Monday, September 17, 2018

Ex Norwegian - No Sleep

Even while keeping a steady pace of recording a new album each year, Ex Norwegian shows no signs of losing its creative edge. No Sleep, which dropped a few months back, is the Miami-based band’s latest collection of cryptic lyrics set to catchy melodies. And it’s great to hear singer-guitarist Roger Houdaille and singer Michelle Grand joining forces again after Grand was absent throughout much of 2017’s Tekstet (Subtitled).

That Houdaille/Grand tandem is particularly impressive on high energy numbers like “Good Intentions” and “Right Again,” but also works on the more elegant “Seldom Sober,” which is augmented with a string arrangement. They also take turns being the sole lead vocalist; with Houdaille grabbing the spotlight on “Making Deals,” and Grand driving the garage rock fun of “Marquee 1970s.” Grand also brings an engaging carefree attitude to the breezy indie rock of “So Maybe Next Time.”

It’s hard to get a consistent message via Houdaille’s edgy lyrics. “Triggered Weeknd” opens with the inspired mantra of “Feel good deep inside, feel good worldwide, feel good to be alive” but later talks about “corrupting musical minds.” Then there’s this couplet from the acoustic-based “Alt Cool”: “traffic flowing into march/Clear blue sky seeking animal starch.” It might not make sense, but like all the songs on this latest effort from Ex Norwegian, the well crafted performances make it work.

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Friday, September 14, 2018

Slumgullion

Welcome to all the musicians gathering in Douglas Park this weekend for Riot Fest. The extensive and eclectic lineup includes Elvis Costello and The Imposters; Johnny Marr; Liz Phair; Beck; Blondie; Cypress Hill; Twin Peaks; Cat Power; Superchunk; Killing Joke; Matt and Kim; Flogging Molly; Alkaline Trio; Gary Numan; The Exploited; Jerry Lee Lewis; and Digable Planets. By the way, Look Now, the new album by Elvis Costello and The Imposters, will become available on October 12.

The recently reformed Off Broadway, led by Cliff Johnson, will be opening for Pablo Cruise of “A Place In The Sun” fame tomorrow night at The Arcada Theater in St. Charles.

WXRT air personality Terri Hemmert will join Phil Angotti, EXPO ’76, Live To Sing Choir, and other guests at Fitzgerald’s this Sunday, to celebrate the life of Val’s Halla record store owner Val Camilletti.

My nephew Joe Flamm, champion of this past season’s Top Chef on the Bravo Channel, will be one of the well-known chefs on hand for the Fulton Market Harvest Fest tomorrow and Sunday. Rick Bayless, and Stephanie Izard will also do some cooking there. The Fulton Market Harvest Fest also has a full slate of music acts scheduled, and several local restaurants will be represented.

Did I mention I’m his godfather? Joe Flamm will also be among the 250 chefs at this year’s Chicago Gourmet Rock The Fork event at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park on September 29. There will a 93XRT live music stage as well.

The Indie Press Fest takes place tomorrow from noon to 4:00 p.m. at publisher 826CHI’s storefront location at 1276 Milwaukee Avenue on Chicago’s north side. As noted in this week’s edition of Chicago free paper Red Eye, there will also be music and beverages.

New albums released this week include The Crossing by Alejandro Escovedo; True Meanings by Paul Weller, and Snow Bound by The Chills.

Tickets went on sale today for A Bowie Celebration with Mike Garrison, Earl Slick, Gerry Leonard, Carmine Rojas, Bernard Fowler, Corey Glover, Lee John, and other musicians at The Vic on February 22.

City Winery Chicago has just announced that Procol Harum will be performing at the venue next February 20 and 21.

Spertus Studios is hosting the Printer’s Row Art Fest tomorrow and Sunday in Chicago’s Printer’s Row area in the south Loop.

Chicago-based rock critic Jessica Hopper will be promoting her new memoir book Night Moves at some upcoming events in the area. She’ll join Megan Stielstra for a joint book release at the Women and Children bookstore on September 20, has an appearance at the Empty Bottle club on October 29, and will join José Olivarez at the Chicago Humanities Festival on November 4.

That special version of Sunshine Boys’ stellar debut album Blue Music in a limited-edition (250) blue vinyl package is now available via Cheap Kiss Records.

Minstrel Palooza Live
returns to Durty Nellie’s in Palatine on September 22 for another gathering of musicians related in various ways to the Minstrels Music Store in Niles. Scheduled acts include Gus Adonis; Kevin Lee and The Kings, Cracked Actor; Van Go; Todd Money Experience; Larry Mitchell and Dave Ulrich; Charlie Victor; and Tiger Bite. Admission is free, and the show starts at 1:00 p.m.

The Petty Kings will bring their tribute to Tom Petty to The Prairie Arts Center in Schaumburg next Saturday, September 22 as part of a double bill with the ‘70s FM Radio Rock band.

Saatchi Art will present The Other Art Fair on the weekend of September 28 – 30 at the Mana Contemporary gallery at 2233 S. Throop. The event promises visitors will be able to “meet and buy direct from 120 of the best emerging and independent artists in a unique experience.”

AntiFlag’s video of its cover of Buffalo Springfield's “For What It’s Worth” is being released in a partnership with Everytown, a movement to end gun violence. The veteran punk band will release its latest album American Reckoning on September 28.

Destinos, the 2nd Chicago International Latino Theater Festival, kicks off September 21 and runs through October 21 at various venues around town.

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Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Moon Darling – By The Light Of The Moon

Released earlier this year, the seven-song EP By The Light Of The Moon is an impressive second effort from Moon Darling. It follows Dreams, which introduced the Seattle-based band’s hypnotic and self-described “psych rock” in 2016. Lead vocalist-lead guitarist Michael Julian Escobar once again spearheads an adventure that touches on several genres without locking in on any of them.

Escobar and bandmates drummer Michelle Nuño, keyboards player Mathew Buckner, and bassist Jack Jay have a knack for immediately grabbing the listener’s attention with playful intros. “Soul Mine” kicks off with some familiar scary music before shifting to an energetic arrangement, and “Don’t Rise” opens with exotic middle-eastern instrumentation. “Right All The Time” drifts in on Buckner’s atmospheric keyboards but then morphs into an earthy blues number.

Escobar’s distinct vocals capture the emotional sentiment of the title track, which also features an irresistible groove. And on songs like “When The Morning Comes” and “Learned Amongst The Sky,” his fluid guitar playing evokes Robin Trower on Bridge Of Sighs. “She Said (The Key)” finds Moon Darling taking a lighter approach, but still allows Nuño to showcase her powerful drumming.

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Sunday, September 9, 2018

Sunday Papers

I wasn’t able to do a Slumgullion on Friday because my wife Pam and I were out making merry with some friends at the classy and fun River North Design District Walk. So here’s a Sunday look at what’g going on in the entertainment world.

Welcome to all the musicians who have traveled here for our annual World Music Festival Chicago, and to all the fans who’ve come to watch them perform. The festival opened this past Friday and will run through September 23 at various locations around the city.

And so this is what you put on your Christmas cards when you mail them this year. The U.S. commemorative stamp for John Lennon was unveiled on Friday at a ceremony in New York attended by Yoko Ono. The stamp uses the cover of Lennon’s Walls and Bridges LP.

Tickets are now on sale for Peter Asher and Jeremy Clyde at City Winery Chicago on November 6; Vanessa Davis Band at FitzGerald’s on November 16; Little Steven and The Disciples Of Soul at Copernicus Center on November 5; Nick Lowe at SPACE on December 29 and 30, and Nick Lowe’s New Year’s Eve bash with Los Straitjackets at SPACE.

Michael Nesmith and The First National Band have a gig coming up next Thursday, September 13 at the Old Town School of Folk Music.

Congratulations to Imogene Bebb, who does a fine job managing the former Hollies lead vocalist Allan Clarke Appreciation Society Facebook page, on embarking on a music career of her own. A video of her performing a demo version of her original song “(H)ours” with bassist Jim Preece can be seen on YouTube.

That special version of Sunshine Boys’ stellar debut Blue Music in a limited-edition (250) blue vinyl package is now available via Cheap Kiss Records.

Scott Ligon will host an All-Star Freakout next Wednesday, September 12, at FitzGerald’s. Four days later, on Sunday, September 16, WXRT air personality Terri Hemmert, Phil Angotti, EXPO ’76, Live To Sing Choir, and other guests will gather at Fitzgerald’s to celebrate the life of Val’s Halla record store owner Val Camilletti.

Paul McCartney’s latest album, Egypt Station is now available, and some critics are calling it his best effort in years. I haven't had a chance to listen to it yet, but “Come On To Me” was certainly a promising start.

Riot Fest returns to Douglas Park next Friday, September 14, and will run throughout the weekend. Chicago Innerview, a local publication that specializes in covering the city’s mega music festivals, has released a Know Before The Show guide to Riot Fest. A dapper looking Elvis Costello is on the cover, and there are 30 pages profiles on Beck; Blondie; Cypress Hill; Twin Peaks; Liz Phair; Cat Power; The Exploited and other participating acts. You can pick up a free copy at Reckless Records stores.

Minstrel Palooza Live returns to Durty Nellie’s in Palatine on September 22 for another gathering of musicians related in various way to the Minstrels Music Store in Niles. Scheduled acts include Gus Adonis; Kevin Lee and The Kings, Cracked Actor; Van Go; Todd Money Experience; Larry Mitchell and Dave Ulrich; Charlie Victor; and Tiger Bite. Admission is free, and the show starts at 1:00 p.m.

We’re just about a month away from Jodie Whittaker’s debut as the title character in the long-running British sci-fi series Doctor Who. She’ll be the first actress to take on the traditionally male role of a time lord capable of creating an entirely new appearance and personality via regeneration. Whittaker previously starred in the British series Broadchurch with David Tennant following his stint as The Doctor, so it seems likely the two of them occasionally discussed his time on Doctor Who. At any rate, best wishes to Whittaker on her new adventures through time and space.

I finally watched Twice Upon A Time, Peter Capaldi’s farewell episode of Doctor Who via a DVD from the Palatine library, and now intend to buy my own copy. It initially took a while for me to warm up to his version of The Doctor (particularly following Tennant and Matt Smith) but he fully embodied the character by the end of his tenure. On Twice Upon A Time, he’s funny, compassionate, clever, and very wise. Actress Pearl Mackie does a stellar job of helping with Capaldi’s sendoff, and it was nice to see the show give her character an imaginative and heartfelt exit.

Pearl Mackie will be one of the guests at Chicago TARDIS when it comes to the Westin Lombard Yorktown Center on the weekend of November 23 – 25.

In other convention news, ACE Comic Con Midwest comes to Navy Pier in Chicago on the weekend of October 12 – 14. Scheduled guests include Chris Evans, Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen, Lee Pace and Zazie Beetz. There will also be over 60 comic writers, artists, and creators, as well as several vendors.

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Thursday, September 6, 2018

A Blogger Gets His Comeuppance

It’s not surprising that Juliet, Naked combines rock and roll, clever dialogue, and romantic tension in a way that’s reminiscent of High Fidelity. Both films were based on novels written by Nick Hornby. Another point of interest is that director Jesse Peretz commissioned Robyn Hitchcock, Conor Oberst, M. Ward, and Ryan Adams to compose the songs the film’s fictional American alt rocker Tucker Crowe (Ethan Hawke) is said to have recorded in the 1990s. Juliet, Naked also pokes fun at self-important music bloggers who fawn over their heroes and occasionally get things wrong.

At the risk of sounding like Duncan, the British blogger played by the always funny Chris O’Dowd, here are a few observations on Crowe’s music. It was a bit disappointing that his songs, which we’re told marked him as a rising star before he mysteriously disappeared, aren’t featured that much in the film. With the exception of Oberst’s energetic “LAX,” the Hawke-sung originals don’t drive the action as well as gems by The Three O’Clock (“Sorry”) and Squeeze (“Goodbye Girl”). The Three O’Clock and Squeeze aren’t included on the soundtrack album, but Hawke’s heartfelt take on The Kinks’ “Waterloo Sunset” is.

Fortunately, the plot is a fun series of twists and turns that finds Duncan’s girlfriend Annie (Rose Byrne) somehow striking up an online friendship with Crowe after he sees her negative comments about him on Duncan’s blog. Both feel they’ve wasted years of their lives—Crowe on drugs and alcohol and Annie on playing second fiddle to Duncan’s fanboy obsession with Crowe. Eventually, Crowe travels to the UK, and finds Annie even more appealing after meeting her in person. Meanwhile, Duncan has been having an affair with a co-worker, and is flabbergasted to discover Annie romantically involved with the musician he’s idolized for decades.

Congrats all around to Hornby, Peretz, Hawke, O’Dowd, and Byrne for making this tale of getting one’s life back on track so funny and enjoyable.

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Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Incoming

A few months back, the legendary local power pop band Frisbie celebrated its 20th Anniversary with special guests at the Martyrs’ club on Lincoln Avenue. They have a new gig coming up with Eric Chial from The Bon Mots and Decoy Prayer Meeting at Montrose Saloon on October 21. Montrose Saloon, located at 2933 W. Montrose, has been building a loyal following due to musician and self-described “talent buyer/sound wrangler” Chial lining up some of Chicago’s best music acts.

The Handcuffs will be at Montrose Saloon on December 8, along with a special performance by singer-guitarist Mike Skill from The Romantics with his new side project ’67 Riot. Brad Elvis, who plays drums with The Handcuffs and The Romantics, will be part of the Mike Skill and ’67 Riot performance. The evening kicks off at 9:00 p.m. with an acoustic set by Mike Coy.

The September issue of the Illinois Entertainer has a profile of WXRT DJ Lin Brehmer in which he explains that he’s able to enjoy late-night concerts and still do his early-morning shift thanks to his afternoon naps. Having talked to Brehmer on a few occasions, I can attest to IE media columnist Rick Kaempfer’s assessment that the DJ always treat fans as if he was their “best friend in the whole world.” The profile also offers some fascinating insight on how Brehmer creates his weekly Lin’s Bin commentary, and I’m still hoping he’ll put out a collection of those enjoyable segments, either in book or audio form.

That same issue of the Illinois Entertainer mentions a recently restored version of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s 1972 film Imagine that’s due to hit theaters in the near future. I.E. reports that Imagine has an audio remix by Grammy Award winning engineer Paul Hicks. By the way, Hicks is the son of original and still-with-the-band Hollies guitarist/harmony vocalist Tony Hicks.

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Friday, August 31, 2018

Slumgullion

Photo from The Flat Five Facebook page.

The Flat Five, whose 2016 debut It’s A World Of Love and Hope drew widespread critical acclaim, have sold out their gig at FitzGerald’s in Berwyn tomorrow night. The band members have years of experience in various music genres, and for this project they focus on glorious harmonies and breezy, retro arrangements.

Two of those Flat Five musicians, Casey McDonough and Scott Ligon, and will be joining WXRT air personality Terri Hemmert, Phil Angotti, EXPO ’76, Live To Sing Choir, and other guests at Fitzgerald’s on September 16 for a celebration of Val’s Halla record store owner Val, who passed away earlier thus summer. On the September 12, Scott Ligon will host an All-Star Freakout, at FitzGerald’s.

Zany garage rockers The Woggles have a gig tomorrow night at Reggie’s on State Street, just south of downtown.

Paul McCartney will release his latest album, Egypt Station, next Friday. That’s the same day we’ll see These Days from Paul Carrack; Raise Vibration from Lenny Kravitz; and In The Blue Light from Paul Simon. A week after that will bring new efforts from The Chills; Alejandro Escovedo; and Paul Weller.

This year’s Chicago Fringe Festival kicked off yesterday and will run through Monday, September 3 in various locations in the Jefferson Park neighborhood on Chicago’s northwest side. Over 24 shows are scheduled to take place.

It will be a busy weekend in Jefferson Park, as the annual Polonia Festival takes place just outside the Copernicus Theatre, which is a quick walk from the Jefferson Park Metra/CTA station. Tributosaurus will wrap up the festival by covering Eric Clapton on Monday night.

Tributosaurus will become Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young on September 5 at Martyrs.

Riot Fest returns to Chicago in two weeks, bringing Beck; Elvis Costello And The Imposters; Blondie; Cypress Hill; Twin Peaks; Liz Phair; Cat Power; The Exploited; and countless other acts to Douglas Park September 14 through 16.

I just bought a copy of noted artist/writer Bill Morrison’s graphic novel treatment of The Beatles’ animated movie Yellow Submarine. Morrison is president of the National Cartoonists Society and was recently named editor of Mad Magazine. Published by Titan Comics, this colorful and faithful version celebrates the 50th anniversary of Yellow Submarine’s release.

The Petty Kings will bring their tribute to Tom Petty to The Prairie Arts Center in Schaumburg on Saturday, September 22 as part of a double bill with the ‘70s FM Radio Rock band. I’ve seen The Smithereens, American English, and The Neverly Brothers at the Prairie Arts Center, and it’s a classy venue.

City Winery Chicago recently announced it will host A John Lennon Birthday Retrospective at 1:00 p.m. on October 7.

The Bookends, the 1960s-inspired garage rock duo of bassist-vocalist Sharon Lee and guitarist-vocalist Karen Lynn, have just released their debut album Far Away But Around. It’s available on the Dead Pulse website.

Todd Rundgren will join forces with the Chicago Sinfonietta for a Night Of Harmony II on September 8 at House Of Blues. The concert is a benefit for Rundgren’s Spirit Of Harmony Foundation, which helps provide music education for youths.

The Kaleidoscope Eye 2.0 Festival of Modern Psychedelia is coming to Live Wire on Milwaukee Avenue on September 8. The first annual Kaleidoscope Eye at this same venue last year was a mind-bending success.

Minstrel Palooza Live returns to Durty Nellie’s in Palatine on September 22 for another gathering of musicians related in various way to the Minstrels Music Store in Niles. Scheduled acts include Gus Adonis; Kevin Lee and The Kings, Cracked Actor; Van Go; Todd Money Experience; Larry Mitchell and Dave Ulrich; Charlie Victor; and Tiger Bite. Admission is free, and the show starts at 1:00 p.m.

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Friday, August 24, 2018

Slumgullion

Major newspapers are carrying a story about a London-based Rolling Stones fan who has a acquired a long-lost recording of Mick Jagger and Carly Simon singing together on a ballad believed to be named “Fragile.” Still, I’m more interested in a thread on the Hollies Appreciation Facebook Area page by some of its most frequent contributors. First, Knut Skyberg shared a photo and track list for an upcoming Hollies tribute album called Wishyouawish on the Australian indie label Teensville.

Anthony Edward Marsden noted that he had never heard of one of the songs, “Coming From The Ground.” According to Cameron Burns, Hollies founding members Allan Clarke and Graham Nash wrote the song for the Swedish band The Lee Kings (no relation to Chicago’s Kevin Lee and The Kings) back in the 1960s. Clarke and Nash, along with fellow Hollies Tony Hicks and Bobby Elliot are rumored to have joined in on the recording. I’ll be following the Hollies Appreciation Facebook Area as well as Teensville Records pages to learn more about Wishyouawish. So far, I don’t see a release date.

The Seventh Annual Chicago Women’s Funny Festival kicked off yesterday and is scheduled to keep males and females laughing through Sunday at Stage773 at 1225 W. Belmont. The various shows will include standup, sketch, improv, and musical comedy.

The I AM Art and Music Festival will mark its 10th anniversary of spotlighting local talent tomorrow from 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. at The House Of Blues in downtown Chicago. There will be performances by Thomas Nicholas Band, Bodega, Gorilla Social, Oakmen, Sin Anestesia, Straight Skinny, Weird Beard and Wilde.

Congratulations to the organizers of last weekend’s YippieFest on successfully carrying out their second annual celebration of theatre, comedy, music, and performance art at The Prop Thtr. Modeled after the late Mary-Arrchie Theatre’s long-running Abbie Hoffman Died For Our Sins Festival, YippieFest had a full house when I dropped by on Saturday night. Abbie vets Famous In The Future offered another set of skits and songs, and was particularly impressive on its clever and biting opening political satire. Carla Hayden and James Moeller of Black Forest Theatre created a hypnotic set of alt rock, with assistance from violinist Nura A. Standup comedian Trevor Gertonson had some funny observations about growing up as a goth rocker, horror movies, and how to handle dangerous pets; and The Agency Theatre Collective hosted a freewheeling open mic set. It was nice to see this counter-culture tradition will live on.

Skokie’s Backyard Bash kicked off today and will feature performances by Sister Hazel, Foghat, and Tributosaurus as the weekend progresses.

I thoroughly enjoyed Mark Olsen’s Los Angeles Times article (also carried in the Chicago Tribune earlier this week) about the new film Juliet, Naked. Arriving in theatres today, Juliet Naked is a rock and roll comedy based on the novel of that name by Nick Hornsby. Olsen’s fascinating and extensively researched piece centered on the various musicians who were enlisted to create new music that sounds like it sprang from the alternative rock of the 1990s. There’s a quote from Robyn Hitchcock that’s one of the best descriptions of the creative process I’ve ever heard. Juliet, Naked got three-star reviews in the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune today.

Wizard World Chicago Comic Con
has returned to the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont and runs through Sunday. Celebrity guests include David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson from The X-Files; Nichelle Nichols from Star Trek; James Marsters from Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Torchwood, and Smallville; Michael Rooker and Pom Klementieff from the Guardians Of The Galaxy franchise; Ernie Hudson from Ghostbusters; and several cast members from Outlander.

The 33rd Annual Bucktown Arts Fest takes place 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. tomorrow and Sunday at 2200 N. Oakley in Chicago.

This year’s Chicago Fringe Festival will take place over the weekend of August 30 through September 3 in various locations in the Jefferson Park neighborhood on Chicago’s northwest side. Over 24 shows are scheduled to take place.

Chicago Filmmakers will present the Chicago Premiere of director Casey Puccini’s satirical look at filming an indie movie I Don’t Care tomorrow night. The cast includes Sasha Gioppo, Bryn Packard, Kevin Stangler, Christine Vrem-Yostie, Cameron Worden, Brian Wiebe, and Taylor Wood.

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Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Welcome To My World

Photo from the Wizard World Comic Con Chicago

Wizard World Chicago opens tomorrow at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont and will cast its magical spell through Sunday. The annual event brings together self-professed nerds, sci-fi devotees, graphic novels readers, art lovers, TV fans, and anyone who embraces the more adventurous paths of modern culture. Prices for a four-day pass and single day tickets vary, so check out the website for schedule and ticket information.

This year’s celebrity guests include David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson from The X-Files; Nichelle Nichols from the very first Star Trek; James Marsters from Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Torchwood, and Smallville; Michael Rooker and Pom Klementieff from the Guardians Of The Galaxy franchise; and Ernie Hudson from Ghostbusters. Several cast members from the Outlander TV series will be on hand for the opening tomorrow. It’s disappointing there are no Doctor Who cast members this year, but there were a number of them in 2017.

Wizard World Chicago also offers aisle after aisle of corporate and independent vendors selling comic books, t shirts, action figures, and other fantasy/sci-fi related artifacts. In the huge marketplace dubbed Artists Alley, up-and-coming artists and writers compete for attention. There’s also a fun, masquerade atmosphere as people dress up in superhero or villain costumes, and gladly pose for photos. Where else are you going to see Batman and Princess Leia sipping 32-oz. Cokes together, or Captain Jack Sparrow and Harry Potter walking side by side.

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Friday, August 17, 2018

Slumgullion

As I write this, the second annual YippieFest is underway at the Prop Thtr. Carrying on the tie-dyed tradition of the late Mary-Arrchie Theatre’s long-running Abbie Hoffman Died For Our Sins festival, this counter-culture bash will feature theatre, live music, short films, comedy, and other forms of performance art during its Friday through Sunday run. Famous In The Future, the skit and song comedy group that performed at every single Abbie Fest, are leading the way, and will be unveiling a brand new revue at 8:30 p.m. tomorrow night. (Full disclosure: I was a member of Famous In The Future for several years.) Other Abbie vets who’ll be on hand include Rush Pearson, Citizens Relief, Black Forest Theatre, Trained Monkey Productions, DB Theatre, and whitewolfsonicprincess. The schedule is available on the official YippieFest website; Prop Thtr is located at 3502 N. Elston.

Pearl Jam makes a triumphant return to Wrigley Field tomorrow night at 7:00 p.m. The Chicago Cubs currently have the best record in the National League, so Eddie Vedder, Pearl Jam lead vocalist and one of the biggest Cubs fans in rock and roll, should be in good spirits.

Wizard World Chicago Comic Con returns to the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont August next Thursday through Sunday, August 23 - 26. Celebrity guests include David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson from The X-Files; Nichelle Nichols from Star Trek; James Marsters from Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Torchwood, and Smallville; Michael Rooker and Pom Klementieff from the Guardians Of The Galaxy franchise; Ernie Hudson from Ghostbusters; and several cast members from Outlander.

Tickets went on sale today for Black Uhuru and Onesty at Reggie’s Rock Club on September 22; Nicki Bluhm and Gil Landry at Lincoln Hall on November 11; Lindsey Buckingham at Athenaeum Theatre on October 17; Echo and The Bunnymen at The Vic on November 24; and Lemon Twigs at Metro on January 25.

The official website for Shoes is offering assistance for anyone who’s had trouble ordering the power pop band’s new Black Vinyl Shoes Anthology 1973 – 1978 3-CD set on Amazon. In order to overcome a few Amazon glitches, go directly to this page.

Death Cab For Cutie’s latest album Thank You For Today came out today. The happy-go-lucky band will perform at the Auditorium on October 7.

The 210 Live club in Highwood is holding a JB Ritchie Benefit Concert this Sunday.

City Winery Chicago recently announced it will host A John Lennon Birthday Retrospective at 1:00 p.m. on October 7. Other shows coming up at that venue include Justin Hayward from The Moody Blues on August 26; The Lotus Kings doing a tribute to Santana on August 27; Great Moments In Vinyl offering The Jimi Hendrix Experience on September 11; and Dar Williams with Lucy Wainwright Roche on September 16.

There will be a special advance screening of David Schalliol’s documentary The Area at The Gene Siskel Film Center on August 23 as part of the 24th Annual Black Harvest Film Festival. The Area concerns activist Deborah Payne’s efforts to stop a freight company from displacing hundreds of families on Chicago’s south side. It will return for a regular run from September 14 – 27 at Gene Siskel Center.

This year’s Chicago Fringe Festival will take place over the weekend of August 30 through September 3 in various locations in the Jefferson Park neighborhood on Chicago’s northwest side. Over 24 shows are scheduled to take place.

Chicago Filmmakers will present the Chicago Premiere of director Casey Puccini’s satirical look at filming an indie movie I Don’t Care on August 25. The cast includes Sasha Gioppo, Bryn Packard, Kevin Stangler, Christine Vrem-Yostie, Cameron Worden, Brian Wiebe, and Taylor Wood. Mr. Packard was a member of the Chicago-based skit comedy group Famous In The Future some years back.

Fans of the late Tom Petty can enter a contest on the Omaze site to attend a listening party with his band The Heartbreakers at The Clubhouse, a secret recording and rehearsing location. Money raised will support The Midnight Mission, a charitable organization that helps homeless people in the Los Angeles area. The more money you donate, the better your chances of winning.

Fans in Chicago can also honor the singer-guitarist’s legacy at Flirting With Time - A Tom Petty Tribute at The Tonic Room on August 25. The event will feature Ryan Joseph Anderson, Dan Ingrenthron, Mike Holtz, Brian Morrisey, Jeremy Kay and special guests.

The Bookends, the 1960s-inspired garage rock duo of bassist-vocalist Sharon Lee and guitarist-vocalist Karen Lynn, have just released their debut album Far Away But Around. It’s available on the Dead Pulse website

Tributosaurus, one of Chicago most successful and ambitious tribute acts, will become AC/DC on Sunday August 26 at Skokie’s Backlot Bash, take on Eric Clapton at 7:30 p.m. on September 3 at Taste Of Polonia in Jefferson Park; and honor Crosby, Stills. Nash and Young at Wire in Berwyn on September 8.

The 60th Annual Chicago Air and Water Show takes place tomorrow and Sunday on the lakefront at North Avenue Beach. I know this isn’t rock and roll related, but I’ve had a lifetime fascination with planes since childhood, so I’ll be waiting for my favorite one—the P-51 Mustang to fly past tomorrow.

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Friday, August 10, 2018

Slumgullion

Photo from the Smashing Pumpkins Facebook page.

The Smashing Pumpkins will be playing to a hometown crowd next Monday and Tuesday at the United Center. Their opening act is the Emily Haines-led synth rock band Metric, so it’s going to be a potent double bill.

Step right up! Welcome to everyone who’s come to town for The Fest For Beatles Fans – Chicago this weekend at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in Rosemont. The annual event kicked off this evening and will run through late Sunday night. Be sure to check out Chicago-based acts Ellis Clark and (possibly) Ary Paloma Jeebie; Jay Goeppner; and Phil Angotti and Friends at The Apple Jam Stage on the second floor. For a more extensive look at Fest For Beatles Fans - Chicago, see my post this past Wednesday.

Tickets went on sale today for the John Butler Trio at the Chicago Theatre on November 29; Rosanne Cash and John Leventhal at The Old Town School Of Music on November 9; Stanley Clarke at SPACE on November 6; Peter, Bjorn and John at Lincoln Hall on December 5; and Tom Rush at SPACE on November 18.

Emmylou Harris, Jackson Browne, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Shawn Colvin, Lila Downs, Steve Earle and Graham Nash will embark on The Lantern Tour together starting October 23 at the City Winery in Nashville, TN. Other stops include Washington, D.C., Collingswood, Boston, and New York. The series of acoustic concerts will benefit the Women’s Refugee Commission, which advocates on behalf of migrant and refugee families. No word yet on whether this will be coming to Chicago.

So I was a bit premature in stating here earlier that the Chicago-based trio Sunshine Boys have fully recovered from their various physical ailments. According to a recent email put out by the band, drummer Freda Love Smith is still recuperating from back surgery and isn’t quite ready to rejoin her mates. On a more cheerful note, the email announced the upcoming release of the Sunshine Boys’ stellar debut Blue Music in a limited-edition (250) blue vinyl package that includes lyrics and photos. The blue vinyl Blue Music will be available at “a couple of record stores picked out for celebratory performances.” Hopefully, we'll hear more on that soon.

The Rolling Stones are putting together a collection of vintage songs by their favorite blues artists, titled Confessin The Blues. Available as a two-CD set; a Volume 1 and Volume 2 LP set, or a special 5x 10 vinyl bookpack + six art card prints, Confessin The Blues will feature Chuck Berry, B.B. King, Howlin’ Wolf, John Lee Hooker, Elmore James, and Muddy Waters. Stones guitarist Ron Wood created the art for the cover. It will be released on November 9 but is available for pre-order on the Rolling Stones official store.

There will be a special advance screening of David Schalliol’s documentary The Area at The Gene Siskel Film Center on August 23 as part of the 24th Annual Black Harvest Film Festival. The film concerns activist Deborah Payne’s efforts to stop a freight company from displacing hundreds of families on Chicago’s south side. It will return for a regular run from September 14 – 27 at Gene Siskel Center.

This year’s Chicago Fringe Festival will take place over the weekend of August 30 through September 3 in various locations in the Jefferson Park neighborhood on Chicago’s northwest side.

Jay Goeppner and his Backdated Band will be performing a John Lennon Tribute on August 14 at the 210 Live club in Highwood. 210 also has a JB Ritchie Benefit concert coming up on August 19

Chicago Filmmakers will present the Chicago Premiere of director Casey Puccini’s satirical look at filming an indie movie I Don’t Care on August 25. The cast includes Sasha Gioppo, Bryn Packard, Kevin Stangler, Christine Vrem-Yostie, Cameron Worden, Brian Wiebe, and Taylor Wood. Mr. Packard was a member of the Chicago-based skit comedy group Famous In The Future some years back. Chicago Filmakers is located at 5720 N. Ridge Avenue in Chicago.

Speaking of Famous In The Future, (full disclosure: I was a member of this group for 20 years) they’ll be hosting their second annual YippieFest next weekend at the Prop Thtr on Chicago’s north side. I’ve been calling this the lovechild of the Abbie Hoffman Died For Our Sins festival that ran for 30 years at Mary-Arrchie Theatre, because Famous In The Future were Abbie Fest veterans. Look for a similar mix of theater, standup comedy, film, and live music.

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Thursday, August 9, 2018

Incoming

Fans of the late Tom Petty can enter a contest on the Omaze site to attend a listening party with his band The Heartbreakers at The Clubhouse, a secret recording and rehearsing location. Money raised will support The Midnight Mission, a charitable organization that helps homeless people in the Los Angeles area. The more money you donate, the better your chances of winning.

Fans in Chicago can also honor the singer-guitarist’s legacy at Flirting With Time - A Tom Petty Tribute at The Tonic Room on August 25. The event will feature Ryan Joseph Anderson, Dan Ingrenthron, Mike Holtz, Brian Morrisey, Jeremy Kay and special guests.

The New Duncan Imperials will be bringing their straw hats, off kilter sense of humor, and The Total Pro horns with them for their 10:00 p.m. gig tomorrow night at FitzGerald’s in Berwyn. According to a video posted on Facebook, the band has a new EP with an undetermined number of songs on it coming out soon.

Tomorrow is the release date for Diamond Boy from Enuff Z’nuff, and Wild! Wild! Wild! from Robbie Fulks and Linda Gail Lewis.

Over The Rhine, the alt rock/Americana band led by Linford Detweiler and Karin Bergquist will be at City Winery next Sunday.

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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

I’ll Take A Ride To See What I Will Find There

The 42nd Annual Fest For Beatles Fans - Chicago takes place at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in suburban Rosemont this weekend, August 10–12. The event presents musicians, authors, artists, photographers, and music biz people who have some connection to to the most famous band in rock history. Many are accessible to fans in the general sense of watching them being interviewed in the Grand Ballroom, and on in face-to-face conversations at the autograph tables. It’s not unusual to spot these famous people walking through the crowd or chatting with fans.

There will be live performances in the Grand Ballroom by Peter and Jeremy—Peter Asher from Peter and Gordon and Jeremy Clyde from Chad and Jeremy; Roy Orbison Jr. and his band; Billy J. Kramer; Beatles tribute band Liverpool; The Weeklings; and Sandalwood Sitar. This year’s guest list also includes producer Jack Douglas; Abbey Road engineer Geoff Emerick; and Leslie Cavendish, who served as The Beatles’ hairdresser for eight years.

Terri Hemmert, mid-morning air personality and Breakfast With The Beatles host at radio station WXRT, will notch another year in her decades-long role of The Fest’s MC in Chicago. The Apple Jam Stage, a fairly new and very welcome addition to The Fest, will offer live performances on the second floor of The Hyatt. I would highly recommend checking out the sets by Ellis Clark and Ary Paloma Jeebie; Jay Goeppner; Phil Angotti and Friends; and Scott Erickson.

The Fest For Beatles Fans has a few marketplace areas with loads of music-related memorabilia. The marketplace is also the place to meet noted Beatles authors like Bruce Spizer, Vivek Tiwary, Jude S. Kessler, and Kit O’Toole. Tiwary will also be giving a presentation in The A/bbey Video Ballroom about the Fifth Beatle TV event he’s creating with Bravo and Sonar Entertainment, as well his Jagged Little Pill stage show. Attendees can join in the fun by competing in Beatles sound-alike concerts and an art competition, and you’re welcome to join the musicians and singers who hang out for hours around the stairs in the lower level.

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Friday, August 3, 2018

Slumgullion

Photo from the Lollapalooza Facebook page.

Let me extend a Broken Hearted Toy welcome to everyone who’s in Chicago for the annual Lollapalooza festival in Grant Park. I didn’t see any copies of Innerview at the downtown Reckless Records this time around. The indie publication usually puts out an extensive guide to the festival. WXRT 93.1FM  will have live coverage and interviews from throughout the weekend. If you happen to be in town and want to drop by, forget it. Lollapalooza has been sold out for months.

The Baseball Project, a national pastime related band composed of music veterans, including Scott McCaughey from The Minus Five and Young Fresh Fellows; Mike Mills and Peter Buck from R.E.M.; Steve Wynn from The Dream Syndicate; and Linda Pitmon from The Miracle 3, will be performing at SPACE in Evanston tomorrow night. Sunshine Boys, back in action after some medical issues kept them sidelined for awhile, are the opening act. By the way, “Only A Million Miles,” from Sunshine Boys’ debut Blue Music, remains a serious contender for best song of 2018.

Tickets went on sale today for Courtney Barnett and Waxahatchie at The Riviera Theatre on October 9, and for Lydia Loveless at SPACE on September 24.

The 24th Annual Black Harvest Film Festival kicks off tomorrow at the Gene Siskel Film Center and will run through August 29.

The Bookends, the 1960s-inspired garage rock duo of bassist-vocalist Sharon Lee and guitarist-vocalist Karen Lynn, have just released their debut album Far Away But Around. It’s available on the Dead Pulse website.

The unpredictable and always fun New Duncan Imperials have a rare live gig next Friday, August 10 at FitzGerald’s in Berwyn.

Shemekia Copeland’s new album America’s Child, which long-time Chicago Tribune music critic Howard Reich praised in a full-length article this past Wednesday, is now available. Reich noted that Copeland was “hellbent on sending a message,” particularly on the track “Ain’t Got Time For Hate.”

Over The Rhine, the alt rock/Americana band led by Linford Detweiler and Karin Bergquist, is based in Ohio but travels to Chicago on a regular basis. They’ll be at City Winery next Sunday, August 14. Moody Blues vocalist Justin Hayward will be at City Winery on August 26, and on August 27, The Lotus Kings will perform their Santana Tribute.

Enuff Z’nuff will release their new album Diamond Boy on August 10; Robbie Fulks and Linda Gail Lewis will release Wild! Wild! Wild! on August 10; and Death Cab For Cutie will drop Thank You For Today on August 17.

Todd Rundgren will join forces with the Chicago Sinfonietta for A Night Of Harmony II on September 8 at House Of Blues. The concert is a benefit for Rundgren’s Spirit Of Harmony Foundation, which helps provide music education for youths.

Those of us who were at Little Steven’s Underground Garage showcase at Durty Nellie’s in Palatine a number of years ago still remember how much fun it was to watch the garage rock band The Woggles perform. (The Zombies, Mooney Suzuki, The Gore Gore Girls, and Catfish Haven were also on that bill.) The Woggles will be at Reggies on State Street on September 1, along with Barrence Whitfield and The Savages and Baby Money and The Down Payments.

Jay Goeppner and his Backdated Band will be performing a John Lennon Tribute on August 14 at the 210 Live club in Highwood. 210 also has a JB Ritchie Benefit concert coming up on August 19.

Toots And The Maytals have a gig coming up at Thalia Hall next Wednesday, August 8.

The Fest For Beatles Fans returns to the Chicago area next weekend, at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in Rosemont. Guests include Peter Asher of Peter and Gordon and Jeremy Clyde of Chad and Jeremy; Roy Orbison, Jr.; Billy J. Kramer; producer Jack Douglas, Beatles hairdresser Leslie Cavebdish, and Beatles engineer Geoff Emerick. WXRT DJ Terri Hemmert will once again serves as Master Of Ceremonies. The Weeklings; Liverpool; Phil Angotti and Friends; and Scott Erickson will be performing a The Fest.

Looking ahead, Wizard World Chicago Comic Con will be at the Donald Stephens Center in Rosemont August 23 - 26, and YippieFest, a celebration of theatre, stand-up comedy, performance art, film, and live music will mark its second year at Prop Thtr on the weekend of August 17-19.

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Friday, July 27, 2018

Slumgullion

Photo from Mick Jagger’s Facebook page.

Happy Birthday to Mick Jagger, truly one of the iconic figures in rock and roll. I still have fond memories of seeing the Exhibitionism exhibit that came to Navy Pier in Chicago a few years back, and of course, all the great songs Mick and his mates in the Rolling Stones have given us over the decades. Rock on, Mick!

The powerful triple bill of Jeff Beck, Paul Rogers, and Ann Wilson will perform this Sunday night at the Huntington Pavilion on Chicago’s lakefront.

There will be a tribute to Val Camillletti this Sunday at Val’s Halla Records, the store she ran in Oak Park for several years. Camilletti passed away earlier this week at the age of 78. Ary Paloma Jeebie of The Amazing Heebie Jeebies and Ellis Clark and The Big Parade will do in-store performances, and it’s more than likely customers will share their favorite memories. Val’s Halla was a long-time destination for avid vinyl collectors, and the store always had a full day of entertainment on the annual Record Store Day.

Local psychedelic masters Secret Colours will at Reggies this Sunday night along with Los Angeles-based, self-described “cinematic psychedelic western pioneers” SPINDRIFT. The mind bending music starts at 7:00 p.m.

Tickets went on sale today for a special screening of Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas - 25 Years that will also feature a live performance by the Chicago Philharmonic. The event takes place on Halloween night at the Auditorium Theatre in downtown Chicago.

Lollapalooza returns to Chicago next Thursday through Sunday, and the August edition of Chicago-based monthly New City has a feature article titled Taking Back Guyville - A Feminist Guide To Lollapalooza. It includes profiles on The Regrettes, St. Vincent, Chvrches, Lizzo, Larkin Poe, Portugal. The Man, and Alex Lahey.

The same issue also has the annual Music 45 - Who Keeps Chicago In Tune listing. Mavis Staples came in at number one, followed by Chicago Symphony Orchestra Conductor Richard Muti at second, and Chance The Rapper at third. Other local music acts on the list are Jeff Tweedy, Common, Buddy Guy, Kurt Elling, Tortoise, Smashing Pumplins, Robbie Fulks, Twin Peaks, British transplant Jon Langford, and the off-kilter marching band Mucca Pazza.

It was nice to see a feature story on local artist/curator/journalist Robin Dluzen in the August New City. Dluzen was the editor of the Kathryn Born run Chicago Art Machine flight of online publications. I contributed a number of articles to Chicago Art Machine.

With Lollapalooza just around the corner, it was interesting to read journalist Sam Richards’ piece in the August issue of Uncut magazine about what’s believed to be the first rock festival in England. Barbecue 67, held on May 29, 1967, at the Tulip Bulb Auction Hall in Spalding, featured performances by Jim Hendrix, Pink Floyd, and Cream. That same issue has interviews with Graham Nash and Davies, as well as an extensive cover story on Prince.

Musician Adam Marsland has created a small label called Karma Frog that specializes in power pop and garage rock. The label recently released a new CD by Mod Hippie, a group that includes D.J. Bonebrake from X on drums and David Marks of the Beach Boys on lead guitar.

Uncommon Ground’s 1401 W. Devon location (they also have one on Clark Street) celebrated its 10th anniversary of being the first certified organic rooftop farm in the country this past Thursday.

Another Brick In The Wall, an opera based on Pink Floyd's classic album The Wall, has opened in Cincinnati. According to a blurb in this past Tuesday's Chicago Tribune, Pierre Dufour's take on the fictional rock singer Pink will run through July 31.

The Newberry Library on Chicago's near north side is currently hosting a book sale that runs through this Sunday. The Newberry is located at 60 W. Walton Street.

CatVideoFest makes a triumphant return to Music Box Theatre in Chicago on September 9; with screenings at noon and 2:30 p.m.

The current issue of Streetwise, a publication dedicated to helping homeless people get back on track, has a calendar section that lists upcoming events like the Chicago Poetry Block Party this Saturday at Austin Town Hal and the Women And Children First bookstore's annual used book sale going on tomorrow and Sunday at 5233 N. Clark.

The Handcuffs and The Imperial Sound will share a double bill this coming Monday at Martyrs' on Lincoln Avenue. The early 8:00 p.m. starting time is due to it being a school night.

Congratulations to Young Jean Lee on being the first Asian-American woman playwright to have a production on Broadway. Her Straight White Men recently opened there.

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Friday, July 20, 2018

Slumgullion

Photo from the Pitchfork Music Festival Facebook page.

Welcome to everyone who’s in town for Pitchfork. The annual celebration of indie rock, hip hop and other out-of-the-mainstream genres started today, and runs through Sunday in Union Park. The Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times, along with the city’s weekly free papers, The Reader (with its traditional collectable cover) and Redeye, all have extensive Pitchfork coverage in their latest issues.

Power pop fans who show up at FitzGerald’s in Berwyn tomorrow night are in for a fascinating double bill as Cliff Johnson and The Raine open the evening, and Johnson and the original members of Off Broadway close it. The Raine (John D. Kolonel, Dave Sebastian, Bill Bickel, and Bill Kowalski) have done a great job of backing Johnson as he performs Off Broadway tunes, but it’s also a safe bet that longtime fans will love to see the original Off Broadway back on stage again.

Alt rock band whitewolfsonicprincess will be at The Store tomorrow night with The Darkroom Men and Flapunco.

ArtFest Michigan Avenue opened today in the shadow of the Tribune Tower and will run through Sunday.

Tickets went on sale today for Michael Nesmith and The First National Bank Band at The Old Town School of Folk Music on September 13; KT Tunstall at Park West on November 1; and Violent Femmes at The Vic on November 4.

Shows coming up next Friday, July 27 include My Bloody Valentine at The Riviera Theatre; Mavis Staples at the at Canal Shore Golf Club in Evanston; and Peter Himmelman at SPACE in Evanston. On Sunday. July 29, Jeff Beck, Paul Rogers, and Ann Wilson will perform at the Huntington Pavilion on Chicago’s lakefront.

A special tour edition of Ann Wilson’s upcoming solo album Immortal—a collection of cover material by some of her favorite artists—is now available for a digital download. Two of the tracks were recorded live at The Arcada Theatre in St. Charles, IL. The full album comes out in September.

In other album news, Paul Collins, a member of the highly influential trio The Nerves, and the founder of the dynamic power pop outfit The Paul Collins Beat, has been notching positive reviews for his latest, Out Of My Head.

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Tributosaurus Becomes Fundraiers

It’s always fun catching a Tributosaurus show, but its tribute to The Who this Thursday night at Martyrs’ has an added significance. The club, located on Lincoln Avenue a few blocks south of Irving Park, has been hit with a financial crisis due to what the owners call an “unexpected collapse of an adjoining business and long-time tenant.” Proceeds from Thursday’s show will help Martyrs’ continue to book some of Chicago’s best local talent. Frisbie (founding member Steve Frisbie will be part of the Tributosaurus show), The Handcuffs, Phil Angotti, Ellis Clark, The Amazing Heeby Jeebies; Tomorrow The Moon, The Sunshine Boys, and Sons Of The Silent Age are some of the acts that have become regulars.

It’s also been the home of an annual George Harrison Birthday Bash, Halloween weekend tribute shows, and a regularly scheduled rockabilly showcase. WXRT has done live broadcasts with major recording artists like The Pretenders at Martyrs’, and as a Facebook post promoting the upcoming Tributosaurus gig points out, Pete Townshend and John Entwistle performed there. The list of international acts that have rocked the Martyrs’ stage also includes Graham Parker, Spoon, Pat DiNizio and Jim Bajak from The Smithereens, Beck, Bob Mould, Ian Hunter, Imelda May, and The Yardbirds. Martyrs says fans should stay tuned for online and silent auctions. As someone who’s enjoyed numerous shows at the club, I’m wishing them the best of luck.

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Monday, July 16, 2018

Three Hour Tour - You Never Know

Three Hour Tour’s latest release finds the Champaign, IL band once again cruising through guitar-based power pop songs. Lead vocalist/lead guitarist/bassist Darren Cooper is joined by rhythm guitarist/backup vocalist Kent Whitesell, and drummer Brad Elvis, along with guest appearances from drummers Terry Wathen and John L. Richardson. Adam Schmitt, who mastered the album, plays keyboards on one of the tracks.

Cooper wrote (or co-wrote with Ken Glosser) all the material on You Never Know, and he definitely favors mid-tempo arrangements. There isn’t a wide range of approaches, but Cooper is consistently on the mark with fetching melodies and well-crafted lyrics on songs like “Birds Of Clay” and “Theodore’s Last Call.” On a number of tracks, he seems to be drawing inspiration from power pop master Matthew Sweet.

“Fallen Angel” is a romantic and imaginative tale about a heavenly creature who veers too close to earth, and is forced to live among mortal men entranced by her beauty. On the fun and engaging title track, Cooper channels his best David Bowie baritone to describe the career of a rock and roll superstar, and leads the band through an impressive instrumental coda. The energetic “Standing Still” is another highlight.

Cooper also likes to throw the occasional curveball; such as “Ballad Of Buddy Rich.” It’s a funny look at what life on the road might be like with the legendary jazz drummer. “Pascal The Hypnotist” is a spirited instrumental that features Cooper, Whitesell, and Brad Elvis really cutting loose. As enjoyable as You Never Know is, a few more tracks with that high level of energy would have made it even better.

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Friday, July 13, 2018

Slumgullion

Music Box Theatre, located at 3733 N. Southport, will be screening the 50th Anniversary edition of Yellow Submarine at 2:00 p.m. this Sunday. A recent article by Randy Lewis in the Los Angeles Times (also carried in the Chicago Tribune) notes that the animated film based on The Beatles song has undergone a 4K restoration with new mixes for all of the songs. The August issue of British magazine MOJO—with a dapper looking David Bowie on the cover—has a six-page feature on Yellow Submarine.

That same issue of MOJO has a four-star review of Graham Nash’s new Over The Years double CD of demos and alternative versions, as well as a review of The Rolling Stones at The London Stadium.

If you catch Yellow Submarine at the Music Box on Sunday, you can also take in the Southport Art Festival at Southport at Waveland Avenue. It runs tomorrow and Sunday and will offer art, photography, sculpture, jewelry and mixed media.

The Square Roots Festival is happening in Lincoln Square this weekend. Matthew Sweet and The Dream Syndicate are the main acts tonight; The Jayhawks, The Handsome Family, Bombino, and Gato Pero headline tomorrow; and Pokey Lafarge and Tossers are Sunday’s headliners. The off-kilter but charming singer-songwriter Dawn Landes will perform tomorrow, and other acts include Les Rodailleurs, and the Alma Afrobeat Ensemble.

Tickets went on sale today for Jonathan Richman at Thalia Hall on October 27; Local H at Lincoln Hall on November 18; Marcia Ball at SPACE on August 23; The Sadies at Hideout on August 6; and Todd Snider at SPACE on November 7.

WLS-AM radio host Steve Dahl is holding a Garage Sale tomorrow at the Rivers Casino in Des Plaines that will benefit Beds Plus, a charity organization dedicated to helping homeless people.
He’ll be selling vintage vinyl, CDs, artwork, sports memorabilia, old studio equipment, and assorted personal belongings. EXPO ’76 will be performing an eclectic selection of cover songs from noon to 2:00 p.m., and there will be food trucks on hand. The garage sale runs from 10:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the casino’s north lot. Admission is free but you have to be 21 or older to attend.

The 8th Annual 5K Run To End Homelessness kicks off at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow at Montrose Harbor, and the fastest 50 overall runners will win two 3-day passes to Riot Fest.

Alt rock band whitewolfsonicprincess will be at Moe’s Tavern tomorrow night at 8:30 p.m. Boundary Waters and Waterplanet are also on the bill. Next Saturday, whitewolfsonicprincess will perform at The Store with The Darkroom Men and Flapunco.

Robert Cray has a gig coming up at the North Shore Center For The Performing Arts in Skokie on July 21, and Chris Isaak rock that same venue on August 12.

Congratulations to Loyola University Chicago on coming in at Number 5 on College magazine’s Top 10 most eco-friendly colleges in America. According to a Sun-Times article by Alice Bazerghi, the top spot went to Colby College. It’s located in Maine, and held its first Green Graduation ceremony this year.

Urgh! A Music War, the 1981 documentary that features performances from The Go-Go’s, X, Echo And The Bunnymen, UB40, Devo, 999, Gary Numan, Devo, Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark, and several other punk and new wave bands, will be screened at the Music Box this Monday July 16. Admission is $10.

Power pop fans who show up at FitzGerald’s in Berwyn next Saturday, July 21 will witness a transformation as Cliff Johnson and The Raine open the evening, and Johnson and the original members of Off Broadway close it. The Raine (John D. Kolonel, Dave Sebastian, Bill Bickel, and Bill Kowalski) have done a great job of backing Johnson as he performs Off Broadway tunes, but it’s also a safe bet that longtime fans will love to see the original Off Broadway back on stage again.

Foo Fighters have sold out their Concrete and Gold Tour date with The Struts and Melkbelly at Wrigley Field on July 29, and added a show with The Breeders and Touched By A Ghoul at the Cubs park on July 30.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2018

It Came From Steve Dahl’s Garage

Like a lot of us who’ve accumulated rock and roll memorabilia, WLS-AM radio host Steve Dahl is looking to get rid of some stuff. What sets Dahl apart is that his immense popularity stretches back beyond the earliest days of juggernaut hard rock station The Loop, and he’s had access to all sorts of promo material. He’s interviewed famous rock musicians and performed parodies with his own group. Plus, as noted in a recent Chicago Tribune article by Jennifer Johnson, money from the sales at his Garage Sale this Saturday at the Rivers Casino in Des Plaines will benefit Beds Plus, a charity organization dedicated to helping homeless people.

Dahl explained to Johnson that he’ll be selling vintage vinyl, CDs, artwork, sports memorabilia, old studio equipment, and “some personal items.” Back in 1983, I heard from friends that Dahl did a phone interview with The Hollies in advance of their reunion tour (Graham Nash was even involved) performance at ChicagoFest. The possibility that he might be selling items from that tour brings back memories of when I was a kid and WLS—a Top 40 station in those days—was giving away Christmas cards from rock stars. They had one from The Hollies but I wasn’t the lucky caller who snagged it. Even with no Hollies items involved, it should be fascinating to discover what Dahl has to offer.

Another incentive is that musician Dag Juhlin, who’s a regular on Dahl’s current afternoon show, will be performing from noon to 2:00 p.m. with his extremely entertaining covers band EXPO ’76. Juhlin’s extensive resume also includes Poi Dog Pondering, The Slugs, and the recently formed Sunshine Boys. The garage sale runs from 10:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Rivers Casino’s north lot at 3000 S. River Road. Admission is free but you have to be older than 21 to attend.

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Friday, July 6, 2018

Slumgullion

There’s a power pop explosion coming up at FitzGerald’s in Berwyn on July 21 when Cliff Johnson and The Raine open the evening, and Johnson and the original members of Off Broadway close it. The Raine (John D. Kolonel, Dave Sebastian, Bill Bickel, and Bill Kowalski) have done a great job over the past few years of backing Johnson as he performs Off Broadway tunes, but it’s also a safe bet that longtime fans will love to see the original Off Broadway back on stage again. I’m hoping to have more on this as the gig gets closer.

WESTfest kicked off today at 5:00 p.m. and will continue tomorrow from noon to 10:00 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 10:00 p.m. Presented by the popular and critically acclaimed Empty Bottle venue, the festival will offer over 30 live acts and DJs at Chicago Avenue and Damen.

The Millennium Art Festival at Lake and Michigan Avenue also started today, and will be back tomorrow and Sunday.

Congratulations to Pilsen on being chosen by Forbes as one of the world’s “coolest neighborhoods.” As reported by Katherine Rosenberg-Douglas in this past Tuesday’s Chicago Tribune, the Forbes travel writers praised the Chicago neighborhood for its, “hip galleries and walls decorated with colorful murals.” Rock fans have grown more familiar with Pilsen in recent years due to the emergence of Thalia Hall as a popular venue for indie rock shows.

The July issue of UK magazine MOJO, with the cover story The 50 Greatest Songs Of Pink Floyd cover story, also has a short interview with Chicago-based Liz Phair about her favorite records and musicians. Phair’s Girly-Sound To Guyville: The 25th Anniversary Box Set was recently released. MOJO also has a longer piece on former Doctor Who star Christopher Eccleston about his favorite releases. Oh, and the number one song on MOJO’s Pink Floyd list? “Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Part I – V).”

Last Saturday night’s birthday bash for local musicians Ellis Clark, Ary Paloma Jeebie, and Chloe F. Orwell at Montrose Saloon underscored the venue’s emergence as a viable new showcase for Chicago area bands. A number of musicians were on hand to join in the fun and watch performances by The Frantastic Sound System, The Handcuffs, and Ellis Clark’s Big Parade. Upcoming shows at Montrose Saloon include Futuristic Drago playing the music of T Rex tomorrow night, The Amazing Heebie Jeebies (fronted by Ary Paloma Jeebie) and The Dyes on July 14, and The Bon Mots and Mike Coy and Friends on July 28.

Songs from the beginning. I was excited when I read about Graham Nash’s Over The Years two-CD compilation on social media and The Second Disc website, and now that I’ve had a chance to listen to the album, it totally fulfills my expectations. Over The Years offers a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at some of his best-known songs via previously unreleased demos and alternate versions. I’m planning to post a full review in the near future. Nash will be spending the last week in July performing in England.

The Square Roots Festival being held in Lincoln Square next weekend will offer an eclectic and guaranteed entertaining selection of acts throughout its run. Matthew Sweet and The Dream Syndicate are the headliners for Friday night; The Jayhawks, The Handsome Family, Bombino, and Gato Pero headline Saturday; and Pokey Lafarge and Tossers headline on Sunday. The off-kilter but always charming singer-songwriter Dawn Landes will perform on Saturday, and other acts include Les Rodailleurs, and the Alma Afrobeat Ensemble.

Urgh! A Music War, the 1981 documentary that features performances from The Go-Go’s, X, Echo And The Bunnymen, UB40, Devo, 999, Gary Numan, Devo, Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark, and several other punk and new wave bands, will be screened at the Music Box on July 16. Admission is $10.

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Thursday, July 5, 2018

Incoming

Graphic from The Sons Of The Silent Age Facebook page.

Glam and swagger. Chicago area fans of classic British rock can get a double dose at Martyrs’ on Lincoln Avenue this weekend. The Sons Of The Silent Age will be covering the music of David Bowie on Friday, and Great Moments In Vinyl will perform The Rolling Stones’ Hot Rocks 1964-1971 greatest hits album in its entirety on Saturday. Made up of well-known Chicago area musicians, The Sons Of The Silent Age have notched high-profile gigs at Daley Plaza, when the David Bowie Is exhibition opened at the Museum Of Contemporary Art, and at Taste Of Chicago as Billy Idol’s opening act. They’ve got plenty of firepower to bring Bowie’s eclectic catalog to life. Great Moments In Vinyl is a collective of area musicians who’ve built a strong reputation by performing classic albums in their entirety on the club scene.

Tomorrow night’s English Beat concert at Metro is sure to bring back fond memories for long-time ska fans in the Chicago area. Particularly with Chicago’s own Heavy Manners as the opening act. Both bands started out around the same time; in the midst of a ska revival in England that quickly spread to the States. According to Wikipedia, Heavy Manners opened for The English Beat (as well as The Clash) back in those days. People in attendance tomorrow night can expect English Beat classics like “Save It For Later,” “Ranking Full Stop” and “I Confess,” as well Heavy Manners gems like “Taking The Queen To Tea” and “Hometown Ska.” DJ Chuck Wren is also on the bill.

It’s not the biggest or best known among Chicago’s summertime art fairs, but the Millennium Art Festival at Lake and Michigan Avenue always has an impressive selection of painting, photography and sculptures, and it’s right in the heart of downtown. The festival runs from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Friday; 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Saturday, and 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday.

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Tuesday, July 3, 2018

The Sick Rose - Someplace Better

The Sick Rose is based in Torino, Italy, but guitarist-backup vocalist Georgio Cappellaro spent the better part of the 1990s in Chicago and performed with a band here called The Drapes. Before returning to Italy, he must have packed his suitcases with loads of Midwestern power pop know-how. While it’s unclear whether the band’s name comes from William Blake’s 1794 poem, The Sick Rose’s recently released seventh album Someplace Better could serve as a blueprint for how to best use the power pop genre.

Produced by Ken Stringfellow of The Posies, the material concentrates on romantic relationships and features Luca Re’s powerful singing and the band’s spirited backing vocals set to catchy arrangements. “How To Be Your Friend” and “Childhood Dreams” are guitar-driven tracks that evoke the earliest power pop bands like The Records and The Raspberries. On “Blame It On Me,” The Sick Rose crafts an achingly beautiful melody without sacrificing a bit of energy.

“Nobody” is pure 1960s-fueled entertainment; mixing garage rock with a hint of soul in a high-speed swirl of guitars and keyboards. It’s easy to imagine it being performed on a show like Shindig or Hullaballoo, with a bevy of dancers around the band. “Fortune And Fame” and “Frustrated” likewise explore garage rock territory with fun results, while the title track is peppy instrumental that sounds like it could be a TV theme song.

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Friday, June 29, 2018

Slumgullion

Montrose Saloon on Chicago’s north side will be the perfect place tomorrow night to enjoy high energy rock and wish some local musicians a happy birthday. Initially, the bash was planned for singer-guitarist Ellis Clark, but it’s been extended to include Ary Paloma Jeebie and Chloe F. Orwell. Clark currently leads the group Big Parade, and his storied past includes being part of Epicycle—one of Chicago’s first punk bands—founding Social Act, and being a member of The Handcuffs. Ary Paloma Jeebie is the front person for The Amazing Heebie Jeebies garage rock/rockabilly band; and Chloe F. Orwell is the lead vocalist-guitarist for indie rockers The Handcuffs. Facebook posts have hinted at a Ary-Chloe duet, and it’s likely guest musicians will be involved. The Frantastic Sound System will kick off the evening at 9:00 p.m. The Montrose Saloon is located at 2933 W. Montrose Avenue, admission is a mere $5.

Singer-guitarist Phil Angotti also recently had a birthday, but he and Casey McDonough will be performing a show at Reclaimed Bar tomorrow night.

Chicago’s long-running ska band Heavy Manners and DJ Chuck Wren will be the opening acts when The English Beat plays at Metro next Friday, July 6.

I was happy to see an email from Amazon today stating my copy of Graham Nash’s two-CD set of demos Over The Years has shipped and will land on my porch this coming Tuesday. It features demos of classic Nash solo and and CSNY material like “Immigration Man,” “Teach Your Children,” “Wind On The Water,” “I Used To Be A King,” and “Chicago/We Can Change The World.” The oldest demo is a version of “Marrakesh Express” The Hollies rejected when Nash pitched it to them in 1968.

YippieFest, the love child of the once-annual Abbie Hoffman Died For Our Sins Theatre Festival at Mary-Arrchie Theatre, will be back for a second round on the weekend of August 17 – 19 at Prop Thtr. Last year’s bash was organized by Famous In The Future comedy group founder Frank Carr, who picked up a few tips about how to run this sort of event while performing at every single Abbie Fest. He’s back at the helm this year. Any theatre groups, performance artists, or musicians interested in being part of Yippie Fest 2018 can contact the official website.

New albums came out today from Florence + The Machine (High As Hope) and Ray Davies (Our Country: Americana II).

Actress Karen Gillan has been having a splendid career since leaving Doctor Who, landing roles in Guardians Of The Galaxy, Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle, and Avengers: Infinity Wars, as well as directing the indie film Tupperware Party. She’s also among the women featured in the new Feminists Don’t Wear Pink (and other lies): Amazing Women On What The F Word Means To Them book curated by Scarlet Curtis. It’s now available on Amazon UK.

The Bangles had original bassist Annette Zilinskas on board when they performed last Sunday at the Arroyo Seco festival in Pasadena. Other acts on the bill included Neil Young, Jack White, and The Pretenders. Next up for The Bangles is the Pershing Square Downtown Stage summer concert on July 14 in Los Angeles. I’d love to see them do an outdoor gig in the Chicago area.

The Go-Go’s are also keeping busy on the west coast. They’re performing tonight at Humphreys Concerts By The Bay in San Diego and on Monday, July 2 at The Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. Meanwhile, Head Over Heels, a play based on their music, is running on Broadway.

Fruits de Mer, the UK indie vinyl label, shared a post on Facebook promoting the very last gig by The Pretty Things. Although the band was never well known in the States, they been active in their native England for 55 years. The Final Bow takes place on December 13 in London at the O2 Arena, with special guests David Gilmour, Van Morrison, and Bill Nighy.

Let’s raise a toast to local artist Eddie Carr, who recently passed away. As noted in a Sun-Times article by Maureen O’Donnell, Carr was the genius behind the elaborate Christmas displays at Butch McGuire’s on Division Street for 30 years. He also enjoyed creating portraits of his favorite rock musicians, including Jimi Hendrix and Bob Marley.

Monty Python’s Spamalot continues its run at Mercury Theater in Chicago through August 5.

Amplified: Chicago Blues, an exhibition honoring Chicago’s blues heritage, is up and running at the Chicago History Museum through August 10, 2019. The exhibition will focus on Howlin Wolf, Little Brother Montgomery, Little Walter, Magic Sam, Big Joe Williams, Willie Dixon, Koko Taylor, and Muddy Waters. at on Clark Street. The Chicago History Museum is located at 1601 N. Clark Street. Admission is $19 for adults.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Power Pop As Promised—With A Bonus


Photo of Jon Auer and from Ken Stringfellow from Ken Stringfellow’s Facebook page.

This past Saturday night’s pairing of The Posies and Material Reissue at Park West in Chicago was every bit was rewarding as expected. Both bands excel at high-energy power pop, while maintaining an ability to explore various nuances. The Posies emerged from Seattle’s grunge scene in 1987 but with a more elaborate pop approach built on Hollies style harmonies. The original lineup of Material Issue sprang from Chicago’s vibrant rock scene during our city’s moment in the spotlight back in the early 1990s. The Park West gig also featured a short but potent set by Canadian singer-guitarist Terra Lightfoot.

The Posies are in the midst of their 30th Anniversary Tour, so it was no surprise to see them reaching back to gems like “Suddenly Mary” and “Golden Blunders” from their breakout album Dear 23. Singer-guitarist Jon Auer and singer-guitarist Ken Stringfellow were more energized and focused than at their enjoyable but meandering City Winery gig as a duo earlier this year. The jokes didn’t start until Stringfellow noted bassist Dave Fox’s checkerboard cap and suit, and claimed The Posies had signed a promotion deal with Purina. Stringfellow tossed in a few other quips but mostly he and Auer bounded back and forth on stage, cutting loose on their guitars and vocals while Fox and drummer Mike Musburger supplied massive support.

The Posies kept the crowd revved up with catchy songs like “Dream All Day,” “Flavor Of The Month,” and “Ontario.” Stringfellow dedicated “You’re The Beautiful One” to the late Jim Ellison of Material Issue and Posies bassist Joe Skyward, who passed away in 2016. The hard-edged, high-speed “Grant Hart” from the Amazing Disgrace album honored Husker Du’s recently departed drummer/vocalist. Unfortunately, my usual dependence on public transportation kept me from catching all of The Posies’ set, but I suspect they kept rocking long after I left at the 1-hour mark.

Material Reissue, which features singer-guitarist Phil Angotti in Ellison’s role, along with original members bassist Ted Ansani and drummer Mike Zelenko, blasted through highlights from the band’s handful of albums. As in other recent shows, they brought in guitarist Jay O’Rourke and keyboards player Lou Hallwas to help out. After opening with the exuberant “Crazy” from their debut International Pop Overthrow, Material Reissue moved on to irresistible numbers like “Going Through Your Purse,” “Kim The Waitress,” and “Renee Remains The Same.” “Valerie Loves Me,” “Diane,” and “What Girls Want”—hits from the band’s MTV days—sounded as strong as ever.

Singer-guitarist Terra Lightfoot, backed by a bassist and drummer, unleashed hard-edged songs with elements of indie rock, Americana, and funk. Her combination of strong, emotive vocals and furious strumming was particularly impressive on “Stars Over Dakota” from her latest album New Mistakes, while another song featured some extended jamming. “No Hurry,” from her Every Time My Mind Runs Wild album, had a hint of country and western.

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Thursday, June 21, 2018

The Who, The Pretenders, and How To Become A Novelist

Photo of Dag Juhlin from Facebook.

Depending on when you read this, you could still catch Dag Juhlin and Phil Angotti performing as a duo for the first time tonight at the Montrose Saloon. They’re both both veterans of the Chicago music scene—Angotti with The Idea and as a solo act; Juhlin with The Slugs, Poi Dog Pondering, EXPO ’76, and Sunshine Boys. They’ll be will be covering The Who, and it’s a safe bet they’ll offer deep tracks and vintage gems rather than only hits like “Won’t Get Fooled Again” or “Pinball Wizard.” Also on the bill are The Real Pretenders, who be performing songs by The Pretenders.

For the past three years, The Writing Workshop of Chicago has staged a Writing Day Workshop a few weeks after the Printers Row Lit Fest. So if shopping for books and seeing famous authors in person lit a fire under your own creative urges, you can act on that this Saturday. The Writing Day Workshop will be held at the Congress Plaza Hotel, 520 S. Michigan Avenue from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. See the website for admission price and the full schedule

You can spend more for a opportunity to pitch your project to a literary agent, or get a critique of your first 10 pages from an editor or writing teacher. I went last year, and found it rewarding enough to merit making it an annual trek. For the 2018 event, I’ll be pitching my YA/Paranormal/Romance/Rock & Roll novel to two different agents. Wish me luck.

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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

A Double Dose Of Power Pop Expertise

Photo from The Posies Facebook page.

It’s hard to imagine a better place for Chicago area power pop fans to be this Saturday night than at Park West for a double bill of The Posies and Material Reissue. The Posies, in the midst of their 30th Anniversary Tour, will be drawing from a wealth of albums, including Dear 23, Frosting On The Beater, and Blood/Candy. The set list is sure to include irresistible gems like “I May Hate You Sometimes,” “Suddenly Mary,” “Dream All Day,” and “So Caroline.” Singer-guitarist Jon Auer and singer-guitarist Ken Stringfellow have been the band’s nucleus for all these years, and their harmonies remain impeccable.

Material Reissue includes Material Issue founding members bassist-vocalist Ted Ansani and drummer Mike Zelenko, along with singer-guitarist Phil Angotti, who was a good friend of the late Jim Ellison. The new formation came together for an International Pop Overthrow - Chicago gig a few years back that packed the house at The Abbey Pub. They still perform occasionally on the local club scene, and opened for Matthew Sweet at Park West a few years ago. Original tunes like “Valerie Loves Me,” “Diane,” and “Renee Remains The Same,” along with their cover of The Green Pajamas’ “Kim The Waitress” still pack a melodic whallop. Singer-guitarist Terra Lightfoot is also on the bill, and will be playing songs from her recently released album New Mistakes. The music starts at 8:00.

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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Power Pop Shoppe In Wrigleyville

Photo from The Power Pop Shoppe’s post on Facebook

WNUR air personality Kirk Fox has been hosting live showcases based on his Power Pop Shoppe radio program at area venues for a while now, and he has another gem coming up tomorrow (Friday, June 15) night. This one’s a 1970s Night of cover versions with a definite power pop flavor at The Sandlot Wrigley. It features one of Chicago’s masters of tributes, Phil Angotti, along with the Lovepunch band, with special guest Mark Watson.

Angotti has quickly become a Power Pop Shoppe showcase veteran, having played his own material in the past. He’s also done tributes to Simon And Garfunkel, The Bee Gees, The Zombies, and Squeeze at various venues. Tomorrow night, Angotti will be performing songs by Elvis Costello, Tom Petty, Badfinger, and Cheap Trick. Lovepunch plans on serving up music originally done by Blondie and The Knack. The show starts at 8:00 p.m. The Sandlot Wrigley is located at 3477 N. Clark St.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Incoming

Here they come, walking down Lawrence Avenue. The Monkees Present The Mike Nesmith And Micky Dolenz Show comes to the Copernicus Center in Chicago’s Jefferson Park neighborhood this Thursday night. Hits songs will begin flowing at 7:30 p.m.

Monty Python’s Spamalot will open at Mercury Theater in Chicago on this Thursday, June 14 and run throughAugust 5.

CHIRP Radio 107.1 FM is helping present Urgh! A Music War at the Music Box this Saturday, July 16 at 7:00 p.m. The 1981 documentary features performances from The Go-Go’s, X, Echo And The Bunnymen, UB40, Devo, 999, Gary Numan, Devo, Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark, and several other punk and new wave bands. Admission is $10.

Arthur Buck (Peter Buck and Joseph Arthur); Buddy Guy; Johnny Marr; and The English Beat have new albums coming out this Friday, June 15th.

Cracker is what the world needs now and they’ll be bringing their catchy Americana rock to The Old Town School Of Folk Music this Sunday night.

Gomez will stage a 20 Year Celebration Of Bring It On in a WXRT show at The Vic this Friday, June 15, and Saturday, June 16. The radio station has been giving away tickets to callers this week.

A Day In The Country returns to The Hideout, one of Chicago’s more eclectic and critically acclaimed venues, on Sunday, June 24 from 2:00 to 11:00 p.m. Scheduled acts include headliner The Cactus Blossoms, along with Three Blue Teardrops, Golden Horse Ranch Band, The Saluda Moonlighters, The Lawrence Peters Outfit, and Al Scorch’s Country Soul Ensemble. There will be a barbecue by Honky Tonk BBQ and homemade pie by Bang! Bang! The Hideout is located at 1354 W. Wabansia on the north side.

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