Photo: pikselstock/Shutterstock

14 Signs You Were Raised in the Denver Music Scene

by Tim Wenger Oct 1, 2015

1. In middle school, you swapped the traditional backpack for a messenger bag emblazoned with a large Five Iron Frenzy patch.

And you were definitely the first one to do so. All those other posers got nothing on your style. You’d been listening to ska since you’re friend’s older brother brought over that Mighty Mighty Bosstones tape a few weeks before.

2. Nowadays, you become irate when anyone refers to Denver as a ‘fly-over’ city.

Then proceed to tell them about how strong our music community is and how many nights you spent at shows last year, obviously distinguishing between local shows and nationals.

3. The ticket stubs you saved from your teenage years all read Nobody In Particular Presents.

Before AEG came in and took over the Bluebird and Ogden theatres, they were almost as seedy as the far reaches of East Colfax. That never stopped you from spending your underage days standing in line on Denver’s most infamous street waiting to catch the latest hot offering on the road from Southern California and, although you may not want to admit it, you stood outside the men’s room at the Bluebird hoping to find someone impaired enough to sneak you a beer.

4. You know that when someone says they are playing South Broadway this weekend, that it means only a few specific blocks.

Namely, from 1st Ave south to Alameda.

5. Even though you’ve never met him, you have a deep affection for Barry Fey.

And if you are old enough, you caught U2 and many of Fey’s other shows at the Rainbow.

6. You still have a ‘F*ck Television’ shirt somewhere in the bottom of your drawer, and that Born In The Flood cd is still under the seat in your car.

Recently, you’ve been following Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats performances on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien while barely holding back tears.

7. You remember when The Fray sang church songs.

Just look at them now. Was that marijuana you smelled at their Red Rocks concert?

8. Even though you may not live anywhere near Broadway, the Hi-Dive is basically your neighborhood bar.

You see five people you know before you even get in the door, and the PBRs always seem to taste fresher there.

9. You saw Big Head Todd play at Herman’s Hideaway back in the day.

That place used to be so hip.

10. You wish the Vans Warped Tour was still out at Adams County Fairgrounds.

In 2001, that party in the parking lot after the torrential rain set in still lives in your mind as one of the most legendary days of your life because you made out with a girl on top of your buddy’s mom’s minivan. It just sucks that you missed Rancid.

11. You’ve had your car towed from somewhere just off Colfax while at a show.

Probably from that old Blockbuster parking lot across from where Independent Records used to be. Your parents didn’t believe that’s why you were late getting home.

12. Speaking of Independent Records, their departure still makes you nostalgic, because you used to buy all of your concert tickets there.

Not to mention all of the in-store signings and midnight openings for the biggest album releases! You worked so hard boycotting Sam Goody at the mall that we never thought the day would come when Independent closed its doors.

13. Every time a new venue opens, you go check it out and rigidly analyze it against the former 15th St. Tavern or Cricket on the Hill.

Those bars were legendary, no matter what anyone says. Where else would it take 10 fingers and four toes to count the number of friends you’ve seen hurt themselves trying to crowd surf in one place?

14. You’ve already blocked off your calendar for next year’s Underground Music Showcase, because it is the best week of the year.

You’ve been every year. In fact, when someone tries to tell you about the new band they heard at South By Southwest, you immediately inform that the festival is too blown up these days and that “You should really check out the UMS.”

Discover Matador

Save Bookmark

We use cookies for analytics tracking and advertising from our partners.

For more information read our privacy policy.