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  • Blogs

    September 30, 2014

    Comedian Ryan Hamilton on Inspiration, Comic Competitions and More

    Ryan Hamilton has been around the block a time or two; the resident of New York City (who grew up in Idaho) was named one of Rolling Stone's Five Comics to Watch in 2012 and appeared on two seasons of Last Comic Standing, where he gave a good showing. He'll be performing at the downtown Comedy Works ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 19, 2014

    Colorado's You, Me & Apollo Wins National Award for "I Don't Want to Be Loved"

    The winners of the 2014 Unsigned Only Music Competition have been announced, and the Fort Collins band You, Me & Apollo won in the Americana category for its song "I Don't Want to Be Loved." The competition received more than eight thousand entries with a finalist group presented to a panel of judge ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 11, 2014

    Ex-NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg implies Pueblo and Colorado Springs don't have roads

    Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is a big fan of gun-control measures passed in Colorado following the Aurora theater shooting. But he just handed opponents of the laws an easy way to dismiss him as an out-of-touch elitist unfamiliar with the West. To whit: In a just-published interview, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 31, 2014

    3 things to do for free in Denver this week, March 31-April 3

    No joke: rent is due on Tuesday. But that doesn't mean you can't live a little this week. From an art-inspired fashion trunk show to a film about artist Dan Asher to a magazine store party, the next few days are full of happenings that won't make your rent check bounce. And that's not an April Fool ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 13, 2013

    Medical marijuana dispensary review: Gaia Plant-Based Medicine in Denver

    As much as I would like to say there was a more cannabis-related reason for my visit to Gaia, what really brought me to the shop's doorstep was a Cuban sandwich. Far enough down East Colfax to still be East Colfax, Gaia Plant-Based Medicine is nevertheless in a decent location, with a sidewalk stor ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 30, 2013

    The ten best comedy events in May

    Now that we've finally eked our way into the warmer weeks of spring (fingers crossed), it's time to get off the couch and head out into the fresh air to get to May's ten best comedy events. We've got albums being recorded, albums being released, two Latino-themed shows, nerd heroes Aziz Ansari and C ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 19, 2013

    The best EDM in Denver this weekend

    JONN HAWLEY @ FUNKY BUDDHA | SAT, 4/20/13 It's extra awesome that Audio Indika is facilitating this year's 4/20 show at the Funky Buddha, and those responsible loading the decks have outdone themselves by bringing Jonn Hawley to town. The Minneapolis-based DJ/producer has more than twenty years of e ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 19, 2013

    Maya Jane Coles on her quick rise in America

    One of electronic music's fastest rising young stars, Maya Jane Coles has become a major phenomenon over the last two years. Just 25 years old, the Londoner has been recognized as one of the hottest DJs on the planet by everyone from Rolling Stone to Resident Advisor and she has performed at major f ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 7, 2013

    The Stooges' Raw Power turns forty today

    Great art does not always move units. Case in point: The Stooges' 1973 album, Raw Power, was a complete flop commercially. But, as with the story about the Velvet Underground, it seems that everyone who did buy it must have been inspired to start a band, because forty years after its initial release ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 29, 2013

    Gateway Acts: How a Rush to judgment ultimately led to more affecting music

    Gateway Acts is a new ongoing series on Backbeat in which we examine the music that served as an entry point for our burgeoning musical obsessions, a gateway drug that tuned us in and turned us on. Today, Noah Hubbell gives us the goods on a Rush to judgment that he made early on. I grew up in a ho ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 15, 2013

    Why EDM is thriving while other genres aren't

    DJs are the new rock stars? Maybe. (Although chefs are already the new rock stars.) Still, the big name DJs do seem to be living pretty large, what with the constant travel to exotic locations, goofily-clad fans, eager women, drugs and parties. Just swap MacBooks for guitars and it doesn't look so d ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 13, 2012

    Independence Institute Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms party celebrates "perks of adulthood"

    The Independence Institute's annual Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms party is "the most politically incorrect event of the year," as we tagged it years ago, and the tenth annual ATF event lived up to that billing Saturday even if it didn't make the news that the 2010 incarnation did -- when then-Senate ... More >>

  • Music

    June 28, 2012

    Fitz and the Tantrums

    Wednesday, July 4, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, 303-830-8497.

  • Film

    June 14, 2012
  • News

    May 31, 2012
  • Music

    May 10, 2012
  • Blogs

    May 8, 2012

    Brian Jonestown Massacre's Anton Newcombe on Beck, living in Germany and Bright Channel

    The Brian Jonestown Massacre (due tonight at the Bluebird Theater) has been through ups and downs since 1990. But through it all, singer and primary songwriter Anton Newcombe, has steered the band through releasing more great albums per decade than most bands have across entire career. For the unini ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 15, 2012

    The Best of SXSW Music: Wednesday 3/14/2012

    ​If you're familiar with chaos theory, which in its basic form is the attempt to find patterns in the random acts of shit on Earth, then you may understand the difficulty that comes with describing a full day at SXSW. To break down the bright, scintillating chaos, Village Voice Media's roving musi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 10, 2012

    Black Keys: "Rock & Roll is dying because of Nickelback"

    Despite the pointed assertion of Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney that rock music is dying because of Nickelback, the genre still appears to be selling quite well. Granted, not quite as well as hip-hop or pop, but it's still kicking. In a recent Rolling Stone cover story, Carney is quoted as sayin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 10, 2012

    Dear Diary: Why won't this ska boy notice me? Where is my Nirvana shirt? I have nothing to wear!

    Once upon a time in the '90s, I was not the cool blogger I am now. I was just like any other teenager, barely existing on the Internet (save for being a third, observational party to my best friend's chat-room adventures) and living out my writing dreams as a reporter for my high-school newspaper, T ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 12, 2011

    Howard Jones on performing Human Lib and Dream Into Action in their entirety on this tour

    Fredrik SvenssonHoward Jones​Howard Jones (due Saturday, October 15, at Summit Music Hall) was one of the most successful and popular synth-pop artists of the 1980s. Jones's songs were uplifting, but never saccharine, and he had a knack for articulating the concerns and hopes of people regardl ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 11, 2011

    Superheroes, HBO documentary, profiles real-life superheroes, but not Denver's Wall Creeper

    ​Real-life superheroes, those brave (and some would say foolhardy) folks who strap on costumes and battle evil wherever they can find it, are reaching media saturation. They've become a staple of nightly news stations, scored a lengthy shout-out in Rolling Stone, and one of them, a lone soul w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 16, 2011

    Q&A: Marc Maron on podcasting, standup and thoughtful critics

    ​Marc Maron's comedy style is honest, often unforgiving and occasionally enlightening. He might be best known by many for his podcast, "WTF With Marc Maron," but first and foremost he's a standup comedian. Marc Maron will appearing at Comedy Works Downtown starting tonight and running through ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 15, 2011

    Twist & Shout named among top record stores by Rolling Stone -- after being snubbed last year

    ​Man, what a difference seven months makes. After being completely glossed over last fall along with all of the other record stores on the Front Range, Twist & Shout got a nod this morning from Rolling Stone as one of the Best Record Stores in the U.S.A. Not sure what changed in that time, but ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 10, 2010

    A rundown of Kanye West's wonkiest moments

    Kanye has gotten a lot of flack for doing some absolutely wonky things. Most recently, a photo of his hoo-ha mysteriously appeared on the Internet, followed by word that he copped the microphone on a Delta flight last week to perform for the cabin. Even with all the wonky things he's done, though, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 8, 2010

    Marijuana: Rolling Stone, New York Times tout Nederland as a weed wonderland

    ​The national media's fascination with the weedier aspects of Colorado life continues unabated, and the town of Nederland is among the latest beneficiaries. A few weeks back, Nederland's pot friendliness landed the community on Rolling Stone magazine's latest "Hot List" in a piece likely read ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 2, 2010

    Mogwai, Amos Lee, moe. shows announced

    ​Mogwai stops by the Bluebird Theater on Monday May 2 as part of its world tour supporting its seventh album, Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will, slated for release on Sub Pop on February 15. Tickets for this one are $25 and go on sale this Saturday, November 6 at 10 a.m. Amos Lee visits ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 6, 2010

    Top ten most blatant and alleged song heists

    Earlier this week, Nick Cave responded to accusations that he nicked the basis of the song "Palaces of Montezuma" from a tune by some guy named Frank Duffy called "Grey Man." It seems absurd someone as versatile as Cave would intentionally borrow a lick or two from another song. Any similarities ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 29, 2010

    If President Obama has a thing for hip-hop, here are five artists to add to his iPod

    ​In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, our president revealed that his music palette has expanded slightly in recent years with a little help from his personal aide, Reggie Love. New additions to his usual standbys of Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones include Nas and Lil' Wayne. It's a lit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 15, 2010

    Tim Tebow: Rolling Stone piece praising him attacked for implying CO Springs hates gays

    Tim Tebow and mom for FOTF.​Among the most commented pieces on the Colorado Springs Gazette's website in recent days has been an editorial spurred by a Westword post, "Tim Tebow: Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi Reluctantly Predicts Big Things for 'Kid Jesus.'" Not that Gazette editorialist Wayne ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 13, 2010

    U2 reschedules its prevously postponed Denver date, Rihanna cancels show this Thursday

    ​A few weeks before U2 was slated to come to the States for another leg of its 360° tour, Bono injured his back while preparing for the dates and had to have emergency surgery, which resulted in the postponement of a number of US dates, including the June 12 show at Invesco Field. Live Nati ... More >>

  • Music

    August 20, 2009
  • Blogs

    October 29, 2008

    Colorado takes center stage during Robert F. Kennedy Jr.'s MSNBC appearance

    Robert F. Kennedy Jr. as he appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show. Our conversation with BBC journalist Greg Palast, who co-authored "Block the Vote," an article in the October 30 edition of Rolling Stone, with Robert F. Kennedy Jr., has spawned a number of pieces about the Colorado voting system and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 29, 2008

    The difficulty of being a first-time, mail-in Colorado voter

    Nick Roberts. "'Block the Vote' co-author and Rolling Stone contributor Greg Palast on Colorado's troubled voting system," an October 29 blog, suggests that our fair state makes it mighty tough on folks who not only want to vote but are interested in their ballot counting. Here's one more anecdote ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 18, 2008

    Rolling Stone and John Denver's nutsack

    Sorry, but this is the only nut-sack image we're publishing... The September 18 issue of Rolling Stone magazine is devoted to comedy, and among the amusing features is a section entitled "Please Pick Your Ass & Other Low Points in Comedy Notes." The piece deals with bizarre recommendations from TV ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 5, 2008

    3OH!3 in Rolling Stone

    As if selling out multiple nights at the Gothic and the Fox Theatre, killing it on the Warped tour and dominating airplay on most -- if not all -- of the modern rock stations in the country weren't already evidence enough, 3OH!3 is edging closer and closer to ubiquity. In the Artists to Watch sectio ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 5, 2008

    Rearview: The Week in Review (8/29/08-9/5/08)

    These Kids are looking a little grizzled... Here's a convenient, one-stop guide to all the great content you might have overlooked this week on Backbeat Online while you were preoccupied with the alarming news that New Kids on the Block had reunited and released a new album, despite the fact they h ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 1, 2008

    Friday Rap-Up: Ichiban, Ludacris, Wyclef Jean, Jay-Z

    Locals Only When Ichiban’s name was announced as the winner of Best MC at this year’s Westword Music Showcase, the hip-hop heads in attendance were taken aback but so was the rapper himself. “There were so many dope MC’s in the category this year, I was actually very surprised,” Ichiban ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 25, 2008

    The Blog Shortcut, July 25 Edition

    Look at the paragraph below as a map to our little corner of the blogosphere. The Cat's Pajamas invites you to see what you missed at a lingerie party at the Chateaux Mansion. Judging by this photo, skin wasn't in short supply. Cafe Society samples Carelli's Ristorante Italiano in Boulder and previ ... More >>

  • Calendar

    July 17, 2008
  • Blogs

    July 8, 2008

    Animo: Lady Killing It On This Year's Warped Tour

    Animo just got a nice little bump on about it's, ahem, swelling buzz on this year's Warped Tour. Evidently, the band is turning heads a plenty. About damn time. God knows the act, formerly known as Dork, has certainly paid its dues. If we're not mistaken, this summer marks the outfi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 7, 2007

    Friday Rap-Up: Pimp C Dies, Spice 1 Shot, Lauryn Hill Still a Pain in the Ass

    For those of you discontent with the hip-hop scene, Ghostface Killah released an excellent album this week along with this accompanying video. Veteran rapper Pimp C dies in L.A. Rapper Pimp C, of the veteran and legendary Houston rap group UGK (Underground Kingz), was found dead in a Los Angeles ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 26, 2007

    Q&A With Steve Bays of Hot Hot Heat

    Steve Bays, Hot Hot Heat’s frontman, had a lot more to say than we could squeeze into Westword’s September 27 profile, as demonstrated by the attached Q&A. At interview time (on September 12, the day after HHH’s latest CD, Happiness Ltd., was released), the band was heading north to Los Angel ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 30, 2007

    David Holthouse Turns Up in Rolling Stone

    Former Westword writer David Holthouse (he of the famous "Stalking the Bogeyman" saga) made his debut in Rolling Stone this week (the one with Johnny Depp and Keith Richards on the cover), writing about Shirley Q. Liquor, a gay white man who puts on blackface and performs as a boozing welfare mother ... More >>

  • Music

    February 8, 2007

    Kristin Hersh

    Sunday, February 11, Twist & Shout, 303-722-1943.

  • Blogs

    October 25, 2006

    Both Ways Bob

    "We're the loudest ones here! YEEAAAHHH!" a red-faced guy shouted at his buddies a few minutes before Bob Dylan's October 24 appearance at the Fillmore Auditorium. And, for my money, he was right. This quartet of middle-aged yahoos could have given even the most obnoxiously sozzled Parrothead a run ... More >>

  • Music

    October 9, 2003

    The Beatdown

    Less talk, more rock.

  • Music

    November 9, 2000


    Wishing for a perfect world.

  • Music

    April 23, 1998
  • News

    November 6, 1997

    Taking a Hit

    A maker of "water filtration systems" for smokers gets more publicity than he bargained for.

  • More >>