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Undercover and underage at LIFEspot

Earlier this year, I made a commitment to broaden my horizons. I said I'd catch music in different genres and at different venues than I normally frequent. I didn't set any specific measurable goals to correspond with this resolution, but I think I've been fairly successful. For example, last month, I caught some bands at the fabled Herman's Hideaway for the first time. Last week, I enjoyed drinks (and the cacophony of the piano bar) on the patio at Charlie Brown's. And last Friday, I had my inaugural experience at the LIFEspot in Centennial. That last one was nothing like what I'd expected.

In case you're not under 21, I'll give you a little background. LIFEspot is a teen outreach and community center, started by St. Andrew Methodist Church and nestled inconspicuously into a strip mall on University Boulevard and Dry Creek Road. Yep, it's way out in the 'burbs, but that hasn't stopped the venue from giving birth to a passionate, pubescent scene -- one that has launched bands like Breathe Carolina, the Chain Gang of 1974, the Axe That Chopped the Cherry Tree and many, many more. Ever since I wrote a Mile High Makeout about the Band Formerly Known as Prince, I've been hoping to catch that young band's admittedly derivative but thoroughly addictive party jams live, and it appeared that LIFEspot was the place to do it.

Since I'm a half-Jewish heathen, I get a little anxious at the thought of entering places like this. Fortunately, the gracious and patient Matthew Till, who has much more experience with the all-ages Christian scene, agreed to tag along for moral support and comic relief. I should point out that LIFEspot doesn't profess to be a Christian venue. In fact, it bristles under that label. In a beautifully written Myspace blog, the venue states, "...we aren't big fans of harmful things and we like to support things that build people up; but it doesn't have to always be about Jesus."

That sounds reasonable.

We entered through a door on the back side of the strip mall, climbed a flight of stairs that reminded me nauseatingly of my high school and came face-to-face with a wonderfully affable older woman who might have been the mother or grandmother of one of the kids inside. She welcomed us, marked our hands and ushered us into the venue.

That's when things got weird.  

...to be continued in a later edition of the Mile High Makeout.
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