Sam Bush is always The Man, the King of Telluride being his unofficial, official monicker (Sam's the sole image on the cover of the hardcover, lavish photo book commemorating the fortieth anniversary, fer Pete's sake). Never accepted by Sam himself, nonetheless, the thought of a Telluride without him seems impossible. This year, following last season's 40th for the festival, is the celebrated 40th for Sam, as in consecutive years, since the 2nd in 1975 that made it a real festival, instead of a strictly local event. To celebrate, Sam put on a riveting set with his band and some guests, including ten other mandolinists for 'Russian Rag,' a piece he recorded (with Mike Marshall) on his "Late As Usual" solo album, dubbing multiple mandos. Here, it was eleven live mandolins -- AKA eighty-eight strings. June 21, 2014. Photo by Jake Royko.