The five best concerts in Denver this weekend

3. STONEY LARUE @ GRIZZLY ROSE | FRI, 1/4/13
Stoney LaRue was born in Taft, Texas, near Corpus Christi, to a family of musicians and spent part of his formative years in Oklahoma, eventually settling in the Stillwater of Cross Canadian Ragweed and Jason Boland. So guess what he does for a living now? If you can get past the silly name, which you should, you'll find that LaRue is one of the strongest young talents in the Red Dirt/Texas Country arena, and such a seasoned road dog that two of his first three records were live sets.

2. JOHN GORKA @ SWALLOW HILL | SAT, 1/5/13
John Gorka got his start performing live as a musician through Godfrey Daniels, the venerable coffee shop in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, while he was attending Moravian College as a student of philosophy. It was there that he honed his craft as one of the preeminent folk songwriters of his generation. Gorka's warm presentation and his subtle, intelligent lyrics and gift for understated guitar flourishes brought him to the attention of respected folk label Windham Hill in the late '80s. Since then, he's released nearly a dozen albums, toured internationally and shared the stage with many of his own heroes. Lately he's been revisiting his roots as a craftsman of spare melodies of exceptional refinement.

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