Photo by my wife, Pam.
You Know The Drill. WXRT held its annual Listener Poll Gala at Craftsman Experience in the River North neighborhood this past Thursday. The place is a sort of Apple Store for hardware, where visitors can try out a variety of brand new tools. On Thursday, most of the attention was focused on a podium where the XRT air personalities took turns announcing the winners for Best Album, Best Song, Best Concert, Best Music Venue, Best Movie, and Best TV Show. During the hour-long Gala, which was broadcast live on the air, only the top five or top ten vote getters for each category were announced. The full results can be seen on WXRT’s website.
Lin Brehmer handled the bulk of the show, and Tom Marker, who for some reason was never formally introduced, provided fun, onstage announcements. There was a roar of applause when Terri Hemmert was introduced as a recent inductee into the National Radio Hall Of Fame; and Marty Lennartz delivered the Best Movie countdown while channeling his Regular Guy character. Frank E. Lee, Jason Thomas, morning news anchor Mary Dixon, Program Director Norm Winer, and Corporate Takeover’s Kristin Kay were also on hand.
The good vibes were only partially due to the free wine and beer being served, as loyal fans savored an opportunity to mingle with the station’s primary DJs during the reception afterward. Congratulations to WXRT for putting together a smoothly run, thoroughly enjoyable evening. Here are the winners for each category. Best Album: The Suburbs by Arcade Fire; Best Song: “Little Lion Man” by Mumford & Sons; Best Concert: Lollapalooza; Best Concert Venue: Chicago Theater; Best Movie: Inception; and Best TV Show: Modern Family.
Phil At The Bottom Lounge. The Phil Angotti Band, which includes Mike Zelenko, Carolyn Engelmann, Tommi Zender, and Ellis Clark, will be performing at The Bottom Lounge tonight. Other acts scheduled to play include Davenport Ed, Ten Foot Tall, and Band Called Catch. Angotti recently filmed a video at Quenchers Bar, with the help of several friends.
I’ll Be Playing In A Band Down By The River! That was my imitation of the Chris Farley character Matt Foley, by the way. Abbey Road On The River will celebrate its 10th Anniversary by holding a pair of events this year. The first will be May 26th-30th in Louisville, Kentucky; and the second will be September 1st - 5th in Washington, DC. 60 bands from 10 countries will be involved. See the official website for more information.
Remember When You Were In The Beat? That Was Awesome! The Chicago Tribune had a listing yesterday for Paul Collins tickets going on sale for a show on March 10th at Subterranean. That doesn’t match the venue’s calendar, which shows Collins scheduled to perform on February 19th with The Half Rats as his opening act. A recent Facebook post from Collins shows the date as February 19th. Earlier that day, he’ll be doing an in-store appearance at Permanent Records at 5:00 PM. I’m guessing the Trib got the date wrong. Collins released the highly impressive comeback CD King Of Power Pop in 2010, and has launched The Beat Army to promote power pop music. Consider me enlisted.
No Fooling. Jeff Beck, with special guest The Imelda May Band, will be coming to The Cadillac Palace in downtown Chicago on April first as part of his Rock N’ Roll Party tour. Beck’s 2010 release, Emotion&Commotion has been nominated for five Grammy Awards.
Long May He Run. Neil Young will be honored with a tribute concert at Carnegie Hall in New York on February 10th. Over 20 artists, including Patti Smith, The Roots, Shawn Colvin, Aimee Mann, Evan Dando and Julianna Hatfield, Joan Osbourne, and Cowboy Junkies, are scheduled to take part by performing Young’s songs. Pollstar reports that tickets start at $45, and $250 VIP tickets will include admittance to the artist after-party at City Winery.
The Gang’s All Here. The newly reformed Gang Of Four are set to release their CD Content on January 25th, and will appear on David Letterman’s show February 8th. The band kicks off a 15-date North American Tour tour on February 5th, and will be at Metro in Chicago on February 11th.
Making A Spectacle Of Themselves. Michael Lux and The Bad Sons are calling their first show, scheduled for January 28th at Bottom Lounge, a “Rock n Roll Spectacle.” The lineup will also include Half Rats (I’m assuming it’s the same band as the one opening for Paul Collins although their MySpace page doesn’t list either gig), The Mutts, and Bob Dey’s Tank Engine Man. Admission is free up until 10:00 PM. Michael Lux and The Bad Sons will be selling copies of their debut EP Neat Repeater, at the show. Lux is also a member of the band Holus.