One of the great things about the Sundance Film Festival's arrival each January (and some might argue, THE only great thing) is the preponderance of music that arrives in Utah that might otherwise pass us by.
The festival inevitably brings a bunch of Vegas resident DJs, and some hip-hop that would NEVER come to Zion. And some shows prove to be more memorable than the year's films. I remember seeing the Beastie Boys throw down at a party at Park City Mountain Resort (a MySpace party no less), but I can't remember any films from that same year.
This year, I imagine I'll mostly remember the Sound City party Friday night at Park City Live, featuring Dave Grohl and a bunch of guests from his documentary. That's just a prediction at this point, but I've seen Grohl play drums a few times in concert, and I'm counting on the fact he'll do the same as he collaborates with a lineup that includes John Fogerty, Stevie Nicks, his fellow Foo Fighters, former Nirvana bandmate Krist Novoselic, Rage Against The Machine's Brad Wilk, Fear's Lee Ving, Cheap Trick's Rick Nielsen and a few others.
That show sold out almost instantly, but there are several other music options still available for folks wanting a piece of the Sundance action. You don't need any credentials or passes for these shows, but you need a willingness to spend more than you might on the average concert.
Here are a few venues and Websites worth checking out to see if something is happening that might inspire you to join the frenzy in Park City, or in SLC.
Park City Live (formerly Harry O's), has a selection of DJs from the Wynn Resort in Vegas, like AfroJack on Sunday, and an appearance by 2Chainz on Monday, and Utah's own Neon Trees headlining on Wednesday, Jan. 23.
The Star Bar is reopening in time for Sundance with a diverse slate of rock, hip-hop and potential train wrecks (hello, Courtney Love!). If you ever wanted to see Tommy Lee play DJ, or hear "OPP" in person from Naughty By Nature, you'll want to check out the entire lineup of the Star Bar's Sundance offerings.
Downstairs is always a popular spot for DJ action, thanks to owner DJ Mom Jeans, and this year you can find the likes of Lil' Jon and DMX involved in the festivities. Go to the Ticketcake Website to check out Downstairs shows, as well as small shows all over Park City.
In Salt Lake City, a real treat comes courtesy of the Sundance Festival Cafe at the Beehive Tea Room, where you'll find an all-star slate of local talent including Mark Dago dropping rhymes, the Folka Dots bringing the delectable harmonies, and a stylistic smorgasbord on a nightly basis thanks to bands like Hot Club of Zion, Triggers & Slips, the Moth and the Flame and more. Visit the Beehive Tea Room's Website for the complete rundown of the free shows every night during the festival.