Music, Fashion, and the Underground Music Showcase (UMS) Days 3 & 4
If you remember from the last post from my concert going adventures, the first two days of UMS weren't really a bust but they were a little slow. This now changes drastically!
The good thing about the true weekend portion of this festival is that the event starts earlier in the day. (2PM). Less trying to cram things in, crowds get a little more spaced apart, and you have great natural lighting for taking pictures at least half of the day. Before going into details of the day...the clothes!
I got two Express strapless dresses on sale during the 4th of July for days hot summer days exactly like this. I've mentioned once or twice before that if I know I'm going to be in the sun, I try to avoid tan lines as much as possible and strapless is my favorite means of doing so. I wanted to pair this white dress with something really bright, fun, and summery so I went with all turquoise and cool blues to accessorize.
There's this place called "The Yellow House" or "Centennial House" that hosts a party in conjunction with UMS every year. Depending on who you ask, it's either in cahoots with UMS or kind of a rebellion party against it. Either or, I suppose it is a little underground and many people make it out to be the place to be. My friend Zach's band was playing there that afternoon so I popped by for a bit. Honestly, it was a cool space but at the end of the day it was a house party with a band in the backyard. Fun? Yes. Worth skipping the festival for? Nah. That said, the house scored pretty big by the acts who played there so if your favorite musicians were scheduled then I understand better. Like, it was cool, but way too many people I knew really trumped it up. I guess I was expecting it to be more like the time I went to an anarchist Christmas party in Philly where they both bumped and grinded to JayZ and Beyonce (ironically???) all night AND lit off fireworks inside the house. This party was a little more tame. F*cking hipsters! Kidding...sort of. It also wasn't super underground (although considering it had a hashtag I'm not entirely convinced that it truly was) as you could just walk in. Again, I had been hearing about it left and right and couldn't get a straight answer about what this party even was...so yeah. Maybe if I had gotten a straight answer instead of conflicting ones I wouldn't have naturally compared it to the anarchist party in Philly, haha. But it was fun and I have no complaints.
After I figured out where the house was by hearing music coming out of the backyard (after getting incorrect cross streets) and finding the (correct) yellow house with an alley to the backyard open, I walked in a little bit late to my friend Zach's band, Gun Street Ghost. Honestly, I was totally taken aback! This guy has been in a Megadeth cover band and here he was on his electric guitar rocking out to country. Everyone's musicianship was spot on for sure, but like folk, country is a genre I rarely get into. But hey, I was out in the middle of the afternoon and this infamous hipster party...why not play country, right? And, again, they were really good.
He has better jewelry than me!
After that I had to jet because I had some time sensitive things to take care of, switched into flip flops as my dogs were BARKING from three days of walking/standing in heels, grabbed an early dinner and made it back in time to catch part of a local band (Chemistry Club...more on them in a moment) and then head to the main stage to see Milo Greene. My friend Elexis is the reason we were at Milo Greene, as it's one of her favorites. I had heard of them but had not heard them, if that makes sense, and boy am I glad she introduced them to me! I've been listening to them quite a bit since UMS and am a bonafide fan now. Their live show is amazing, for what it's worth!
Immediately after Milo Greene was STRFRK, and luckily my friends didn't have conflicts and stayed there with me. To my surprise NONE of them knew STRFKR. I had wanted to see them for years but it had never really worked out. I went into seeing them with no expectations as I had heard nothing about their live show and knowing that they use some electronics in their music I just didn't know what to think. I am very happy to report that they have an amazing vibe to them and they are super tight. Plus, the lead male singer wears a dress and that's something that I never complain about. Seriously...REALLY good show!
That said...I have never seen so many high people in my entire life! Bros hugging for too long, terrible non-stop dancing, obnoxious loud girls, and some guy with a light saber for no apparent reason. It was mostly entertaining, with a few annoying exceptions. Fun fact: I do not do drugs. In fact, I rarely drink. Maybe every month or two I let my hair down. I just can't get my sea legs back after health issues the past few years, tolerance and hangover wise, so it's something I've mostly just cut out. So I get to experience everyone's shenanigans through the most sober of lenses, haha.
After STRFKR I called it quits because I was supposed to have a meeting before day 4 of UMS that I had to prep for (it got cancelled) and three days of music and sun was enough for me to call it quits around 10PM.
The next day, day 4 got kicked started by a schedule change on my end, a comedy of errors trying to find a brunch place after 2PM without a long line to get in (paging the always classic Denny's!), and plastering flyers all over the neighborhood where UMS is because my friend Elexis was throwing a cancer fundraiser later in the week. Basically I was at UMS for an hour or two before actually seeing any bands because we were out and about doing street team work. This was fine as there was nobody I needed to see during this time, and I think all of us were starting to burn out slightly.
Why did I wear what I wore though? Honestly, day 4 was the toughest for me dress. I wanted to wear fun shorts at some point this weekend and ran out of time. It was supposed to be raining and not as hot this day, which is why I decided against shorts. Thinking it would be not as hot, I started looking at my tea length sun dresses. Eventually I landed on the Bernie Dexter dress that I've coined my "New Girl" dress, because Jessica Day wears it in an episode of New Girl.
A shorter dress may have been more appropriate as it was hella hot, but whatever. I paired this dress with my black Jessica Simpson flats as I decided to call it quits after the day before with heels, my ModCloth heart monitor necklace (my favorite personal ironic necklace haha) and the same Kate Spade bag as the day before as it matched the teal within my dress. I next to never use the shoulder straps a lot of bags come with as I prefer to have a handbag dangling from my forearm, but I decided this look went with the dress and would probably be easier for doing the flyer thing. Honestly, I've been wearing this bag like this ever since. Apparently I do like bags with shoulder straps a lot after all! Live and learn!
Eventually we ran out of posters to flyer and give to businesses to put in their windows. My favorite was the bookstore owner who refused to give me a chance. I walked in smiling and she hated me from the first second. She begrudgingly asked what it was for, and after I told her it was for a cancer fundraiser she still wasn't impressed with me. She asked where it was and I told her it was in the Highlands (a neighborhood of Denver about 15 minutes away from the Baker neighborhood that we were in). She said, "I don't do non-neighborhood posters." I said that was cool and to have a nice day. I walked outside to tell my friends about it and they squinted and pointed to a Red Rocks flyer in her window, which is 30 minutes away, and said, "Sure, she doesn't advertise for events outside this neighborhood." Not everyone is going to like you folks, or like what you're trying to accomplish. You win some and you lose some. Haters gonna hate, but staying polite is always best. I was in this store for a friend's book signing a few years back and I remember this woman giving everyone attitude. Yikes. What a way to run a business, lol.
After acting as an unofficial street team, we broke for ice cream over music because it was so hot out. From there we went to one of my least favorite bars to see my new favorite local act, SF1. You may remember me talking about them a few weeks back when they opened for Jurassic 5. Between the two shows I realized they were local and found them on the UMS schedule and I got Jeanice and Brian to go with me to see them. SF1 "isn't your typical hiphop" in that they have African drums, tap dancing, and belly dancers for some songs. My whole friend group was blown away by them. They're also genuinely talented rappers. Seeing SF1 is an experience, in a way. We had a lot of fun seeing them again, but granted we probably didn't look like it. All three of us were sunken into these lounge chairs the venue had, and were all sun zapped out. But honestly, we did have fun!!
After that I got to see Chemistry Club for real (the first attempt was super crowded so Jeanice and I went shopping at a vintage store haha), but they were playing again and Brian missed them as well, so it was an easy decision to see them after SF1. Chemistry Club was my favorite discovery of UMS, and I hope to see them again ASAP. They're a not-so nerdy pop rock band and they put on a really great show. The bar they were playing in was also very full, which was kind of impressive given that it was Sunday evening on day 4 of the festival.
After Chemistry Club, we headed back to the main stage to see Tennis perform. They're a local band gone national, so it was a super fitting closer for the weekend. I have been a fan for several years and while driving across the country earlier in the summer I had listened to them a ton. They're lyrics are super fun, and as expected, they put on such a great show. They're coming to town again this month but sadly I'm not sure I'll be able to make it (I'm still trying to find a way though!). And, how much do you love this girl's (Alaina Moore) 70s style and vibe??
Only three more concerts left from the summer! I'm going to continue this series after, but they will be more sporadic posts as my concert going schedule is a lot lighter for the foreseeable future. I'm also hoping to post these within a week after shows from here on out as well. Next up on deck: The Kills with Baby in Vain, The Foo Fighters, and Hall and Oates.
A fake rain walkway...because why not? #hipsters
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