NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND

Every bar worth drinking at in these great United States has a character like Nato Coles. They know the jukebox so well that the reference catalog becomes meaningless. They're on first-name-basis with all the bartenders, spout trivia like someone's actually listening, and have a particular stool with their ass-print permanently worn in. But most importantly, they're storytellers, historians of low-culture, grizzled raconteurs that can effortlessly shake-out a cocktail of true facts and utter bullshit until it becomes as intoxicating as their "usual."

Originally from Milwaukee, Nato Coles is a journeyman of Midwest punk, getting his start in bands like Modern Machines and the Shrubbers. While he's now been away for longer than he lived there, Brew City still feels like home for Nato. "That's the city that taught me pretty much everything I know," he elaborates, "learning how to tune a guitar, and learning how to avoid getting mugged." Modern Machines made some splashes in the north-coast punk community of the early 2000s, building upon a strong local following gleaned from legendary house shows and other DIY venue spaces. Striking out on the highway with the "MoMacs," as they were known to their fans, gave Nato his first taste of the touring lifestyle and also his first brush with the Twin Cities. "There's a Hold Steady line about knowing Mary Tyler Moore and Profane Existence. I knew Garrison Keillor and Siberia," he says with a laugh. "I would come up here by myself and stay for week, go out and hang out every night and made a ton friends. I kind of realized that the Twin Cities has so much to offer."

While he was definitely enamored with Minneapolis and St. Paul, Mr. Coles had always been a bit of a rambler and wasn't ready to settle down yet. When Modern Machines broke up, Nato and bassist Danny Z picked up and moved to Brooklyn to form a few more projects, Used Kids and Radio Faces, that kept them occupied for almost three years. The time in Bucktown was a watershed experience for him, and Nato cites his late Radio Faces bandmate Jamie Ewing as a hugely influential figure in his musical development. [...] A few more years and a few hundred shows later, Nato moved back to the Midwest and landed in Minneapolis, where he formed the first group to exclusively feature his songwriting talents, The Blue Diamond Band, with a stable of local punkers to back him up. If the MoMacs were Nato's "basement band" then BDB is unquestionably his "bar band," with names like Bruce Springsteen and Thin Lizzy looming large in their list of influences. While he's quick to point out that their debut full-length Promises to Deliver"is not a Springsteen-clone album," Nato and the Boss do seem to share thematic interests. [Zach McKormick, City Pages]

Past Shows


Jul
8
th
2019
7th St Entry
Jun
8
th
2018
7th St Entry
Jun
8
th
2018
7th St Entry

Lee Bains III & the Glory Fires

with Eleganza! and NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND
Oct
8
th
2016
Indeed Brewery
Oct
8
th
2016
Indeed Brewery

Indeed Brewing Company's Hullabaloo 2016

NO COVER
with Night Moves, Butcher's Union, NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND and more!
May
20
th
2016
Indeed Brewery
May
20
th
2016
Indeed Brewery

WHIRLYGIG 2016

with Eleganza!, NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND, Sam Cassidy and more!
Mar
17
th
2016
Turf Club
Mar
17
th
2016
Turf Club

Dillinger Four

with NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND, Bug Fix and Cherry Cola
Nov
27
th
2015
Mainroom
Nov
27
th
2015
Mainroom

A TRIBUTE TO THE REPLACEMENTS

with The Melismatics, Al Church, NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND and more!
Jun
3
rd
2015
Turf Club
May
16
th
2015
Indeed Brewery
May
16
th
2015
Indeed Brewery

ART-A-WHIRL

with Mark Mallman, Rupert Angeleyes, NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND and more!
Apr
29
th
2015
7th St Entry
Apr
29
th
2015
7th St Entry

NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND

with Nightosaur and Squares
Dec
10
th
2014
7th St Entry
Oct
11
th
2014
Indeed Brewery
Oct
11
th
2014
Indeed Brewery

Indeed Brewing Company's Hullabaloo 2014

with Tired Eyes, John Swardson, Crossing Guards and more!
Nov
6
th
2013
7th St Entry
Nov
6
th
2013
7th St Entry

Eddie Spaghetti

with NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND and John Swardson
Oct
22
nd
2010
7th St Entry
Oct
22
nd
2010
7th St Entry

Toys That Kill

with the Arrivals, Gateway District, NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND and more!
Oct
9
th
2010
7th St Entry
Oct
9
th
2010
7th St Entry

NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND

with Written Off, Truck Stops Across America and THE ANCHOR WINDLASS
Jul
20
th
2010
7th St Entry
Jul
20
th
2010
7th St Entry

Scott H. Biram

with THE FLOODSUFFERERS and NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND
May
25
th
2010
7th St Entry
May
25
th
2010
7th St Entry

Screaming Females

with Tenement and NATO COLES & THE BLUE DIAMOND BAND

More Shows

Oct
15
th
Palace Theatre

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard

with Leah Senior
Feb
18
th
Fine Line

Pokey LaFarge

with Esther Rose
May
29
th
Surly Brewing Festival Field
Jan
27
th
7th St Entry
postponed

The Schizophonics