George Cessna: 105.5 The Colorado Sound Featured Artist, January 2022

by Kevin Johnston
All photos by Erika Ryann

Hundreds of hours spent in the basements of dive bars don’t often yield respectable accolades, but for George Cessna, that’s arguably how he came to be this month’s Colorado Sound featured artist.

Cessna and his close friend Brian Buck literally clocked as much time in the basement of Denver’s beloved Hi-Dive, recording and eventually emerging with Lucky Rider, a twangy, dark and lo-fi album released in December.

“Of course, it took us hundreds of hours of work because we were still learning all the time,” Cessna tells BandWagon of the eleven echoey, country-leaning tracks. “I think it also helped give us a lot of confidence with music projects in the future. We know what we’re capable of, or not capable of, now.”

Though his first proper solo effort, Lucky Rider is not Cessna’s first rodeo. He released a split in 2019 with the artist Lathe, and is a participant and pedigree of the best (and, only?) gothic-roots dark-country supergroup in the region, Slim Cessna’s Auto Club, of which his father is the founder. 

“I think I always wanted more than anything to play in my dad’s band,” Cessna says, “so when I started doing that, I kind of hit a ‘well, now what?’ point with my own music. It’s hard to be able to believe you can make anything as intricate, strange, and beautiful as their music. And I don’t know if I ever will. But it’s nice being back in work mode on my own stuff, and I hope to keep that ball rolling.”

Lucky Rider hits the sweet spot between Timber Timbre, Low and George Jones. Hear it on the air at 105.5 The Colorado Sound and see George Cessna with his band Snakes and January 28 at The Bluebird Theater in Denver with Wayfarer.