Salt Lake City's insistence on celebrating St. Patrick's Day the weekend before the actual holiday is less perturbing when you think about all the weekend warriors who can come out and play.
And there's plenty of play to be had this weekend, particularly on the music front. Let's break it down:
There are a ton of great artists performing Friday night, starting early at The Heavy Metal Shop, where Michael Dean Damron plays an in-store at 5 p.m. before moving on to play on the bill at Burt's Tiki Lounge later on. Damron is a treasure, a rootsy rocker who can put on a show for sure.
Elsewhere, the eclectic Northwest rockers The Quick and Easy Boys headline a four-band bill at The State Room; they consider themselves a mix of the Minutemen, Willie Nelson and P-Funk, and they're not far off. Every paid ticket gets a free slice from ESTE, too, so that's a serious come-on for the curious. The Legendary Porch Pounders are playing at the Hog Wallow, the Elephant 6 Holiday Tour stops at Kilby Court. And up in Park City, the City Weekly Street Team is hosting a bash at the Spur Bar & Grill.
Welcome to early St. Patrick's Day, and be sure to get down to the Gateway before 10 to get a good spot for SLC's St. Paddy's Day parade. You definitely want to be near the reviewing stand if possible, to hear the running commentary of the genuine Irish as they poke fun at the passing floats. The post-parade siamsa is also a must-go.
Later on, you can continue your green day with the Young Dubliners at The Depot, doing covers and originals in their Irish-rock style. The Sensations Soul Band are hosting a Mardi Gras party at the downtown SLC Sheraton Saturday night, and the Utah Arts Festival's Tardy Mardi Party, always a great time, is Saturday night as well.
For more music options, consider the Otis Heat show at The Woodshed, Cypress Hill's DJ Muggs spinning in Ogden or DJ Homicide at Elevate. State Radio brings politically inspired punk and reggae to In the Venue. And if you're looking for something heavy, check out the SubRosa CD release party at The Urban Lounge, after reading our interview with the band, pictured, right here.
No rest on this Sunday. The excellent double-bill of Tera Melos and Marnie Stern drops in at Kilby Court.
No go rest up for the REAL St. Patrick's Day.