The Rifters are a band playing their own brand of southwestern folk-country Americana and whatever-else-they-feel-like music.  Based in and around Taos and Santa Fe, New Mexico, The Rifters are (l – r) Rod Taylor (guitar, mandolin, vocals), Don Richmond (guitar, mandolin, fiddle, banjo, pedal steel guitar, dobro, harmonica, vocals), and Jim Bradley (bass, vocals). 

rifters_sepia_med_resPutting out more music than it seems should be right for three guys on stage, the Rifters employ a wide range of acoustic and electric instruments, combined with soaring three-part harmonies.  They provide a mesmerizing variety of music from driving blue-grama-grass to ethereal desert beauty. The years of playing to the dance crowds in their northern New Mexico homeland has given their music a toe-tapping rhythm that is engaging and undeniable. With a pedigree of bands like Hired Hands, the Rounders, and South by Southwest among them, the Rifters are truly a musical voice of their region of high desert vistas and mountain majesty.

The Rifters continue to carry on the tradition of two-step dance with crowd pleasing performances in the southern Colorado and northern New Mexico area.


“The Rifters are brilliant performers with an easy stage presence and great audience rapport.  They deliver a wonderful show and our audiences love them.  Acoustic, simple, marvelous writing, superlative playing makes them my most requested encore group.”
Alice Beauchamp, Director
Colorado Mountain College ArtShare

“The Rifters are a multi-dimensional and HUGELY talented group of musicians out of Southern Colorado and northern New Mexico.  They are monster players, pickers and singer-songwriters.  Period.  Any venue, anywhere, lucky enough to book this band, should consider themselves very lucky indeed!”
Bernie Murphy, Murphy’s Irish Pub, Silverthorne, CO

The Rifters website
The Rifters playing live, youtube video link (a nice representation of the sort of material they play)
Links to live renditions of songs from their live album (where you can listen and/or download from Released 2013, ‘Live At The Sagebrush’.
On Spotify
On iTunes
The Rifters current performing calendar

Don Richmond of The Rifters named Honorary Artist of the Year by Independent Music Awards Southwest

7 OCT 2014: Don Richmond of Howlin’ Dog Records and the southwestern-Americana band, ‘The Rifters‘ was named Honorary Artist of the Year for 2014 by the Independent Music Awards Southwest.

Don Richmond
Don Richmond

Richmond is a long time Alamosa, CO resident and musician, and a founding member of the near-legendary Colorado band Tumbleweed (1973 – 1990) and the Colorado-New Mexico band Hired Hands (1992). Don owns and operates Howlin’ Dog Recording, one of the most respected acoustic-oriented recording studios in the region, and has appeared on dozens of recordings by many of the region’s top artists, such as Chipper Thompson, Kim and the Caballeros, Bill Hearne, Rick Fowler, Michael Hearne, and many others. He has composed and recorded musical soundtracks for three documentary films seen nationally and internationally; Still Waiting – Life After Katrina, seen nationally on PBS, the civil rights documentary We Did It All Ourselves, aired on PBS and seen at international film festivals, and Roy Bedichek’s Vanishing Frontier that also aired nationally on PBS. Don has also been Artist in Residence and Aesthetic Institute Instructor with the Colorado Council on the Arts and has authored a book on the psychology of creativity and performance titled Getting Your Music Past the Fear, available through Amazon. There is also a website devoted specifically to the book – .

Richmond is currently working on numerous recording studio projects and touring with The Rifters in Texas. Richmond, with The Rifters, is represented by Aspenbeat.