Getting started with local music, part three

Well, it's the end of the week and time to wrap up this little tutorial on how to begin sinking slowly, satisfyingly and inextricably into the local music scene. We've barely scratched the surface, of course, but it's time to move on to other pressing issues. So far, we've talked about getting exposure to local bands by catching the opening acts of touring bands you like and about bingeing on local music at one or more of Denver's fantastic music festivals. Today, we'll look at a tactic that is often overlooked: become a regular.

There's no shortage of great live music venues in the Denver area. For discovering new music, the smaller the better. From the Iliff Park Saloon in the east to the D Note in the west, from the hi-dive, 3 Kings and Skylark to Larimer Lounge and Meadowlark, and even Boulder's Laughing Goat and b-side lounge -- not to mention Moe's, the Toad Tavern, Herman's Hideaway, Herb's, Bender's, the Oriental, the Marquis, Cervantes, Lion's Lair and many, many more -- you never have to ask, "Where can I find live music in Denver?" And you can use these venues to help you discover local bands you might like. Become a regular.

You can find the venues above - or scout out venues in your area -- by using Westword's cool location search tool. Then you can click on a venue name to see an overview, including user reviews, best-of awards and a listing of upcoming events that are happening there (here's an example overview of Dazzle). If you spot a bunch of touring bands you know you dig, that just might be the place for you. The folks who book these joints - especially the smaller clubs - tend to wear their tastes on their sleeves as they book bands. So if you find a venue that seems to share your tastes in touring bands, the odds are that the local bands that dive books will also be up your alley.

Of course, the most important thing you can do is just get out there and start sampling the amazing array of live music Denver has to offer. It's a friendly town and, no matter what your scene, newcomers are usually welcomed and embraced. It's your city -- take a bite.

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