Sneak Peek: Preview Song “Fort Benton” from Caroline Keys’ New Album

Coming to Montana in 1998 to captain a boat at Glacier National Park, now local musician Caroline Keys will be releasing the first album with her newest project, The Lanesplitters, this Friday, June 2nd.

North-Carolina/Virginia native Keys now has 10 years of experience playing regional shows with local staples: including Stellarondo, The Best Westerns, and The Broken Valley Roadshow. Thus, the 10 track album embodies the spirit of Montana that the singer-songwriter has come to know over the years.

The Top Hat is hosting the album release party for Mean to Stay on June 1st, the night before its set release. For those who are impatient to hear what this artist’s creative palette translates to in-studio, check out the sneak-preview of Keys’ song “Fort Benton”

The song is written from the perspective of a character Keys met in Fort Benton, when her bluegrass unit Broken Valley Roadshow played the town. After the show, members were picking for fun in a dive-bar, where Caroline recalls:

“A patron of the bar heard our ruckus in the corner and introduced himself: ‘I am the mayor of Geraldine, Montana but I have to come to Ft. Benton to drink.’ How could a song not sprout from there?”

After the songs for the album were selected, the whole ensemble (Gibson Hatwell: pedal steel, Jeff Turman: upright bass, Nate Biehl: electric guitar, and Matt Tipton: percussion and horns) journeyed to Type Foundry, an independently owned studio in Portland, Oregon, to record. It was on the road that “The Lanesplitters” came to light; seen as a bumper sticker displayed by some motorcyclists en route (

A motley crew of Missoulians, these band members truly eat, breathe, and sleep the Missoula music scene. Show your support for the local scene by hitting The Top Hat in downtown Missoula on June 2nd for the album release party.

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