Country singer Dierks Bentley's connection goes far deeper than his new song, "Goodbye In Telluride." Bentley recorded his ninth album, "The Mountain," at Studio in the Clouds just outside of Telluride after finding inspiration there when he performed at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival last year. The musician even flew in his songwriters for a five-day retreat in the mountains.
Over Labor Day weekend, Bentley will host the first Seven Peaks Music Festival on a 240-acre ranch in Buena Vista, featuring fellow country stars such as Miranda Lambert, Elle King and Sam Bush. More acts were announced Tuesday. Bentley talked to Colorado Matters about Colorado, the new record and singing with Brandi Carlisle.
On falling for Telluride and for Colorado:
"I did, I really did fall hard. I’ve been in Telluride before, and my brother’s been trying to get me to come back out there ever since. Something about going back out there with kids and the bluegrass festival obviously, it just felt like a really natural place to be. It felt like home. So I started coming back out more often, and eventually ended up making a record there last year."
On choosing Buena Vista for his music festival:
"We’ve been talking about doing a festival for a long time. When you do a festival in Colorado, you want to feel like you’re in the Rockies, and doing it in Denver just didn't really feel like that. It’s a big city and the mountains are pretty far away. This location in Buena Vista came up. I came to BV, and it’s just the perfect location. These 14,000-foot mountains visible from the festival site. Great town, great people. Everybody wanted to work with us and was really excited about country music coming to the area. Again, it all goes back to us trying to find more ways to spend more time in Colorado."
On meeting the owner of the Studio in the Clouds:
"We pulled up to his studio, which is really just a house on a mesa up there in Telluride. First thing I notice this dog, that looked more like a wolf, was guarding an animal carcass. I said, 'Ah, that’s interesting.' We came around the corner, and there he is on the table saw cutting up an elk. He comes over to say hi, and he's got flecks of flesh all over him, and he’s got these really old tools he’s using. We’re like, 'Who is this guy? This is amazing.'"