Queen City Sounds Podcast S2E37: The CBDs

The CBDs, photo by Tom Murphy

The CBDs are a Power Folk Trio formed in the Boulder area in 2013 when the members of the band more or less met each other through their wives and via the world of CU Boulder. Burt Rashbaum (keyboards, vocals), Evan Cantor (acoustic guitar, harmonica, bass, vocals) and Roland LaForge (electric guitars, vocals) all grew up on the East Coast of America and were electrified by the counterculture of the 60s and 70s and all witnessed that great wave of music and art as it was happening before they separately found themselves moving to Colorado in the mid and late 70s. Rashbaum has a background in writing and has been a published author for decades, Roland LaForge was a geologist who spent times in volcanoes around the world gathering data for analysis among his other duties and Evan Cantor in addition to more mundane jobs was a part of Colorado’s avant-garde as a member of Walls of Genius with Little Fyodor (aka Dave Lichtenberg) who blurred the lines between punk, tape collage and noise and Cantor experienced the rich and great underground scene of 1980s Denver and Boulder including witnessing shows at The Packing House and The Junkyard including the legendary 1986 show with Einstürzende Neubauten the tickets for which were painted bones one had to purchase at Wax Trax. Cantor was also in various other left field punk and experimental rock bands over the years but upon befriending his current bandmates he reconnected with some of his own roots in that genuinely cool end up hippie subculture and its own musical leanings.

The CBDs have been playing shows along the front range for the past decade and are now finally releasing a double album conceived of as representing the kind of set list one would hear at one of the band’s performances. Two Sets is the kind of record that could have come out fifty years ago, a decade ago or now and its refreshing and spontaneous energy draws you in immediately into its stories of life, love, bemusement at some of the situations one finds oneself navigating through life. In moments it recalls the off the cuff brilliance of the Grateful Dead or The Band and in others of Frank Zappa in his mode of thoughtful storytelling. It’s a varied record that flows so well it’s like listening to the kind of movie one would hope someone would make of a Tom Robbins novel but one more rooted in instantly relatable and evergreen themes of human connection that bypass sectarian political and cultural divides. It’s a gentle yet potent reminder of an era of idealism and open humanity that never needed to get tarnished and one that seems accessible, practical and nurturing.

Listen to out interview with The CBDs on Bandcamp give a listen to Two Sets on Bandcamp as well (linked below) and witness the easy and creative connection of the band for yourself live. For more information on the band and their future exploits visit thecbds.com.

Upcoming Live Dates for The CBDs:

3/5/23: Very Nice Brewing Company, 4-6 pm, 20 Lakeview Dr., Nederland, CO
3/18/23: BOCO Cider, 6-8 pm, 1501 Lee Hill Dr., Boulder, CO
5/5/23: The Rock Garden, 6-9 pm, 338 W. Main St., Lyons, CO
6/6/23” The Local, 7-9 pm, 2731 Iris Ave., Boulder, CO