Red Rocks Amphitheatre and a proliferation of outdoor festivals bring a host of national artists to Colorado during the warmer months, so winter can be a slow time for music fans. But the state has plenty of top-notch indoor venues to enjoy, in Denver and the surrounding suburbs as well as mountain towns such as Frisco and Estes Park.
Below is a list of ten of our favorite new, old and very old venues in Colorado, from cozy bars like Syntax Physic Opera to the 101-year-old Ogden Theatre and the revamped Fillmore Auditorium.
10 Mile Music Hall
After running the Barkley Ballroom in downtown Frisco for more than five years, owners Todd Altschuler and Keegan Casey decided to take things to a new level with 10 Mile Music Hall, which opened down the street last month with two shows by Leftover Salmon. The 750-person room has a number of jam-centric and electronica shows lined up for the winter, including the Disco Biscuits, Minnesota, and the Infamous Stringdusters.
In November last year, the Buffalo Rose in Golden closed for an extensive remodel. The event-center side of the building will open on January 25 as part of the UllrGrass Music and Beer Festival, while the restaurant and bar side will open in the spring. One of Colorado’s oldest bars, the Buffalo Rose hadn’t seen any major enhancements since the mid-’80s. Chris Cone, who bought the bar and music venue in 2016, said his first priority was to preserve much of the existing structure while completely overhauling the interior, including HVAC and electrical systems, flooring, lights, furniture and layout. The February calendar includes the Hazel Miller and Austin Young bands, as well as tribute bands Under a Blood Red Sky, Citizen Dan and KISSM.
After nearly two decades in the Golden Triangle, Dazzle moved to much bigger digs in the Baur’s building downtown. The new space, which just about doubled the capacity of the old location, had a stellar October with high-profile acts from the ECM label; in December, the venue is bringing in some great saxophonists, such as Houston Person and Javon Jackson.
Fillmore Auditorium, which took over the longtime home of the Mammoth Events Center, will celebrate its twentieth anniversary in 2019. Over the past year, the Fillmore has gotten a multimillion-dollar renovation that includes gradated tiers throughout the main floor area, creating better sight lines; new seating areas on the east and west sides of the venue; expanded restrooms; and updated decor. More upgrades to the 3,600-capacity venue will be completed in the coming months.
Mutiny Information Cafe
Sure, Mutiny is a cool-ass space that’s packed with books, graphic novels, CDs and vinyl, and it’s got its own coffee shop, but it’s also an all-ages venue that hosts book readings, live podcast recordings and a wildly eclectic assortment of music acts, from punk, avant-garde and metal to electronica, hip-hop and jazz.
When the Ogden Theatre first opened 101 years ago, it hosted organ recitals, dances and vaudeville acts before becoming a movie theater. Promoter Doug Kauffman bought the Ogden in 1992 and opened it a year later as a full-time music venue with a 1,600-person capacity. Over the past dozen years, AEG has booked a steady stream of primarily national acts there. This winter’s lineup includes Gogol Bordello, Railroad Earth, the Infamous Stringdusters, Desert Dwellers, RJD2 and many more.