The heck with Elvis: What about trail-blazing rockabilly royalty Wanda Jackson? This little lady with a powerful voice came up around the same time and even shared stages with the King, who is said to have encouraged her to loosen up a little and take the rockin' route with her career.
She went on to record such hits as "Fujiyama Mama," "Let's Have a Party" and "Right or Wrong," and the transcendent Jackson, who can whoop anyone's ass off the stage, is still alive to tell the story. And kicking: In her sixties now, she rocks on. Her spunky CD, Heart Trouble, came out just a couple of years ago, and she'll be on stage tonight at e-town's B'Earthday Party Concert, the Colorado eco-talk-and-music variety radio show's fourteenth-anniversary celebration, which begins at 7 p.m. at the Boulder Theater, 2032 14th Street in Boulder.
Oh, there's more: Top folkie singer-songwriter John Gorka is also on the bill, and actress Darryl Hannah will receive e-town's coveted e-chievement award at the live taping overseen by the show's founders, Nick and Helen Forster. For info and tickets, $20, call 303-786-7030 or visit www.bouldertheater.com. -- Susan Froyd
The UNC/Greeley Jazz Festival grooves on
Get ready for the 35th annual UNC/Greeley Jazz Festival, which swings that fair city tonight through Saturday. The largest non-competitive festival of its kind in the nation cuts loose with performances by a mix of small combos, jazz vocalists and big bands at 7:30 p.m. each evening at the Union Colony Civic Center, at 701 10th Avenue, with free after-hours sessions at the Stetson Room of the Best Western Regency, 701 8th Street. Grammy winners such as Vince Mendoza and Peter Eldridge, as well as more than 6,000 jazz students and teachers, will be featured; ticket prices range from $22 to $28 per evening. Daytime concerts and clinics round out the festival; for more information, call 1-800-315-2787 or log on to http://usonia.unco.edu/uncjazz/festival/festival.html. -- Ben Hiller
War Is Hell
'We're none of us the same!' the boys reply/'For George lost both his legs; and Bill's stone blind/'Poor Jim's shot through the lungs and like to die/'And Bert's gone syphilitic: you'll not find/'A chap who's served that hasn't found some change/And the Bishop said: 'The ways of God are strange!' -- from "They," by Siegfried Sassoon
It's been quite some time since anyone dared to voice the thought that a poet could change the course of world politics. And there's a reason for that: No poet ever has. But that never stopped the little buggers from trying, and it never stopped some people from listening. Even though the well of anti-war poetry may come up a little dry these days, we have only to look back a short distance to find old voices raised in protest not only against their wars, but against all of them. The lives and friendship of two of these poets -- Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen, who met while doing time at the Craiglockhart military hospital after serving in the trenches of World War I -- is the focus of the play Not About Heroes, which just finished a run at the Bug Theatre and is now being staged at Boulder's Dairy Center for the Arts (2590 Walnut Street), where it will stay through May 7. Call 303-402-0482 for showtimes; admission is $15 ($12 for students and seniors), and reservations are strongly advised. -- Jason Sheehan