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September 2022 - LET US ENTERTAIN YOU: Monolith on the Mesa - Roman Barham

Monolith on the Mesa is a "High Desert Experience" that is an independent 3-day festival hosted on the grounds of the Taos Mesa Brewing Mothership and Hotel Luna Mystica in beautiful Taos, New Mexico. The festival features a variety of heavy roxk music (Heavy Psych, Stoner, Retro Rock, Sludge, Space Rock, Doom, Drone) and installation art accompanied by projected visuals around the compound. This year for the 2022 Festival, The Mad Alchemist projecting on both stages! Music inspires art, and art inspires music. The festival experience is private and exclusive, capping at 1,500 tickets for an ultimately intimate performance enjoyed on two stages, both outdoors. An "earthship" amphitheater dome adorned with a brand new sound & lighting set up. The newly renovated patio stage sits right next to the Amphitheater, only a few steps away. Roman Barham, Co-Founder of the Festival, took a moment to share more about this year's event.

What is it about Monolith that makes it so unique?

Monolith On The Mesa is a special kind of music festival. It combines the love for music and nature. When me and Dano started working on Monolith in 2018, we wanted to find a venue and vibe that fit perfectly with our ideas for our Festival. Once Dano invited me up to Taos to check out sites for Monolith. I fell in love with the landscape and people of Taos. We booked the lineup to fit the vibe of the surrounding high desert environment, and it worked out well. We never overlap our set times, so no one misses any bands.

How were the bands selected for this year?

This year's lineup consists of bands booked for Monolith in 2020 and 2021 that end up not playing due to the COVID pandemic. So I rolled them over to 2022. I'm stoked so many bands were still down to jam Monolith. I know Dano would be so thrilled with the lineup for 2022!

Tell us about the image used to promote the Festival this year? Who created the piece?

Nick Filth is an amazing tattoo artist from New Hampshire that was good friends with Dano, and I remember Dano talking about asking Nick Filth to do the art for Monolith 2022. This year's art reflects on a tribute to Dano with his elemental signs coming down from the sky towards the gorge of speakers. Nick did a great job on the poster. I love the colors!

What has the experience been like moving the Festival forward without Dano (Sanchez)?

Honestly it was hard to realize Dano was gone. The fact that we would not be working together on Monolith on the Mesa anymore broke my heart. I knew I had to continue Monolith in Dano's honor, and he would want me to build Monolith to the level that we always talked about...worldwide level. I still let Dano know about new news with Monolith. I will remember our weed smoking, brainstorming sessions, bouncing around our ideas, and sharing dreams we had for future Monolith on the Mesa manifestations.

To learn more about Monolith on the Mesa or to purchase tickets, visit

Author: Teresa Robinson


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