* Blue Bird, fronted by singer Marta Fielder, have released a new EP, Metamorphosis . The five-song set is the band's first release and is available as a download via CDBaby.com. The band recorded the EP at ARC Studios with A.J. Mogis. The seven-piece band describes their sound as mixing “influences of folk, soul, doo-wop, and Americana into intricately woven pop songs.” * The coolest local music thing I've seen lately: The Youtube video blog of local musician Dereck Higgins (currently of InDreama). In between live videos of bands like Conduits and Icky Blossoms, Higgins recounts recent vinyl purchases in a record room that looks like a treasure trove. While the comments seem to indicate that his audience is mostly other in-the-know audiophiles, just watching Higgins joyfully express a lifetime of learning and loving music is worth watching. Check out his YouTube page at Youtube.com/dereckvon. Thanks to HearNebraska.org for the head's up on this. * Shelterbelt Theatre, 3225 California St., is coupling live jazz performances with a series of short plays called Nobody Gets Paid . The play, written by Ellen Struve, compiles tales of the jazz life inspired by her travels with her husband, saxophonist Kevin Pike. The 10:30 p.m. shows run three consecutive weekends, starting this Friday and Saturday. Musical performers include the Kevin Pike Quartet, the Steve Helfand Trio, the Doyle Tipler Trio and the Matt Amandus Trio. Tickets are $10. For more information, visit Shelterbelt.org. * Omaha indie-poppers Thunder Power are still trying to kick start their way into ARC Studios to record their debut album with producer A.J. Mogis. The band has booked the time, but are hoping to raise $2,000 via Kickstarter.com to help pay for the sessions. Once recorded, the band plans to release the album via Slumber Party Records. * No line-up announced yet, but Red Sky Festival is plugged into the worldwide web now. That site is redskyfestival.com. With a little more than 80 days until the festival starts, let's hope a lineup announcement is soon. * Dear Waiting Room Lounge, Thank you for the Cold Cave show July 31. Sincerely, every ‘80s-obsessed kid who insists he/she isn't really goth, but kinda is. (Me included.) P.S. More Matador bands please.