Keeping up with this workload isn't easy: Hatch spends about twenty hours a week working on his site, and while he says he receives a great deal of satisfaction from his efforts, he doesn't make much money from it despite a monthly page-view count that regularly exceeds 100,000. "I've got some banner ads up there now, but there's no way I can quit my day job yet," he concedes. Until then, he plans to continue to keep his ear to the ground and his fingers on his keyboard. "With all the acquisitions around here, there's a lot of things happening," he says. "I'm just trying to keep up."

I've got a confession to make: I never go out on New Year's Eve--or at least I haven't done so since that fateful night seven years ago when my car was totaled because of an unpleasant combination of icy roads and a driver more interested in looking at an accident on the other side of Sixth Avenue than in keeping his eye on the road. The incident so traumatized me that I've spent the last night of every subsequent year hiding in my basement and praying that no cars smack into the house. But for those of you braver than me, here are some musical options. Opie Gone Bad visits Herman's Hideaway in the company of Yo, Flaco!, which may or may not have a new lead singer in tow; the Sam Bush Band, with John Cowan and Mighty Squirrel, forages at the Boulder Theater; Tab Benoit cranks out the blues at the Little Bear; the Paladins get rootsy at the Bluebird Theater; the Jazz Crusaders set off on a quest to the Casino; the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band sweeps up at the Grizzly Rose; the Amazing Rhythm Aces play their cards right at the Buffalo Rose; the Healers are the prescription at Jimmy's Grille; and Bill Haley's Original Comets rock around the clock at 9th Avenue West. Or at least until a few minutes after midnight.

--Michael Roberts

Backbeat's e-mail address is: While you're online, visit Michael Roberts's Jukebox at

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