On his own this time around

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Jamie McLean's new album is called "This Time Around."

As in, this time around, things are different. This time around, it's about Jamie McLean -- solo. For five years, McLean played guitar for the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. In early 2004, he moved from New Orleans to New York City and stepped out on his own, fronting his own band.

¤ Jamie McLean Band

¤ 10 p.m. Tuesday

¤ Levelz in Ski Time Square

¤ $5

¤ 870-9090

He wrote the material, sang the songs and produced "This Time Around."

"It's all my project," he said.

The Jamie McLean band has some of the funky sound that people will recognize from the Dozen, but his solo work steers more toward straight ahead rock 'n' roll with a singer/songwriter vibe. His songs are catchy with radio-ready hooks.

McLean wrote a lot of the music while on the road with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band.

"I was hanging out with an acoustic guitar, and the songs were pouring out of me," he said. Many of his lyrics are heavy and introspective, but the backup music is upbeat and danceable. It allows the listener to approach the music on his or her own terms -- as the backdrop for the party or as a chance to sit, listen and ponder.

"This Time Around" was released in May, and McLean has been touring since. Tuesday's show will be his first time on stage in Steamboat Springs without the Dirty Dozen Brass Band.

"With the Dozen, I didn't even break a sweat," McLean said. "I'm more of an entertainer now. I'm bounding around the stage, getting hot and sweaty and making a night out of it.

"It's pretty liberating to be on my own. To be a sideman is always going to be restricting. No matter how great the music is, it's not your own."

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