If you were looking for silver liners in the bizarre experience of the 2020-21 pandemic ski season, one of the clearest was the addition of the Music on the Mountain pop-up concerts on the local hills.
Starting in January, Aspen Skiing Co. began hosting surprise daytime concerts. Designed to be safe against COVID, the shows were located near chairlifts and designed not to draw crowds, but rather to entertain skiers and snowboarders as they pass or load a chairlift.
It was a surprise and a healthy dose of simple festive fun in a winter that for most people was full of stress and tension. Just sliding around and watching DJ Naka G or DJ Mayfly on the elevated stage while navigating the labyrinth of lines at Ajax Express was a reason to smile and celebrate the gift of being able to ski amid the international health crisis. public. Seeing members of Thievery Corporation and Ghost Light scrambling next to the Village Express was a highlight. Especially on Fridays and Saturdays in the middle of the day, bands and DJs kept popping up out of the blue – at the Alpine Springs Elevator, the Cliffhouse at Buttermilk, and Elk Camp.
Along with the unique (and extremely rare a year ago) ability to see some live music, the series also offered paid concerts for musicians in a time when there were none elsewhere.
The series is back this year with at least two events planned to help celebrate opening days, bringing shows to both Aspen Mountain and Snowmass Ski Area on Thanksgiving Day, and then to the amusement ride in Aspen Highlands on December 12.
And, as public health restrictions have eased in the last year of pandemic life, Skico is also bringing its long tradition of concerts back to the Base Zone during the Bud Light Hi-Fi concert series. long to come, as there haven’t been since Soul Rebels’ February 25, 2020 Mardi Gras concert at Snowmass Base Village (if we had known that this frigid night of music and fireworks would be our last for so long many of us probably would have savored it more).
The Hi-Fi show mostly changed later this year, focusing on spring break and end-of-season days. None of the artists have been announced.
The first to return, and rightly so, will be a Mardi Gras show at Base Village on Shrove Tuesday, March 1. This will be followed by a March 26 show at the Aspen Mountain base on March 26 and the return of the Skico Core Party – normally a big event with a prominent headliner who closes the streets and highlights sets a scene on Paradise Corner – April 2.
The biggest outdoor winter concerts of the year, the X Games Music Festival in Buttermilk, are off the schedule this year as ESPN brings vaccinated fans back to the site. So we’ll have to wait another year before we can go back to the days of 10,000 kids dancing in the snow at Panda Peak, but we can warm up with Music on the Mountain and the return of Hi-Fi shows, and that’s it. is a start.