The blue-eyed baby sat happily on his mom's lap, gumming her index finger as a musician sang and strummed an acoustic guitar.A short-legged dog casually cruised the room, finding a spot to rest between two folding chairs.Hanging from the wall, one guitar embellished with colorful chunky jewels caught the natural light coming in from the front door.Friday was no ordinary day at Steve's Guitars in Carbondale.
Spirits were high as music lovers - of all ages and breeds - crowded into the intimate venue to listen in on KDNK's Guest DJ Day."I think it's great to hear music coming out of Steve's Guitars during the day," said Amy Kimberly, KDNK development director. "We've been throwing around the idea to broadcast live from Steve's for a while."As part of the ongoing KDNK Fall Sustainable Radio membership drive, Guest DJ Day featured live music from a range of genres including jazz, bluegrass and folk. The goal of the event was to raise $5,000.Songwriters John Oates and Grammy Award-winner Jimmy Ibbotson, both of Woody Creek, were among the valley talent recruited to help raise funds for community radio.
"Jimmy said it was a real pleasure to come down and sing his heart out during the day," Kimberly said. "The musicians, they've been loving it. People have been coming in and out, and there have been a lot of kids and dogs. This goes to show the amazing community we live in - it's just an exemplary day with great music, nice people and Sopris gleaming."Between songs, guest DJs such as Ibbotson took the time to share a few stories behind the music. He recalled the inspiration behind his song "Dance Little Jean," which he recorded as a member of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band."I wrote this to try and win back my teenage bride ... and I knew my little daughter Sarah Jean would dance to it," Ibbotson said. "This one was a our first Top 10 country hit. Buck Owens wouldn't play it though because he thought it was a about a little girl born out of wedlock."Oates recalled the reason he penned "She's Gone" - he was stood up for a date - and spoke about his love of songwriting.
"The writing process is kind of like magic ... like exercising a muscle. It's hard to get started, but once I get into it, I'm on a roll," he said. "My perfect vision is to stay at home and write."Singer-songwriter Reed Waddle, of Destin, Fla., was part of Friday's lineup of talent. He and Oates have been collaborating recently, writing the song "Blue Eyed Soul," which they recorded Thursday and performed live for the first time on the KDNK airwaves."I feel especially blessed to be working with Mr. Oates. I came here last winter to write - I traded my flip-flops for cowboy boots," Waddle said. "Then I got a call from John Oates one day. ... It's been a really inspirational experience for me. There's definitely a part of my soul in these mountains."Waddle opened for rocker Stephen Kellogg, who also volunteered for Friday's Guest DJ Day, at the Belly Up in Aspen Friday night. Waddle was happy to stop in to Steve's Friday afternoon to share his songs with KDNK supporters."I've been here a couple of times and every time I come here, I think I look at all the guitars more than listen to the music," he said. "For me, it's like walking into a candy store."