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Westword Music Showcase 2004

Love .45

To borrow some logic from members of the dearly departed and much-loved Five Iron Frenzy, welcome to our newest Westword Music Showcase ever! Each year we blather on about how "this year's event is bigger and better than ever," and while historically it's always been true -- since the Showcase debuted in 1995, each year's event has been markedly bigger and better than the previous year's -- we're not making that claim again this year. Not exactly. Yes, the 2004 Westword Music Showcase is definitely the biggest yet. But the best? Like the decision on the Westword Showcase award winners, we're leaving that judgment call up to you. God knows, we're proud as hell of this year's version, our tenth, and we've done everything possible to make sure that it's our best ever, from adding new venues to scheduling like-minded acts in specific rooms. For instance, electronic enthusiasts will be in heaven upstairs at the Church, where some of the area's finest DJs will throw down; downstairs in the same building, metalheads will be in for a hell of a good time. With the quality and quantity of acts on this year's lineup -- fifty of Mootown's best and brightest, nearly double the number at last year's Showcase, as well as special performances by the VIOLENT FEMMES and Josh Wink -- you'll wish you could clone yourself in order to see them all.

ANTIK
NOMINATED IN PUNK
5 P.M., SERENGETI

And you are...?
Antik: Sean, CJ, Cody and Adam.

Website?
www.antiksucks.com

How long has your act been together?
One year in August.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
2004 Vans Warped Tour.

Recent recordings of note?
"Alone" single.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Sean: Dish Network; CJ: Planet Honda; Cody works with his dad; and Adam is a waiter.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
750.

Favorite places to play?
Fox Theatre, Boulder.

Why music?
Extremely friendly and professional staff. Best group ever worked with.

If not music, what else?
Cars!!

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Last Ride

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
At our show at the Ogden with Ion, Misunderstood and the Commodes, the crowd was off the hook. They were stage-diving, getting in fights, crowd-surfing and more. Definitely a sight to see. Play it safe, kids!

Worst gig?
May 29 at the Gothic Theatre. NIPP's new security for that place sucked. Totally disrespectful.

What do you love about the local scene?
The scene is getting huge! It's awesome to watch all the bands blow up in Denver and even at national levels.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Too much trash-talking. If a performer or artist is getting recognized, there is always someone that has to bang them for it.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Some people say that the bandmembers are extremely full of themselves. In fact, we are not at all. Hence the name: antiksucks.com. If you meet each one of us, you will see we are very friendly, caring guys.

Any random facts we should know?
Vote for us on Lollapalooza!!

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncos.

Parting shot/final comments?
Cement Mixer...ahhh, love the taste.

APOSTLE
NOMINATED IN HIP-HOP
10 P.M., OPAL

And you are . . .?
Jeff Campbell, aka Apostle.

Website?
www.coloradohiphop.org

How long has your act been together?
I am a solo artist. I've been spittin' rhymes since I was fourteen years old, in 1984. I was first published in 1994, so I guess you can say a decade.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
I attended the National Hip-Hop Convention in Newark, New Jersey, as the state chair for Colorado.

Recent recordings of note?
New album coming soon, entitled Intelligent Movement.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I'm the executive director of the Colorado Hip-Hop Coalition.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
6,000 in 1999 at Reggae on the Rocks. (In 1984, as a breakdancer at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, I performed in front of 15,000.)

Favorite places to play?
Club Triology in Boulder; Soiled Dove in LoDo; Cervantes'; and Red Sea in Portland.

Why music?
It inspired me so much in my life. Stevie Wonder helped me learn to read. It was what moved me at a very early age.

If not music, what else?
Community organizing.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Mos Jef, Short Man's Complex, JRS-One and One Pac.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
In 2000, at Southwest Plaza Mall, Borders Books Coffee and Music: I had some little sixteen-year-old girl dance with me, and I pissed off her parents.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
I met a Vietnam Vet who was only 5'10" -- but had size 13 1/2 shoes.

Worst gig?
At the Chief Theater in Pueblo in 1995. The host of the event introduced me as the "Ass Pistol."

What do you love about the local scene?
The incredible talent.

What bugs you about the local scene?
No sense of community.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That I've retired. Don't call it a comeback -- the new joint is on fire!

Any random facts we should know?
The new album, featuring KRS-One and Stero Lion and produced by Heavyweight Dub Champion, is some of my best work.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Favorite Colorado athlete: Amy Van Dyken.

Parting shot/final comments?
Hip-hop in Colorado keeps getting better. Suckas trying to X me out, but they can't circumvent the real deal. I'm proud of my age, my accomplishments and the mistakes I've learned from. Stop talking shit. You know who you are. Let's build a community with this hip-hop. It ain't about a hot record; fuck a hot record. Live this. Peace.

BACKBONE VELVET
NOMINATED IN FUNK/SOUL

And you are...?
Marri Jo, Backbone Velvet.

Website?
www.backbonevelvet.com (Our site is currently being updated and improved and will be current soon!)

How long has your act been together?
Three to three and a half years. Our first show was at the Cricket, on January 16, 2001.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Nominated for the Westword Music Showcase -- second year in a row now. We just played our third People's Fair, and our new live CD was just released.

Recent recordings of note?
New Backbone Velvet live CD.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Marri Jo, lead vocalist: Watsu Practitioner (a form of aquatic body work, working primarily with the disabled community); Johnny, guitarist: CAD tech; Chip, bassist: a hair designer working for Head West in Evergreen; and Laura, drums: accountant.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Packed house at Herman's.

Favorite places to play?
It's different for all of us: Johnny likes the Soiled Dove; Laura likes the Cricket. And Chip and I love playing up in Bailey at Chip's house, which we call the "Fairgrounds," after Chip's last name, which is Fair -- just up close and personal for our circle of friends.

Why music?
Johnny: "'Cause I got to!!" Laura: "It's my passion!" Chip: "Why not? It's always been there!" And me: As a gift to my family and friends.

If not music, what else?
Johnny: "Living on the beach!" Chip: "Gardening." Laura: "Therapy." And me: Watsu!

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Backbone Velvet was brought to us by Chip, and that was it! NEVER anything else; it just fit perfect.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
We played a great show at Herman's one night. After we were done, of course, the shots were flowing! A bit later, we were all frantically looking for Johnny. He was nowhere to be found. It later came to our attention that he was quite comfortable, passed out in the back of his own truck, right in front of the bar!

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We have only played one gig outside of Denver. It was a wedding for our good friends outside of Cody, Wyoming. We rented a big RV, loaded it up with all of us, pulled in to their family gathering and proceeded to scare the hell out of his family. He had a lot of explaining to do to his parents, and we rocked out all night long, echoing throughout the canyon. Yes, we are all still friends.

Worst gig?
We haven't had any really bad gigs! Johnny had a night where he wasn't expecting an encore and forgot all his riffs -- and, well, basically the song. Laura had "tech" problems with her cymbals one night, and it was obvious throughout the show and recording. And Chip and I can't say we've really had any bad gigs. We get something out of all of them.

What do you love about the local scene?
Johnny likes just being a part of it. Chip likes the diversity of all the original music in Denver. And we all love the great support we receive from all the other musicians in town. We are truly blessed with great and very talented friends -- and so many other local bands!!

What bugs you about the local scene?
Johnny wishes there were more diverse clubs to play. Laura wishes there was a bigger focus on women in music.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Our name getting messed up. We are not BLackbone Velvet -- that would be used for a porno soundtrack or something! And we are not just a blues band or a classic-rock band.

Any random facts we should know?
We were great friends and in each other's lives for years before we ever decided to play together. This is a deep well we are all in here.

Avalanche or Broncos?
BOTH.

Parting shot/final comments?
Johnny: "Tequila -- thanks for thinking of us." Chip: "Scotch -- keep on rockin' in the free world!" Laura: "A slippery nipple -- heellllooo, Wisconsin!" And me: "A tequila body shot -- man, I love you guys! YOU ROCK!"

BLACK BLACK OCEAN
NOMINATED IN PUNK

And you are...?
Ryan Eason, Black Black Ocean.

Website?
www.blackblackocean.com

How long has your act been together?
Two years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Action Driver Records is putting out our new full-length, Eaglemaniac; CD-release show and mega raging party on July 9 at Rock Island.

Recent recordings of note?
Eaglemaniac.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Sold-out show at the Ogden, opening for someone -- however many people that was.

Favorite places to play?
Lemp Arts in St. Louis; Modified in Phoenix.

Why music?
Well, we can't all be bodybuilders.

If not music, what else?
Bodybuilding.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Lucifist, Seawolf!, Endangered Feces, Blood Face Knife Wound and Kitty Hearts.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
I had just returned from an interpretive-dance pilgrimage to Rio on a chilly Friday last November. Stephen had just returned from running smack to Berlin. We were both pretty wrecked. We had a show booked at a very secret warehouse that night. Jared and Quintin showed up very obviously on a higher plane of awareness, and when we all arrived at said warehouse, it was empty except for a very old man. He told us that we were the chosen, and then he felt our clothes and told us that they were odd. We then played some songs for him, and he laughed loudly and smoked copious amounts of high-grade opium.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Toledo, early 2003. Jared and myself had far too many vodka gimlets, and we decided it was high time to get buck naked. Apparently, so I learned later, Ohio has laws against standing on top of parked cars with your unspeakables on display. As soon as we saw the police coming, we both bolted naked through the streets. The bartender from the venue saved Jared, letting him slip into the back room. I ended up taking shelter in the car of a stranger. I borrowed her phone and got picked up thirty minutes later, during which time we made out. You: red Cavalier, Journey T-shirt, Young MC tape. Me: naked, drunk, confused. Maybe we could click?

Worst gig?
Are there bad gigs, or just bad words?

What do you love about the local scene?
Hot girls!

What bugs you about the local scene?
Hot girls.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
The biggest misconception about us would be that we write our own songs. Most people think that we do, but it's simply not true. We have a writer, a bigwig, some dude in L.A. named T that speaks nine languages, all dead. I've never met him.

Any random facts we should know?
Stephen can count to ten in Swahili. Jared can do a backflip off of a standard curb. Quintin won the Colorado state spelling bee when he was thirteen. Ryan can hold his breath for three minutes and thirty seconds.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncalanche

Parting shot/final comments?
Eaglemaniac release show and mega raging party on July 9 at Rock Island. Coloring contest, eagle costume contest, party favors, funny hats!

BLACK PEGASUS
NOMINATED IN HIP-HOP
4 P.M., OPAL

And you are...?
Robert Houston II (Black Pegasus).

Website?
www.theblackpegasus.com

How long has your act been together?
I've been hustlin' rap for about six years now.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
I'm on that video game, NBA Jams 2. My music's on MTV. I'm on the new Madsoul mix tape, and I'm sponsored by Madsoul clothing and L-R-G.

Recent recordings of note?
My new album, Knuckle Up, is fully recorded and set to release with national and digital distribution in late September '04.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
No nine-to-five job! I'm a full-time rapper.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
I played in front of 1,000-plus people with Atmosphere. I've battled in front of 20,000 people at Fiddler's Green, in the 50 Cent/Jay-Z Rock the Mic battle. Holla.

Favorite places to play?
Strip clubs. Or the Gothic Theatre in Denver, the Fox in Boulder, the Aggie Theatre in Fort Collins, 32 Bleu in Colorado Springs, Emo's Jr. in Austin. Bling-o-rama.

Why music?
'Cause anybody can relate to music.

If not music, what else?
If not music, I'd be a pimp.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Billy Blanks Taebo Squad.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Well, I'm light-skinned brown. And I did a show with Redman and Method Man in Colorado Springs at the City Auditorium. Some drunk chick thought I was Redman, 'cause of my skin tone, I guess, and jumped on stage took off her top, then started grindin' on me -- small highlight of my career.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
The weirdest story can be found on my DVD, in stores now!

Worst gig?
In San Antonio, Texas. I was on tour with Immortal Technique, and some racist cops pulled us over after our show, then illegally searched our car and arrested my brother/hype man "Trigga" for having an unloaded, registered firearm. On top of that, he had a permit to carry it, too. But I guess that didn't matter. We'll see them in court. I hate pork.

What do you love about the local scene?
The fans that support what we do!! Brass knuckles!!

What bugs you about the local scene?
Shady promoters and no big radio airplay. But it's all good. Just have to grind a li'l bit harder.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Who cares? You either like us or you don't. Oh, yeah, I'm not in a band. I'm a solo rapper.

Any random facts we should know?
I'm 24, single with no kids!

Avalanche or Broncos?
BRONCOS!!!!!!

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks to all the fans and supporters: Base Jase, Blizz, Trigga, 3 Deep, Jason Swartz, 1190 AM, 90.5 FM, and everyone who has helped us on the way. Holla.

BOP SKIZZUM
NOMINATED IN FUNK/SOUL
8 P.M., LA RUMBA

And you are...?
Bop Skizzum: Andy Guerrero, guitar and vocals; Serafin Sanchez, sax and keys; Joe Ferrone, trumpet; Charley Hine, lead guitar; Jimmy Stofer, bass.

Website?
www.bop-skizzum.com

How long has your act been together?
I (Andy) started the group back in 1999. We went through various lineup changes over the years, but the core of the band has been playing together for about three years. Serafin joined in 2001, along with Christian, then Joe a year later, followed by Jimmy and Charley in early 2003.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We finally released our first full-length album, Waiting For, which took us about a year to put out. So please go buy our record. We helped to premiere a local TV show called The Noise Floor, which focuses on the local music scene here in Denver and Colorado. That was screened at our CD-release show at the Gothic Theatre, along with Love.45 and our homeboys, the Fray. And the biggest feat is being nominated for best Funk/Soul band in this year's Westword Music Awards.

Recent recordings of note?
Waiting For.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Andy: I run my own postering and promotions business, working for NIPP and putting up posters for other local bands in town. Serafin: full-time student at CU and gives saxophone lessons at Wheat Ridge High, along with helping instruct the Pomona marching band. Charley: works for REI making backpacks. Joe: teaches trumpet to kids in DPS on the weekends and was just accepted into the Air Force Falcons' jazz band. Jimmy: barbacks at the Dark Horse Saloon in Boulder and is a full-time student at UCD. Josh: works for a textile delivery company.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
1,000 people or so in Fort Collins with G. Love and Special Sauce and Flogging Molly.

Favorite places to play?
The Gothic Theatre.

Why music?
Because we live and breathe it. We've lived and breathed it our whole lives and can't see living our lives without it. It's what keeps all of us going day in and day out, in one way or another.

If not music, what else?
Haven't given that enough thought. Music has always been the first choice. We're all hoping that it's going to work out.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
We kind of stumbled onto Bop Skizzum. I can't think of the other names. Oh, wait, I think I first named the band Felix, but it was already taken by some band in Austin. We decided on Bop Skizzum because we didn't want to be strapped into playing only one style of music. Although we are primarily a funk band, we wanted a name that people could remember and that allowed us to play rock, hip-hop, reggae, Latin -- whatever we wanted. So the Funky Funkinaters was overruled.

What do you love about the local scene?
I love the fact that almost everybody in this town knows at least two or three people who are in some kind of band. There are really only about three degrees of separation from each band in town. Somebody knows somebody, and I think that's awesome! Also, the fact that more and more people are being turned on to the awesome music scene we've got here.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The fact that some bands try to play rock star and don't support other bands in town. Very few people in bands actually take the time to go see other bands in town. There seems to be a tight-knit community in the indie-rock and punk-rock scene. But more funk bands need to see indie bands. More metal bands need to go check out the hip-hop band. And hip-hop bands need to check out rock bands, etc. Get out there and see how awesome other bands who don't play your style of music are. We try to get out and see a lot of different groups. Get out there and see your peers.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That our band name is Bob Skizzum, not Bop Skizzum. And that we are a ska band. Love ska, but we are not a ska band. Also not a jam band. We funk and we rock. It can be done.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Who cares? Sports get enough attention in this town.

Parting shot/final comments?
Get out and support local music. They're are tons of great bands in this town. So instead of seeing a movie, go see a real, live rock band. If you're going to the bar, go to a bar that has a live band. And please buy our record -- it is really, really good. Last, and most important, get out there and vote not only for the showcase, but for a new president. Let's get Bush out of the office he never should have had in the first place! Make sure all your friends are registered to vote, and don't blow off voting this November. The future of our nation depends on you, the rock-and-roll public!

BRAD UPTON QUARTET
NOMINATED IN JAZZ/SWING

BREAK MECHANICS
NOMINATED IN HIP-HOP
6 P.M., LA RUMBA

And you are...?
Break Mechanics: Q Burse, vocals; PAAS, vocals; Low, vocals; Daren Hahn, drums; Greg Raymond, keys; and Casy Sidwell, bass.

How long has the act been together?
About a year and a half.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Q Burse is releasing his solo CD, Q Burse Is...the Timeless Child, on Fanbass Recordings.

Recent recordings of note?
We just finished mixing our debut album this week and are releasing the record sometime in late July.

What do you love about the local scene?
It's really like one big family. Everyone is constantly performing with each other and sitting in. There is an amazing group of artists, poets, dancers, DJs, musicians, MCs, writers and activists that make up this community. Denver's underground hip-hop scene is real as rain, and we are fortunate to have a community like that.

Avalanche or Broncos?
The Broncos. Defense wins championships.

Parting shot/final comments?
Low, one of our MCs, recently changed his name from Down Low after catching an episode of Oprah -- you'll have to ask him about it.

BRIGHT CHANNEL
NOMINATED IN ROCK
10 P.M., ACOMA CENTER

And you are...?
Bright Channel.

Website?
www.flightapproved.com

How long has your act been together?
Since February 2002.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We managed to finish this questionnaire in less than thirty minutes, despite our collective hung-over brain fog.

Recent recordings of note?
Our first album is due out in fall 2004.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Guitar Tech, music-store manager and forest-service employee.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
About 600 people

Favorite places to play?
The Climax Lounge, Gothic Theatre and our basement.

Why music?
It's the perfect anti-depressant (and it makes us feel warm and fuzzy).

If not music, what else?
Jeff would be painting. Brian would be spending more time with his dog, Jinx. And Shannon would sell everything and buy a TiVo.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Satan's Bitch, Bearfox, Fishlegs, Van Halen.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
After racking our brains over this question, we've come to the realization that we're not very funny or strange. Thanks a lot.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
No tours with this band, yet.

Worst gig?
There was one memorable experience where the gig conditions were so bad that Jeff told the audience they'd have to pay us to keep playing. It was all downhill from there.

What do you love about the local scene?
There are a lot of great venues to play in Denver right now, and we've met a lot of really good people through the music scene.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Although support for the local music scene has gotten better in recent years, there is always room for improvement.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
The biggest misconception is that we actually play our instruments. In reality, there are monkeys backstage playing the real instruments, and Jeff is lip-syncing to a Britney Spears vocal track on half speed.

Any random facts we should know?
The Earth gets 100 tons heavier every day due to falling space dust. That's pretty heavy.

Avalanche or Broncos?
We've never heard of either of those bands...

Parting shot/final comments?
Gravity is a harsh mistress.

BUCKNER FUNKEN JAZZ
NOMINATED IN FUNK/SOUL

And you are...?
Professor Roderick W. Buckner, Buckner Funken Jazz.

Website?
www.BuckyLove.com

How long has your act been together?
Six years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Opening for Maceo Parker, A.W.A., Liquid Soul, and many others.

Recent recordings of note?
Working on a new CD.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
On time. My day job is in music education.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
We have played for over 200 to 300 people.

Favorite places to play?
Herb's, Herman's and the Breckenridge Jazz festival.

Why music?
Music is a part of my life. I am very in tune with music, and it makes me happy.

If not music, what else?
Music, period.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Buckner Jazz and Blues Band.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Playing in Copper Mountain in the snow.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
I can't tell you in public.

Worst gig?
A job that paid only twenty bucks to each player.

What do you love about the local scene?
There are a lot of fine musicians out there and some a-holes, but for the most part, they are pretty friendly.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Promotion -- or the lack of promoting local talent -- on the local airwaves.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
People think that we only play jazz or funk. What they don't understand is that we do both at the same time.

Parting shot/final comments?
Keep pushing the local bands, more PR for the local bands. We have some fine bands here, and we are not being heard enough.

BUCKSKIN STALLION
NOMINATED IN COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS/ROOTS
8 P.M., SERENGETI

And you are...?
"As hollow as the hollow sound of my empty whisky flask..." or Troy Schoenfelder, founder and singer-songwriter of Buckskin Stallion.

Website?
www.BuckskinStallionMusic.org

How long has your act been together?
Founded in 2000. Revolving cast of characters.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Got voted into the Westword Music Showcase 2004!

Recent recordings of note?
Blue Ribbon Buzz was released earlier this year on Big Bender Records (www.bigbender.net). BRB is an ode to industrial beer and the traditional story-song. Ahh, hell, it's a celebration of all things Americana!

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Walk the Colorado Highways in search of aluminum cans and returnable bottles.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Uhhh, how many were at Redding 2002?

Favorite places to play?
"World's Only Corn Palace," in Mitchell, South Dakota; 3,300-seat arena next to the "cop shop" in my home town.

Why music?
Because Townes Van Zandt is my godfather. Further, my bandmates are known, in some circles, as the Bastard Sons of Townes Van Zandt.

If not music, what else?
Stand-up comedy. Steve Martin informed me long, long ago that "Comedy Is Not Pretty." I find the same is true of country music.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
T-Roy and the Asthmatics.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Earlier this year, with a little change in our pockets going jing-a-ling-a-ling, Buckskin opened for the Georgia Satellites.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Earlier this summer, Buckskin was playing a festival in Wyoming. An extremely inebriated woman punched the bass player in the chest for not letting her sing "a sad song" into his mike. A herd of men and women descended upon the stage. A brawl breaks out on stage, then in the crowd. Buckskin escapes stage left. The only casualty was my Beta 87A Shure microphone. I loved that fella.

What do you love about the local scene?
What's not to love?

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That Buckskin plays saccharine Top 40 country. Buckskin Stallion is roots-rocking Americana. Marty Jones once said, "Buckskin Stallion is like Woody Guthrie on an amplified bender."

Any random facts we should know?
I play a Gibson J-45 acoustic guitar and use only D'Addario medium-gauge strings.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Dunno much about local sports.

Parting shot/final comments?
As the late, great Townes Van Zandt wrote, "If I had a Buckskin Stallion, I'd tame him down and ride away."

CEPHALIC CARNAGE
NOMINATED IN HARD ROCK/METAL/AGGRO
8 P.M., THE CHURCH DOWNSTAIRS

And you are...?
Cephalic Carnage -- Ted, the fifth Beatle, complainer and general troublemaker.

Website?
www.cephaliccarnage.net

How long has your act been together?
According to my mom, I never really got it together.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
In the last year and a half, we've played over 220 shows in sixteen countries, on tour with (here comes the shameless name-dropping) Hatebreed, Mastodon, Cradle of Filth, Shadows Fall, Cannibal Corpse, Killswitch Engage, Unearth, Kreator, Macabre, Madball, Terror, Dysrhythmia, Shai Hulud and many more.

Recent recordings of note?
Lucid Interval (Relapse Records), Halls of Amenti, 19 minute doom MCD (Willowtip Records) and Relapse Contamination DVD.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We, as a band, own a screen-printing operation. We will make shirts and stickers for you (shameless plug). Contact us at ted@cephaliccarnage.net

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
We headlined a festival called "Fuck the Commerce" in Neiden, Germany, for over 4,000 people.

Favorite places to play?
New York, anywhere in Canada, San Francisco, the U.K., Denver, anywhere in Holland, Seattle, Minneapolis, Paris, Stockholm... I'll stop before I get annoying.

Why music?
Is there another option for people like us other than washing dishes?

If not music, what else?
Homelessness. Oh, wait...

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Ani DiFranco, Carniceria, Metallica, Usher, Iron Maiden and Jackson Browne, to name a few.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
At an S&M show in Fort Collins, these dumb goth chicks wanted to dance on stage with us and requested that we play some "sexy" music. So we broke out some hillbilly country and attacked them with our instruments until they left. Cephalic 1, dumb goth chicks 0.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We played in Reno with Converge and Exhumed, and while Converge was playing, a member of an all XstraightedgeX "gang" (look out, suburbia) busted out his machete and began to attack the singer with it. Then it got really silly from there.

Worst gig?
Any gig that you have to make the promoter empty out the pinball machines to come up with the guarantee.

What do you love about the local scene?
Friends, family, big-fish-in-a-little-pond syndrome.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Friends, family, big-fish-in-a-little-pond syndrome.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That unlike our Hot Topic fashion-core counterparts, we no longer tune or rehearse.

Any random facts we should know?
John (drums) played on the new Secret Chiefs 3 record with Trey Spruance (Mr. Bungle/ Faith No More).

Avalanche or Broncos?
1 Avalanche, 2 Broncos. 2 couldn't give a shit.

Parting shot/final comments?
Parting shot: Jägermeister (shameless plug). Final comment: We promise we won't tell people we're Ion this year at the Showcase. And keep in mind that a vote for Cephalic is not just a vote for us, but a vote against the other bands in our category. Thank you!

CHRONOPHONIC
NOMINATED IN FUNK/SOUL
9 P.M., LA RUMBA

And you are...?
Chronophonic.

Website?
www.chronophonic.com

How long has your act been together?
About three years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We were proud to take part in the second Chronophonic Funk Workshop in the earlier part of this year. All the members of Chronophonic worked with the students of Denver School of the Arts on a variety of topics, including composition, history, performance and improvisation.

Recent recordings of note?
Our second studio album, Footwork, was released in February of 2004. Kevin Clock (Gladys Knight) of Colorado Sound Studios co-produced the album, and Tom Baker (Beastie Boys, Stone Temple Pilots, B.B. King) mastered the CD. Currentl,y the album is receiving airplay from over 130 stations across the country. The album has charted on 22 stations in fourteen states.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We hold it down as a waiters, mechanics, liquor salesmen, teachers and paint distributors.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Maybe 500 people.

Favorite places to play?
Your basement.

Why music?
Why not?

If not music, what else?
Prison guard/interior decorator.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Deep Pudding, Lucky Pants or Unlucky Pants.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
We played the grand opening of Fitness Explosion, a physical training facility. Due to Jon Piazza's waterlogged biceps, the mike turned into a crutch, and he went into a 45-minute Pointer Sisters medley. After comforting him with a blanket and chamomile tea, we finished the gig with high accolades.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
See answer to previous question.

Worst gig?
There have been a few that have rated extremely low. But one stands out, at Bottoms Up in Aurora. We were paid $10.

What do you love about the local scene?
There are some excellent musicians in Denver and the surrounding areas.

What bugs you about the local scene?
There are a multitude of venues in Denver that find it acceptable to consistently rip off bands with dismal pay and then look them in the eye and ask, "Is that okay?" After having performed throughout Colorado for a few years, at nice venues and crappy ones, we've found that it's not okay. Most decent people, even at the tiniest bars, can afford to pay a band a few hundred dollars for a full night's work. So what bugs me? A business that thinks it's cool to rip off musicians -- you venue owners know who you are. Let's take a stand as artists: Demand what you deserve and get paid.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we're all really, really good at board games. Some of us are good at Monopoly. Some are good at Yahtzee. Yet it is true that Mike Chiesa holds the key to Candy Land.

Any random facts we should know?
Birds don't have bladders.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncolanche.

Parting shot/final comments?
No, seriously, birds don't have bladders.

CRISPY CRITTERS
NOMINATED IN JAM
8 P.M., DAZZLE

And you are...?
Crispy Critters: Dave Hunt, vocals, lead guitar; Mike Studeny, vocals, guitar, harmonica, alto sax; Mike "Spanky" McCluer, bass; Tom Piercy, drums; Paul "Dr. Pos" Cohen, tenor and soprano saxophones; CR Gruver, vocals, keyboards, organ; Herb Green, congas, percussion; Richard Korte, sound engineer; and Mark Serratoni, on-call drummer.

Website?
www.crispycrittersband.com

How long has your act been together?
Four years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Being nominated for this and getting a couple of our songs in the airplay rotation from a live, in-studio session on 99.5/The Mountain. And Dave finally cleaned up the dog shit in his yard.

Recent recordings of note?
Mountain Mayhem studio recording available at Twist & Shout and Cheapo Discs. And we record every show we play to hand out to folks.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We pay our bills with online checking. The day jobs vary from having none to working in bars, hospitals and owning a business.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Arapahoe Basin Ski Resort, last Memorial Day weekend. We set up at the ticket counter platform, had it cranked up, and all the people in line riding the chairlift and coming down the hill had a soundtrack to their day.

Favorite places to play?
Red Rocks, Quixote's, Gothic, Bluebird, Cricket on the Hill and the Goat (Summit County).

Why music?
It's only rock and roll, but we like it, like it, yes we do!

If not music, what else?
Lovin' life and hanging with the band family, since we are all good friends.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Crembone, Grapeway, Chin Music.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
After our set at Red Rocks, hanging out in the famous tunnel checking out all of the signatures of people who have played there. It was strange to be able to put our band and names there, too.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Last winter, leaving Denver for some mountain gigs. We were heading to the Goat in Keystone. The weather was horrendous. We had chains on the bus. Everyone was inside with all of our stuff, and we blew out a tire. We met Destiny that night. She was actually a six-year-old blind girl who was born on Halloween. She was the daughter of the tow-truck guy. We rode in the cab of the tow truck with her singing "You Don't Have to Call Me Darlin,'" by David Allan Coe. Then we were jamming out with Nine Inch Nails. At first she was psyched because she thought we were magicians, not musicians. She got over it.

Worst gig?
A Camel Cigarette event held at the Church in Denver. We hate it when people don't have their shit together. It is even more disappointing when there is a huge budget and everyone's talking a big game, and then nobody gets their part done. No advertising. Lame party. People running around all stressed out. Not fun.

What do you love about the local scene?
That radio is finally seeing that there is a market for music that people like. Including bands from this area. All bands are local somewhere. 99.5/The Mountain. 1610 AM KCUV. Also that there is every kind of music represented in Denver from a wide array of bands.

What bugs you about the local scene?
That people have a hard time paying a $5 cover because they spend all of their money on a $63 -- and up -- ticket for some Clear Channel show. All of the service fees from Ticketmaster are way more money than what bands are charging at the door to their favorite bar.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we are a Grateful Dead cover band. During our shows, we play 90 percent original music, and when we do play a cover, we try to pick out some good old random tunes.

Any random facts we should know?
We have the best sound guy in town: Richard Korte. Dave also has two and a half balls.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Go Avs, Go Stars -- kind of the Yin and Yang. With so many people in the band from different towns, the smack talk around sports is crazy. We try to stick to music.

Parting shot/final comments?
It is all about the love.

DAVE CIERI AND
THE ARMS & LEGS QUARTET
NOMINATED IN JAZZ/SWING
9 P.M., DAZZLE

And you are...?
Dave Cieri of Dave Cieri and the Arms & Legs Quartet (now known as General Populace).

How long has your act been together?
One year.

Recent recordings of note?
We're working on a new disc as we speak.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
All of us, right now, are just playing in the band or teaching.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Probably 500 people at the Fox Theatre, opening for Stanley Jordan.

Favorite places to play?
Dulcinea's 100th Monkey and the Fox Theatre.

Why music?
I never knew anything else. It's a different language used to express and study the world that we live in. English falls short many times, and this is a way of digging deeper. I've never had a choice. I've enjoyed it from the beginning -- even though I don't really remember the beginning. It's serious fun; that's probably the easiest answer.

If not music, what else?
I don't know. I'm going back to school to study history, so I'm interested in that. But I'll always love music, whether I make money at it or not.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
They're all pretty strange.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
With this band, we haven't really been on tour at all.

Worst gig?
We played up in Vail once for a political event. That group up there tends to be pretty apathetic.

What do you love about the local scene?
Dulcinea's, particularly. I like the fact that there's grit in that place, and there's not a lot of grit in this town. It seems to be a football and computer town and not a lot else. In there, it tends to be a little grittier and more like real life.

What bugs you about the local scene?
A lot of people are getting recognition for not being able to play. I think it can be a little too friendly sometimes. And a good dose of judgment would go a long way. Everything seems to be a little too equal. I feel like the scene could use a little more active decisiveness -- what's good and what's not.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Probably that were a straightahead jazz band, because the instrumentation tends to look like that. We love the tradition of jazz, but we're trying to move it forward instead of getting caught in a cul-de-sac.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Neither.

DEVOTCHKA
NOMINATED IN AVANT-GARDE

And you are...?
Nick Urata, DeVotchKa

Website?
www.devotchka.net

How long has your act been together?
Since 1997.

Recent recordings of note?
Una Volta (second full-length).

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We teach music and Spanish, do taxes and menial labor.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
1,000.

Favorite places to play?
The Bluebird, Larimer Lounge.

What do you love about the local scene?
There are a lot of great bands. Radio 1190 is the best thing to happen to local music.

Any random facts we should know?
A Russian record label found our first record and actually released it in Russia.

Parting shot/final comments?
I'm sorry these responses are soo boring. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

DJ BEDZ
NOMINATED IN DJ: TURNTABLIST/HIP-HOP
5 P.M., OPAL

And you are...?
Cassidy Bednark, aka DJ Bedz, aka the White Shadow.

Website?
www.djbedz.com

How long has your act been together?
I started back in 1995.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Performed at KS-107.5's Summer Jam; finished first season as team DJ of the Denver Nuggets; locked up 23rd affiliate on Zeo Radio's nationally syndicated Old School and Urban mix shows; and, of course, my biggest honor, the Best Hip-Hop Mix CD award in Westword's Best of Denver 2004.

Recent recordings of note?
June 2004 Radio Bums monthly mix CD: We put out about 6,000 copies of that particular mix.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
Believe it or not, deejaying pays the bills.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
I think a sold-out Pepsi Center has 19,000 people in it or so; that would have to be the largest crowd.

Favorite places to play?
There's nothing better than sitting around with a couple of geeky DJ friends at home playing breaks and old school hip-hop.

Why music?
Music moves the soul.

If not music, what else?
Well, I was almost a math major in college before deciding on music composition as my major instead. So who knows where that would have led?

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
I've always been DJ Bedz, the White Shadow. Although I must admit "the Pale Rider" has a nice ring to it.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
I've worked too many drunken, chickenhead, wanna-be thug extravaganzas. To even try to narrow down the list would be ridiculous. Although I did witness a young woman and her special relationship with a beer bottle in the basement of a local nightclub. That will, no doubt, scar me for life.

Worst gig?
Wow, when I first started deejaying, I played to a packed club of like 400 to 500 people every week, and I only got paid $75. (Yeah, I'm calling you out, Tulagi.) Check that -- it was only like $63.58, because I was on the payroll and they deducted taxes.

What do you love about the local scene?
I love the fact that Denver isn't so overwhelmingly big like L.A. or New York. If you work hard, you can achieve the big-fish-in-the-small-pond phenomenon and have almost everybody know who you are and what you do.

What bugs you about the local scene?
People view one another as competition rather than trying to build bridges and form alliances.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
I run into a good amount of people who dismiss me as the "white guy who thinks he's black." But usually that only comes from idiots and people that don't know me, so it doesn't bother me all that much.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Nuggets!!!!!!!

Parting shot/final comments?
Shout-outs to my family, Dad, Mom and Cam, and my crew, the Radio Bums. Thank you to everyone who supports me and allows me to play rap music and get paid for it. Thank you to Westword for all the love; I really appreciate what you guys give back. Peace!

DJ CYSKO ROKWEL
NOMINATED IN DJ: TURNTABLIST/HIP-HOP
3 P.M., OUTDOOR STAGE

And you are...?
DJ Cysko Rokwel, Crunk Brothers.

Website?
Crunkbros.com should be up in August.

How long has your act been together?
Two and a half years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Placing second in the DMC, and winner of the Westminster Guitar Center battle.

Recent recordings of note?
Two mix CDs, I Need Money and Cysko Doesn't Mow the Lawn.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
LoDo Music Festival 2003 and opening for Hieroglyphics crew, fall 2003.

Favorite places to play?
Soiled Dove.

Why music?
It's all I know.

If not music, what else?
Art.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Sons of Wrath.

Worst gig?
December at the Soiled Dove, DMC champions tour with Klever Enferno -- this was the worst gig, because nobody showed up. And it was some of the illest turntable shit I've ever seen.

What do you love about the local scene?
Hip-hop is starting to be a commodity in the music scene.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Shows are too far between.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That most of us underground DJs only play Top 40.

Any random facts we should know?
Grand Wizzard Theodore created the scratch.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncos -- definitely keep it old-school.

Parting shot/final comments?
Support your local hip-hop, please! Shouts to: Crunk Brothers, Unappreciated Scholars, Life Crew, Basementalism, Yo, Flaco!, Dialektix, Platter Pirates and Procussions.

DJ IDIOM
NOMINATED IN DJ: TURNTABLIST/HIP-HOP
9 P.M., OPAL

And you are...?
Christopher James Cory, aka DJ Idiom.

Website?
www.djidiom.com is in the works. I've got ten of my top scientists and creative monkeys slaving away 24/7 for the upcoming site launch. (To Matt and Mark, my web designers: Disregard the previous sentence and take as much time as you need to make the website hilariously awesome.)

How long has your act been together?
I've been deejaying outside of my bedroom for just over a year, but I have yet to get my act together, by any means.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
My most recent feat was working my Monday shift at Twist & Shout Underground without buying a record before the end of my shift.

Recent recordings of note?
I made an awesome mix tape for Ginger, but none of you will ever hear it unless: Ginger lets you ride in her car; Ginger drives by you in her car bumping my CD with her windows down; or Ginger decides to burn my CD and slang it to you.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
How I manage to pay my insane amount of bills is a mystery. I mean, I've got the mortgage on my summer home in southern France. Then, of course, my winter-getaway residency in the Caribbean. Not to mention my penthouse in NYC. And you think I can fly on a commercial airline to any of my cribs? Hell, no! I need my private jet, of course. And with today's gas prices, jet fuel isn't exactly spare change like it used to be. Of course I need furs and sparkly jewels and thangs. Plus I love to wine and dine my special lady friend, and mama's got to have the nicest shoes and champagne money can buy. Luckily I've got jobs at Twist & Shout and Comedy Works to keep my extravagant lifestyle afloat.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
The biggest crowd I've ever played for where people probably weren't paying attention to me was the Elemental Flavaz concert at the Lending Pavilion, before KRS-One. The biggest crowd I've ever played for where people probably were paying attention to me was either the Blackalicious show at the Fox or the Sage Francis and Anticon show at the Boulder Theater. The most people who I've probably played for in one night happened last year at my old house on Clayton Street, during our Springaween celebration (Springaween = Halloween + Springtime).

Favorite places to play?
My favorite places to play are Ginger's basement; Round Midnight in Boulder, because it has the most amazing owners, bartenders and sound engineers ever; the hi-dive; the Fox; and the Boulder Theater.

Why music?
I guess music has always had a presence within my life. My mother is a piano teacher, and I've always played an instrument. So if I wasn't playing music, it was always going on in the background. I think music just seems to naturally make the most sense to me of all of the things that go on in my life. I was always really intensive with school and sports as a kid. But when I got home from all of that, I would listen to music to relax and unwind. So last year, when I graduated from college and heard the "what are you going to do now" and "are you going to get a real job" questions over and over, I figured I had two obvious options: Number one was to stay in school for six more years to get a Ph.D. in sociology, which is the obvious socially preferred pathway. Number two was to say f#*k it and become a starving artist for the time being. Well, here I am answering questions for Westword instead of writing essays about social inequality.

If not music, what else?
If it wasn't for music, I would either be a sociologist, as I mentioned above, or a housewife.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
I think I spun at a house party a few years ago, and on the flier I told them to make my name DJ Stick-E-Buns. Now that I think about it, why didn't I stick with that name?

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
I deejayed a high school prom for an alternative school in Brighton last year, which was hilarious. These high school kids would boo me, then give me a CD and tell me what track to play, then pack the dance floor as soon as their CD came on. Then, whenever I would mix out of the song, the dance floor would clear in a matter of seconds, and the booing would proceed.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
I deejayed at the Phoenix Bouldering competition a year ago, which is not actually in Phoenix but in the desert outside of Phoenix. I had to haul all of my equipment with my friend "Sasquatch" to Phoenix in his truck (I still owe you for everything you put up with on this trip). Everything went fine with the music except for the extremely hot temperatures. During the after-party, in the middle of this field in the desert, and after having a few drinks, I decided to relieve myself in the bushes instead of the portable facilities conveniently provided by the competition. On my way back from the bushes, I was shanked in the head by this metal pole sticking out from a climbing wall that had been stored sideways on the back of a trailer. I was knocked to the ground but didn't think too much of it at the time. I put my hat back on, and about five minutes later I asked Sasquatch to feel the enormous new bump on my head. Long story short, I ended up being taken by ambulance to the nearest hospital forty miles away and received eight staples in my head. Then I got booted out of the nice hospital bed to wait in a very uncomfortable chair in the emergency room lobby for Sasquatch to pick my sorry ass up. I ended up waiting for four extra hours because Sasquatch had to sober up -- then he got a flat tire and had to walk back to camp to borrow another car. We both got about an hour of rest, then drove straight back to Denver. Sasquatch, you my boy!

Worst gig?


See above anecdote.

What do you love about the local scene?
I love the friends I've made through the local scene and the relationships that have developed through my involvement within it.

What bugs you about the local scene?
I am thoroughly bugged by egos, promoters who manipulate and abuse artists, and those who value money over artistic integrity.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Most people that see me deejay think I'm around 6'3". I'm always explaining that I'm really only 6'1", and my Afro adds about two inches to my height. So I appear taller than I actually am. Really, I don't think that anyone has any conceptions about me. I hope they'll just listen to my music for what it's worth to them.

Any random facts we should know?
1) Most toilets flush in E flat. 2) No one knows where Mozart is buried. 3) It takes a sloth two weeks to digest food. 4) Gorillas sleep for fourteen hours a day, just like me.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Well, being killed by an avalanche would definitely suck pretty badly, because you would be freezing and probably suffocate, and the whole ordeal could be a slow awkward death. Plus, it would most likely take you by complete surprise, and you would be utterly confused as to what's going to happen to you when you die. There would probably be the thought in the back of your mind that you might be rescued. But I've heard that the aftermath of an avalanche can be quite peaceful. So if you're still not dead when that happens, that could be pretty cool. Now, being trampled by a herd of wild broncos is a different story altogether. I can't imagine that a herd or broncos could sneak up on anyone. It would be absolutely apparent that you're about to get trampled by a bunch of broncos and that there's absolutely nothing you can do to stop them. I would think the pummeling would only last for a few seconds before you either lose consciousness or die, so I can't imagine that you would really feel too much pain or discomfort. And just think of how sweet it would be for people to say, "Can you believe Billy got trampled by that pack of wild broncos?" rather than "Can you believe that Billy got buried in that huge pile of snow?" I'm going to have to go with Broncos on this one.

Parting shot/final comments?
Join DJ Nutter and myself for our office Christmas party, July 6 at the hi-dive, 7 South Broadway. We'll have Christmas punch, pictures with Santa, a secret Santa for those who bring presents, Christmas cookies, and decorations and music to put you in the mood for the Christmas season.

DJ IVY
NOMINATED IN DJ: DANCE/ELECTRONIC
8 P.M., THE CHURCH

And you are...?
Josh Ivy, aka DJ Ivy.

Website?
www.milehighhouse.com

How long has your act been together?
I've been deejaying since 1996.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I pay the bills mostly from DJ gigs. Four days a week, I do freelance graphic design from home.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
2,000 peeps.

Favorite places to play?
Boulder Theater, National Forest land, the EndUp (SF) and Trilogy wine bar.

Why music?
Because I can't live without it.

If not music, what else?
Graphic design.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Last weekend at the Colorado Electronic Music Festival, I accidentally kicked over my open crate of records. We were on a super dusty slope, so all the records just dove into the nasty dust -- the last place you want your vinyl! Then, to top it off, I kicked over Jon Nedza's records minutes later -- super party foul!

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
I was playing an outdoor party in Arizona. There were massive amounts of bugs flying around. The only lights around were the ones on the turntable, so naturally, the bugs were all attracted to these lights. Every time I looked up, there was some other wild bug sitting on the spinning records. One time, a massive locust came down, clung to the needle and proceeded to try to fly away with it. The needle came crashing down, and the music stopped -- it was hilarious.

What do you love about the local scene?
The incredible sense of family: It's a small town, and I feel like I know everyone. It feels great to go out and feel at home almost anywhere.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Not enough mystery and excitement: It is a small town, and that has some drawbacks. It would be fun to have a few more thousand heads out there supporting and rocking out.

Any random facts we should know?
I was the top-ranked under-eighteen U.S. downhill mountain-bike racer from ages fifteen to eighteen. I was Junior National Downhill Champion in 1991. I was on the U.S. Junior National Mountain Bike team from '91 to '93. I was ranked fourth in the Junior World Championships in 1992. I raced professionally from 1994 to 1995.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Lance Armstrong.

Parting shot/final comments?
We need a GROWednesdays venue!

DJ NUTMEG
NOMINATED IN DJ: DANCE/ELECTRONIC
10 P.M., THE CHURCH

And you are...?
DJ Nutmeg.

Website?
www.RyanDykstraNightlife.com

How long has your act been together?
Been playing records since 1995.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Best Club DJ, Westword Best of Denver 2004, CEMA (Colorado Electronic Music Association) Best Up and Coming DJ, CEMA 2000 Best Local House DJ.

Recent recordings of note?
Currently in studio.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I work at Twist & Shout Underground and deejay three to four nights a week.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
I played for 4,300 people at a rave called EARTH.

Favorite places to play?
Rox on Sundays and Lime on Saturdays

Why music?
Simple: It's pure love for music and dancing. That's been it since I was like five years old.

If not music, what else?
Who knows? I try not to think about that.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Britney Spears and Bone Crusher.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
One time a lighting truss fell on me while I was playing.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
One time several years ago, we had to throw a party out in the woods outside of Santa Fe on a whim because the venue fell through nine hours before the show.

Worst gig?
Hands down, it was this stupid fashion show at the Sherman Events Center a year ago. What a joke.

What do you love about the local scene?
All the support I have received from this city and friends. Not to mention all the bad-ass talent.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Too many mainstream remixes.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
The fact that I really love epic trance.

Any random facts we should know?
I love chicks with big noses.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncos, all the way.

Parting shot/final comments?
David Holthouse rules.

DJ SARA T
NOMINATED IN DJ: DANCE/ELECTRONIC
6 P.M., THE CHURCH

And you are...?
Sara Thurston, aka DJ Sara T.

Website?
www.Saratea.com

How long has your act been together?
Physically since 1978, but deejaying for seven years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Getting invited to guest-DJ on the East and West coasts.

Recent recordings of note? vMix soon to be CDR'd and distributed hand to hand.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I do promotions for record labels, put on parties, intuitive counseling (yes...seriously), art direction and write music for soundtracks.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Three hundred or so: Party at the Hipster Youth Halfway House.

Favorite places to play?
House parties and bumping clubs. No difference to me, as long as the kids are dancing.

Why music?
It crosses boundaries.

If not music, what else?
Assorted creative projects getting my drawing on, writing, stenciling and clothing alteration and design.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
DJ Left Ear. (I'm deaf in one ear, 89 percent!)

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
A fight broke out at the Skylark one night a few years back, and I got to choose the soundtrack for the brawl. One person actually noticed my selection of music, and I was thrilled!

Worst gig?
Never had one.

What do you love about the local scene?
Those locally who take the time to meet new people, go out of their comfort zone and build community.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Talk without action.

Any random facts we should know?
Besides being an Internet detective, I used to be a puppeteer.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Avalanche. Legal fist fights are where it's at.

Parting shot/final comments?
Denver fucking rocks it. Shout-out to 1190 and the Monkey Mania crew. Keep it realz.

DJ SHAKE
NOMINATED IN DJ: TURNTABLIST/HIP-HOP
7 P.M., OPAL

And you are...?
DJ Shake, Crunk Brothers.

Website?
www.SceenMag.com

How long has your act been together?
Crunk Brothers, three years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Third place, Boulder DMC; first place, Englewood Guitar Center -- third year in a row; third place, Guitar Center New Orleans regional.

Recent recordings of note?
Club Crunk, a mix of club muzik put together by myself and DJ Mier. And some of the background muzik you hear in pornos.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
Hustle, hustle, hustle. All I really do is spin and network with the right people. Soon I'll be doin' tats and selling canvases.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
About 2,000. That's not too big, but it was an import-car show, and there was tons of hot ladies, which was all that mattered.

Favorite places to play?
Thursday -- Splash 2; Friday -- the Castle; Saturday -- Bash; and, of course, any time I get a chance to bust some hard-core turntablism.

Why music?
Just another way to creatively express myself.

If not music, what else?
Pimpin' ho's, starting riots, producing XXX films and tattooing.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Crunk Brothers was it. Nothing else came up.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Having girls come up to me thinking I'm some national headliner -- and me going along with it.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
In New Orleans, at the House of Blues: Gettin' drunk after my performance and hittin' all the strip clubs (all before I was 21).

Worst gig?
Haven't had a real bad one yet.

What do you love about the local scene?
There's some really good people here puttin' CO on the map. And that makes it easier for others to come up in the future.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Not enough people know what's real. Spinnin' club muzik is great, but I wish people would know there's a lot more to deejaying than just blending songs and party rockin'. At least take an interest in the turntablist scene. See who's takin' titles and winning battles.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Some people know us for battling and others for doin' clubs. But that just makes us more diverse than most DJs.

Any random facts we should know?
I love Hilary Duff, Angel Val, Raylene -- pretty much any of the Vivid girls -- and I always watch The Simpsons.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Avys.

Parting shot/final comments?
SceenMag.com coming soon. Big up to Carlos at Sceen Productions, Westword, TechnixArt canvases, DJ Mier and the whole Crunk Brothers crew, Nufunkdefile Records, and some 151 & coke = viagra. Peace.

DJ TY TEK
NOMINATED IN DJ: DANCE/ELECTRONIC

DJ VAJRA
NOMINATED IN DJ: TURNTABLIST/HIP-HOP
7 P.M., THE CHURCH

And you are...?
Chris Karns, aka DJ Vajra.

Website?
None at the moment.

How long has your act been together?
I've been deejaying for about eight years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
First place at the DMC Boulder Regional.

Recent recordings of note?
I did some studio work for a new Procussions single titled "Wake-Up."

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I work full-time at Bart's CD Cellar in Boulder.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
2,500 people, opening for Run-DMC in Wyoming.

Favorite places to play?
Fox Theatre in Boulder.

Why music?
Because what else is there?

If not music, what else?
I don't even want to think about the possibility of not doing music.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
DeeJay Shmeejay, Steamin Pee, Bob Chylan, Samuel L. Scratchin' and Saul Good, to name a few.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Can't think of one right now.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Watching Casual (Hiero) throw a drunken idiot out of the backstage area at 8150.

Worst gig?
8150 is always bad. They hang the turntables from the ceiling because the whole building shakes when people dance in there.

What do you love about the local scene?
I love that there are people trying to make it bigger and better.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Not enough quality talent.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
When I do routines, people get confused because they think they're supposed to dance to what I'm doing. They don't understand that I'm not a rave DJ. I like to make my own music using other people's records rather than just letting them play.

Any random facts we should know?
I am alive.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncos, of course. Hockey sucks.

DJ WYATT EARP
NOMINATED IN DJ: DANCE/ELECTRONIC
9 P.M., THE CHURCH

And you are...?
Wyatt Earp is my stage name. My real name is Wyatt Jenkins. To my friends, I'm just Wyatt. Any of those will get my attention in a mall. I also answer to Jessica, but that's a different interview altogether.

Website?
HotorNot.com. You may have to refresh a few times to get my page, but I'm there. Currently a 9.5, thank you for asking. Actually, www.wyattearpmusic.com.

How long has your act been together?
A few billion cells have decided (on a whim, I'm guessing) to be me for 28 years so far. I hear rumors we may break up, but that's probably just water-cooler talk. Of course, I'm like 90 percent water, so that murmuring may warrant further investigation.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
I recently built a house and purchased a granite slab for my kitchen countertops for $800. That's a screaming deal. And when it's installed, it will really look quite nice.

Recent recordings of note?
A 33-second A minor with a Casio Bossa Nova background last week. Two weeks ago, I tried to record C major over the same melody but failed. I forgot to rewind the cassette.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I run ladies on Colfax. I office on the RTD's prestigious 15L Friday and Saturday nights after I finish spinning. You'll find me in the back, on my phone, making things happen.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
One time the Nuggets came into the Church after a game. A lot of them are well over 6'4".

Favorite places to play?
Hotel lobby, for the after-party, checkin' out at six in the mornin'...

Why music?
It was either spin music or tell your fortune outside the Purple Martini. Some guy beat me to the second thing.

If not music, what else?
Kite-fighting.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Wyatt, Your New Insect Overlord. Wyatt? Why Not!

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
I once played an entire set with no pants on because an unruly dance enthusiast dumped a beer on me before I went on. And, well, because I had just purchased this great lace-up suede thong from BodyAware. My ass looks great in that thing.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Ibid.

Worst gig?
This questionnaire.

What do you love about the local scene?
I actually hate the local scene. I hate all scenes. I really dislike the term "scene," actually.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Oh, I didn't know there was going to be a second part to this question.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That I am a band or an act. I'm just a guy trying to help drug-addled music aficionados wallow through another evening of mind-numbing sex and depravity at the cost of previous generations' struggles.

Any random facts we should know?
You should probably know your mother's maiden name. That seems to keep coming up again and again.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Actually, the most dangerous animal is a shark riding an elephant, just trampling and eating everything it sees.

Parting shot/final comments?
What were the last nineteen answers? Chopped liver?

THE DOJO
NOMINATED IN HIP-HOP
6 P.M., OPAL

And you are...?
Dojo.

Website?
www.dojosound.com

How long has your act been together?
Four years and many moons...

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Releasing our second single in France on the La Fondation label. This one is a remix of "Bad Dreams" that DJ Destro (Dialektix/Procussions/Mad Scienz) did that follows the twelve-inch we did two years ago with them featuring the Analog Suspect. The single is off a compilation called Battle Weapons in Session, Volume One that has moved sick units in France and the U.K. And it just got licensed to a distribution company in Taiwan called High Note. (Big up to the deck ninja Destro; your cuts are worldwide.) We also got to rock the stage before KRS-One in Boulder last fall, thanks to the H.D.C. crew, which was humbling as well as eye-opening. The Dojo also has a new home purchased by the producers that will serve as the new home base for Dojosound and the Dojo studio. And it came with a brand-new barbecue grill and basketball hoop. You can't beat that with a bat.

Recent recordings of note?
The Spellbinder EP, with noteworthy vocalist Spellbinder. You may have caught him with the Dojo earlier this year; if not, he performs regularly at Dazzle with the mighty Break Mechanics on occasion. It is a four-song demo EP that turned into a project early this year and had the Analog Suspect and Selecta Roswell twisting the knobs behind the seasoned voice of the Binder. We are two months away from dropping the new Dojo full-length that will feature Apostle, Dialektix, Icabod Strange and others, alongside the Suspect and Undefiable. DJ Idiom and DJ Square have signed on for guest scratches, and we are hoping to involve the Colorado Springs Massive (Accumen1, Black Pegasus and Still Catchin' Wreck) on a collaboration about this strange state of ours. Because it is strange, and those guys are straight wreckin' shit! We also have a remix EP in the works featuring some of our friends from the dance and down-tempo scenes taking on tracks from our first album and the Everything Flows instrumental album. Remixers thus far include: the Draconians, Equueli, Diverse, Annex of Soul, DJ Dnile, McPullish and a few more digital weirdos who stretch the boundaries between glitch and boom.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
A master chef, a satellite goddess and a wax slinger pay all their taxes to the Bush and bin Laden families.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Either Reggae on the Rocks last year or the Heavyweight Dub: Liberation Process show on April 19, 2003. Both were massive as far as sound, vibes and crowd response.

Favorite places to play?
The Mercury Cafe, Revoluciones Gallery, the Boulder Theater, DJ Onket's living room, the Soap Factory, Trilogy Lounge, and Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Why music?
Music is what moves us as a people and heals us when we suffer. It can be a voice of reason or a verbal fist. It can translate feelings around language and travel the globe at record speed. For the Dojo, music is always a learning experience and, within the Dojo, a teaching one.

If not music, what else?
The Undefiable one makes sweet love in the kitchen, so he would surely open his own chain of restaurants. Chez Noonan: Where you bring the booty and we serve the meat? The Suspect would soon grow weary of cattle country and would make her way to Japan to take her rightful seat as the head of a vicious gang of all-female breakdancing ninjas. The Selecta would be in Europe making crop circles and starring on a reality-TV program where he shares a flat with Harvey Keitel, the Rock, the Olsen Twins, Emeril the chef and, ahem, Scully from The X-Files.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Well, first we were going to be Visual Fission Hug, but Optik Fusion Embrace kinda blew that for us. And then we thought, what about Dianetics, like the L. Ron Hubbard quack, but Dialektix kinda ruined that for us. So we just settled on Dojo.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
After opening for Awol and Josh Martinez, we proceeded to watch Mr. Martinez get ill on the mike during his set and then get sick behind the turntables before doing the fifty-yard dash to the men's room, and then, like a champ, returning to the stage to finish his set and even show some fans some breakdancing moves after the show. That is hip-hop at its finest!

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Sitting through a two-hour Equinox celebration ritual that included a parade before performing at a party down in Santa Fe. The dance and hip-hop scene down there is small but organized and organically refreshing -- not polluted by "beef."

Worst gig?
The ones where the promoters collect all the dough and then pull out the file cabinet full of excuses when you try and criticize. But we've recently been informed that apparently, that is, in fact, hip-hop at its finest as well.

What do you love about the local scene?
Keg-hop shows at the old Revoluciones gallery; stores like Twist & Shout/Wax Trax/Bart's and Independent, where you can still buy underground music from someone in a T-shirt instead of a monkey suit; the strong collective sound coming from Colorado Springs hip-hop; Basementalism; labels like Dorje/Nobot/Persistence making waves locally and nationally; Red Rocks -- 'nuff said; punk-rock pizza at Two-Fisted Mario's after the show; GROWednesdays; MotherEarthSoundsytem; the Eclipse Show in Boulder; Fridaze at Dream; Swing-A-Ling Soundsystem and DJ Uplifter; some of the illest turntable wizards this side of the Mississippi, like Vajra/Destro/Idiom/Square/ Thought/Sol/Ali/Inka One/The Radio Bums/Even-flo and those Turbo Kru monkeys; the dedicated and crafty graffiti artists that work this town, as well as the An-ism collective with their digital graffiti; the Art Bus; Mags like Ultrasound and Sherbert; organized anarchy like Monkey Mania; and complete insanity like Chicken and Waffles at the Blue Mule.

What bugs you about the local scene?
It is perfect in every way -- and the moon is made of cheese.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we only make hip-hop music.

Any random facts we should know?
Undefiable's posse will grow by one this fall. Analog Suspect recorded a track with Heavyweight Dub Champions recently. And Selecta Roswell still refuses to get a cell phone.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Avalanche, because you have a way better chance of seeing some forty-year-old Cherry Creek housewife doing the Cabbage Patch to Usher's "Yeah" at the Pepsi Center than at Mile High Stadium (seized by Invesco).

Parting shot/final comments?
Put down the notion that Colorado isn't being heard. With bands like the Procussions, 16 Horsepower, Big Head Todd and Dressy Bessy leading the way, it's only a matter of time before the "big little city" is recognized for the musical hub that it is. And with that attention, other bands will be able to add to what these groups have cemented. Big up to Westword for supporting local music and helping it grow internally and beyond the four corners of our state.

DRESSY BESSY
NOMINATED IN POP

DRUG UNDER
NOMINATED IN HARD ROCK/METAL/AGGRO
6 P.M., THE CHURCH DOWNSTAIRS

And you are...?
Romero, vocalist for Drug Under.

Website?
www.drugunder.com

How long has your act been together?
Not quite two years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Signed an endorsement deal with Jägermeister and Sik World Clothing Company.

Recent recordings of note?
Finishing up our first full-length CD. We are recording at Rudy's Studio as we speak.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Full-time father and husband, and work part-time at my parents' health-food store, Nature's Harvest. My mom is my boss, still!

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Eric [Greenwall, Drug Under guitarist] and I played in front of 10,000 in our old band a few times -- very lucky and very blessed to have had those moments.

Favorite places to play?
Hollywood, the Whisky and the Roxy. Locally, too many to list. They all have a cool vibe: House of Rock, Hard Rock Cafe, Whiskey Bill's, Ecks, Cricket -- I like 'em all. I'll play anywhere.

Why music?
I love music. It's who I am. I was born to do this.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Tommy Lee suggested Neuromancer. We almost went back to Sick, but this was a lot different, musically, image-wise and obviously member-wise. We started over.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Halloween at Coopers'town. Lots of naked people on stage -- it was insane. We were Kiss, in full makeup. They were drunk and naked!

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Ted Nugent got pissed at us in Utah at a radio fest in front of 6,000 fans; he pulled the plug on us three songs into the set. He didn't like the mosh pit we fired up. Oh, well.

Worst gig?
Halloween last year, with Union Underground. You know the deal. It's over. Move on.

What do you love about the local scene?
Dave H. at Westword and KBPI (Uncle Nasty and Willy B's support of the scene). I'm not kissing ass -- it's true. You put hard rock back in the local mainstream. Greg and Willie have been there always. Love.45 getting a deal could help us/the scene more than we may realize.

What bugs you about the local scene?
People talk shit all the time. They don't even know me or how hard we have worked. I have paid my dues. I don't care what they think. I earned everything, the good and the bad.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Too many to list. Don't want to dwell on the negative stuff. Ain't got time. But go back to the previous question. You get the deal, right?

Any random facts we should know?
We really do have label interest, I swear.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncos.

Parting shot/final comments?
If I may quote one of our nation's greatest leaders and poets: "I forgot the fuckin' words, man!" -- David Lee Roth.

ERICA BROWN BAND
NOMINATED IN BLUES
4 P.M., LA RUMBA

And you are...?
Crazy, we're told, but we're the Erica Brown Band.

Website?
www.ericabrownband.com

How long has your act been together?
We've been together since 1998. Although some days it feels a lot longer, some a lot shorter.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Erica's pedicure... Oh, feAts!! We played the third year in a row for the "Dinner for Those Who Hunger" for Volunteers of America. We opened for B.B. King in February. Scotty and Rich shot really low numbers on the golf course this year. We opened for Tommy Castro, and the list goes on!

Recent recordings of note?
Rough Cut Stone, of course, and we'll be recording a local edition of Studio C for KBCO. I think one of our shows at KUVO with Miss JC may have been recorded, as well.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Like most other folks, most of us work day jobs -- but if I tell you here, the creditors will know where to find us!

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Gee...lately, that would have been last week, for the City Park Series. The organizers estimated about 5,000 folks. What a blast!

Favorite places to play?
As Scotty says, "I'll play anywhere, anytime!" We all agree. It's such a gift to be able to move people with what you love to do. And then they give us money! Yes!

Why music?
Any person who truly has it in their soul will find a way to get it out. Genre doesn't matter. Race and color don't matter. Blind or deaf, doesn't matter. It will get out.

If not music, what else?
Something creative.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Since E's been doing it for so long, how about "Shakin' That Moneymaker?" (grin...) Actually, none, really. The band was the Love Bandits for a while, but we changed it to just Erica Brown Band.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
It's not a gig story, but when Erica did her Maris the Great interview.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Probably doing three shows over two states in fourteen hours.

Worst gig?
The worst day playing beats the best day working.

What do you love about the local scene?
We think three things. The support of our fans! When they love you, they love you! The diversity of the scene here. We've all been to local shows from opera to Yo, Flaco! to GT and the Sidewinders to Sam Mayfield. The fact that local acts get airplay here. KUVO, KRFX, The Mountain, KBCO, KGOAT, KGNU -- all the regional radio stations support us.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The lack of blues venues. Denver has a thriving blues scene, but not enough places dedicated to blues. So we go anywhere we can to play. It makes for an interesting playing experience -- especially if you play somewhere that normally doesn't book blues and then you bowl them over.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That E is a lot younger than she looks. That Scotty was bald, even as a child.

Any random facts we should know?
E is a lot younger than she looks. Scotty was bald, even as a child.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Both. Why not? They are all sports entertainers who give the best they've got each time they do it.

Parting shot/final comments?
We'll let each person fill in the blanks: The EBB are...?

THE FRAY
NOMINATED IN ROCK v8 P.M., ACOMA CENTER

And you are...?
The Fray.

Website?
www.thefray.net

How long has your act been together?
Two years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Nominated Best New Band of 2003 by Westword. Recorded in KBCO Studio C. Headlined the Gothic Theatre with 400-plus crowd.

Recent recordings of note?
Reason EP.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Three of the members run their own businesses. Dan is a cab driver; he works for Yellow Cab. Isaac's company, Filament Productions, produces a TV show called the Noise Floor (www.noisefloordenver.com). And Joe runs a combination wholesale/retail company and deals in investments and real estate; he also has a travel-agency business. The remaining two members are currently in college.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
The largest crowd was 50,000-ish. However, they were running by, because it was during the Bolder Boulder. In reality, a show with a crowd coming to see us perform: roughly 500 people.

Favorite places to play?
Gothic Theatre, Fox Theatre.

Why music?
It's something we all have done for most of our lives. We all want this to happen; we want music to be a career that has the means to maintain an enjoyable life and family, because we love it. Reality is harsh, but it is certainly more devastating to a person who doesn't pursue what they love to do.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Belladonna and Stratford.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
The funniest gig was for a local film production that wanted a real-life battle of the bands scene featured in their movie. We were the last band; we were supposed to close the night out in a specific time slot. There were some delays over the course of the night. And by the time we were set up and ready to perform, they signaled to us that we had five minutes left. We all lost it, started one song.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We performed at a wedding in Evergreen that paid very well. The bride and groom were from Wyoming, so the only music they -- and everyone else there -- knew was country. So we pulled out "Freebird" and good old "Sweet Home Alabama" for an hour or so. They loved those two songs and stared at us for the rest of the set.

Worst gig?
Virgin Megastore. They set us up in the middle of the store, which was completely awkward. Nothing went right.

What do you love about the local scene?
Those who are in the local scene are extremely supportive.

What bugs you about the local scene?
There are not many who are involved with the local scene.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we have only one lead singer, when we have two.

Any random facts we should know?
Our bassist has a concealed-weapons permit, is nocturnal and is on prescription speed.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncos.

Parting shot/final comments?
We desperately want to perform at Lollapalooza or Red Rocks, so please vote for us to do so.

FUTURE JAZZ PROJECT
NOMINATED IN JAZZ/SWING
7 P.M., LA RUMBA

And you are...?
Future Jazz Project.

How long has your act been together?
Four years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Finally getting a record out, our debut release, called Check One. The record has been getting a lot of airplay on KUVO. Rodney Franks has really been helping us out.

Recent recordings of note?
Check One, 2004, self-released.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
The entire band is made up of professional musicians. In addition, Dameion is a massage therapist. Venus is a bilingual space-science facilitator: She dresses up like an astronaut and walks around on Mars. Paul Matthews, aka PAAS, recently founded ASR Entertainment, a Denver-based promotion and production company.

Favorite places to play?
Dazzle, every Thursday night, and Round Midnight in Boulder.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Seeds, Black Steel, Big Wheel.

What do you love about the local scene?
There are a lot of amazing players in this community. We are just blessed with a disproportionate number of world-class musicians.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we're a jazz band.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Case: There is only one team like the Denver Broncos.

THE GAMITS
NOMINATED IN PUNK
10 P.M., SERENGETI

And you are...?
The Gamits.

Website?
www.gamits.com

How long has your act been together?
Eight or nine years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We have toured Europe twice, Japan twice, and we just released our best record to date. We go back to Japan on July 4th and then a five-week tour with the Queers in the States.

Recent recordings of note?
Antidote, on Suburban Home Records.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Our other jobs include studio engineer/producer, flower-shop manager and novelty distribution.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Either Weezer's crowd in Denver or a show in Tokyo. Both were pretty big shows for us.

Favorite places to play?
I liked Tulagi in Boulder a lot until they shut it down. That was my favorite local venue. Also the Gothic, the Ogden and the Bluebird, locally. We like Austria, Italy and anywhere in Japan quite a bit, too.

Why music?
Why do we play music or why does it exist?

If not music, what else?
Sandwiches.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Pieces of Work, Two Jacks and a Jill.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Last time we played two shows in one day, it was pretty funny. Both shows were at the Larimer Lounge, and by the second set, I could barely stand up. People kept bringing us drinks. I have never played so bad. I thought it was funny at the time, but now that I think about it, it was really sad. More funny (?) strange stuff happens on tour, I guess.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Well the funniest ones cannot be printed in this publication. Here's a tame one. Again, we were playing at a bar. It was a place in Missoula, Montana, called Jay's Upstairs. I don't think they do shows anymore, but when they did, they would always give the bands free rein on the bar. That particular night it was Jäger shots. We were on tour with the Nobodys, and it was our turn to play. The stage was really tall but very small. We were all in rare form when we got up there. After a couple songs, I somehow stumbled forward and tripped over the monitor. I went flying off the stage, and without thinking about it, I did a front flip to protect my guitar. I landed flat on my back and kept on playing. The guys in the Nobodys laughed so hard that they fell off their chairs. I was not laughing.

Worst gig?
A pizza place in southern Italy. They turned off the power because the show was too loud for the pizza-eating patrons. It was also one of the funniest shows ever!

What do you love about the local scene?
I love almost everything about it. Of course there are always some bad apples and some jackasses that can ruin your night, but you really get to appreciate how great Denver is when you tour around the rest of the country. There's lots to offer here. Some great bands and some great people involved with every part of the scene.

What bugs you about the local scene?
It's getting a bit too hipster. And I don't see a lot of bands doing anything other than emulating sounds and fashions. I wish it could be more about the music, which it is for a lot of local bands. I guess it's the same everywhere.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we can't drink you under the table.

Any random facts we should know?
No additives does not mean a healthier cigarette.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Go, local sports team!

Parting shot/final comments?
Check out: www.gamits.com. Thanks and see you at the show.

GEORGE & CAPLIN
NOMINATED IN AVANT-GARDE
5 P.M., ACOMA CENTER

And you are...?
george & caplin.

Website?
www.georgeandcaplin.com

How long has your act been together?
We've been bandmates since 2001 and conceptual bandmates since 1980, when our Tonka trucks first worked on a project together.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We just finished a new LP. We are extremely proud of its themes, diversity and overall creativity. But over the last year, we have been pleasantly surprised many times. We were very honored to have our last album, Fate's First Lonely Night, be ranked in the top five for local releases in 2003 by the Denver Post. And Pitchfork Media also named our album one of the top twenty albums that should have been reviewed in 2003 nationally.

Recent recordings of note?
Fate's First Lonely Night, our second full-length album, was released in June of last year. Our new LP, Electronic Eulogy From Morse Code Infinity, should be released soon! Probably in late August of this year.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Education. One of us is a fifth-grade teacher, the other is an educational assistant for elementary teachers.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
We tend to be shy in big crowds, so I guess we never counted. More than our fingers and toes, though, we know.

Favorite places to play?
Yorkshire Studios, Climax, hi-dive, Larimer Lounge and Denver Museum of Contemporary Art.

Why music?
Nostalgia for childhood imagination: We always created new ways to use our old toys when we were younger. Now we apply the same ideas to our instruments.

If not music, what else?
Being dorks privately instead of publicly.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Never a hard decision: Anything inspired by Alfred Hitchcock is okay with us.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
We played once at a venue that is definitely more conducive to blaring guitar solos, party music and verse chorus/verse chorus kind of compositions. We played after a blues/soul cover band. And let's just say that many beers grew warm from mouths being unable to operate when we started playing songs using our guitars like washboards and using a variety of rewired kids' toys.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Coming soon.

Worst gig?
Whenever we are too critical of ourselves. Which is almost always.

What do you love about the local scene?
So many incredibly talented musicians and artist have been inspiring us lately. I think we have enjoyed more local shows lately than any national acts. The best part of the scene is its sense of community. I feel like I am back in art school again.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Denver has an incredible scene of experimental artists and IDM artists that often go unseen in certain circles. I would love to see these acts be appreciated in a broader context. We all owe a lot to their experimentation.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Neither of us is named George or Caplin.

Any random facts we should know?
Watch Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest to solve all our mysteries. The mysterious "Third Man" in our live set is named Marcellus Lewis, aka 86spaceboat. His new EP is great.

Avalanche or Broncos?
How about them Denver Gold?

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks to the Iselin family and Stevens family, who nurtured our freedoms in youth and support us today. And thanks to those who listen and make it even more fun for us to share. Also, thanks to Tyler Potts, whose influence will be tremendously missed in the Denver scene. Tyler helped us get our foot in the door in the beginning, and we will miss his music and his inspiration. But we know he will do great things in Seattle.

GROUND ZERO MOVEMENT
NOMINATED IN HIP-HOP
8 P.M., OPAL

And you are...?
The hardest-working group in show business. The Ground Zero Movement!

Website?
www.groundzeromovement.com

How long has your act been together?
All members have been involved in the hip-hop scene as early as 1992. The current form of the group has been together since December 2001.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
The Summer Jam after-party with J-Kwon; D.O. skydiving off the Aurora Mall; and a trip to Mexico to rock three shows in San Carlos, Sonora.

Recent recordings of note?
The new album, Writer's Square, will be released in August. Future I.D. is still available (go cop that!!). Tangerine V.I.P.er will be re-released in August. And No Radio Play is just a collector's classic!!

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
CD sales, stealing wallets, working security, pimpin', rocking mikes and giving sound financial advice.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Summer Jam 2003 at Fiddler's Green.

Favorite places to play?
Anywhere that has good sound. We hate incompetent sound staff!

Why music?
The only thing I love more than music is God (the fathers in the crew really love their kids). Everything else is secondary.

If not music, what else?
If it weren't hip-hop, it would be jazz. If not jazz, then blues. If not blues, then soul. If not soul, then reggae. If not reggae, then punk rock. Music will always factor into the equation.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Ground Zero Movement was always it. There were no other suggestions.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
We did a show with Shock G (Humpty) in Fort Collins at the Starlight Theater. Some kid in the crowd stole his nose, so he had to just be Shock G for the rest of the night.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
After one of the shows in Mexico, a guy came up to me (Dow) and straight-up offered me his sister. His friend grabbed my hand and tried to make me feel on her goods, and the girl grabbed my head and kissed me. I felt like a true superstar -- that never happens here. DJ CY didn't sleep for the entire four days we were in Mexico. But if it wasn't for the people he made friends with in his sleepless nights, we would have never made it back home. Thanks, Aldo!

Worst gig?
We don't look at any shows as completely bad. Sure, there are some that had a lot of room for improvement. But if we can turn even one new person on to the Ground Zero Movement, it makes every show worth it.

What do you love about the local scene?
The people. Thanks for your support!!

What bugs you about the local scene?
The complaint we have about the scene here is the same one we have always had: People do not take hip-hop seriously here. The sooner people (promoters, listeners, performers etc.) respect hip-hop -- both as an art form and as a viable business prospect -- the sooner Colorado will share in the billions of dollars that hip-hop generates each year.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we are thugs who don't know how to act. That we are so uncontrollably rowdy we can't do a show without someone getting hurt. We are very professional and take our performances very seriously. We like to have a good time with our music, just like any other band does.

Any random facts we should know?
Dow Jones makes beats at 5 a.m. before work. D.O. loves anyone who buys him Black and Mild cigars. DJ CY has a black belt in tai chi. Sid Fly is the chairman of the Gullification Council (if you don't know, ask at a show). DJ Arkitech helped mix the sound for The Little Mermaid. And A.S.E. One makes the best cornbread in Park Hill!

Avalanche or Broncos?
The team I can get tickets to see is the team I like, especially if the tickets are free.

Parting shot/final comments?
You know Chauncey Billups got the MVP, right?!

HEMI CUDA
NOMINATED IN PUNK
7 P.M., SERENGETI

And you are...?
Anika Zappe, lead vox and guitar; Karen Exley, bass and vox; Mark Allen, drums, monster from another mother.

Website?
www.hemicudarocks.com (home site); www.popsweatshop.com (US label site); www.thunderbaby.de (German label site); www.myspace.com/hemicuda (fun profile)

How long has your act been together?
Since '97.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Ha! Overcoming every hurdle possible to get our summer tour together; our Red Rocks gig (July 20); and many miles on the treadmill.

Recent recordings of note?
We just did three songs in this bad-ass studio with a producer -- sounds awesome. Hope to release it as an EP this summer.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We don't. We live in a lean-to by the Platte, but you can see us slinging booze at your favorite bars around town.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Mmm. Probably sold out at the Ogden -- 1,000+?? (speaking for the girls, not our drummer: He's played for many, many more).

Favorite places to play?
The ones that pay us well, with big stages and good, good-looking crowds -- so many!

Why music?
Dumb question.

If not music, what else?
World traveling or helping the mentally handicapped.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Wait a sec, these are the same questions every year. Well, to change things up, we did consider naming our album "...it's what's for dinner."

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
The time Anika forgot to bring her amp!

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Seeing our friends from Denver at a show in Germany. So many more, so little time.

Worst gig?
Ha! That would be bad business to mention names. Let's just say we decided not to play upon arrival.

What do you love about the local scene?
Being able to sleep in my own bed at the end of the night.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Lack of support from people who don't understand how much work goes into what we do.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we are popular because we wear hot pants -- we can write a killer song, too, ya know.

Any random facts we should know?
Karen needs a bicycle.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Irrelevant. But we do wanna hit up Trevor Pryce's new label.

Parting shot/final comments?
Hemi Cuda summer West Coast tour kicks off July 1. Check out sites listed above for tour dates. See us when we return at Red Rocks on July 20!

HONKY TONK HANGOVERS
NOMINATED IN COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS/ROOTS

And you are...?
The Honky Tonk Hangovers, Denver's Super Electrified Hillbilly Band.

Website?
www.honkytonkhangovers.com

How long has your act been together?
About four years or so, near as we can reckon.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Nominated by Westword for Best Country Band; released Giant Country; played the main stage at the People's Fair for the second year; opened for Brian Setzer at the Fillmore Auditorium; have received nearly daily airplay on 1510 AM/KCUV radio; received a grammy nod in the category of Best Country Album.

Recent recordings of note?
We released our second CD, Giant Country, on the Big Bender label in February. This is, as the title implies, a huge recording, with fourteen original tunes and two covers totaling nearly a full hour of music! Check it out at www.bigbender.net, where you can download some music, or purchase it at finer record stores throughout the state.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Tim runs his own office equipment repair business. Dylan is a full-time student at the School of Mines. Donnie is an export/import expert. And Dave keeps the world safe from nuclear terrorism by providing enhanced security at Russian nuclear facilities.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
We had the extremely high honor of opening for Brian Setzer at the Fillmore Auditorium. There were about 2,000 people there, and we were very well received. It was quite a hoot!

Favorite places to play?
Lincoln's Roadhouse, Sharp's Roadhouse, Herman's Hideaway, the Soiled Dove.

Why music?
Roots country music is the optimal form of expression. Every song tells a story worth hearing, a story of living, loving and being a man. It tells stories that every red-blooded American can relate to. It's the perfect means by which the "strong silent type" can express himself and tell his life's story.

If not music, what else?
Good, passionate lovemaking or beating the living crap out of somebody who desperately deserves it: Those are the only things comparable.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
We don't even remember what else came up. As far as we recall, the name came immediately. Maybe it was God-sent?

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Being that nothing surprises us anymore, it's difficult to remember particulars. Our gig history is a blur of drunken dancing, singing, people falling onto our monitors, wedding proposals and requests for every Johnny Cash song you could think of.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Due to the fact that each Hangover has a day job, we have yet to go on the road, but we are planning/hoping to do so sometime soon.

Worst gig?
Ranger Dave had just come back from Russia and was too exhausted to play. The rest of the fellers decided that the show must go on and found a guitar player at the very last moment. Somehow they got through it, collected a paycheck and didn't disappoint one of our favorite employers. Now, that's dedication to duty!

What do you love about the local scene?
All the bands on the roots-country/rockabilly scene in Denver work very well together, and we are all friends. There are no trivial rivalries or any other BS among us. Every band has its own unique sound. The cutting-edge roots-country acts in town, other than the Hangovers, are, of course, the Railbenders, the Dalhart Imperials and Halden Wofford and the Hi-Beams. These are the bands that have been making records, playing lots of shows and making waves -- and no two of these bands have a similar sound. That is a rare thing and gives Denver music lovers a rare opportunity to enjoy every style of classic country music every weekend!

What bugs you about the local scene?
The Denver music scene can be very fickle. One day you can fill Herman's Hideaway to the gills, and on another day five people turn out for a show. As far as country music goes, we do poorly in "country" bars because nobody is interested in traditional country dancing such as the two-step or the country waltz. They are mostly interested in line dancing, and therefore they only want to hear cover tunes of songs they hear on the radio.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Many people think that because we have sideburns that we are a rockabilly band. The music we play "walks the line" between rockabilly and country but tends to cross far deeper into country territory than into rockabilly. We are a country band!

Any random facts we should know?
Due to Ranger Dave's extensive foreign travel and his many friends still serving in U.S. Army Special Operations, the Hangovers are currently being listened to from Moscow to the presidential palace in Baghdad!

Avalanche or Broncos? vThe only real sports fanatic in the band is Donnie, and he is a season ticket holder for the Broncos.

Parting shot/final comments?
We want to thank Denver and its citizens for making it possible to play and record original music and be successful. Most cities will only support bands that cover popular hits. If that was what we would have to do in order to play, I don't believe we would do it. This is a very unique town in that original bands have a good shot at becoming popular.

WILLIE HOUSTON
NOMINATED IN BLUES

ION
NOMINATED IN HARD ROCK/METAL/AGGRO
5 P.M., THE CHURCH DOWNSTAIRS

And you are...?
Ion, Noe De Leon.

Website ?
www.ionband.com

How long has your act been together?
Ion has been together for about a year and four months or so.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Performing with some of my favorite acts at large venues: Disturbed, Taproot, Chevelle (Denver Coliseum), Evanescence (Fillmore Auditorium), Cold, Orgy, Godhead and Society1 (Ogden Theatre).

Recent recordings of note?
Yes, our new album, Gross National Product.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Tod: graphic design; Joe: delivers car parts; Noe: delivers legal documents; Gef: has no idea/teaches drum lessons/drum and bugle corps; Nik: works at Home Depot.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
The biggest crowd would be at the Denver Coliseum; it was, if I'm right, around eight to ten thousand. It was crazy, and I almost puked.

Favorite places to play?
I love playing at Herman's; it's like home. Besides, they have the sexiest waitresses. And I need to not leave out the doorman, who treats us like it's our home. It really does feel like home. I like Cricket on the Hill for the live, up-in-your-face feel. And the Blue Mule is always a personal pleaser. I like performing at the Ogden and Gothic for full live stage setup purposes.

Why music?
Music has had a really big impact on my life. It gives me something to take out emotion and stress on. Music really comforts me, whether it is my own or other music.

If not music, what else?
If not music, I would have been a journalist or a movie director.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Gross National Product. Terraform. "Todd Schlafer and his four asses." (Ha ha ha).

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Somebody in the band played a show and soiled himself on stage! Uhh? What?

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We were touring and stopped in Vegas, and I wanted to gamble, for some "odd" reason. The very first piece of U.S. currency I pulled out, which was a quarter, I lost at Treasure Island. I dropped it and lost it on the boardwalk. I think it was a sign not to gamble. I always lose money.

Worst gig?
Place not mentioned, but we didn't get paid -- and I had a scary stalker that night. The sound was horrible. And we had to pay for drinks, which were expensive.

What do you love about the local scene?
I like that no matter what different styles people play, the bands are still good friends and can relate -- and accept that music is a worldwide language within itself.

What bugs you about the local scene?
What bugs me is all the drama and people trying to fit in genres. Those are usually the people/bands that make the separation of styles worse. The venues need to stop catering to just one style or size.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
People think we are hardcore metal and think because some of the music is loud that it's all angry. There are so many songs that we have that are the complete opposite of how it's approached musically.

Any random facts we should know?
We are hardworking, and I can never eat or sleep without hearing melodies in my head. I always have a need to write and learn more. You can never, ever learn enough or get good enough. There's always so much more to learn. My personal style favorites are mostly hip-hop and old-school jazz and blues.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Avalanche and Broncos -- but mostly their cheerleaders and the great deals on booze they have at every local bar.

Parting shot/final comments?
I would personally like to thank Dave Herrera for putting the balls back into the local scene and the local media/paper. I'd like to thank Uncle Nasty for helping out the local scene as much as he has. I, myself, along with Ion, would like to thank each individual that has supported us this far into our career and hard work. There will be much, much more coming from Ion. I would like to play more diverse performances with other local acts. Buy the new CD!

LOVE .45
NOMINATED IN POP
5:45 P.M., OUTDOOR STAGE

And you are...?
Love .45.

Website?
www.love45.com

How long has your act been together?
Five years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Signing a record deal with Studio E Records. Signing a management deal with the same firm that handles several multi-platinum acts such as 3 Doors Down, Puddle of Mudd and Chevelle.

Recent recordings of note?
The Seattle Sessions EP; the single "Don't Ask Me" has been featured on Channel 93.3/KTCL and has recently charted as high as #2 on the Top 8. National debut on Studio E Records slated for release this fall.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Unemployed/Love .45.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Red Rocks Amphitheatre.

Favorite places to play?
The Ritz in Colorado Springs, Herman's Hideaway, the Blue Mule and the Soiled Dove.

Why music?
Our love, passion and insatiable appetite for the music and performing. It can be compared to a pirate's curse!

If not music, what else?
A college education and beyond!

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Spiral Network.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Halloween night, we dressed up in ghoulish costumes and performed as the backup band for Maris the Great, playing "God of Thunder," by Kiss. Maris sang lead vocals.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
On a spring/summer tour, driving through the Mojave Desert during the day with no air-conditioning had everyone going delirious. This had the guys taking off T-shirts, putting them on their heads as turbans and singing gospel hymns.

Worst gig?
At a gig in Texas, our gear was stolen overnight from the hotel parking lot where we were staying.

What do you love about the local scene?
The camaraderie among the bands is awesome, as well as the local support from all the fans! What an incredible, supportive environment!

What bugs you about the local scene?
Our local scene is not getting the attention that it deserves nationally. There's lots of great talent here that deserves some of the national spotlight, recognition and opportunities!

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That a record deal means an instant cash windfall. That's false! All record-company monies are recoupable, so you gotta work even harder, stay smart and sharp and keep your eyes wide open as you write, record and perform the best music possible at all times! Having your heart and motivation in the creative process of creating art and music is the good stuff while keeping the brain on the biz aspects, too! We're blessed to have a good team with a good plan, and we'll let the music do the talking!

Any random facts we should know?
Mick and Paul are originally from Loveland, Colorado. Jim and Danny are currently roommates.

Avalanche or Broncos?
The majority of us would say Broncos, except Danny Elster, who is a major Kansas City Chiefs fan.

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks to Westword (and its committees) for taking the time to recognize and acknowledge the Colorado music scene through the Westword Music Showcase and awards! What an amazing opportunity to showcase local talent and give readers and music fans the chance to voice their opinions and catch some great live entertainment! We're grateful for the opportunity to participate, and for Westword's continuing commitment to covering the wide variety of unique talent and styles that Colorado has to offer. See ya on Saturday, June 26! Cheers from Love .45! -- Paul, Danny, Mick and Jim.

THE MAGIC CYCLOPS
NOMINATED IN AVANT-GARDE
4 P.M., SERENGETI

SAMMY MAYFIELD
NOMINATED IN BLUES

RON MILES
NOMINATED IN JAZZ/SWING

And you are...?
Ron Miles, trumpet player.

How long has your act been together?
Different bands, different times. Rudy Royston seems to be the constant, and we've played with each other over ten years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Just steady practicing.

Recent recordings of note?
Ron Miles Quartet: Laughing Barrel; Jo Henry: Tiny Voices; and Fred Hess: The Long and the Short of It.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
Teaching at Metro State College.

Favorite places to play?
Colorado.

Why music?
A chance to contribute.

What do you love about the local scene?
The bands, the camaraderie between musicians and the passion of the listeners. KUVO and KGNU. And our great local record and CD stores. Dolly Zander.

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks for including us in this distinguished group of musicians.

MATTHEW MOON
NOMINATED IN SINGER/SONGWRITER

And you are...?
Matthew Moon.

Website?
www.matthewmoon.com

How long has your act been together?
Eight years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Played in London, England, recently.

Recent recordings of note?
KBCO Studio C (Locals Edition). 99.5/The Mountain (homegrown compilation).

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
Music only, for the last four years.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
65,000

Favorite place to play?
Cricket on the Hill.

Why music?
Because it's really, really fun, and super, super nice.

If not music, what else?
PE instructor at St. Mary's Academy

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Before I was Matthew Moon I called myself Matthew Gallows until my mother told me it reminded her of someone hanging from a tree.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
I've got three: 1) Brian Ford dressed in '70s garb, completely wasted, knocks over two tables, a monitor and a mike stand. 2) Brian Ford passes out on the front of the stage. 3) Brian Ford sings "Prophet of Doom," by the Samples, after three shots of Rumplemintz, two car bombs and sixteen beers.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
On an off night in Missoula, Montana, we decided to go bowling. As we passed the hotel bar, we noticed a very attractive female bartender. One drink never hurt anyone, right? We sat at the bar and watched the room fill up with college kids. Some guy with a green backpack offers us acid. We trip our balls off and forever change the meaning of the phrase, "Let's go bowling."

Worst gig?
Battle of the Bands at the Skyline, 1999. Who comes up with these silly competitions?

What do you love about the local scene?
Sharon Rawles.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The band Missing Melissa.

What's the biggest misconception about you?
I do not know.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Our tour schedule always revolves around football.

THE MOTET
NOMINATED IN JAZZ/SWING
10 P.M., LA RUMBA

And you are...?
The Motet!

Website?
www.themotet.net

How long has your act been together?
Since 1998, almost six years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Performed at KBCO's 25th Annual Kinetics in May to thousands of fans; will be performing at the San Francisco Fillmore in July. The Motet is working hard to spread consciousness and awareness throughout the music community. We're conducting voter registration at shows throughout 2004. We're fueling our tour bus with eco-friendly and clean-burning bio-diesel on our West Coast summer tour. Bio-diesel is manufactured from vegetable oils, is a renewable resource, is biodegradable and dramatically reduces engine emissions.

Recent recordings of note?
Music for Life, a brand-new recording of all new music coming out next month. The first new album in two years!

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Pay the bills playing music. Day job is to shed and practice so that we can play great music all night.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Probably Kinetics in May, although I don't have an exact number. One of the best crowds was years ago at the Carbondale Mountain Fair ,where we had the full and undivided attention of 5,000 boogeying folks.

Favorite places to play?
Obviously, Boulder and Denver. Friends and family make it great. But we have awesome crowds in Missoula, Montana; Asheville, North Carolina; Austin, Texas, and San Luis Obispo, California. The whole West Coast, from San Diego to Seattle, can be just great.

Why music?
Music feeds the soul. Ideally, it pays the bills and feeds your belly, as well.

If not music, what else?
Different strokes for different folks. Our guitarist, Mark Donovan, does great web design. Our percussionist, Scott Messersmith, has been building and now completing his house up in the mountains.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Motet was originally the Dave Watts Motet. We were gonna call ourselves String Cheese Incident, but someone had snatched that up already. Also thought of Fish, but that would have been confusing.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Why does the weather just dump on us every Halloween? It's either raining buckets or dumping snow. We've sold out the Fox Theatre on Halloween every year for the past three years, and the weather is always horrible. Something spooky going on, for sure.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Being on tour.

Worst gig?
Ouch. I'd rather not talk about it

What do you love about the local scene?
Just the great support and family feel. The diversity of interests in Boulder keeps things vibrant and alive. There's just some great energy here.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Well, nothing, of course. Everybody's great. We love everyone.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we will keep the same lineup forever. The nature of the Motet is change. The music evolves, and so do the players. You can always count on the players being top-notch, phenomenal musicians. You just may not recognize all of them from the Motet show you saw a couple years ago.

Any random facts we should know?
Motet, by definition, is a cappella music. We came up with the name before we ever bothered to check it out in the dictionary. Oops. When we named the band, it was constantly fluctuating from a quintet to a septet to a sextet, so by calling it Motet, the name would always be right.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Huh?

MR. PACMAN
NOMINATED IN AVANT-GARDE

And you are...?
Mr. Pacman: 8-bit video-game action-rockers. Mr. Pacman on vocals and key-tar; Silver Ghost on Commodore 64 super-computer; the White Tiger on percussion; and Cockroach 3030 on guitar.

Website?
www.addinchessafely.com

How long has your act been together?
Mr. Pacman has been a trusted Denver institution since 2001.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Forget about the music, Mr. Pacman is still the undefeated champion of the Hotdog Challenge (hosted at indie venue Monkey Mania), having downed fifteen hot dogs with buns in five minutes and washing them down with nothing but ketchup and mustard. Let's see the competition do that!

Recent recordings of note?
We're working on two new full-length albums, the heavy-metal epic Crotch Rocket and the Caribbean-flavored Mr. Pacman Goes to Jamaica. In the meantime, we've been collecting some impressive remixes from the Pacman Playaz around the globe. Want to rock out to "The Ninja" in an obnoxious rave-party atmosphere? You will.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Let's stick with: astronaut, pirate, cowboy and dungeon master.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
The record for us is still the fabulously disastrous "Night of 1,000 Evils" Grim Halloween Party of 2002, if you can count dodging bottles and escaping the drunken, angry mob as "playing for." If so, we counted a thousand "fans" at that show.

Favorite places to play?
We'd like to give a shout-out to the Gothic Theatre. We'd like to shout out to the Larimer Lounge and the Climax Lounge. Shout-out to the hi-dive -- you've got a great venue. You, too, Bluebird Theater. You, too, Lion's Lair. And Monkey Mania, we can't forget you.

Why music?
Romance expert Fabio really summed it up best in his 1993 classic Fabio After Dark: "When I play a special song, it is very important because it can express what I feel so perfectly. A song can speak for me when I cannot put my feelings into words. I listen to a solo and I think of a duet."

If not music, what else?
Although music is a primary focus, entertainment is the mission. So without music, we'd probably be doing the violent children's show The Half Hour of Power, warning kids about the dangers of strangers and the stinking of drinking.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Mr. Pacman was never a group of musicians who set out to invent a band. The name and the idea started as a film-school project and grew from that, collecting musicians. So there was never any question as to the name. A better question for us might be: "What are you going to be called after your lawsuit with Namco?"

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
At the 4th of July party at the Scott Baio Army house, Mr. Pacman performed only one song, "Let's Get This Party Started." The song was performed six times, and each time, Mr. Pacman guzzled a 40 oz. malt-liquor bottle during the instrumental while the crowd chanted, "Chug! Chug! Chug!" The final reprise consisted of Mr. Pacman singing the final verse while simultaneously puking his guts into our gearbox.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We were in Albuquerque on tour with the Magic Cyclops. The Magic Cyclops thought it would be funny to play a prank on us and pretend that his car, the Suzuki Swift, had been stolen. The bouncer of the bar, who was in on it, drove by in the "stolen" car, triggering the White Tiger to get in his van and start chasing the Swift. A high-speed chase ensued, and the White Tiger was seconds from apprehending and pummeling the bouncer before the prank was revealed. We are still plotting our revenge against the Magic Cyclops.

Worst gig?
Probably any show in which one or more pieces of critical gear decides to fail. Since we use a lot of vintage synth technology, this is not that unusual. Taking a hint from the hit show Survivor, we've decided to institute a "last man standing" policy in which the show must go on until every last piece of equipment has failed. One particular show ended with only vocals and hand claps.

What do you love about the local scene?
Denver is a great town. People are always excited to participate and help out with Mr. Pacman. I don't think we could ask for any better support from musicians, record stores, venues and media.

What bugs you about the local scene?
We're not so excited that Colorado has become the hippie jam-band capital of the world. We're planning to launch our own death-metal Phish cover band called "Phist" just to sabotage that jingle-jangle noodley-doodley scene.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Mostly misspellings based on the popular '80s video game "Pac-man," to which the band "Mr. Pacman" is wholly unrelated. The real story behind the name: Mr. Pacman was the name of our lead singer's comb-overed junior high school gym teacher who used to tell him that he wouldn't amount to anything. Look at him now, Mr. Pacman! Look at him now!

Any random facts we should know?
We found our guitar-playing, six-foot cockroach in a bombed-out Guitar Center in the year 3030. In the future, the roaches are masters of heavy metal. He eats raw garbage, so feel free to feed him at one of our shows!

Avalanche or Broncos?
Avalanche, just because we're trying to kiss their asses so they'll play our hockey anthem "Heavy Metal Hockey Animal" video over the JumboTron.

Parting shot/final comments?
Eat your vitamins and never give up!

MY CALCULUS BEATS YOUR ALGEBRA
NOMINATED IN AVANT-GARDE
6 P.M., SERENGETI

And you are...?
My Calculus Beats Your Algebra: Thorin Klosowski and Bryan Danknich.

Website?
www.thedanceprogram.net/mcbya

How long has your act been together?
Two years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We recently constructed a cosmic hamster capable of being ridden around puzzle-like worlds and dropping bombs.

Recent recordings of note?
A three-inch split with Dead Medic. A full-length is due out August 5. A CD split with (the) Kindercide is due out soon. And a ten-inch is due out in spring of 2005.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Twist & Shout and Metropolitan.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
70 people, maybe 75 -- maybe even 100, if you count the people who we drove to standing outside.

Favorite places to play?
Monkey Mania and the hi-dive.

Why music?
It's the only way to express the constant stream of video-game soundtracks that are playing in our heads.

If not music, what else?
I'm sure we would find something useful to do with our time. Bryan is an expert bass fisherman; assuredly there is something he could do with that. Thorin, however, is frightened of most outdoor environments; maybe that could be used to an advantage somehow.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
The time Bryan got his hand bit clean off by one of the members of Hipster Bloodbath. He was forced to reconstruct a hand out of spare metal parts in order to complete the set. Later, the hand was located and sewn back into place.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
The Pheremones, Peoria, Illinois. You have to see it to believe it.

Worst gig?
Larimer Lounge.

What do you love about the local scene?
The few remaining DIY kids who are striving to create an environment for creativity and ingenuity while remaining true to their ethics and morals.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The fashion, the drugs, the pretension and the competition.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
People seem to think that they enjoy hearing us play.

Any random facts we should know?
Surprisingly, neither of us are classically trained.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Raiders and Red Wings.

PLANES MISTAKEN FOR STARS
NOMINATED IN PUNK

And you are...?
Good. Up in Them Guts should be out any day now, and we are touring our asses off.

Website?
www.pmfs.net

How long has your act been together?
A little over six years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Avoiding liver failure.

Recent recordings of note?
Up In Them Guts on No Idea.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We all just scrape by on odd jobs and the help of our loved ones.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
2,500 on different support tours.

Favorite places to play?
Wherever we are welcomed.

Why music?
Our modeling careers failed.

If not music, what else?
We'd have the biggest fucking garden you've ever seen.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Blue Oyster Cult, but we found out it was taken.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
We had a ghetto bird (police chopper) bust our house show. (Your tax dollars at work.)

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
You name it.

Worst gig?
Too many to decide.

What do you love about the local scene?
Friends Forever.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Apathetic/fickle/hipster kids.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we are a metal band.

Any random facts we should know?
The world is going to hell in a handbasket. We need to love each other more.

Avalanche or Broncos?
The Fighting Whities.

Parting shot/final comments?
Be good to each other.

PLASTIC PARACHUTE
NOMINATED IN POP
5 P.M., LA RUMBA

And you are...?
Plastic Parachute: Ricky Brewer, guitar; Shaun Nelson, bass; Nic Woods, drums; and Deb Hooks, vocals.

Website?
www.plasticparachute.com

How long has your act been together?
A year and a half.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
The Westword nomination! We've also had a great year opening for such acts as Nelly Furtado and Rick Springfield, and we're pretty stoked about playing Red Rocks this summer!!

Recent recordings of note?
In August, we're heading out to L.A. to record our new album. We're very excited to be working on our latest material with cool cat Rodger Carter.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Bills? Oh, we don't have any... Uh, well...oh, are those due again? Hmmm.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
40,000 runners at the Bolder Boulder 10K race this year. They never even had a chance to get bored with us.

Favorite places to play?
So many great venues in Denver! Special love to all those who let the Plastic kids in the door and gave a new band a chance.

Why music?
We had a choice?

If not music, what else?
Olympic synchronized swim team.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Love Children of Dave Herrera.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Playing to 2,000 screaming women at the Paramount when we opened for Rick Springfield.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We had a streaker at an out-of-town college show once. Whitest buns we've ever seen.

Worst gig?
We'll get back to you on that one, as we're about to hit the road full-time in a thirty-foot RV. The worst is inevitably yet to come.

What do you love about the local scene?
It's an exciting time for the Denver's music scene. There is room for everyone here and an audience for every artist who wants to hit the stage, no matter what musical style.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The lack of realization by so many that there is room for everyone here and an audience for every artist who wants to hit the stage.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Hmm, don't know. We don't really listen much.

Any random facts we should know?
We collect string and we have a most stellar Street Team. Shout out to the paratroopers.

Avalanche or Broncos?
The Avs and your local synchronized swim team.

Parting shot/final comments?
"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined." -- Thoreau

THE RAILBENDERS
NOMINATED IN COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS/ROOTS

And you are...?
The Railbenders: Jim Dalton, vocals, guitars; Tyson Murray, upright string bass; and Graham Haworth, drums and vocals.

Website?
www.railbenders.com

How long has your act been together?
Established in 2000.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We just got a gig opening for the Charlie Daniels Band on June 26 at the Budweiser Arena in Loveland. As a result, we won't be able to play this year's Westword Music Showcase as we have for the past two years. We're happy about the gig, but disappointed about missing the showcase.

Recent recordings of note?
Segundo was released this year on Big Bender Records. We also have a new split CD release with Eddie Spaghetti (of the Supersuckers), which is out on their Mid-Fi label.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Tyson owns and tends bar at Tavern 13. Graham is a fish salesman for the Seattle Fish Company. And Jim is a bartender at night and a real estate appraiser by day.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Probably opening up for Willie Nelson at Jazz Aspen in 2002. We were on early so it was a light crowd compared to Willie's crowd but that was an exciting gig for us. We also played this year in front of about 1,200 people in Tempe, Arizona, opening up for Roger Clyne.

Favorite places to play?
Denver will always be our favorite. There are too many great Denver venues to list. We had a great time in Nashville and want to go back again. Nita's Hideaway in Arizona was a blast too.

Why music?
Pretty simple, really. We just love playing!

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
I have never laughed as hard as the time Tyson and I were driving up I-70 to a gig, trying to catch up to some of our friends who had driven ahead of us after a gas station stop. Tyson got the wild idea that he wanted to moon them. We eventually spotted their Jeep Cherokee up ahead. As I pulled even with their car, Tyson pressed his ham against the window. As I looked over to see their reaction, I suddenly realized we had the wrong car! It was an older couple -- probably retired and on vacation. I burst out laughing, Tyson turned to look and said, "Oh, shit!" and sat down as fast as he could. I had tears in my eyes from laughing so hard.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
That would have to be our buddy Matty flying all the way to Nashville to see us this past weekend and requesting "Piss Up a Rope," by Ween. The Nashville crowd was about the most conservative-looking crowd we'd ever played for. But we figured we had to play it for the one guy who flew all the way from Denver just to see us, so we did! The best thing is, they went crazy for it! A bunch of ladies who had to be in their sixties and seventies were laughing hysterically. Thanks, Matty!

Worst gig?
The ones where people ask you to play the "Boot Scootin' Boogie" -- or whatever the hell that line-dancing song is!

What do you love about the local scene?
The diversity of the music. There is a lot of great music, regardless of the style/genre. This is a very supportive scene among musicians.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Geographically, the venues are too spread out. It would be nice if there were one main part of town where everyone could go and have the luxury of walking to different venues and see many different bands (like Austin's 6th Street, and Nashville's Broadway) in a single night. It's difficult in Denver to see more than one show in a night.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Everyone thinks Tyson and Jim are brothers. We get asked that at every other gig.

Any random facts we should know?
Tyson and Graham have the same exact birthday! What are the odds of that? Graham is the son of Bob Haworth (of Kingston Trio fame).

Avalanche or Broncos?
Tyson digs the Avalanche, while Jim and Graham are all about the Broncos.

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks for the gig! Salud!

THE REALS
NOMINATED IN COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS/ROOTS
9 P.M., ACOMA CENTER

And you are...?
The Reals.

Website?
www.thereals.net

How long has your act been together?
Kevin and Matt have been playing together since just after high school -- ten years. The Reals have been together for five years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Touring Western cities this summer and fall with New Belgium Brewing company's Tour de Fat; winner of Westword's Readers' Choice for Best Recording; and lots of rotation at 1510 AM KCUV and The Mountain.

Recent recordings of note?
Our new record, Majestic, has sold nearly 2,000 copies since November. There's some new stuff on the website, with more to come soon.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
John Horan: owner of Real Baby; Cheyenne Kowal: mama, owner of QueenSweep; Kevin Meyer: teacher and joe slinger at Pablo's on 6th; Tom Zingaro: owner of Blue Lotus landscape company; Chris Budin: day job at Gravity Music Gear, backline/technical roadie work on the side; and Matt Kowal: audio engineering/CD mastering.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
About 3,000 at the Fillmore, and Matt played for several hundred thousand at a Broncos' Super Bowl homecoming.

Favorite places to play?
Gothic, Bluebird, Fox, Fadó, Fillmore, Lucia's Casa de Café, Bit & Spur (Springdale,Utah); Taste of Colorado is a wild trip, and the old Skylark.

Why music?
It's a great common language for lots of different types of people and can have instant results making people feel good.

If not music, what else?
Cheyenne would be reading head bumps as a phrenologist.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Chaps -- No Pants. 15 Bus.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
When we first started, our old drummer talked us into playing a fourteen-year-old's birthday party, whose sister he had the hots for. The kids were not into us at all. Eminem would have made them much happier. The parents were pretty torqued -- while reclining on their bed surrounded by their lap poodles, they expressed their disappointment.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
In Salt Lake City, Utah, after ripping off some small items -- someone left their used needle wrapped in an old rag on the dash of the van. Earlier, drummer Darin Hahn freaked out elderly RV-ers as he walked through the hotel parking lot with his pants around his ankles, singing "The Old Grey Mare." Coincidence?

Worst gig?
See above.

What do you love about the local scene?
Lots of great supportive friends/bands: Oakhurst, Jack Redell, Born in the Flood, Local 33 and all the Rainville fellas.

What bugs you about the local scene?
A lot of people booking shows don't look as deep into various scenes as they could. There's some really interesting stuff happening in Denver. We make some of our shows more of an event. A strong contrast between performers is cool -- we've had acrobats, a twenty-person children's Mariachi band and world champion yo-yo'ers.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That our live sound is quite as mellow as our latest recording.

Any random facts we should know?
Applehorn's taint got lasered.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Zephyrs.

Parting shot/final comments?
Dave Herrera has the monkey pox.

RED CLOUD
NOMINATED IN COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS/ROOTS
6 P.M., ACOMA CENTER

And you are...?
Red Cloud: Ross Etherton, Jason Heller, Andrew Warner and Jeremy Ziehe.

Website?
www.redcloudrock.com

How long has your act been together?
Red Cloud was born in September of 2002.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We were able to clone Jason Heller using a few droplets of his sweat and some chest hair from the Sexrock Gods, formerly known as Black Black Ocean.

Recent recordings of note?
A seventy-minute collection of rock songs due to come out in a few months.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Cooking, slinging coffee, slandering and dealing with water salinity reports.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
There were quite a few giants at a show we played with I Can Lick Any SOB in the House.

Favorite places to play?
A few lucky souls saw us, drunken and covered in chicken fat, at Club 404. Steakhouses and places that serve pizza will generally get our votes.

Why music?
It's all about catharsis, man. And there's something special about four social retards making noise together.

If not music, what else?
Flag football or lawn darts.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Thunderwizard.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Steakhouse.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Yet to be had.

Worst gig?
Bass solo, take one. Club 156.

What do you love about the local scene?
All of the rock.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Not enough dancing.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
We are neither country nor metal. We have one foot firmly planted in the prog-rock stylings of Charlie Daniels and one foot planted in the stinking pile of shit that was once known as Trixter.

Any random facts we should know?
We can dance.

Avalanche or Broncos?
George "The Animal" Steele and Koko B. Ware.

Parting shot/final comments?
We will wrestle anytime, anywhere. Bring the steel cage, and we will bring the pain.

JACK REDELL
NOMINATED IN SINGER/SONGWRITER
6 P.M., DAZZLE

And you are...?
Jack Redell.

Website?
www.satirerecords.com

How long has your act been together?
That's relative.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Walking upright.

Recent recordings of note?
Working on two albums -- one featuring Penelope Project, the other featuring seven local bands including Judith Avers, Brad Rhoda, Born in the Flood, the Reals, John Davis and the Lost Tribe.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
Loading trucks.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
3,000, at the Paramount with Dwight Yoakam.

Favorite places to play?
My living room, the Blue Mule, the Paramount, Cricket on the Hill and the Thin Man.

Why music?
It helps me sleep.

If not music, what else?
Phrenology.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Reasonable Jack Redell.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Opening for Cirque du Soleil; those folks are really quite flexible.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Midget bar brawl outside of Pittsburgh.

Worst gig?
As long as there's a guitar in your hand and Bullit bourbon, there is no bad gig.

What do you love about the local scene?
Solidarity, folksingers' groupies.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Traffic cops.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
People think I'd be taller.

Any random facts we should know?
I have a birthmark in the shape of a penis on my penis.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Cincinnati Reds.

Parting shot/final comments?
Dave Tough is my hero.

REVEREND DEADEYE
NOMINATED IN BLUES
4 P.M., ACOMA CENTER

And you are...?
Reverend Deadeye.

Website?
www.revdeadeye.com

How long has your act been together?
Oh, Lord, I ain't never got my act together.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Snake-handlin' and drinkin' poison.

Recent recordings of note?
What I do is take note when the preacher says, "Son, yer gonna burn in hell."

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I preach the word and I run whiskey out the back of my truck.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
A couple of 300-pounders.

Favorite places to play?
Church, you damn sinners.

Why music?
I know! I just keep askin': Lord, why have ye brought this affliction upon me?

If not music, what else?
Drowning in a lake of eternal hellfire.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
I don't eat meat, just corn: corn liquor and corn hole.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Last Sunday morning. Whooooooeeeee. That was funny.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
The night I spent boozin' with Johnny Cash, Jesus Christ and Gus at Hairy Mary's in Des Moines, Iowa.

Worst gig?
I ain't had one.

What do you love about the local scene?
The Lord, liquor and ladies.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Earwigs -- Lord, they bug me.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Drink Damn Sinners.

Any random facts we should know?
I've got rotten apricots in my pants.

Avalanche or Broncos?
"When I weep and fast, I must endure scorn; when I put on sackcloth, people make sport of me. Those who sit at the gate mock me, and I am the song of the Drunkard." -- Psalm 69:10-12.

Parting shot/final comments?
Bless yer sinnin'-ass souls.

REXWAY
NOMINATED IN ROCK

And you are...?
Rexway: Skot Lain, guitarist; Craig Dubin, drummer; Mike Mitchell, vocalist; Susan Phelan, bass; and Chris Dockter, guitarist.

Website?
www.rexway.com

How long has your act been together?
We've been a band for about five years now.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We have been featured on several extreme snowboarding and snowmobile videos called Slednecks, distributed worldwide by Fox Racing.

Recent recordings of note?
Recently finished recording a full-length demo at Westlake Audio in L.A. with Porno for Pyros guitarist Peter Distefano, which is currently being shopped to major labels on the West Coast.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Bills? Who pays bills? Isn't everyone unemployed? Susan is a radio personality; Craig drives the little bus; and the rest of us, well...bills? Who pays bills?

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Biggest crowd was a sold-out show at the Ogden. What does that hold -- 1,200?

Favorite places to play?
Our favorite places to play: Herman's Hideaway, Slocum's Underground (Casper, Wyoming), Cricket on the Hill and the Blue Mule, to name a few.

Why music?
Why not music?

If not music, what else?
If not music, we'd all be dead. No other choice.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
90 Grit Nipples, Rex Fetch and a variety of others not worthy of a mention.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Really, any time we play local or on tour, it's hard to keep Chris and Skot in their pants. They like to have naked races -- don't know why. Don't ask. Either way, the stories are good. You'll have to ask one of them personally.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
See above.

Worst gig?
Several bad gigs. Did you hear the one about Rexway playing in a batting cage in thirty-below weather? Lots of nudity at that show!

What do you love about the local scene?
I think the local scene is like a big family. I love that. All the friendships, love and hate that goes along with family life!

What bugs you about the local scene?
Did I mention that the local scene is like a family? Who loves their family all the time?

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Biggest misconception about our band is that we're ska. The Denver Post printed we're a ska band. Huh? Apparently, they haven't seen us!

Any random facts we should know?
Random facts: A forty-pound parrot is a huge bird. It takes a mighty big fish to hump a whale. All the way around a pig's ass is definitely pork!

Avalanche or Broncos?
Avalanche or Broncos? Any other choices?

Parting shot/final comments?
Parting shot: Despite popular rumors, Rexway is not broken up, nor do we plan to break up. Don't know how these things get started. We're breaking for personal time, to regroup, write some new music and come back bigger and better in a month or so!

ROGUE
NOMINATED IN HARD ROCK/METAL/AGGRO
7 P.M., THE CHURCH DOWNSTAIRS

And you are...?
My name is Bill Terrell, and I'm the frontman for Rogue.

Website?
Our website is www.roguemetal.com

How long has your act been together?
We have been together over seven years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We were recently on the cover of Westword, and we recently turned down a full national tour because of an unforeseen member change.

Recent recordings of note?
Our most recent recording is an album called Rogue Nation. We will have another studio album released by the fall.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
I own a nightclub called Whiskey Bill's. One of my guitarists is an ironworker, and the other specializes in automobiles. Our bassist works in a factory.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
The biggest crowd we ever played for was a national opener in front of over 4,000 people. We are totally looking forward to European touring, where the crowds are enormous.

Favorite places to play?
Our favorite places to play would be the Ogden, Iliff Park Saloon, Whiskey Bill's, Pops (St. Louis). This year we plan on making a bunch of new big favorite venues to play.

Why music?
I chose to play music because I had a severe passion for it. It wasn't really a choice; I was just driven to it.

If not music, what else?
If not for music, I would have been some type of martial-arts comedian. You know, the kind of guy who would kick someone's ass if they didn't laugh.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
It's been so long, I couldn't answer that question. I honestly don't remember.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
The debacle at Fat City would be a funny local story. We had a blast playing, but everything surrounding the show was complete chaos. The guy watching their backstage area almost didn't let us get back so we could perform.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
On tour in Indiana, a girl died in front of the stage. She hit her head on the ground and went into insulin shock. She was dead for fifteen minutes before they revived her. That was bizarre.

Worst gig?
The worst gig we ever played would probably be the Milwaukee Metalfest. It was totally disorganized, and we got the runaround from everyone involved. It sucked.

What do you love about the local scene?
I love the drive that a lot of the bands have. More people touring and promoting their asses like they should. I really get to see how much talent there is owning a club -- and there is a lot.

What bugs you about the local scene?
What bugs me and my band the most is the bullshit that people talk. They are usually people who have not earned the right to talk shit because they have done nothing in their own careers. The "I want something for nothing attitude" really gets to us.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
The biggest misconception about Rogue is that we are not nice guys. Every person in the band is a stand-up individual. When you get a certain level of success, people think differently of you. We are all cool people.

Any random facts we should know?
We have pretty much held every local attendance record there is in Denver. Some shows have drawn more, but ours weren't comped. We are known for throwing the best parties in town, and for having the coolest crowd of people that follow us. Rogue-ans rule!

Avalanche or Broncos?
I myself am a hardcore Broncos fan. The rest of my band loves them as well, but they are more partial to hockey and the Avalanche.

Parting shot/final comments?
Check out our website, and keep your eyes and ears open for us this year. We have secured distribution for the next record, and this will be our biggest year to date. Thank you all. And mad love to Cephalic Carnage, who has done things on the national and international market. We are proud as hell of them.

ROSE HILL DRIVE
NOMINATED IN ROCK
6:45 P.M., OUTDOOR STAGE

And you are...?
Daniel, son of Steve-O.

Web site?
www.rosehilldrive.com

How long has your act been together?
I think around four and a half years or so.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Finishing a whole bottle of Jim Beam, from what I remember.

Recent recordings of note?
We are in the process of recording our first album.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We leave the lights off and don't bathe.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
About 2,000, at a couple of festivals on the East Coast and in the Midwest.

Favorite places to play?
The Fox Theatre, hands down. And Proud Larry's in Oxford, Mississippi.

Why music?
I don't know about that question. Why is much too deep. How about what. What music. There you go.

If not music, what else?
Cars and women.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Joe Johiminna and the Jahosaphat Witnesses, Jumpin Jimminy and the Joggily Stars, and The J's.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
The one where we all walked out naked and everyone started laughing. And everywhere I turned there were people pointing and evil faces -- but it turned out to be a dream.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
There was one in Jersey, where the owner of the club wanted to beat us. We ended up playing for a bunch of pseudo-hippies that ran out holding their ears and asking for their money back. Boy, did I feel like an ass.

Worst gig?
I don't think there is such a thing.

What do you love about the local scene?
The Fox and all of the music.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Nothing, really. It is what it is.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we're Hanson. Fuck that.

Avalanche or Broncos?
I didn't know they played each other.

Parting shot/final comments?
Can you write "fuck" in your paper?

THE ROYAL WE
NOMINATED IN POP
7 P.M., ACOMA CENTER

And you are...?
The Royal We, soon to be known as Hot IQs: Eli Mishkin, lead vox/ guitar; Bryan Feuchtinger, bass/vox; and Elaine Acosta, drums.

Website?
www.theroyalweband.com

How long has your act been together?
About a year and a half.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Bryan has just learned to tie his shoes; Eli has memorized most of the Pledge of Allegiance; and Elaine has finally stopped wetting the bed.

Recent recordings of note?
Our debut album, An Argument Between the Brain & Feet, comes out in late summer 2004.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
We are all rocket scientists. Ahem. But in our spare time, Bryan's a recording engineer (Uneven Studios), Elaine's a nurse, and Eli's a project manager.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
About 350 people.

Favorite places to play?
The Larimer Lounge, hi-dive, Bluebird, Monkey Mania, Climax Lounge and Fox Theatre.

Why music?
It's the easiest and fastest way to be in a car commercial. But seriously, we're all obsessed. Music is an addiction, a hobby, a good excuse to stay out till three on a Tuesday night.

If not music, what else?
Elaine would be a hot dog vendor, Eli would be a haberdasher, and Bryan would be a WB Superstar.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Oh My!, Seatbelt for My Mustache, the Royal Fisticuffs, Cub Scout Hips and, oh, yeah, Prince of Pants.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
This one time, we brought in a few extra members and all this crazy gear. Decided we'd speak in thick British accents. Then we played heavenly landscapes of rock to 6,000 screaming fans at Red Rocks -- wait, no, that was Radiohead.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
While playing Reno, we had this belligerent drunk thrown out for being an ass. Well, it turned out he was the promoter of the show. Death threats ensued. Long story short, we'll never be able to play in Reno again.

Worst gig?
None, really.

What do you love about the local scene?
The camaraderie, the diversity of sounds, and the fact that any given day at any given club, you can see your favorite band or see a great new one. Denver has blossomed into a fine, fine music town.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The lack of national recognition.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
For one, that Bryan is really Steve Sanders from 90210. Also, that Elaine has breast implants (which were then removed). That's just patently false. And that Eli is really Glen Danzig. A more sensitive Danzig, if you will. Also not true.

Any random facts we should know?
Elaine has a superfluous nipple. Bryan's grandpa invented the Egg Wave. Eli was the voice of TV's Alf.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Who in the what, now?

Parting shot/final comments?
Eli: "I think that the single most important thing in this life is [illegible]." Elaine: "I don't want anything I have to say at this time to be immortalized. But thank you for asking." Bryan: "I'm hard at work practicing for my audition for WB Superstars. Check it out, yo."

RUBBER PLANET
NOMINATED IN POP
10 P.M., DAZZLE

And you are...?
Silver from Rubber Planet.

Website?
www.rubberplanet.net

How long has your act been together?
Six years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Having CD-release parties in four different states.

Recent recordings of note?
A brand-spanking new CD, Out There.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Pizza Hut -- that's why I'm so chubby.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
A couple of thousand, when we opened up for Lifehouse.

Favorite places to play?
Out of town, where no one knows you. In town, I love Herman's when the dance floor is bouncing every one up and down.

Why music?
I just love it. I'm not sure why, but it calls out to me, smacks me around, makes love to me and leaves me wanting more.

If not music, what else?
Skateboarding.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Leather Rockets.

Worst gig?
We were on tour, and the booking agent told us that there would be at least 200 kids at this gig in California. And there was! The place was packed, and everyone was dancing to rap music. As soon as we started playing, the club cleared out like someone had pulled the fire alarm.

What do you love about the local scene?
Lots of great bands.

What bugs you about the local scene?
All the haters.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Everything you hear about us is true.

Any random facts we should know?
Vitamin G and I have been together since high school.

Avalanche or Broncos?
I'm a huge Broncos fan and one of the biggest fans of the local scene.

Parting shot/final comments?
Green is the new pink!

ERIC SHIVELEY
NOMINATED IN SINGER/SONGWRITER
7 P.M., DAZZLE

And you are...?
Eric Shiveley & the Deserters: Eric Shiveley, vocals; Miles Marlin, bass; Mark Mauldin, guitars; Dan Paschke, guitars; and Chris Reidy, drums.

Website?
www.ericshiveley.com

How long has your act been together?
Four years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Eric ate year-old bag of Ranch Corn Nuts found in trunk. Miles finally removed Rocket Ajax bumper sticker from Dodge Aries K. Mark's second testicle descended. Dan smoked huge bowl of banana peels. Chris got kicked out of three McDonald's for hogging the PlayPlace ball-washer.

Recent recordings of note?
This year we're totally gonna make a four-song album or something for giving to clubs and stuff. Miles's friend Randy said we could easily play at Shooters if we had a demo. And that place gets packed with bikers on Thursdays. Anyway, we have a four-track reel-to-reel, and Mark's friend Rhett can make unbelievable effects and stuff on his PC. I mean, he can make anything from helicopters to something that sounds like an elephant screaming and then blowing up. It kills me every time he plays it! You're not gonna believe this demo!

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Courier. (I wanna give a shout-out to my peeps at Triple Z. Yo, Ronda!)

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
At Knebworth in 1990, Miles ran on stage when Elton John started "Sacrifice." Probably 80,000 people saw security hold Miles up while Elton John rammed a mike stand into his groin like thirteen times.

Favorite places to play?
Definitely the Larimer Lounge -- because the sound guy does a quick check and then tends bar until feedback breaks something. That's rock and roll, y'all. Or any club where we can open for dreamboat Jim Dalton of the Railbenders!

Why music?
Man, have you ever seen pretty ladies get all silly and drape themselves on some bald dude reading poetry?

If not music, what else?
Kickboxing: sport of the future.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Nina Sorority, On Second Thought I Just Wasted Six Bucks, 1190's Random Noise Generator.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
This one time, at band camp, Mark dressed up like Paul Stanley and made matzoh balls for everyone.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
This one time, at band camp, Chris stuck a drumstick in Dan's cat's butt. And then, another time, when we toured Australia, Dan ate his weight in prawns from the barbie and then threw up all over Mark, who got all mad and screamed at us like Paul Stanley would if he had thrown up all over him.

Worst gig?
Oh, man, it has to be the night at the Cricket when we used a drum riser Tommy Lee unloaded on us cheap. That thing started to spin like a goddamn bingo wheel with a Shriner calling! Chris was really more bouncing off the drums than he was playing them, but eventually the cage door flew open and Chris landed safely on a pile of B.C. Rich Warlocks that belonged to the headliner.

What do you love about the local scene?
Oh, my gosh! Do you have a few hours??! I mean, everyone here is so supportive and friendly! Tequila shots! Wooooooo!

What bugs you about the local scene?
Oh, my gosh! Do you have a few hours??! I mean, everyone here is so supportive and friendly! Tequila shots! Wooooooo!

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we play alt-pop/rock with a roots-rock flair. Are you deaf? We play post-alt roots with a Western pop/rock flair. Please.

Any random facts we should know?
Sorry, ladies, Eric is taken! No, please...please don't look that way. Please my darlings, really, it's best this way. Oh, please listen, my sad little flowers, there will come a day when you make someone very happy and you'll have forgotten all of this. Now go, and please don't look back this way. No, please!

Avalanche or Broncos?
Duh, Avalanche. No, wait, pro sports are so un-indie and corporate, man. Is my hair properly disheveled?

Parting shot/final comments?
You should see Buckwild.

STRING CHEESE INCIDENT
NOMINATED IN JAM

And you are . . .?
The String Cheese Incident.

Website?
www.stringcheeseincident.com

How long has your act been together?
Ten years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
There are challenges around every turn, which is great, because it keeps us on our toes. Recording our most recent studio album was a huge accomplishment, just in the way we grew as musicians from the experience.

Recent recordings of note?
Our most recent studio album was Untying the Knot. We also have an ongoing live CD series called On the Road, which makes a soundboard recording of every show available to those who are interested.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
While not always the case, today we are fortunate to do what we love for a living. We play music day and night.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Probably Bonnaroo -- 60,000 or 70,000 people.

Favorite places to play?
Red Rocks Amphitheatre here in Colorado, Hornings Hideout in Oregon, and the Fox Theatre in Atlanta come to mind.

Why music?
Playing music is creatively and spiritually satisfying -- and it's a damn good time.

If not music, what else?
It depends which of us you ask. Perhaps something that involves the outdoors, like skiing or backpacking, or perhaps a circus freak.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Obviously, none!

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
There are so many, but the "left behind" stories are always memorable. During a Colorado run, when Kyle had just joined the band, he was M.I.A the morning following a gig. The funny thing was that wherever he was, he didn't have his shoes, because they were on the bus. We drove off without him. But we weren't that mean; we threw his shoes out the window so he wouldn't have to walk barefoot.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Another left-behind story, somewhere in Montana or Idaho: We mistakenly left Billy behind at a rest stop. We thought he was in his bunk sleeping and didn't even realize he was missing until two hours later, when, at another rest stop, an old couple knocked on our bus door and suggested we do a head count. Billy had approached them and asked them to say something if they saw a tour bus down the road.

Worst gig?
During some run of fifteen shows in sixteen nights, somewhere in North Carolina we got into a car accident, had to rent a Ryder van, and then the Ryder van broke down. And that evening's show: Yes, we made it, but our spirits were not very high.

What do you love about the local scene?
Denver/Boulder offers incredible genre diversity and outstanding musicianship.

What bugs you about the local scene?
In general, local audiences often lack receptivity toward local acts.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we're always happy.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Broncos

THE SWAYBACK
NOMINATED IN ROCK
9 P.M., SERENGETI

And you are...?
Eric Halborg, singer and bass player for the Denver band the Swayback.

Website?
www.theswayback.com

How long has your act been together?
It'll be two years in August.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Getting a rad new drummer named Nolan Aldridge and playing shows with him. He was just what we were looking for and has taken the band's sound pocket right where we always wanted it to be.

Recent recordings of note?
"I Want to Be Euroboy," recorded last night at home. Sample lyric: "I want to be Euroboy, I want a good time...all the time." -- Ah, Turbonegro, gush gush.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
I do graphic design for Goldenbell Press here in Denver. I layout Chronos magazine for them. I also do web and graphic design for a company I started called Denver Design Army. DDA! Bill bartends at the hi-dive/Sputnik. He also spins rock/new-wave/dance freak-out music under the alias the Underwearwolf. Nolan plays drums for the Swayback and guitar for Signal to Noise -- strictly rock.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
With the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs at the Gothic for about 900 or so.

Favorite places to play?
Gothic, Fox, Larimer, hi-dive, 15th Street, Garageland, Monkey Mania, Lion's Lair, basements and our practice space.

Why music?
Just another way to make the art, but louder. We get to play with the bands whose records we love and respect.

If not music, what else?
Invisibility.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Mostly Monster, the Hit Points, Bugbear in the Rear, and Stalagmites and Stalactites.

What do you love about the local scene?
The amazingly talented and diverse bands that sport very little attitude. Vaux. Fear Before the March of Flames. Bright Channel. Scott Baio Army. Pinkku. Nightingale. Black Black Ocean. Love Me Destroyer. Call Sign Cobra. The Gamits. Screaming Bats. Munly. D.Biddle. Porlolo. Carrier. The Symptoms. Mr. Pacman. George & Caplin. Hot IQs. Zombie Zombie. Tarmints. Planes Mistaken for Stars. Drag the River. Great Redneck Hope. Matson Jones. Rabbit Fight. Audio Dream Sister. White Dynamite. The Risk. Signal to Noise. Blackout Pact. The Affairs. Grace Like Gravity. Dressy Bessy. That's some heavy shit, a collective artistic force to reckon with. Cool kids in the bands and cool kids that come watch the bands. Sweet venues and promoters that give you rad opening gigs for nationals and package together eclectic local band shows. Radio 1190!

What bugs you about the local scene?
Nothing, really.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we're a punk band.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Chicago Bears.

Parting shot/final comments?
Young kids in the 'burbs, city folk and freaks: Practice your instruments. Get a band together. Write songs and come join us. The music scene is on fire down here, and we want more fuel.

OTIS TAYLOR
NOMINATED IN BLUES

And you are...?
Otis Taylor.

Website?
www.otistaylor.com

How long has your act been together?
Since 1995.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
A three-star review in Rolling Stone for Double V.

Recent recordings of note?
Double V (2004) and Truth Is Not Fiction (2003), both released on Telarc Records.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
Music.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
10,000.

Favorite places to play?
Too many to mention.

Why music?
Why not?

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Otis Taylor Group, Otis Taylor Experience, Otis Taylor Trio, etc., etc.

Worst gig?
Wagon Box in Story, Wyoming.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The lack of support.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That I'm traditional blues.

Any random facts we should know?
My favorite dessert is German chocolate cake.

Parting shot/final comments?
Support your local musicians -- one of them might just become the next thing.

TWO TON MOXIE
NOMINATED IN JAM

TYFOID MARY
NOMINATED IN HARD ROCK/METAL/AGGRO
4 P.M., THE CHURCH DOWNSTAIRS

And you are...?
Tyfoid Mary.

Website?
www.tyfoidmary.com

How long has your act been together?
Four years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Getting opening slots for national acts and getting nominated for the Westword awards; signing a deal with Hapi Skratch; and being selected to play at the Whisky A Go-Go in Hollywood for the Crue Fest on July 17.

Recent recordings of note?
Quarantine, released this past April; two songs on the compilation from Rudy's recording studio, Explosion in the Rockies.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Scott is an estimator for a flooring company; Jerry is a student at Red Rocks Community College and bounces at Club Ra on the weekends; Igor sells supplements at Wild Oats; and Dugan is in building maintenance.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Ogden Theatre, with Blister and Rogue last October -- 1,100 to 1,200 people.

Favorite places to play?
House of Rock, Ogden, Hollywood Legends and the Gothic Theatre.

Why music?
It's what we fucking love to do. And we're fucking good at it. It's a great form of release.

If not music, what else?
There is nothing else. Music will always be a part of our lives, even when we're ninety years old, shitting and pissing ourselves, in a nursing home somewhere in God-knows-where, U.S.A. We'll be jammin' on kazoos.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Anaconda Smelter, Spostakoff and Circle of Wetness.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Sherman Street Complex: Jerry wore a fat lady's dress from Wal-Mart, a pink bouffant wig, old lady's glasses and a red boa and had lipstick smeared all over his face.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We haven't been on tour yet. This is our fucking year, goddamnit!

Worst gig?
Back Alley Lounge, Fort Collins. Jerry had just joined. Five people were there. We got paid $16. Not even enough for gas money home. Lame.

What do you love about the local scene?
The fucking fans, baby, hot girls and the camaraderie between most of the bands.

What bugs you about the local scene?
People and some bands like to talk shit. Sometimes it's like high school drama all over again. And people outside Denver don't take the music scene too seriously. There's a lot of kickass bands here that need to be discovered.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we've got our shit together. We're about the most disorganized motherfuckers we know. But we still make it to our shows on time -- most of the time -- and kick ass.

Any random facts we should know?
Scott, aka Slippy Long Cocking, and Jerry, aka Ass Master Flex, are porn stars.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Scott likes both, but Avs all the way. Jerry says, "Fuck sports. Music and Ultimate Fighting -- gotta have the blood." Dugan digs the Avs. Igor could care less.

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks, Denver, for the Tyfoid Love. You guys fucking rock. Hopefully we can get out to other states, put Denver on the map and make all you fuckers proud.

WENDY WOO
NOMINATED IN SINGER/SONGWRITER
3:45 P.M., OUTDOOR STAGE

And you are...?
Wendy Woo, also appearing with the Woo Band, also known as the Woo Crew and the Woo Band Trio!

Website?
www.wendywoo.com

How long has your act been together?
I have been playing since 1997; but this particular group, The Woo Crew, has been playing together for two years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Releasing the new album Walking the Skyline, performing at the Smoky Hill River Festival for six concerts, performing at the Hotel Cafe in L.A. and the Durango Songwriter's Expo in Santa Barbara. A summer of great events ahead!

Recent recordings of note?
Walking the Skyline is our fifth album.

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I do all the booking, publicity and promotions for this band. It keeps me busy full-time.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
18,000 people, at the Lilith Fair at Fiddler's Green in 1999.

Favorite places to play?
Smoky Hill River Festival in Salina, Kansas, and Red Rocks.

Why music?
It was a path that presented itself to me. I wasn't really good at anything else, so I was able to put all of my time and energy into this one thing.

If not music, what else?
The only other thing that I was good at was bartending, so it pretty much had to be music.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
I have always been Wendy Woo, although I have been in the process of changing the Woo Band to the Woo Crew. The Woo Crew was a name I had given my band and the group of people that follow us around. I have a joke I tell my hard-core fans. I tell them if they come to one show, I learn their names. If they come to two shows, I memorize their names. If they come to three shows, I put them to work. My Woo Crew is made up of bandmembers, friends and family who walk into a festival, set up, play, sell and tear down in the fastest and most efficient way. The people who work with me to help make this happen are the Woo Crew. They are my friends and family.

Worst gig?
Seven painful nights at a lounge in Bend, Oregon.

What do you love about the local scene?
The support of both fellow musicians and the fan base. The people who continue to come out and support bands night after night and show after show.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The gossip. But, hey, I'm probably instigating it.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Being from Boulder, that I play folk music, eat vegetarian and date girls.

Any random facts we should know?
I love funk music, eat red meat and love boys -- although I prefer the company of my thirteen-and-a-half-year-old lab/chow mix, Sadie (shown on the inside of my CD cover). She has seen me through four major relationships, and she is still hanging in there.

Avalanche or Broncos?
I have always been a fan of Shjon Poedin; then he got traded. Now, neither. But I still like Shjon Poedin.

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks for all the support from Westword during the course of my career. I like these music awards. I like to see things get stirred up in the Denver music scene. Thanks for having me again!

VICTORIA WOODWORTH
NOMINATED IN SINGER/SONGWRITER
5 P.M., DAZZLE

And you are...?
Victoria Woodworth & the Heroes

Website?
www.TheHeros.com (Be sure and spell it right or you will not find us.)

How long has your act been together?
I wouldn't say that our act is together, if you want the truth, but we've been enjoying each other's company and noise for about two years or so.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
I just won Westword's Best Female Singer-Songwriter of the year, and I probably never would've done that without the band kicking my ass to finish something/book shows/get out of bed. I will also be opening solo for John Hiatt on June 19 in Boulder, which will be a noteworthy feat when it happens, if that counts.

Recent recordings of note?
Faultline, which took three years. So it's not recent, but it's the most recent.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
I am a receptionist, the drummer is a carpenter, the lead guitarist is independently wealthy, and the bass player is a specialist of some kind.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
People's Fair 2003 was big. CD-release at the Larimer Lounge in October of last year was pretty packed, too. I played for a full house at the Bluebird, opening solo for Dan Hicks & the Hot Licks a while back. Sorry, I can't decide. It all seems larger than life to me.

Favorite places to play?
Anywhere with a real wood stage. We like wood. We even have wood guitars; each one has a name and a personality.

Why music?
Why not? Because we can't really do anything else that well?! I think that's kind of a goofy question.

If not music, what else?
A formless void. Inertia. Ennui. Overeating. Prozac. Death.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Guano Americano.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
It would have to be the time that I was booked as a solo to open at the Bluebird for the Hate F--k Trio. Would've been kind of like Nanci Griffith opening for the Sex Pistols. It was canceled at the last minute and never actually happened. Frankly, all of our gigs have been a little strange, if you want to get right down to it. We're always amazed to find ourselves there in the first place.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We have only been to Louisville, but a woman did show us her boobs there. Full on! I personally was quite impressed, because we're not even that kind of band.

Worst gig?
We played a Cancer Society benefit at the D Note in Arvada -- which is a lovely, lovely venue -- but the sound guy kept leaving the board unattended (like he was just embarrassed to be there). There was brain-rending feedback about every two minutes, and we were subsequently catatonic for most of the set. It was not particularly magical.

What do you love about the local scene?
It's like a box of chocolates: You never know, etc.

What bugs you about the local scene?
It's definitely taken on the trappings of legitimate business in recent years. I think that has sucked a lot of the fun out of it. Too many publicists and cell phones and crap now. And it seems like everyone has the same hair anymore, no matter what kind of music they play! But that's probably just me.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we are mellow, artsy types with no particular agenda, and that we are not wildly attractive.

Any random facts we should know?
I am the only person in the band, and perhaps in the world, who does not drive or have a credit card. I can't be trusted with these things.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Neither. The guitarist has a green SUV of some kind (it's like a Subaru or something). The drummer and bass player drive non-specific, broken-down gas hogs that look like washing machines to me. I have a very cool bike from Gart's. Oh, my God, I just realized this question is about sports, not cars! Hee, I don't know. I'd say the band is probably Broncos. I'd rather get my teeth cleaned, personally.

Parting shot/final comments?
Twangy music has the power to separate your body from your soul, if that's what you're looking for. Handle with care.

YO, FLACO!
NOMINATED IN FUNK/SOUL
4:45 P.M., OUTDOOR STAGE

And you are...?
Adam Bartczak, trombone player from Yo, Flaco!

Website?
www.yoflaco.com

How long has your act been together?
Around seven years (one year with this current lineup).

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
Yo, Flaco! was named one of the "Bands to Watch in 2004" by JamBase.com and was recently chosen by Budweiser for sponsorship as a part of its national "True Music" campaign.

Recent recordings of note?
We are actually going into the studio to record our next album in mid-July; it should be released this fall! We're really excited to head into the studio to record!

How do you pay the bills? What is your day job?
I'll do most anything to get the bills paid, but playing side gigs and painting houses is mostly what I do at this point.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
Hmm, probably the grand opening of Invesco Field. And we've had some really big crowds at a couple of the LoDo Fests. The gig at the Jim Beam Distillery in Kentucky was great, as well. The thing is, as long as you're having a great time on stage, it truly does not matter if there are fifty people in the crowd or 5,000. You've just gotta play your best at each gig.

Favorite places to play?
Elbo Room in San Francisco; Herman's Hideaway, Soiled Dove and Round Midnight in Colorado! Oh, and the Lion's Den in NYC was really dope!

Why music?
Because it is universal and expressive. It's a fun, positive way to express yourself to others. Music is freedom!

If not music, what else?
Geez, I have no idea... Maybe teaching kids. The transference of knowledge is so important, and if I could not do it through music, teaching would be another option. But it would need to be some sort of artistic endeavor -- maybe art, creative writing, something along those lines.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
The Lusty Janitor and Backstage Suasion, to name a couple.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
There was a crazy transient wielding a spoon at us while we were on stage at the Boulder Creek Fest a couple of years ago. He acted like he wanted to kill us, but then he started dancing and enjoying himself. It was bizarre!

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
Um, let's not go there. Suffice it to say, what happens in Austin stays in Austin! Enough said.

Worst gig?
The dreaded Zodiac Club! (I think it's closed now): minimal audience, no pay, and fists were flying. It was awful -- and yet a strange bonding experience for us all.

What do you love about the local scene?
The support and incredible interest from music lovers in town, especially since we are so far away from the coasts. It's like we're our own self-supported "music entity" out here in Colorado.

What bugs you about the local scene?
The "outside opinion" from those on the coasts is that Denver is simply a cowtown, when in reality, it is a very learned, cultured, artistic community that is gaining notoriety.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Because of some of the successes -- minimal or otherwise -- we've had, many have this "ill vision" that we are like rock stars, have a huge record deal, are bored in Denver, etc., and that's not true at all. As with most bands, we play music because we love it. We love the expression; we love connecting with the audience. We adore all the amazing people in Colorado and around the country who have shown all their support over the years. If it was not for the folks coming out to our shows, there would be no Yo, Flaco! We know this. We appreciate all the support and every opportunity that comes our way.

Any random facts we should know?
Our van smells really bad!

Avalanche or Broncos?
Oh, man, don't make us choose! We're Colorado fans, whatever the team!

Parting shot/final comments?
On behalf of the band, we'd just like to thank everyone on the nominating committee for including Yo, Flaco! in the Funk/Soul category this year. And a huge thank-you to everyone who takes the time to vote for your favorite bands. And most of all, for everyone involved in the local scene: Your support makes all of this possible -- not only for us, but for all the bands in Colorado! You are why we play!

YONDER MOUNTAIN STRING BAND
NOMINATED IN JAM

And you are...?
Ben Kaufmann of the Yonder Mountain String Band.

Website?
www.yondermountain.com

How long has your act been together?
Five and a half years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
CNN appearance; Bonnaroo 2004; playing at Telluride's Bluegrass Festival consecutively for the past four years; gearing up to release our third live album.

Recent recordings of note?
Old Hands, our third studio album to date.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Being in Yonder Mountain String Band.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
In front of 35,000 at Bonnaroo.

Favorite places to play?
Acoustic Coffeehouse in Nederland.

Why music?
We took a chance at living the dream, and it happened.

If not music, what else?
I'd be a crooked cop.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Uncle Creepish and the Grumpy Thumpers, and the Sam Bush Band.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
Look at the next answer.

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
There was a time when we left Jeff in Elko, Nevada, and realized he wasn't in the back of the RV when the sheriff's department called.

Worst gig?
There was a show in the middle of the East Coast where a colorful local drunk showed up, and we also were facing threats of abuse by the staff. The music just didn't stand a chance after that.

What do you love about the local scene?
The local scene has supported us from the beginning. We wouldn't have made it if we had started any other place. It's the reason we all still live here. It's a great place to call home.

What bugs you about the local scene?
Nothing bothers me. All the bad times I've had have been somewhere else.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
Often I see in print "Colorado Hippies: the Yonder Mountain String Band." I feel that someone is not doing his homework and is making a stereotype of our audience, which is not fair. We also reject the label of "jam grass," because it doesn't give enough credit for the original music we're writing -- and that, we feel, is making a contribution to acoustic music.

Avalanche or Broncos?
Whichever one had Ray Bourque on it.

Parting shot/final comments?
Thanks! We can't wait to be back in Colorado and play some more music in our home state.

ZEBRA JUNCTION
NOMINATED IN JAM

And you are...?
Zebra Junction, aka Zebra Junction.

Website?
www.zebrajunction.com

How long has your act been together?
About five years.

What are some of your noteworthy recent feats?
We made the top four at the Rock Harvest Battle of the Bands held at Cervantes'. And we started the Monthly Sessions at the Merc. (More on that later.)

Recent recordings of note?
Orange Porridge (2001), and we've been recording new material off and on since this past January.

How do you pay the bills? What are your day jobs?
Instrument repair guy, instrument teacher guy, piano-tuning guy, Supreme Court library guy.

What's the biggest crowd you've ever played for?
I believe it was over 500 people, at the Crested Butte Music Festival.

Favorite places to play?
Upstairs at the Mercury Cafe! Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom. And the Bluebird Theater.

Why music?
Why real jobs?

If not music, what else?
Gigolos.

What band names were left on the cutting-room floor in favor of your current one?
Sitting Zebra, Buck A Scoop, the Four Skins.

Funniest/strangest gig story -- local?
They're all funny/strange! People still don't know what to make of us. Neither do we. Can someone please pigeonhole us!

Funniest/weirdest gig story -- on tour?
We played a retirement home in St. Malo, France, soon after recording Orange Porridge because my mother-in-law worked there. The ones who could hear didn't get it. Neither did we.

Worst gig?
We got booked to play at an art-gallery opening. Got there and found out it was in the middle of an indoor mall. Luckily, it wasn't announced on our website. Old ladies kept sticking their phone numbers in the tip jar.

What do you love about the local scene?
There is a distinct Colorado sound, which fortunately includes accordion.

What bugs you about the local scene?
It's not united...yet. Venues rarely support bands financially, making it extremely difficult to do it full-time.

What's the biggest misconception about your band/act?
That we're just a jam band.

Any random facts we should know?
Lineup change in the works, so we won't be the same as we wuz before we wuz. Picture Zebra Junction playing banjo, uke and toy piano on steroids, man!!

Avalanche or Broncos?
Avalanche.

Parting shot/final comments?
We're making a daring attempt at unifying the Denver underground art scene by putting on shows that bring together cutting-edge painters, sculptors, architects, activists, comedians, musicians, filmmakers, photographers, dancers, graphic artists, etc., and getting them to interact with one another for an evening. People in the audience are welcome to partake in the show. No spectators! Last year we called it the Spin and Swirl Sessions, which started at the Bluebird Theater. This year it's called Monthly Sessions at the Merc. Come and participate in the creation on the second Saturday of every month, upstairs at the Mercury Cafe! Contact us to audition or share your ideas! We're honored to be nominated. Thank you. Now, get off your couches and create something!


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