The Fairport Convention Era, the next installment of Richard Thompson’s Live From London - A Lifestream Concert Series, takes place tomorrow, Sunday, September 27. It’s being presented by the Chicago area venues The Old Town School and SPACE, with tickets on the website for The Old Town School of Folk Music.
The Rachel Drew Quartet has a 6:00 p.m. gig tomorrow, Sunday night at Montrose Saloon on Chicago’s north side. Amazing Heeby Jeebies will be there on October 4, and Van Go will be performing on October 23. All of these shows will be outdoors in a socially-distanced setting.
Fans of high-caliber, melodic rock and roll received two gifts this weekend with the release of Cheap Trick’s “Rebel Rebel” and The Posies’ “Sideways.” Cheap Trick has always crafted splendid cover versions, whether it’s material originally recorded by The Beatles, The Move, Fats Domino, or Terry Reid. They score again with David Bowie’s “Rebel Rebel,” opening with a drum volley similar to the one on their rendition of “Ain’t That A Shame.” This is pure fun and it’s available to download on various sites. The Posies are masters of exquisite pop and lush harmonies, starting with the very Hollies like Dear 23 and moving on the more energetic but always catchy songs of their later albums. “Sideways, ” which is also now available for download, carries on that tradition. I hadn’t thought of it before today, but there’s a certain similarity between them and the Chicago-based Sunshine Boys.
Dag Juhlin, who formed Sunshine Boys with Freda Love Smith and Jacqueline Schimmel a few years back, has a solo gig coming up at Hey Nonny in Arlington Heights on October 13. He’ll have a decades-long career to choose material from, ranging from the 1980s punk band The Slugs through two superb Sunshine Boys albums. He also performs with Poi Dog Pondering and the tribute band Expo ’76.
Hey Nonny is on a roll with its live shows again, with upcoming gigs by The Bad Examples and Jon Langford. The venue’s goal has been to bring a Chicago style live music ambience to the northwest suburbs.
Another fairly new and very cool addition to downtown Arlington Heights is Coco and Blu, which serves beverages, cocktails, and plates. My wife Pam and I have become regulars. It’s a fairly large space that looks like it could hold events at some time in the future when it’s safe to have bigger crowds.
A new Smashing Pumpkins song titled “Cyr” hit the airwaves this weekend, and it features the band experimenting in a more synth rock style. Billy Corgan’s vocals are still immediately recognizable though. “Cyr” and a second new song, titled “Colour Of Love,” will be on the next Smashing Pumpkins album. As noted in the Chicago Sun-Times and at the Chicago Eater website, Corgan and fashion designer Chloe Mendel have brought their Madame ZuZu’s tea shop back to Highland Park. It had been closed since 2018.
Writer/director Aaron Sorkin’s The Trial Of The Chicago 7 comes to Netflix on October 16 and it’s already snagged positive reviews from Richard Roeper in the Chicago Sun-Times and Michael Phillips in the Chicago Tribune. The cast includes Eddie Redmayne, Jeremy Strong, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Sacha Baron Cohen, Mark Rylance, Michael Keaton, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Frank Langella. Having performed for 20 years at the Mary-Arrchie Theatre’s annual Abbie Hoffman Died For Our Sins festival with the Famous In The Future comedy group, I’ll always think of Mary-Arrchie Artistic Director Rich Cotovsky whenever I hear the name Abbie Hoffman. Cotovsky did a fabulous job of portraying the Yippie leader at the opening and closing ceremonies.