This innovative, alternative hip-hop collective from Denver, CO is giving novel insights into evolving trends within modern music. Broken Tongues has a singular, live-instrumental sound that at times can be funky or thrash, and at others, soulful and refined. The result is a genre-bending alchemy, conjuring the likes of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stevie Wonder and Atmosphere. Indeed, the genre moniker, “hip-hop” is ill-equipped to fully describe exactly what BT creates, which is an aural amalgamation of hip-hop, progressive rock, jazz and livetronica.
When brothers, Greensleeves and Zach Warkentin, founded Broken Tongues in 2008, they sought to create something novel, yet somehow familiar within alternative music. Hip-hop, with its popular appeal and ability to conform to other musical genres, provided the perfect platform to do so. In 2009, they solidified BT’s roster with talented, like-minded artists from varied backgrounds. The completion of BT’s lineup pushed the band’s sound into new explorations of harmony, timbre and live-performance. Now, after two years of hard work at CCM Studios, BT presents “Crooked Skyline,” the group’s first, full-length album, mixed and engineered by Greensleeves. The album is proof positive of BT’s many influences and talents, and of the members’ ability to harmonize all of them into one beautiful, artistic statement.
Common, LLCoolJ, Z-Trip, Mix Master Mike, Kid Cudi, InnerPartySystem, Burton Video Premiere After-Party – “Standing Sideways”, Global Dance Festival at Red Rocks Amphitheater 2011, Del the Funky Homosapien, Digable Planets, Chali 2na, Devin the Dude, Nappy Roots, Camp Lo, Bop Skizzum, MTHDS, The Congress, The Foodchain, Global Dance Festival, Boulder Creek Festival, Pulse Music Festival, LoHi Music Fest, Sunnyside Music Fest
Loose change was born circa 1986 as an underweight and premature baby at Rose Medical Hospital in Denver, Colorado. Even in the incubator, his mother and the nurses could tell that this white boy had rhythm. Growing up as a Jewish suburbanite, LC decided early on that unlike many of his racial brethren, he would not become an accountant or lawyer. Instead, he followed a a strong affinity for music and language. He began freestyling, and found a knack for creative word play (as he figured out that making fun of people is much more appreciated when it rhymes). Eventually, his passions took him to Metro State University, where he studied English, knowing full-well that if rapping didn’t take him somewhere, neither would his degree. Meanwhile, he fostered a love for hip-hop, and although not classically trained in music, he developed a great ear for constructing rhythm and melody.
Loose Change is still an avid freestyler, and he maintains a strong passion for exploring the inner workings of the English language, namely the infinite potential of word combinations within it.
Christie “CC” Chambers came from a musical family, and began performing at a very young age. Singing was something that always came natural to her and she knew early on that she would eventually pursue a love and passion for music. In 1998, she migrated to Denver, Colorado in the hopes of starting a music career. She attended the University of Colorado at Denver for music business and began singing wherever and whenever possible. During that time she performed with numerous well-known bands, and was hired as a backup singer for touring professionals. She eventually formed her own, original funk band called, CC’s Dilemma, which performed at many local venues including the famous, Red Rocks Amphitheater. After the band broke up, she continued working as a solo artist in search of a musical and creative outlet, and her determination eventually lead her to Broken Tongues. CC’s roots are in blues, folk, soul, and jazz, and her vocals lend an unappreciable texture and quality to BT’s music.
Greensleeves is a funky-ass turntablist with translucent skin and a taste for production. While growing up listening to rock, reggae and soul music, Greensleeves found an affinity for spoken-word poetry and classic hip-hop while in high-school, yet couldn’t afford a dookie gold chain or fresh high-tops… However, he did have a conscious mind and time on his side, so he began writing. After struggling to find his identity as a translucent rapper, Greensleeves began making beats with a friend of his, Rev. Box Rocker, on a Dr. Groove and recording into an old Aiwa cassette-tape machine. Years later he discovered ProTools and Reason and it was game-over from there. Through years of stumbles and successes, failed bands and lost songs, Greensleeves has refined his skill set and is back in his hometown to wreck shop and blow up the Denver music scene.
Greensleeves is an audio engineer at CCM Studios and creates all types of beats with bassist Erin Angel under the production name, PRESTOdigitist. Greens attended Smoky Hill HS, Creighton University and UNC – Chapel Hill. Go Heels!
Emerging from the depths of the Denver suburbs, Erin got his start like many other aspiring musicians: by scratching and crawling his way into the local music scene. From open jams to empty stages, craigslist ads and garage bands, Erin pursued any opportunity he found to play music. After years of failed bands, less than desirable gigs, and attempted solo projects, he came close to giving up all together. In the summer of 2009, however, he met Zach, Mike, and Ian, the three members then constituting Broken Tongues. Broken Tongues was a breath of fresh air (“we would just hang out and jam and have fun making music with no agendas or stress.”). BT was the perfect fit for Erin. It incorporated hip-hop (one of his favorite musical genres) into many other styles, and provided Erin with a new level of creative freedom. Now, Erin continues to work hard to perfect his craft in an effort to do one thing: make great music.
While many modern musicians have a tendency to focus their sound into a single genre, Zach Warkentin does not. He has always been intent on exploring music’s boundaries and curious as to how varied styles can be brought together as one. Zach’s intent to create something new out of many things familiar has helped Broken Tongues to forge a unique and dynamic sound. Zach’s guitar influences include the likes of Johnny Greenwood (Radiohead), Wes Montgomery, John Scofield and Omar Rodriguez-Lopez (Mars Volta). Zach composes many of Broken Tongues’s songs (along with Erin) and if you listen to them carefully, you may hear his many musical influences poking through.
Born in Salt Lake City, UT, Zach is a Rocky Mountains native, an avid snowboarder, and a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill, Denver University and Smoky Hill High School.