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Electrolux's Mike Elkerton is your host for his annual Christmas benefit, Saturday, December 14, at Cricket on the Hill. (This year Elkerton says proceeds won't be going to the Roundup Fellowship, as has been the case in the past; rather, funds are earmarked for "the developmentally disabled friends of me--Mike Elkerton.") The lineup, which includes Denver Joe, MK Ultra, Fox Force Five, the Commerce City Rollers, New Country Boy, a reunited Ruby Hue and "a bagpiper," is staggering--and given the amount of drinking that's apt to take place among participants, "staggering" is a good way to put it. Guaranteed to be more interesting than a telephone conversation with Kerry and Ashton.

Hey--former president Jimmy Carter is set to appear at the next E-Town taping, scheduled for Sunday, December 15. No word as to whether Amy's dad will be kicking out the jams--but here's hoping.

The following performers have never been elected president. On Thursday, December 12, Sister 7 engages in sibling rivalry at the Fox, with Chief Broom; the Russian Dragon Band, featuring Art Lande, celebrates the release of its new CD, When Kentucky Was Indiana, at Vartan Jazz; Durt collects at Market 41; and However... explains the proper use of ellipses at Wazoo's. On Friday, December 13, Bad Bax makes good at the Skyline Cafe; and Michelle and the Book of Runes opens at Franklin's. On Saturday, December 14, Westword contributor John Jesitus is among those participating in a program called "Songwriters Under Cover" at Penny Lane. On Sunday, December 15, Ben Stevens travels to Old Chicago, 1415 Market, and R. Carlos Nakai joins William Eaton and Will Clipman at Unity of Boulder Church (call 443-0083 to learn more). On Tuesday, December 17, David Syme, touted as "the human jukebox," plays for the first of two nights at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, at 1750 Welton; Space Team Electra explores the cosmos at the Bluebird Theater as part of a MusicLink Christmas celebration also featuring the aforementioned Czars; and Bile Geyser spews at the Blue Room (formerly the Key Club), with Gina Go Faster. And on Wednesday, December 18, Brendan's is the place to hear Joanna Connor perform material from Big Girl Blues, her latest CD on Blind Pig. Seeing is believing.

--Michael Roberts

Backbeat's e-mail address is Michael_Roberts@westword.com. While you're online, visit Michael Roberts's Jukebox at www.westword.com

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