Heavy Steps

The gloves are off, and the Capitol Steps are ready for an evening of equal-opportunity offending. The musical political-satire troupe will right-hook George W., left-jab John Kerry and sucker-punch everybody in between when it takes the stage at the University of Denver this Friday. But first, a note from our sponsor, courtesy of the Capitol Steps' latest CD, Papa's Got a Brand New Baghdad:

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And now, back to our regularly scheduled performance, which includes such platinum hits as "Son of a Bush," "Cheney and the Jets," "House of the Right-Wing Son" and "Send in the Clones," performed by Capitol Steps gang members Andy Clemence, Michael Forrest, Mike Loomis, Tracey Stephens, Jenny Morris and pianist Howard Breitbart.

The six-piece is part of a crew that's been refining its musical talents since 1981, when a group of congressional staffers first put a skit together for then-senator Charles Percy's holiday office party. "We thought we would just do it once; we didn't expect to do it again," says co-founder Elaina Newport. "Actually, we expected our boss to tell us not to do it again. But like many things in Congress, it has just gotten completely out of control."

Since then, the Steps have performed for everyone from five U.S. presidents ("six, if you include Hillary") to Tom Clancy and filled 24 albums with their inside-the-Beltway wit and wisdom.

"We try to get everybody -- and, especially in an election year, that's kind of nice," Newport says. "We try to be bipartisan, but of course the party in power is always funnier. And there's every kind of music imaginable. Our John Edwards sings to ŒI Feel Pretty' because he's so pretty, and one of my new favorites is a country line dance. Do you know ŒAchy Breaky Heart'? John Kerry sings ŒFakey Purple Heart' to that, and Bush gets to sing a blues tune."

Gentlemen, back to your corners!

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Amy Haimerl

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