The twelve best shows in Denver this weekend
Another several-night stand at Red Rocks this weekend: The Avett Brothers play three shows at the World's Only Natural Amphitheater. Elsewhere, Ms. Lauryn Hill will confound you with a bunch of songs that sound absolutely nothing like the hits your remember. And Joan Baez goes from Denver to Fort Collins. The rest of our picks follow.
Britt Chester Ms. Lauryn Hill at the Fillmore in 2012.
Telluride Town Park : July 12; July 13
This weekend, Ride Festival will bring a lineup including Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Spoon and the Wood Brothers to the mountains. "It is festival season for us. that's what we do all summer," Says Oliver Wood of the Wood Brothers. "Telluride is known as one of the ultimate festival stops. For us, it's a little remote, but we try to make it work."
The Avett Brothers
Red Rocks Amphitheatre : 7:30 p.m. July 11; 7:30 p.m. July 12; 7:30 p.m. July 13
The country is awash in Americana fever as scores of rock-radio favorites dabble in the sounds of yore. It's part of a search for authenticity when so much pop is heavily synthesized, and partially a need for the warm, fuzzy blanket of an imagined yesteryear. Though it might be cute, many of the current banjo-picking types fail to elevate their style beyond gimmick. A huge exception is the Avett Brothers, a North Carolina act helmed by, yes, brothers Scott and Seth. Sure, they're nominally folk-influenced, with their relatively stripped-down, deeply earnest sound and penchant for things like harmonicas. But what sets the Avetts apart is a serious, genre-defying talent for songwriting. Their melodies soar and stick, regardless of the folksy window dressing.
Bluebird Theater : 9:00 p.m. July 11
Making country-twinged pop-rock since 1990, Cowboy Mouth pulls from influences like The Clash -- heard loud and clear in its tribute "Joe Strummer" -- to create its own brand of blues-friendly rock n' roll with a goofy lyrical twist. The band has produced almost as many live albums as studio work, and though radio airplay has been fairly elusive, Cowboy Mouth has found a devoted fan base across the U.S.
Moe's Original BBQ & Bowl : 8:30 p.m. July 11
Dick Dale is one of the most influential living musicians. If Dale hadn't blown the first 48 guitar amplifiers Leo Fender had brought to him, guitar amps as we now know them may have taken longer to develop. Dale, who invented surf rock, used to pay the Beach Boys fifty dollars to open for him in the early days. Dale's influence on rock and roll since the 1950s is immense, and he has shared the stage with legends while being a legend in his own right. He was a seminal influence on Jimi Hendrix, who immortalized Dale in song.
Dazzle Restaurant & Lounge : 9:00 p.m. July 11
Selina Albright tried the saxophone once. She got dizzy, though, and that's pretty much all it took for her to realize that the sax wasn't for her.
"I'm just going to use my lungs for my vocal cords, and that's it," says Albright, whose father, Gerald, is renowned in contemporary jazz and R&B circles for his sax playing. "It's really hard to play the saxophone. It sounded horrible. It sounded like an elephant when I tried it. I don't think I have that calling."
Mishawaka Amphitheatre : 8:00 p.m. July 11
It took decades, but Joan Baez has finally overcome her stage fright. The legendary folk singer and activist, who initially found fame during the folk renaissance of the 1960s, partnering with Bob Dylan on stage and fighting for a wide range of causes into the '70s, '80s and '90s, says she's discovered a newfound sense of creative comfort and inspiration in the past several years. The past decade has seen the most dramatic growth for Baez. A 2009 episode of the PBS series American Masters revisited her musical achievements and turned a new generation on to her work.
3317 E. Colfax Ave., Denver, CO
3295 S. Broadway, Englewood, CO
204 S. College Ave., Fort Collins, CO
13714 Poudre Canyon, Bellvue, CO
930 Lincoln St., Denver, CO
935 E. Colfax Ave., Denver, CO
930 Lincoln St., Denver, CO
2721 Larimer St., Denver, CO
500 E. Colorado Ave., Telluride, CO