The complete 2014 Backbeat bucket list
Since the start of the new year, we've been filling our four blogs -- Show and Tell, Backbeat, Cafe Society and the Latest Word -- with a Colorado bucket list of the 100 things to do before you kick it. Here is the complete 2014 Backbeat bucket list.
See also: 25 reasons the Denver music scene rules
25. Get a picture with the dancing security guard at Red Rocks
It's hard not to dance when you have the chance to see some of the biggest music acts in the world playing one of the best stages in the world on a regular basis. That said, a certain security guard at Red Rocks has made a name for himself by shamelessly getting his groove on. He's got moves that get the whole front row going, and he has no qualms about showing off for the whole show. If you ever get the chance, run down and get a quick picture with this guy, because chances are, you will never meet a cooler security guard, one who isn't scared to have a good time -- even when the boss is watching.
24. Sign your name (or take a pic) in the tunnel at Red Rocks
This is more of a bucket-list item for musicians, but every act wants to be able to have its name on a wall that has been signed by the likes of Jerry Garcia, Joan Jett, Snoop Dogg, STS9, Phish, Atmosphere, 311, the Fray, Kaskade, Deadmau5, Skrillex, and pretty much every other act that has ever graced the famed stage of Red Rocks. It's the tunnel that leads from the green room to the sound board, and every act takes a moment to appreciate the work that was put into the side of a mountain and makes it possible to play before taking in one of the most beautiful sights in the world: the sun setting on the Rocky Mountains behind a wall of fans.
23. Celebrate Elvis's birthday with the late, great Velvet Elvis
Although Velvet Elvis was officially laid to rest in 2011, his spirit, like his inspiration, will live on forever. Every year around this time, he mystically reappears to deliver a Blue Christmas and to celebrate the King's birthday (like this Friday, January 10, at the Oriental Theater). If you haven't seen this show, it's worth adding to your bucket list. The must-see concert is so faithful to the essence of Elvis that you'd swear the King never truly died.
22. Busk on the 16th Street Mall
In the past decade, the Denver music scene has gained massive exposure thanks to acts like the Lumineers and the Fray -- a fact that inspires a new wave of musicians every year to reach for the brass ring. Before working toward wowing capacity crowds, however, a real test for musicians is seeing whether they can capture the attention of an otherwise inattentive audience. Can you make captive commuters stop and hear you out? Only one way to find out.
21. Audition for the People's Fair
Okay, so you've successfully busked on the 16th Street Mall, and now you're ready for another rite of passage in the local music scene: auditioning for the People's Fair. While the crowd at these annual tryouts is obviously more engaged, the task is a little more daunting. After watching so many acts perform, the judges' ears are subject to fatigue, and you only have a few songs to prove your merit and hopefully earn a slot to perform in front of thousands at Civic Center Park. But whether you make the cut or not, it's worth throwing your hat in the ring, just to say you did.