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Well, I am sure you noticed the Ol' Reverb was missing last week, and for that I do apologize. You see, the wife and I went and signed a lease on the former Toons building (802 N. Nevada Ave.), and will soon be moving our humble little vintage clothing and record shoppe, the Leechpit, into this far more suitable location.

Unfortunately, a bigger, better, "Leechy-er" Leechpit means I'll be even more distracted from my Reverb duties than usual. And regrettably, I think I owe it to the readers, the bands, my poor editors, and most importantly, to my family, to get off my damn throne, and let somebody else wear the crown for a while.

I assure you, leaving is no easy decision, as I have had one hell of a ride here at the Independent. I thank everyone at the Indy for giving me the opportunity to play "journalist" over the last three years, and also everyone who has read the column, or started a band, or recorded an album, or has played (or even gone) to a show. You are the scene, and the scene is you!

All that said ... it looks like I'm not the only one busting my small-business ass to keep the, uh, "economic recovery" on oxygen. As I reported on the IndyBlog last week, and as the Gazette so thoughtfully reposted, the building that once housed the Rocket Room will soon be blasting out of its wintry tomb, and back onto the Colorado Springs scene. Behind the name of Zodiac, new proprietors Gentle Fritz and Christina Stone have already begun the transformation of the once-popular rock 'n roll dive.

The overall format will be similar — i.e. booze, music, variety shows, etc. — but "it's going to be a new identity entirely," says Fritz, who was a popular bartendress during the Rocket's reign. "We have really changed the layout in there, and it's really interesting how it's coming out." Look for a grand opening on or around Feb. 18, but until then stick with csindy.com for the latest details, or hit the Gazette blog two hours later!

Now, if I can recommend one last "hurrah," let it be Saturday, Feb. 12, at the Ancient Mariner — a damn fine show for a damn fine cause. Organized by my good friend, and yours if you've ever met him, John (Shitty) Holdaway, the show will feature a mighty fine mix of genres that includes the unique rock of Unikord, the alterna.twang of the Broken Spoke and the super-fuzzed out blues of Grant Sabin, to raise funds to help with medical expenses of Rich Marshall. The father of Jesse and Jamin Marshall of Larry & His Flask is "in the battle of his life" against late-stage pancreatic cancer.

Now, although the Larry & His Flask boys aren't technically local, they come around far often enough, and they stomp out far wild enough of a show, to be considered part of the family. And if there's anybody I know who knows how to take care of family, it's my man Shitty! Anyhow, the show is by donation (for which you will receive a free sampler CD), and is accompanied by a generous raffle and auction, so show up with a few bucks and I'm sure you won't regret it!

So, guys, I guess this is smell you later ... smell you later, forever ...

Send news, photos, downloads and shattered dreams to reverb@csindy.com.

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