Saturday, May 1, 2021

Saturday Slumgullion

There’s a virtual tribute to the late Adam Schlesinger coming up next Wednesday, May 5 at 8:00 pm EST on the Rolling Live Studios site. Schlesinger, a founding member of the bands Fountains Of Wayne and Ivy, as well as a prolific composer for movie soundtracks, passed away last year due to complications from COVID-19. Featured guests include Peter Buck from R.E.M. and Scott McCaughy from The Minus Five; Fred Armisen; Micky Dolenz from The Monkees; Sean Ono Lennon; Glenn Tilbrook from Squeeze; Courtney Love from Hole; Drew Carey; Chris Carrabba from Dashboard Confessional; Britta Phillips; Peter Himmelman; Patrick Carney from Black Keys and Michelle Branch; James Iha from Smashing Pumpkins; Ben Lee; and Taylor Hanson from Hanson and Tinted Windows. Tickets are $20. Proceeds for the event, which is being organized by Jody Porter from Fountains Of Wayne, will go to MusiCares and the New York venue The Bowery Electric.

As mentioned in an earlier post here, several recording artists have joined forces on a tribute album for Adam Schlesinger titled Saving For A Custom Van. The 3-LP set on pink vinyl is due out in September on Vinyl Me Please and will feature cover versions of Schlesinger compositions by Tanya Donelly and Gail Greenwood; Kay Hanley; Nada Surf; Rachel Bloom; Ted Leo; and others.

Summer Of Soul (. . . Or When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised), a new documentary created by Questlove from The Roots, will be released in movie theaters and on Hulu July 2. The footage is from the 1969 six-week Harlem Cultural Festival but most of it never made it to the general public before. Summer Of Soul includes performances by Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight and The Pips, Sly And The Family Stone, Mahalia Jackson, and B.B. King.

This year’s Hot Stove Cool Music fundraiser will once again be a virtual event, taking place on May 18, starting at 7:00 pm EDT. Organizers Theo Epstein and Peter Gammons have assembled another winning lineup of popular athletes and musicians; this time featuring Yo-Yo Ma, Boston Celtics majority owner Wyc Grousbeck, Juliana Hatfield, Bernie Williams, Kay Hanley and surprise guests. Admission charges range from a $10 Single Ticket to the $1,000 Grand Slam, depending on how much you’re willing to donate. 100% of the proceeds go to The Foundation To Be Named Later, the charity organization founded by Theo Eptein and his brother Paul and The Peter Gammons College Scholarships.

Chicago-based singer-songwriter Lou Heneise goes for a traditional folk sound on her debut Trial and Error and succeeds nicely. The four tracks feature Heneise up front on her acoustic guitar, with a boost from drummers Sarah Neczwid and Eric Mahle, and bassist/guitarist/producer Eric Block. Heneise’s clear, pretty vocals help sell the imaginative romantic fantasy of “Bad Day,” and the satirical lust (‘And I’m using boys like chewing gum./But ain’t a girl supposed to have her fun?”) of “Red Lights.”

The Art Of Banksy, which is billed by its production company Starvox Exhibits as the world’s largest collection of privately owned work by the mysterious English street artist, will be visiting Chicago at some point in the near future. Sign up for information on the official site to be given first access to tickets.

The Go-Go’s are celebrating the 20th anniversary of their underrated God Bless The Go-Go’s album by releasing a version on 140GM blue vinyl. There will also be a special edition with two extra tracks exclusively on CD and digital platforms. The release date for these versions is May 14, and they are already available for pre-order. 

The Love For Gravy - Celebrating Wavy Gravy’s 85th Birthday virtual event running May 14 – 16 will feature songs, tributes and stories from an impressive group of performers that includes Graham Nash; Bonnie Raitt and Jackson Browne; Joan Baez; Buffy Sainte-Marie; Michael Franti; Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks; Bob Weir and Wolf Bros; Ani DeFranco; Steve Earle; Chris Robinson and Los Hermanos; Ben Harper; Jorma Kaukonen; and Mara Muldaur. The event is a benefit for Seva, a charitable organization that provides sight-saving surgeries, eyeglasses, and other eyecare services to under-served communities.

I used to think the only thing actor George Wendt from Cheers and I have in common is that everyone yells my name whenever I go into a bar. Actually, nobody does that. But I learned from a copy of Chicago magazine that came with last Sunday’s copy of the Chicago Tribune that Wendt’s colorful resume includes a stint of working as a proofreader. I’ve been a proofreader for decades. Back in 1966, he occasionally helped the proofreading staff at the Daily News. In the magazine monthly Backroom feature, Wendt also recalls his early days at Second City and performing as Edna Turnbland in Hairspray on Broadway.

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