Summer is blowing by, as usual. Need proof? Alive After Five, Boise's weekly music bash at The Grove plaza, already is more than half over. The Wednesday series began its downslide last week.
Bearing that in mind, let's run through the Boise summer bucket list items I suggested in Scene many weeks ago.
We'll assume that you've already floated the Boise River on your inner tube. And you've been to a Boise Hawks game, right? (They're actually good this year.)
If you haven't been to Idaho Shakespeare Festival, you've at least bought your tickets. Ditto regarding a concert at the Idaho Botanical Garden's Outlaw Field. (If you're one of those freeloaders who watches the show from the Foothills above, that counts, too.)
Circling back to Alive After Five: If you haven't attended yet - why? Too hot? Stand in the fountain with the kiddies. Too broke? Come on, it's free.
You're in luck, though, because the final stretch is filled with solid entertainment: The Derailers on July 31, Ben Taylor on Aug. 7, Clumsy Lovers on Aug. 14, Chuck Prophet & The Mission Express on Aug. 21, and Polyrhythmics on Aug. 28.
Alive After Five ends Sept. 4, but the final act - chosen by the Record Exchange - is never announced until approximately 11 seconds before the gig.
BOISE RADIO RATINGS
The spring 2013 Arbitron ratings, which measure listener share among radio stations, hit the streets last week.
In the Treasure Valley, KBOI 670 AM won the 12-plus demographic - listeners 12 and older between 6 a.m. and midnight. Mix 106 topped the 25-54 demographic - the one advertisers care about.
The rest of the numbers are too extensive to list in this space, but you can see them - and where your favorite station finished - on my "Words & Deeds" blog.
DRINK UP, COUNTRY FANS
Country singer Jason Aldean is accustomed to playing stadiums, but he'll headline Taco Bell Arena on July 28 - aka tonight.
Fans with seats in front of the P.A. might be wise to take along earplugs. (I highly recommend Etymotics Research ETY-Plugs for $13.) Aldean, who sold out Wrigley Field last Saturday night, ain't exactly George Strait. "At Wrigley," wrote the Chicago Tribune, "many of Aldean's songs were built on ear-splitting rock riffs bordering on metal."
Maybe he can headline next summer's Mayhem Festival?
Aldean recently played two shows at Fenway Park. According to his publicist, the shows "broke the single-show and two-show attendance records previously held by Paul McCartney and Dave Matthews, respectively, in addition to breaking the all-time beer sales record."
Better start tapping those kegs now, Boise State.
IDAHO LIQUOR REPORT
Speaking of drinking, if you missed my column Friday, you missed a slew of data about Idaho liquor sales. The Idaho State Liquor Division's annual report lets us break down which Boise bars are plowing through the most booze, how much Boiseans are buying at liquor stores and more. (You can read the entire 28-page bar sales report at my blog.)
The biggest question I had involved the proliferation of Treasure Valley breweries and brewpubs. With all the recent focus on local beer, are Boiseans starting to move away from liquor?
The short answer: Nope. In fact, based on liquor sales, there are indications that Boise's economy may be recovering more quickly than the rest of the state.
With support from David Crosby, ex-Boise musician Marcus Eaton has launched a Kickstarter campaign for his "dream-come-true project." He's aiming for $30,000 to make a new album. See the video on my blog. ...
Concerts announced too late to make Friday's Scene magazine deadline included West Coast Fest with Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, Kid Ink, YG, Too Short, Warren G and Mach 10 (Aug. 10 Revolution Center), Trivium/Devildriver (Sept. 12, Knitting Factory), Citizen Cope (solo acoustic, Oct. 2, Knitting Factory) and Datsik (Oct. 3, Revolution Center).
Indie folk-pop act The Head and the Heart will perform at Neurolux on Aug. 28.
TONIGHT IN 'THE OTHER STUDIO'
Join co-host Tim Johnstone and me as we spin old music from rapper Too Short, new music from DJ/producer Avicii and hip-hop newcomer Mac Miller, plus plenty more.
"The Other Studio" airs at 9 p.m. Sundays on 94.9 FM The River.
IN SCENE AUG. 2
Street-taco throwdown! Hot sauce in hand, our restaurant critic tackles Mexican food from three quick-bite eateries.
A look at new public art projects in Boise.
Did we really need "The Smurfs 2" in movie theaters this summer? Apparently so.
Michael Deeds' column runs Fridays in Scene and Sundays in Life. Email: mdeeds@ idahostatesman.com. Twitter: @IDS_Deeds