Have plans this weekend? If not, as usual, there's plenty of choices: Tonight, Jason Aldean's at the Pepsi Center, Jim Hall's at Dazzle and All Capitals is celebrating the release of its new CD at the hi-dive. On Saturday, Five Finger Death Punch hits the 1STBANK Center, Rene Marie's at Dazzle, Drew Grow and the Pastors' Wives are at the hi-dive and Big Joe Thunder celebrates his birthday at Chance's Grill with a cast of local hip-hoppers. On Sunday, Yngwie Malmsteen stops by the Bluebird, Moonface is at the Larimer Lounge and Mac Miller is at the Ogden.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 21
If you're the kinda guy who has a pickup for a reason, or the kinda gal who's been wearing cowboy boots since long before they were in fashion, then chances are you already know what Jason Aldean is all about. Catch the country star tear it up the way it should be torn and bringing down the Pepsi Center tonight with Chris Young and Thompson Square. Tickets are $39.75, $53.75 day of show.
After hearing two choruses of Charlie Christian's solo on Benny Goodman's "Grand Slam" in a record store, a thirteen-year old Jim Hall had a spiritual awakening of sorts. "That's what I wanted to do," Hall, now eighty, says about first hearing the song. "It was such a perfect solo -- no extra notes or anything. It was a real composition the way he played." That one Charlie Christian solo set Hall on a path that would lead the world-renowned jazz guitarist to eventually perform and record with a slew of legendary artists and become a staple of the scene. Check him out at Dazzle tonight at 7:00 and 9:00 p.m. Tickets are $40.
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Guitarist Paul Christus and drummer Tony Corona should be given some kind of medal for weathering numerous lineup changes over the years and sticking to their guns. With their long-running band, all capitals, these two guys have rearranged the roster more times than Spinal Tap, but they've never given up on developing their punk-infused indie-rock sound. When Jim Beasley joined the fold, the group got what it needed to make the songs cohere while shaving off all but the best of its excess. SO get down to the Hi-Dive on S. Broadway and see what the latest incarnation sounds like. Doors at 8 and tickets are $6. Show is 21+
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 22
Ivan Moody may live in Vegas these days, but Denver will always be the place he considers home. Before moving to L.A. and fronting Motograter and then Five Finger Death Punch, Moody grew up here. It really wasn't all that long ago that Moody, now 31, can remember playing one of his first shows ever at the Iliff Park Saloon and being asked to leave when he was finished because he was underage. He's come a long way since then. When he returns home this weekend, he'll be headlining an arena with a show that requires thirty crew members. Catch it at the 1st Bank Center at 7:30 p.m. The show is all ages and tickets range in price from $29.75 to $32.75.
When Marie sang "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing" to the melody of "The Star-Spangled Banner" a few years ago at the Denver State of the City address, she caused a bit of a stir. The words about "the land of the free" and "the home of the brave" weren't quite doing it for her. Throughout Voice of My Beautiful Country, possibly her finest release, Marie sounds absolutely stunning and completely in command. She sounds like someone who's been singing for decades, not someone who only started professionally after she turned forty. Catch the jazz singer in the flesh for two nights at Dazzle this weekend while she celebrates the release of her follow-up with performances Saturday at 7:00 & 9:00 p.m. and Sunday at 6:00 & 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $26.
Honestly, the kind of music you're going to get from Drew Grow and the Pastors' Wives is just about what you would expect from the name: Really good, gospel-infused country/soul. And on top of that, you get the kinda 'whoa-whoa' choruses a room like that at the hi-dive can easily pounce upon and echo, like a hipster revival comin' to Jesus. If you check into this one and don't feel yourself stirring, then you sir may be in danger of losing your soul. Admission is $8 and the show starts at 9:00 p.m.
With no cover, nine performers and Joe Thunder, presiding, Chances Bar is going to be poppin' Saturday night. The hip-hop is non-stop with F.O.E., Haven da Great, 800 the Jewell, American Trash Republic, Gods Forgotten, Kontrast and Fo Chief featuring Fresh Breath Committee, Selector Sam, Gyp da Hip and Comatoast on the bill. Party is 21+
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 23
Yngwie Malmsteen burst into the world of international music in 1984 with Rising Force. At the age of seven, Malmsteen says, he saw a documentary about the death of Jimi Hendrix and was so taken in by the guitar god's musical power and prowess that he set about forging an undeniable virtuosity on electric guitar. Although his playing often seems more about mechanical technique than artistry, the guy consistently puts to rest any doubts about his ability to play technically challenging compositions, rock and otherwise, with each album. Catch him at 8:00 p.m. at The Bluebird for $29.50.
Spencer Krug is probably best known to the world as a former member of Montreal's Wolf Parade. Moonface is more or less Krug's solo project, in which he uses mostly keyboards and synths to make warm, fuzzy pop songs rimmed with a subtle sense of nostalgia. Tonight, Krug will showcase his panoramic new sound with his usual flair for the winsomely and earnestly dramatic. This is retro-futurist electro-indie pop at its finest. Doors are at 8:00 p.m. at the Larimer and tickets are $12, $14 day of show.
Mac Miller will be the first to say "I'm just a motherfuckin' kid," as he does in the above track, but it's hard to deny the kid has swagger, and flow to boot. If you dig good beats and clever shit talk, then definitely check out Mac Miller at the Ogden this Sunday for what's likely to be a pretty damn good show. Doors are at 8:00 p.m. and tickets are $22.50, $25 day of show.
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