The Colorado Music Association unveiled its Music Directory at a holiday party this past Sunday, passing out copies of the comprehensive talent guide. The directory, more than two years in the making, lists the vital statistics of as many working bands and artists as COMA was able to gets its hands on, making it a useful networking tool for members of the three-year-old nonprofit group. (It will also come in handy for the average person looking for, say, a Latin hip-hop wedding band.) But COMA president Tommy Nahulu stressed that this first edition is still a work in progress and encouraged members to report any errors on their way out the door.
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Nahulu's plea only illustrated the absurdity inherent in any attempt to account for a scene that's constantly in flux. To paraphrase a group of singing nuns in The Sound of Music, it's like trying to pin down a weather phenomenon.
Glancing through the directory also offers a sad reminder of some of the artists who floated away during 2002. Denver lost one of its claims to indie-rock fame when the Apples in Stereo's Hilarie Sidney and Robert Schneider left town for the truly geener pastures of Lexington, Kentucky, horse capitol of America. (The band returns for a hometown show at the Bluebird Theater on Saturday, December 21.) Hard-rock fans shook a collective dreaded head this fall when Rocket Ajax split for Los Angeles, land of record deals and smog warnings. Celeste Krenz and Bob Tyler took off for Nashville. Slim Cessna left us a while ago. So did Ph10. (Was it something we said?)
Indeed, the year saw more hookups and partings than an 8Minute Dating marathon. Although some bands didn't move away, they morphed into other bands or assumed alternate names. The Ryan Tracy Band was reborn as Potemkin Square after splitting with vocalist Anitra Carr; Hell Camino rose again, sans frontwoman Al Pierson, who had long been synonymous with that act's overt sexuality. Blister 66 flirted with calling itself Conflict6, then switched back to its original moniker. Two bands, Denunzio and Burstable, sprang from the ashes of Acrobat Down. (Of course, one of those two -- Burstable -- promptly broke up.) The Down-N-Outs are now the Omens; the Kudzu Towers are called Thank God for Astronauts. Pieces of Pinhead Circus, which officially broke up in the spring, have come together in Love Me Destroyer. Gina Go Faster, Fast Action Revolver, Gravity Index and Contender don't call themselves anything at all these days; they simply don't exist anymore.
Next year, can't we all just get along...and settle down?