbia City Theater. We recommend you head out to the Tractor early to catch the entire lineup. It will be well worth your time.
The Lumineers Shine on New Daytrotter Session
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Earlier this week, Daytrotter posted a session with local folk band The Lumineers, who join the rank...Earlier this week, Daytrotter posted a session with local folk band The Lumineers, who join the ranks of other Colorado Daytrotter alum such as Patrick Dethlefs, Paper Bird, and Nathaniel Rateliff.
“Daytrotter’s such a cool thing. We were so excited to be able to be a part of it. They’re super nice. It sorta happened really quick and then we were out of there and on our way to Chicago for a gig,” vocalist Wesley Schultz says.
The four-song session offers a great portrait of The Lumineers’ sound, with their heartfelt lyrics and sparse instrumentation of guitar, drums, and cello, especially on “Slow It Down,” one of three new songs featured. The set is rounded out with “Flowers In Your Hair,” from the band’s last EP, plus two more unreleased songs: “Ho Hey” and “The Dead Sea.” “Ho Hey” suffers when taken out of a live setting, where crowd members can’t shout along with its simple chorus, but overall the recordings are solid and, along with the band’s relentless touring, should garner a few new fans.
The new songs will be included on the band’s full-length album, set for release in January.
“[The new album] is sort of a combination of a couple of EPs that we recorded over the past three years or so. We took some off the first EP and some off the second, with a couple of new ones,” Schultz says.
Denver’s The Lumineers Hit NYC & Daytrotter
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Denver-based trio The Lumineers, a grass clippings favorite from Paste’s Best of What’s Next, hit NY...Denver-based trio The Lumineers, a grass clippings favorite from Paste’s Best of What’s Next, hit NYC this week with two shows last night, one at Rockwood and another at the Mercury Lounge. The band, which released a self-titled EP awhile ago but hasn’t yet widely released its full-length album, also recently stopped off a Daytrotter’s studio to record a solid set. Check it out for free below.
New Finds: The Lumineers
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The Lumineers and I are old friends – at least that's how I feel when I listen to their intimate tak...The Lumineers and I are old friends – at least that's how I feel when I listen to their intimate take on grassroots meets folk rock. With each candid ballad, The Lumineers tell a story of love and life and loss, as though they are confiding in me personally – inviting me to take solace in plotlines with which I'm all too familiar.
The Denver trio, by way of Brooklyn, has been garnering nationwide attention at staggeringly rapid rate in the last six months, and it is no mystery as to why. Their homely sound knows no boundaries amongst diverse audiences. In the last year, they have toured from coast to coast, making waves most recently at this year's CMJ festival in New York City.
As their name suggests, they illuminate the humanity in their listener – revealing their vulnerabilities as much as their strengths. The Lumineers are like the old friend who knows you better than you know yourself – offering optimism and consolation set to a melody you can't help but sing along with.
Each of their homespun songs is rich with coed harmonies featuring all three members - Wesley Schultz (vocals/guitar/piano), Neyla Peckarek (cello, piano, mandolin, vocals), and Jeremiah Fraites (percussion, yells), as well as an abundance of brilliant instrumentation.
After hearing "Ho Hey," possibly their most popular song to date, it becomes abundantly clear that the gifted trio is not trying to impress you with an acerbic wit or hide behind intricate metaphors or euphemisms. Their lyrics are honest and their work as a whole, unpretentious. Maybe it's the tambourine or the egg shaker, maybe it's the foot stomping or the clapping, or maybe it's the call and response effect of the "ho hey," either way I am genuinely dismayed when this song ends. Fortunately, that is why they make a replay button.
When facing adversity, The Lumineers implore you to "keep your head up, keep your love," over and over during the track, "Stubborn Love." What would normally sound like the trite soundtrack to an after school special actually resonates with you - thanks to the sincerity in Wesley's vocals and the uplifting melody saturated with booming percussion and the lighthearted presence of the mandolin.
Simply put, The Lumineers make you feel good. Each one of their heartfelt numbers is chock-full of sage, yet simplistic nuggets of wisdom that beg to be stitched on a pillow. Among them, "It's a long road to wisdom, but it's a short one to being ignored," and "It's better to feel pain than nothing at all; the opposite of love is indifference."
Their first full-length record is set to release early in the new year, and I for one have never anticipated a debut album more. In the meantime, you can find their 2009 self-titled EP at most digital media outlets.
For all things Lumineers, stay connected with their Facebook, Twitter, and their website.
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The Lumineers recently transplanted from Brooklyn to Denver, but don't let that inform your opinions...The Lumineers recently transplanted from Brooklyn to Denver, but don't let that inform your opinions. Wesley and Jeremiah do not sound like the wave-catching hipsters associated with New York's hippest borough. No, these two sound honest and unadorned. Their self-titled EP is seven songs of what we're going to call orchestral folk. There's a lot of that going around, but this is a little different. Let's go to track four — "Gun Song," a simple slow-burner marching in a straight line to its peak, adding relentless guitar and anchored by piano — and its payoff lyric: "And one day/I pray/I'll be more than my father's son." That would be enough by itself, but the disc is top-to-bottom with that sort of wisdom. These guys know what they're doing — after all, they moved to Denver, didn't they?
Flowers in Your Hair
Life in the City
Sleep on the Floor
|May 27, 2013 Monday||12:00 PM||The Gorge Amphitheatre||George, WA, US|
|Jun 1, 2013 Saturday||4:30 PM||Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre||Bonner Springs, KS, US|
|Jun 8, 2013 Saturday||12:00 PM||WDST - Mountain Jam||Hunter, NY, US|
|Jun 9, 2013 Sunday||8:00 PM||the governors ball music festival||New York, NY, US|
|Jun 15, 2013 Saturday||12:00 PM||Bonnaroo Music & Art Festival||Manchester, TN, US|
|Jun 22, 2013 Saturday||12:00 PM||firefly music festival||Dover, DE, US|
|Jun 29, 2013 Saturday||8:00 PM||Théâtre de l'Olympia||Paris, FR|
|Jul 3, 2013 Wednesday||3:00 PM||Hovefestivalen||Arendal, NO|
|Jul 4, 2013 Thursday||12:00 PM||Roskilde Festival in Denmark||Roskilde, Not Applicable, DK|
|Jul 5, 2013 Friday||3:00 PM||Rock Werchter||Werchter, BE|
|Jul 9, 2013 Tuesday||3:00 PM||Un Altro Festival||Milan, IT|
|Jul 13, 2013 Saturday||12:00 PM||T IN THE PARK Festival||Balado, Kinross, Scotland, GB|
|Jul 25, 2013 Thursday||12:00 PM||Floyd Fest X||Floyd, VA, US|
|Jul 26, 2013 Friday||7:00 PM||Merriweather Post Pavilion||Columbia, MD, US|
|Jul 27, 2013 Saturday||5:00 PM||Xponential Music Festival - hosted by WXPN||Camden, NJ, US|
|Jul 28, 2013 Sunday||12:00 PM||Newport Folk Festival||Newport, RI, US|
|Aug 18, 2013 Sunday||12:00 PM||highfield festival||Leipzig, DE|
|Aug 18, 2013 Sunday||3:00 PM||Lowlands||Biddinghuizen, NL|
|Aug 18, 2013 Sunday||3:00 PM||Lowlands||Biddinghuizen, NL|
|Nov 17, 2013 Sunday||7:00 PM||Le Zenith de Paris||Paris, FR|
|Nov 21, 2013 Thursday||7:00 PM||The 02 Dublin||Dublin, IE|
|Dec 1, 2013 Sunday||7:00 PM||Cirque Royal||Brussels, BE|
|Dec 2, 2013 Monday||8:00 PM||Eishalle Dingolfing||Dingolfing, DE|
|Dec 3, 2013 Tuesday||7:00 PM||Estragon Club||Bologna, IT|
|Dec 6, 2013 Friday||7:00 PM||Zenith, Strasbourg||Strasbourg, FR|
|Dec 7, 2013 Saturday||7:00 PM||Columbiahalle||Berlin, DE|
|Dec 8, 2013 Sunday||7:00 PM||Palladium - Cologne||Cologne, DE|