It's that week of the year when tour buses get parked and musicians head home for the holidays.
Now it's true, the Madison music scene never sleeps, and there are many fine local gigs to choose from this week. But if touring artists are your thing, you'll find the next seven days to be a challenge.
Unless, that is, you're willing to put aside your indie taste for a night and warm up to some live holiday music.
One famous musical group will come caroling this Friday, venturing out along the snowy trail of I90/94 from the Twin Cities. They're the Steeles, gospel singers from Minneapolis who are known worldwide.
The Steeles are five siblings who grew up singing in churches together in Gary, Ind. And they would certainly make my A-list of overachieving families.
The star of stars among them is sister Jevetta. She was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance of "I'm Calling You" from the 1987 movie Bagdad Café. She also co-wrote and starred in Two Queens, One Castle, a play based on her own experience being caught in an unusual love triangle. Her husband was having an affair with a man, and he'd become infected with HIV.
Eldest sibling J.D. co-wrote and produced 12 of the 14 songs on the Steeles' 1993 major-label debut, Heaven Help Us All. He's performed and recorded with Prince, George Clinton, Mavis Staples and Kim Carnes.
Jearlyn hosts a four-hour talk show every Sunday night on the Minneapolis radio station WCCO. She covers politics, education and self-improvement topics. Her show is carried in 30 markets across the country.
Fred has released several CDs on Target's Lifescapes label. His first release, Gospel, is Lifescapes' biggest-selling album to date.
And youngest sibling Billy is assistant director of the Sounds of Blackness, a Grammy-winning soul symphony that performs African American music of all kinds.
The Steeles' holiday concert has become a tradition in the Twin Cities. The annual gig is now in its 20th year. The all-acoustic show will feature songs off the group's two holiday albums, This Must Be Christmas and It's Christmas.
Don't fret, rockers. The annual BoDeans New Year's show is just around the corner. But this week, why not trade in your beer cups for a little eggnog? The Steeles are ready to fill the void of your silent night.