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Ten Days to Live 

click to enlarge The Da Vinci Quartet classes up the joint, Tuesday night - at Colorado Colleges Packard Hall.
  • The Da Vinci Quartet classes up the joint, Tuesday night at Colorado Colleges Packard Hall.

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Thursday

Here's one for the tribal tattoos crowd: Radio rockers Godsmack will be playing (quoting directly from the Clear Channel Web site here) "A Rare, Intimate, All-Acoustic Concert" at the City Auditorium (221 E. Kiowa). They'll ostensibly be strumming on their guitars, moaning drearily into the mikes, and -- here's the "intimate" part -- taking time out to talk about their songs. Tickets are $29.50 and are available through Clear Channel at www.cc.com.

Don't get your kilt in a twist. The Longs Peak Scottish and Irish Highland Festival is happening this weekend in Estes Park. There will be pipers piping, drummers drumming, sheepdogs herding, dancers dancing, haggis for eating and a bonny time for all. The athletic events include the sheaf toss (no, not the sheep toss!) and the weird caber toss, where they toss a telephone pole so it tumbles end over end. A one-day gate pass is $5 for kids and $15 for adults. For more, call 970/586-6308 or visit www.scotfest.com.

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Friday

click to enlarge Get your Scott on this weekend in Estes Park at the Longs - Peak Scottish and Irish Highland Festival.
  • Get your Scott on this weekend in Estes Park at the Longs Peak Scottish and Irish Highland Festival.

Tonight at the Black Forest Community Center (corner of Black Forest and Shoup roads in Black Forest), Australian guitar virtuoso Nick Charles will be burning up the floorboards. Touring on his latest and referentially titled new disc, Traveling Fingerpicker, Charles is an acoustic roots and blues kind of guy who's sure to delight fans of Taj Mahal and the like. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. and will run BRAS members $2 members and nonmembers $4. More information is at www.blackroseacoustic.org.

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Saturday

Ditch the Springs this weekend and proceed directly to Crested Butte for the Crested Butte/Gunnison Fall Festival. Events will include chili and salsa cook-offs, live music, wine tasting and enough gorgeous fall mountain scenery to make your eyes explode from their sockets and ooze into your microbrew. Events will be taking place both Saturday and Sunday, and you can learn more by giving the Crested Butte Chamber of Commerce a call at 800/545-4505.

Or, if you're not up for the drive to the mountains, treat yourself to an afternoon out on the plains, beneath the ancient cottonwoods at the Chico Basin Ranch Artists Gathering Exhibition. Throughout the year, artists gather on this holistically managed 87,000-acre working cattle ranch to sketch, paint and photograph the prairie landscape, cowboys and wildlife. More than 50 works by 15 artists will be on display. If you've never seen the view of Pikes Peak from out on the plains south of the Springs, do it today. Call 683-7960 for directions or visit

www.chicobasinranch.com <> for more.

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click to enlarge Itzhak Perlman joins the Colorado Springs Philharmonic - Sunday night at  the Pikes Peak Center.
  • Itzhak Perlman joins the Colorado Springs Philharmonic Sunday night at the Pikes Peak Center.

Sunday

Basso Herbert Beattie will be accompanied by pianist Carol Wilson this afternoon at First Christian Church (16 E. Platte Ave. ) as they perform art songs by English composers Benjamin Britten, Gerald Finzi, Henry Purcell and George Butterworth. The program promises to run the mood gamut from somber to humorous, because, hey, you know those kooky Brits. The concert begins at 3 p.m., and a freewill offering will be taken.

Also today, reigning virtuoso of the violin Itzhak Perlman joins the Colorado Springs Philharmonic at the Pikes Peak Center (190 S. Cascade Ave.). Touted truthfully as the world's greatest living violinist, Perlman has had a career marked with history-making performances with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Leningrad Philharmonic and Boston Symphony Orchestra; has been awarded four Emmys and 15 Grammys; and has received honorary degrees from Yale, Harvard, Yeshiva and Roosevelt universities. (This is where the word legend comes in.) Tickets for the concert are $50-$100 and are available through the Pikes Peak Center box office, at all TicketsWest outlets, including King Soopers, and the World Arena box office, by calling 520-SHOW and online through www.ticketswest.com.

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Tuesday

Sashay your way up to the Denver area tonight for your weekly dose of delicious pop-rock hipsterism with Keane and the French Kicks. The Brit-pop kids in Keane kick out a pretty delightful blend of hook-laden piano- and organ-driven rock redolent of Coldplay and, stateside, Koufax -- you know, Radiohead without the affectation. The French Kicks bring to mind Joy Division, the Cure and a slew of other post-punk crooners and come fresh from a weeklong stint on The Carson Daly Show just for street cred's sake. The fun's taking place at the Gothic Theatre (3263 S. Broadway in Englewood) and tickets are running $15 for an 8 p.m. show. Hit up www.keanemusic.com or www.frenchkicks.com for more.

Tonight at Colorado College's Packard Hall (southwest corner of Cache La Poudre Street and Cascade Avenue), catch the Da Vinci Quartet in all their stringed glory. They'll be kicking off the season with selections from Haydn, Bartok and Dohnanyi. Tickets for the show are $15 for the general public, free for Colorado College students and faculty with ID and $8 for non-CC students. The show starts at 7:30. Call 389-6607 for more information.

-- Aaron Retka

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