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Before we get into this week's column, let's just agree to agree on one thing: None of what you're about to read constitutes a legitimate excuse for missing the genuinely epic Indy Music Awards Festival on Sept. 6. So if you haven't already done so, click here where you can read about this year's winners and check out the artists who'll be performing on three stages at next week's free Stargazers Theatre event. The rest of us will wait for you ...

OK, now that we're all back on the same page, it's time to take note of two festivals happening this very weekend.

On Friday and Saturday, more than three dozen bands will be playing the Live Loud N Local Back to School Jam at Sunshine Studios. Springs-area stalwarts like Aesthetic Delirium, From Slaves to Kings and Last Savior of God will be joined by out-of-town ringers like 12 Stones and iwrestledabearonce, and you can find the full lineup at

Also on Saturday, get ready for the third annual What's Left Fest (, featuring an eclectic lineup of local bands ranging from the Conjugal Visits and Murder Hat to BullHead*ded and Milogic. Hosted by the politically inclined music zine of the same name, the event will also include the works of numerous local artists, including Heather Barlow and Phil Lear. The all-ages show gets under way at 1:15 at the DIY Event Center, which, if last June's Front Range PunkFest is any indicator, is a great place to kick out the decibels.

Meanwhile, if you need a midweek roots respite, I should mention that the Dark Ruler of Rockabilly, Brian Parton, has taken on a weekly Wednesday evening gig at Meadow Muffins. The Oklahoma expat is the closest thing the Springs has to Dave and Phil Alvin, or would be if those guys were a whole lot more cynical.

As noted in this column not long after he moved here last year, Brian's a gifted singer-songwriter who wields a mean Gretsch Country Gentleman electric and is likely to cover anything from Charlie Rich to Echo & the Bunnymen. He'll also be releasing a live CD culled from a recent Fresno, Calif., performance sometime before the year's out.

Also on the upcoming album-release front, Young Austin & No Difference have just finished the mastering of a CD called Blue As Can Be, which should arrive within the month. You can check out the new material when the blues-rockers play Stargazers on Friday night, or the following evening at the Crystola Roadhouse.

If you prefer your music on USB flashdrive bracelets instead of compact discs — and really, who doesn't? — stop by the Black Sheep Friday for a Leftmore album release show. In addition to giving you the opportunity to accessorize yourself with his new Dog Catcher album, Leftmore — aka Joe Ziegler — will be serving up cake to celebrate his birthday. He'll also be joined by Mark's Midnight Carnival Show, Aaron Noble Brown and newly announced Indy Music Awards Indie Rock winners We Are Not a Glum Lot.

Speaking of which, the Nobodys will be basking in the punk-rock afterglow of their IMA win with a show Sunday night at the Triple Nickel, where they'll share a top-flight bill with Seattle garage-metal extraordinaires Antique Scream and Andy Tanner's reunited Headhum. Could make for a rough Monday morning, but it'll be worth it.

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