Calendar

 
Sat Mar 25 - 6pm - $7 All Ages
El Stoppers is a teen Rock band based out of Chicago, IL. In September of 2012 El Stoppers was formed out of diverse group of musicians in a collective effort to perform great original music.
Alternative/ Laundry Room Rock
VOD formed in Chicago in 2016. This skate punk rock duo also dabbles in Psychedelic rock.
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Sat, Mar 25 - 9pm - $15adv/$20door
There’s nothing more rock’n’roll than breaking rules and Sami Grisafe has been doing that her entire life.The talented singer-songwriter and all-star athlete for women’s football has managed to succeed in twoof her life’s passions, music and sports. It’s been said she’s got the voice of Melissa Etheridge and thearm of Joe Montana…and if you’ve ever heard Sami Grisafe sing or watched her quarterback, you wouldmost likely agree. Sami’s newest single, “All-Un-American” is a patriotic anthem that begs the question about whowe want to be as Americans. Inspired by the current political climate and tragic eventsthat threaten to divide us, the lyrics promote the idea that we are “one nation, indivisible,where nobody shall be invisible.” The song is produced by Colin Wolfe (Michael Jackson, TLC,Madonna, NWA) and Evan Ryan. Inspired by musicians like Janis Joplin, Dave Grohl, and the Counting Crows, Grisafe’s music hasa folk-rock feel with provocative lyrics, often incorporating additional styles such as funk, bluesand reggae. She earned six Grammy pre-nominations for her 2012 album ATLANTIS, and in2013 received the Chicago Music Award for “Best Rock Entertainer.” As a proud member of the LGBTQ community, Grisafe supports numerous LGBTQ organizationsthrough her performances. She was named of the ‘10 Chicago Lesbians To Look Out For’ in 2012by the L Stop and her football retirement was ranked #1 in the Windy City Times Top 10 ChicagoLGBT Sports Moments of 2014. In 2014, she wrote and performed a song, “Brand New FairyTale,” in support of marriage equality for the March on Springfield at the state capitol in Illinois.She went on to produce a studio version of the song and a music video, releasing it on the dayof the historical Supreme Court ruling.
A must see live act, Killing gods take the stage with explosive energy and accomplishes something few emerging bands do. Killing gods grabs the audience’s attention and strips away the labels we seem to want to pigeon hole bands into allowing the concert goer to fully envelope themselves into the music. When listening to songs like “Bondage” off of their recently released EP “Escape” you can hear tones from the birth of hard rock in the seventies all the way through the evolution of music as it is today. But even more so, Killing gods have struck the rare chord of music as it is ever evolving into the future. Guitarist, Danny Koziel, seems to be electrified by his guitar's screaming tone and the very chords he is playing, which jolt out to the audience and other band members. Ozzy Rodriguez on drums hammers out the blast beats that punctuate the heartbeat of the band while Greg Sturmon grounds the foundation of the music through his dirty, effected and well laid bass tracks. Jordan Gomer’s wide vocal range allows for the songs to have, at first glance an easily digestible melody, but upon further delving into the lyrics the listener hears the polemic message against “mainstream media fabrications, the totalitarian state, banding together in unity and urges listeners to become free from the monotony of being beaten into submission by the system that has the desire to steal our freedom” quotes Jordan. Killing gods is a four piece hard rock group based out of Chicago. The band formed in the summer of 2012, has already made a powerful impact on the local Chicago music scene by headlining shows at Bottom Lounge, Reggie’s Rock Club, and through the culmination of talent and hard driven dedication, headlined a sold out show at The House of Blues this past year. Although their sound is rooted in rock, Killing gods permeates several sub genres of hard rock and heavy metal making it difficult to lock them into a specific category. Having influences of bands such as Rage Against the Machine, Nine Inch Nails, Black Sabbath, Nirvana, Deftones, Incubus, and Queens of the Stone age to name just some of the bands that Danny, Greg, Ozzy and Jordan have taken inspiration from, it’s easy to see how Killing Gods can appeal to multiple audiences. Killing gods have recently released their second EP entitled “Escape” with the hit song “Bubble” which you can buy on iTunes. You can check out the music video for "Bubble" now on YouTube. Killing gods can also be found on BandCamp, Reverbnation, SoundCloud, Spotify, Pandora, Amazon and Beats Music.
Currently based out of Chicago, Chris Buehrle is constantly working on establishing himself as one of the top acts to emerge out of the Windy City's music scene. With a growing fanbase all throughout the MidWest, he is consistantly working on providing high-energy live performances. Chris is currently in the studio getting ready for a new release and will keep you posted as to what's coming up!
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Mon, Mar 27 - 6pm - $10
OPEN
A pairing of (somewhat famous) Chicago pastry chefs with (somewhat famous) Chicago comic book artists and writers to create a unique character based on the chef's description of a dessert! The original artwork will be auctioned off and the proceeds along with the cover charge will be donated to Common Threads. At the event the chefs will have samples of their desserts to taste, and they and the comic artists will be available to sign artwork and talk about the collaboration. We will have Challengers comic book store set up a Merch table to sell the artist's other comics, etc. which can be autographed as well. The concept is a mashup of the arts - to see where it leads and hopefully get the artists to have a new perspective on their work, along with combining two separate audiences in a fun interesting atmosphere. DJ Marty Mars spinsgood vibes.
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Mon, Mar 27 - 9pm - $7
Hugh’s songs flow in a rhythmic stream of Americana, Celtic, blues, and global folk. His genre, like the musician himself,​ ​ceaselessly explores​. Hugh's debut EP "neighborpoem" was released by JMD Records in 2010, followed by a series of successful singles, including "Sold For Fire," (2010) described by Chicago's music publication Windy City Rock as "carving canons from the air," and his coy reimagining of the Adam and Eve story, "Danglin" (2013), recorded by Brooklyn underground rock guru Oliver Ignatius at Mama Coco's Funky Kitchen. In his latest album, "Another Ghost to Sleep," Hugh honors the role of musician as storyteller, drawing on the many ghosts and tales he has inherited, stolen and saved along his way. Hugh got his start as a performer in New York City. He played in Central Park, living off ​tips and random jobs​,​ filling notebooks with lyrics and sketches. His favorite stages were street corners and soup kitchens, where he would play with and for the Manhattan pedestrians, tourists and homeless. Hugh would slip his own songs between familiar standards, going to school on the greats of 20th-century songwriting, protest and folk revival: Woody Guthrie, Dave Van Ronk, Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger, Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Steve Goodman, Phil Ochs, Paul Simon... Over the years Hugh has performed across the States and Eastern and Central Europe. In the summer of 2016, Hugh's performances in Prishtina, Kosovo were featured in a VOA television special. His songs and stories grow richer with every new encounter. Hugh is currently based in Chicago, Illinois, where he performs regularly solo and with his band, "The Nudes". His eclectic, jazz-trained bandmates contribute an urban polish on top of Hugh's organic folk sound. Hugh & the Nudes have plans to perform and tour regionally into the new year, and to hit the studio to record an album of exciting new material. Performing on a steaming subway platform, a packed club, or the lonely stage of a rust belt dive bar, Hugh welcomes and challenges audiences with​ his songs. In his latest album, "Another Ghost to Sleep," Hugh honors the role of musician as storyteller, drawing on the many ghosts and tales he has inherited, stolen and saved along his way.
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Tue, Mar 28 - 9pm - $10
Friends of the Devil honors the timeless music of the Grateful Dead, played by the finest musicians in Chicago.
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Wed, Mar 29 - 9pm - $10
Cornmeal has never been a band to shy away from reinvention and after over a decade, theyare proving just that as the band sets out with a newly reformed lineup, a fresh energeticsound and heads back into the studio to finish their long awaited first studio album afteralmost 6 years. A nationally recognized live music institution, Cornmeal is heavily influencedby American roots and folk music and seamlessly blends lightning fast tempos andimpeccable harmonies into an unrivaled live performance that continues to expand uponthe ve-piece acoustic-electric groups’ vast musical repertoire. While steeped in the traditionof the past, Cornmeal continues to forge a path all their own, pushing the boundaries ofbluegrass, Americana and folk for a whole new generation of music lovers. With a growingfan base and ever-evolving sound, Cornmeal challenges the recipe of bluegrass and liveperformance.
Comprised of seven indie rock musicians, with an affinity for twang, Gussied saw a shift happening in the world of music for hire. Music connoisseurs were not only wanting their favorite band to play their party, they were wanting nostalgia, romance and rebellion in a pretty packaged dance beat, to match their mason jar, country- chic wedding. Gussied understands how one can ache for Sam Cooke and want to get down to Daft Punk and Billy Idol. They totally support rocking out to Icona Pop, Michael Jackson and losing it over Johnny Cash. In earnest, true midwestern fashion, Gussied is taking back the term “Cover Band” while giving a flirtatious nod to bluegrass.
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Thu, Mar 30 - 8pm - $7
My Double Life is a hard rock band made up of two singer-songwriters’ former projects. Chris MacCarthy (Pet Robot) and Caitlin Radick (Cat Tragic) team up to share in the singing, songwriting, guitar, and bass responsibilities, while Matt Volk takes care of the drumming.
Kerosene Stars was born in the Fall of 2010 by bassist and songwriter Scott Schaafsma after many years performing as bassist for a host of Chicago local bands including Musikanto (aka Crow Moses), Magnus, City Electric, and Sarah Holtschlag. The band’s first release, “The Killer ep” (2011), was produced by Scott and Tim Bennett (Colin Gilmore and Jimmy Dale Gilmore) and includes Jason Bennett (also with Colin Gilmore, Jimmy Dale Gilmore) on guitars as well as local favorites Sarah Holtschlag and bassist Brett Bakshis (Julie Meckler, Belleisle). This second, self-titled release was tracked by Mike Hagler at Kingsize Sound Labs in April 2014, and contains eight genre-hopping indie pop gems. The new line-up includes guitarist Andy Seagram (Benton Harbor Lunchbox), drummer Jim Adair (Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash) as well as multi-instrumentalist Yoo Soo Kim (Hemmingbirds), each of whom bring a unique vitality and distinctive sensibility to Schaafsma’s songs. This sophomore effort from Kerosene Stars represents a more fully realized sound and an exciting new direction for the band. The songs seamlessly blend echoes of the 60’s, alt-country, and Brit-pop, with occasional tangents into moodier and experimental atmospherics. This is music for the head and for the heart, and the record resonates with a sincerity all too rare in modern music. Since forming, the band has shared the stage with Split Single, The Vulgar Boatmen, The Latebirds (Helsinki), NYC’s The Defibulators, and LA’s Goldenboy.
Brooding, sardonic, party time. We are a rock outfit from Chicago, IL. From hard rock to Motown, bath salts to Levi-Strauss, BCT has its bases covered.
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Fri, Mar 31 - 9pm - $10adv/$12door
Seamlessly combining acoustic roots music and traditional instruments with modern technology and amped up dance music, The Magic Beans are as unique as their place of origin, the Colorado Rockies. The group’s diverse approach to music leaves no genres off the table and no one left out; many times resulting in one song spanning several styles within a singular composition. The Beans use no pre-recorded tracks or computers in favor of a more traditional approach to music. Original songwriting, diverse instrumentation and a deep musical bond between the musicians is what sets the band apart. Fans have coined terms like “spacefunk”, “ameritronica”, and “groove grass” to try to describe the music they hear from The Magic Beans, and the band embraces these terms and all input from their fanbase to create what is truly a collaborative musical effort. Music that moves your mind and your hips while inspiring a good time is what The Magic Beans are all about. After all, “Music is magic, magic is life (Jimi Hendrix).”
Low Spark, they're called... A relentlessly grooving musical force based out of Chicago, IL. Drawing from a wide range of influences, they deliver a contemporary fusion of sound characterized by melodic hooks, deep funk tones and extended high-energy solos. Known for their collaborative spirit and electrifying live performances, Low Spark is breaking boundaries as a highly original, progressive act. Low Spark has shared bills with the likes of Bernie Worrell Orchestra, Robert Walter, The Main Squeeze, TAUK, New Sound Underground, Marcus Rezak, Chris Bullock, Blackalicious, Monophonics, Euforchestra, Gene Ween, and many others.
Digital Gnosis was formed in 2008 after a conversation about music, technology, and alchemy occurred while assisting with system authentication. Shortly thereafter, they began making music that has alternately been categorized as Electro-Mystical, Pre/Post-Apocalyptic, and Dimensional. In March of 2016 Digital Gnosis released Aten, an LP. In live performance, they resample video and improvised audio to create a visceral multimedia experience.
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Sat, Apr 1 - 7pm - $10adv/$12door
All originally from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, The Stray Birds started as a duo of acoustic buskers in early 2010 when Maya de Vitry and Oliver Craven met with their instruments, their voices, and their songs. It didn't take much convincing to get bassist Charlie Muench on board, and with the addition of a third unique and powerful voice, the group began to define its captivating sound. Seven years, three original records, and some six hundred performances later, the band is best known today for its songwriting, its tight and forthcoming vocal harmony blend and its commitment to an impassioned delivery of original material, both on stage and in the studio. They've been seen from LA to London, sung songs from Dallas to Denmark, and played tunes from New York to New Orleans. Their 2016 Yep Roc Records release Magic Fire was produced by Grammy-winner Larry Campbell and earned much praise, including being named by NPR as one of Folk Alley's Top Ten Records of 2016. With time, their sound has evolved to a palate broader than what it first was on the street corners and in the markets, but this much remains true: The Stray Birds is a band of musicians as subtle and nuanced as they are energetic, a band of writers as blatant and bold as they are coy, and perhaps most importantly, a band of people as friendly and compassionate as they are talented. It's safe to imagine that most who hear their music come back for another listen, time and again.
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Sat, Apr 1 - 9pm - $8
Manny Torres is a Chicago based singer-songwriter that lives for the passion filled experience of his live shows! His music brings the secular and the sacred into conversation with each other, as he writes and covers songs that demonstrate the beauty, pain, and hope that comprise the human experience as a whole. His voice is warm; even as he sings about heartbreak, such as in “Real Lies," his ineffable joy resides underneath his sorrow. The effect of this is that Manny enables his listeners to bring their own hurting hearts into song with his—he creates space for them to fully feel their pain, release it, and partake in the musical healing offered by his voice. In this way, Manny’s music is an invitation to his listeners to embrace their hopes and fears, their joys and sadnesses and find peace and calm within the messiness of life. Manny draws from influences as diverse as John Legend, Ed Sheeran, Maroon Five, John Mayer, Michael Jackson, and The Weeknd. His raspy soul-filled voice and funky pop groove are sure to lead you into your very own soulful experience.
Willy Dynomite is an 11-piece, original soul band made up of Chicago's finest musicians. Co-led by Stella and Josh Therriault, Willy Dynomite draws influences from many musical genres to produce a new and exciting sound. From Funk to Blues, Afro to Cuban, Reggae to Swing... Willy Dynomite is the hot new thing!
This Chicago, IL based duo is a culmination of a combined, 20+ year of classical training and 30+ year of national touring. Singer-songwriter and acoustic guitarist, MER, teams up with violinist, Jason Vinluan, to deliver intricate musicality coupled with pop sensibility within an engaging, high energy, live performance! The duo defined their musical brand and built a fanbase organically by way of MER's Music Showcase, a weekly 'songwriters in the round' residency at the historic Cubby Bear located directly across the street from Wrigley Field during the spring and summer months of 2016. The first single, "Who I Was" was produced by Sigurdur Birkis (John Mayer, Will Hoge) and was released in Oct 2016. Recording continues with plans of releasing an EP in the summer of 2017. Two Filipinos made their public debut in Nov 2016 with tour dates in Los Angeles, Seattle, Nashville, and Chicago. The duo quickly gained support through the non-profit, Kollaboration.org and gained significant media exposure with interviews & live tapings with Seattle Music Insider and WFLF Fox 32's Good Day Chicago. The duo continues to focus on recording the upcoming EP and strengthening their live performances with touring efforts focused on the college market, Asian-American community, and live music festivals all over the mid-west. Be sure to catch Two Filipinos live in a city near you before they embark on their Asia tour in 2018!
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Mon, Apr 3 - 7pm - $5 - All Ages
The Kilgubbin Brothers’ name and music celebrate the American-Irish shantytown that clung to a muddy island in the Chicago River in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They play the irrepressible, stubbornly upbeat music that emerged onto that island when the tunes and songs first baptized in the blessed wells of Ireland were dragged through the factory-fouled waters of the Chicago River. Playing with tenacity and unruliness, The Kilgubbin Brothers tap into the dance tunes and songs whose spirit and beauty persisted in their new home: soot-stained, early urban America. The Kilgubbin Brothers feature: Chicago Irish fiddle legend Seán Cleland (Drovers, Bohola); the mighty Jackie Moran (Drovers, Comas) on vocals, bodhrán, and banjo; Boston-born, All-Ireland fiddle Champion Brendan Bulger (Sprigs, Noel Henry Irish Showband); guitar virtuoso Jesse Langen (Hasco Duo, Ensemble Dal Niente); and powerhouse singer Ray Quinn (Tin Lynott, Martyrs’).
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Mon, Apr 3 - 8pm - $5
The Kilgubbin Brothers’ name and music celebrate the American-Irish shantytown that clung to a muddy island in the Chicago River in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They play the irrepressible, stubbornly upbeat music that emerged onto that island when the tunes and songs first baptized in the blessed wells of Ireland were dragged through the factory-fouled waters of the Chicago River. Playing with tenacity and unruliness, The Kilgubbin Brothers tap into the dance tunes and songs whose spirit and beauty persisted in their new home: soot-stained, early urban America. The Kilgubbin Brothers feature: Chicago Irish fiddle legend Seán Cleland (Drovers, Bohola); the mighty Jackie Moran (Drovers, Comas) on vocals, bodhrán, and banjo; Boston-born, All-Ireland fiddle Champion Brendan Bulger (Sprigs, Noel Henry Irish Showband); guitar virtuoso Jesse Langen (Hasco Duo, Ensemble Dal Niente); and powerhouse singer Ray Quinn (Tin Lynott, Martyrs’).
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Tue, Apr 4 - 9pm - $8adv/$10door
CAUTION formed on the South Side of Chicago in March of 2009 as the Thursday Dead Night band @ Harte's Saloon in Evergreen Park, IL. What started out as a simple night off for friends to get together and jam some Dead tunes, has turned into one of the most formidable and technically savvy Dead groups in Chicago. CAUTION's unique ability to take these tunes, completely disassemble and jam them at will, is what separates them from other acts currently playing this music. Rather than play it safe, CAUTION takes chances and plays many of the more difficult songs that you just won't hear anywhere else. This approach makes it fresh and exciting for both the band AND listener, and is one of the many reasons the band has garnered such a devoted following. Anthony Massaro: Lead Guitar, Vocals; Dave Waterman: Rhythm Guitar, Vocals; Dan Moulder: Piano, Organ, Vocals; Garrett Degnan: Bass; Jim Farmer: Drums.
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Wed, Apr 5 - 7pm - $25
The Chicago Tribune: “I have seen the future of rock 'n' roll, and its name is Tributosaurus.”Tributosaurus strives to do for rock and roll what a symphony orchestra does for classical; treat the music with the respect it deserves, and deliver it to a listener’s ear in glorious detail. They accomplish this goal by utilizing the finest musicians Chicagoland has to offer, and by cutting no corners. If a Stevie Wonder tune has 6 horns, 3 keyboards, and 4 strings, then that’s what you get on stage. If a Santana song needs 3 guitars and 4 percussionists, so be it. Every month, one band is given the treatment, now totaling more than 90 over the first 9 years of the project. The members of Tributosaurus are musical anthropologists, as songs are excavated, dissected, and reconstituted to replicate the original with proper reverence. They aren’t really a tribute band, but are every tribute band. There are no costumes and there is no make-up, because with Tributosaurus, the music is the star.The band is comprised of five core members (Dan Leali, Curt Morrison, Chris Neville, Jon Paul, and Matt Spiegel), who are joined by artists with credits too numerous to mention. Tributosaurus has sold out shows all over Chicago, and their gigs are an event. Fans commune with the musicians, paying homage to songs that made us all fall in love with music in the first place.
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Thu, Apr 6 - 9:30pm - No Cover
free
After 25 years, The Big C Jamboree, will be ending in May 2017. A night of drinking, dancing, socializing, networking and non-stop music since 1992. For die hard rockabilly devotees and civilian music fans. Over the last decade, this highly organized vibrant jam session, held the first Thursday of every month at Martyrs', has become rockabilly central for many of the musicians & fans of Chicago's American roots scene. Although the monthly jam is devoted to rockabilly, the Big C Jamboree has also offered the span of '40's-'50's Amereicn roots music from Hillbilly Boogie to Western Swing, Jump Blues and 1st generation Rock-n-Roll. The night is run swiftly and simply: a host band performs a short set, followed by a myriad of roots musicians who do 3 songs each. The party like atmosphere includes socializing, drinking & dancing galore while the rotating line-up onstage usually features the raucous sounds of pompadoured rockabilly musicians wailing away on upright basses and hallow-bodied electric guitars; and there's NEVER a cover! It's one of the most dedicated evenings of music in the city.
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Fri, Apr 7 - 9pm - $15
If David Byrne is one of the geniuses of modern times, then Start Making Sense is a tribute to genius. The musicians in this 7-piece Talking Heads Tribute take pride in faithfully recreating the music of Talking Heads entire career. Together they bring much of the Heads unique live show to the stage, with front man Jon Braun as a spot-on David Byrne, giving you a "once in a lifetime" experience. Prepare yourself for a rockin', funkin', danceable celebration of the new-wave art punk you loved from the 80's !!!
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Sat, Apr 8 - 9pm - $15
If David Byrne is one of the geniuses of modern times, then Start Making Sense is a tribute to genius. The musicians in this 7-piece Talking Heads Tribute take pride in faithfully recreating the music of Talking Heads entire career. Together they bring much of the Heads unique live show to the stage, with front man Jon Braun as a spot-on David Byrne, giving you a "once in a lifetime" experience. Prepare yourself for a rockin', funkin', danceable celebration of the new-wave art punk you loved from the 80's !!!
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Mon, Apr 10 - 8pm - $10
Curated and hosted by Yuri Lane, Beatboxers, rappers, breakdancers, and musicians meet with tap dancers, storytellers, slam poets,singers and other talented individuals for acts both spontaneous and rehearsed. Beatbox Chicago LTD. encourages audiences to explore the human and and make music with your mouth!. The creative magic culminates with Maestro Yuri Lane conducting the Symphony of Sound when all the performers solo and harmonize in a symphony of sound like no other. Prepare to have your mind blown while you clap your hands to the Beatbox! Yuri Lane is an actor and human beatbox based in Chicago. He is classically trained in theater, has extensive experience performing in improv, and is the star of three solo hip-hop pieces. Along with his solo shows – MeTube, Soundtrack City, and From Tel Aviv to Ramallah – Yuri is internationally known as the pioneer of beatbox harmonica, a blend of Chicago Blues and Hip-Hop, on his YouTube channel.. Yuri appeared on the Steve Harvey show, Windy City Live, WGN and clubs and venues around Chicago and he continues to perform around the U.S., Europe and Middle East. Yuri is excited to bring his amazing new crew, Chicago Beatbox LTD to Martyrs'.
Kinda like a rapper more like a MC… Pugs Atomz woke up in this world at Leo in Pittsburgh PA., son of a Radio host and a Painter. His love of Hip Hop developed when his family moved to Chicago; during grade school he would see the graffiti on the trains and in his neighbourhood of Englewood. These trains also would have rap groups performing and singers doing their thing for spare change. The leader in him was born in High School, when a few friends thought his idea to be a Nacrobat was a great thing to be. Fast forward a few years and Nacrobats (90 members strong) incompassed everything he wanted and learned watching the structure and moves of Zulu Nation, Chi Rock Nation, Lo Lifes, and Dem Dare. Breakers, graf writers, DJ’s, poets, promoters, Mc’s etc… all under his umbrella spanning Saulk village to Chicago to Rockford. At this time his parents would have people like Oscar Brown Jr. in his living room performing “Signifying Monkey” and various poets, and visual artist of the time schooling him, to give me a sense of culture and balance. His first solo adventure “Thanks for not Rhyming”, on Galapagos 4 records, featured his crew and production from Molemen (Mf Doom, Atmosphere, Saigon) and received a warm response from the underground and started him doing shows across the USA. His second time out “24 Years later” on his own Birthwrite Records faired even better, getting him shows overseas and on a few tours to get his music to the people. Later on he started doing CTA radio with Thaione Davis and Kevin Maxey, a radio show dedicated to Hip Hop with interviews and freestyles, pushing Chicago Artist on the legendary WHPK 88.5fm. Hosting a TV show “Barbershop Hip Hop”, interviewing everyone from Cope 2 to Gym Class heroes to Kurtis Blow, Pugs and partner Slim the Barber would even shoot videos for the locals to have more content. 2007 -2008 saw Pugs getting into fashion, designing clothing/fitted hats with the likes of American Needle and Afro Wear. Late 2007 he got on a 38 city tour with DJ Vadim and Abstract rude around the US and Canada. Being away from home he noticed the scene changing around him, he quickly adapted to the internet life releasing free mixtapes. 2008 also saw a rise in violence in Chicago schools, so Mr. Atomz wrote the song “Me and you” addressing it. He got involved with Coalmine Music, the Stop the violence movement, and teaching with After School matters. Pugs Atomz is well on his way to move people with his music. ”Pugs drops fun and thoughtful albums that take a few listens for you to realize how rare that combination is nowadays. It’s clear he takes rapping seriously without being so himself, always exuding laid back confidence” -(Okay player).
Waffle Gang leader singer/producer/ rapper/ comedian Awdazcate pronounced Audacity is coming fresh off a beat battle (Beat Grade) in LA winning and continuing to provide beats for the masses. He just released 7 Deadly Sins with fellow Waffle Gang member Mack Nito forming the group AWMACK. Awdazcate will be releasing The Waffle King in Mid April and will be opening up for Pharaoh Monch March 17th at Sub T. Push Play and enjoy the tunes........
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Tue, Apr 11 - 9pm - $10
The Grateful String Band puts an bluegrass spin on the music of the Grateful Dead! Anything related is fair game too. Peter Rowan, Tony Rice, David Grisman, Old & In The Way, and of course, Bill Monroe! TGSB's family includes Jim Boukas - guitar, Kris Nowak - guitar, Duff Driscoll - upright, Eric Lambert - guitar, Matt Arendt - guitar, Ben Wright - banjo, Jason Berger - mando, Steve Haberichter - mando, Pat Lyons - mando/dobro, Tom Murray - fiddle, Wavy Dave - banjo, Greg Morland - mando, Dan Andree - fiddle, Spencer Savoie - banjo, Grateful Gary - upright bass, James Chrzan - keys, Mike Krieglstein - upright bass, and more!
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Wed, Apr 12 - 8pm - $10
CHIRP Radio’s Live Lit and Music series, The First Time, is unlike any storytelling show in Chicago. It pairs our readers' personal stories about a First Time experience with a song performance.This unique structure allows the story to resonate with audience members as they experience the accompanying song covered by our house band, The First Time Four band. The band is a remix lineup of Chicago power pop icons Frisbie and features: Steve Frisbie, Liam Davis, Gerald Dowd and Scott Stevenson. These musicians stay current playing around town with the likes of Robbie Fulks, Ian Hunter, Kelly Hogan, Nora O'Connor, Tributosaurus and more. As the First Time House Band they take special care to perform unexpected song arrangements of said covers. It is hard to tell what the audience enjoys more each story or each song.January's theme is First Issue, and readers include Britt Julious, Writer; Sarah Sherman, Nightmare Helltrap; Bill Ayers, Activist/Organizer; JC Brooks, Musician; Allie Wachowski, Amateur Hour Podcast; Dan Epstein of CHIRP Radio.The show is a benefit for CHIRP Radio.org and is hosted by The Moth champion Jenn Sodini. Past readers featured in this quarterly series include Shannon Cason, Joe Meno, Dan Ponce, Len Kasper, Tony Fitzpatrick, Kelly Hogan and Ji Suk Yi.
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Thu, Apr 13 - 8pm - $7
Dan Whitaker & The Shinebenders are a modern day honky-Tonk band from Chicago, IL. They have been entertaining audiences since 2003 with countless performances in Chicago and the Midwest. Their new CD Truck Ride delivers 16 new Dan Whitaker songs, following up their previous albums Shinebender (2006) and Your Final Ride (2004). Shinebenders include Earl Powers on bass, Belden “Trip” Kimball on acoustic guitar and vocals, and Chase Jackson on drums. Dan Whitaker is a long time Chicago based singer, song writer, and guitarist. Whitaker's past associations go back to the late 1980's with DeKalb IL. punk-funk group June Bug Massacre, 1990's with the Americana/blues/rock band Great Plains Gypsies, 2000's with Chicago jam-rockers The Gyps and the Americana/rock band Western Grand.
Hipsters, two-steppers, and even grizzled country purists agree Lonesome Still might be the best-kept secret in Chicago’s country music scene. You’ll hear the influence of the band’s blues, rock, and folk roots as they create a unique retro-country sound anchored by lead singer Michael O’Briant’s Johnny Cash-baritone, sweetened by Kary Ream and Emily Albright’s perfect harmonies, not to mention Emily’s fiddling. Add Chicago music scene veterans Tony Wittrock on lead guitar, Michael “Q” Quiroz on bass, Dave Huizenga on rhythm guitar and vocals, plus Theresa Drda on drums, and you’ve got Chicago’s best outlaw country group.
The Country Doctors founded their practice in 2001. They refer to themselves as an “alt-classic-neo-traditionalist-honkabilly band.” Their roots are in the heartfelt repertoire of country musicians who played and sang with a purity of emotion often lacking in the genre today, while at the same time embracing contemporary artists who share a similar approach to country music. They’re easy to find as they play many venues and festivals in and around the Chicago area. In 2011 they opened Country Music Day at Taste of Chicago which culminated with a classic performance by Loretta Lynn and her band. They’ve been nominated for a Chicago Music Award as Best Country-Western Entertainer in 2011 and 2012. They have two CDs on the independent Medical Records label. The Docs emphasize vocal harmonies, tight arrangements and hot instrumental solos. A typical Docs performance will include their original songs as well as the genre-defining sound of vintage honky-tonkers such as Hank Williams and Buck Owens, songs by country outlaws like Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash and music from contemporary and/or alternative country artists. Most importantly, they like to have fun with their music and their audience.
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Fri, Apr 14 - 9pm - $15adv/$18door
Willie Green (Neville Brothers) / Charlie Wooten (Bonerama, Royal Southern Brotherhood) / Jake Eckert (Dirty Dozen) / CR Gruver (Meters) / Jeff Watkins (James Brown Band) /When New Orleans Suspects arose from the primordial musical soup that is New Orleans,they were a fill-in band and an occasional jam band at their neighborhood Maple Leaf Bar.The group brought together some of the best, most highly respected players in New Orleansincluding Jake Eckert, Jeff Watkins, CR Gruver “Mean” Willie Green on drums, and ReggieScanlan. When they started touring late in 2011, naysayers in the Crescent City agreed itwould not last; the Suspects would be another short-lived super group that would quickly fallapart under the weight of egos and money. New Orleans Suspects exceeded expectationsand some five years later they have delivered their fourth album release, Kaleidoscoped.Jake Eckert, the guitarist and one of the principal songwriters and vocalists, is a veteran of tenyears on the road with Dirty Dozen Brass Band, a former member of Larry Carlton’s band, anda Grammy Award ®-winning engineer. He has extensive formal music training and actuallytaught at the prestigious Guitar Institute of Technology. Not only has Eckert won a Grammy, heplayed on The Grammys broadcast with New Orleans legend Allen Toussaint.Kaleidoscoped was recorded at his Rhythm Shack Studios with assistance from Suspect JeffWatkins, a twelve-year veteran as sax player and section leader for the late James Brown,who constantly referred to him as “the ninth wonder of the world.” Watkins has a formalmusical and engineering education, having attended both the Universities of Missouri andMiami. He was a long-time member of the Joss Stone Band and has performed on multiplenetwork television shows.Keyboardist CR Gruver, the other principal songwriter and vocalist, spent years immersinghimself in the piano style of New Orleans legends like Dr. John, James Booker and AllenToussaint and is arguably the best living practitioner of the New Orleans boogie-woogie pianostyle, which is an aggregate of boogie-woogie, Caribbean rhythmic patterns and second line.Gruver made a name for himself, first in Philadelphia, then in the Rockies, with his bandPolytoxic, and later with Southern rockers Outformation. He also spent time in Leo Nocentelli’sband, pursuing the Meters’ groove.“Mean” Willie Green, best known for his 35 years as drummer for The Neville Bros., has alsoplayed on albums by Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, Edie Brickell and The Grateful Dead. He literallyinvented one of the primary styles of New Orleans trap drumming for which he gets credit frommusicians around the world.Founding bassist Reggie Scanlan spent 34 years on the road as an original member of TheNew Orleans Radiators after stints with both Professor Longhair and James Booker. Thescholarly Scanlan, one of the last living connections to the original generation of New OrleansR&B musicians, has had to leave the road due to illness. Charlie Wooton (formerly of RoyalSouthern Brotherhood) now fills the touring bass chair. Scanlan’s illness drove the Suspectsto help fund medical care for the New Orleans music community. Scanlan, the band and itsmanagement have organized and directed numerous benefit concerts for the New OrleansMusicians Clinic, a 401(c)3 foundation that provides free and low-cost medical care andcounseling for more than 2,500 musicians. The band’s work with the clinic led them to joinforces with JoJo Hermann of Widespread Panic to present three versions of the benefit series“Down on the Bayou,” featuring the Suspects as musical directors and house band with guestsas diverse as Dr. John, all members of Widespread Panic, Al Schnier of moe., Marcia Ball,Harry Shearer, Leland Sklar, members of Aquarium Rescue Unit and “Beehive Queen”Christine Ohlman from the Saturday Night Live band.New Orleans Suspects are unbelievably tight on stage with their peers, press, venue ownersand promoters singing the praises of their musical prowess. They annually perform in a keyslot on the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival’s main stage. USA Today called theirAcura Stage set “Outstanding…a sound that could have only bubbled up from this city.…”New Orleans Jazzfest founder and current director Quint Davis says, “The Suspects are deeptissue New Orleans Funk and have emerged as one of the banner New Orleans music groups;taking their place among the standard bearers of our music. And they rock! Rather, funk.”They have become a regular fixture at noted concert and festival venues in San Francisco,San Diego, St. Louis, Chicago, Minneapolis, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Atlanta,Birmingham, and in what has become a major stomping ground, New York City, where VillageVoice called them “a seriously funky crew,” and even The New Yorker occasionally notes theirpassing through the metropolis. The San Diego Union Tribune called them, “a rollicking blendof funk, jazz, blues, rock and vintage N’awlins R&B, designed to fill dance floors with gyratingcelebrants.”They have formed touring alliances with Tower of Power, Glen David Andrews (of Tréméfame) and Paul Barrere and Fred Tackett of Little Feat. The Barrere/Tackett/Suspects mashuphas been increasingly in demand at music festivals and has generated a track, “DixieHighway,” that appears on Kaleidoscoped. Members of Tower of Power and “Big Chief” JuanPardo also guest on the album on which the Suspects look at the history of New Orleansmusic through a brightly colored prismatic chamber and thus the album title.The band’s first, self-released eponymous album debuted in 2011 and featured the smokingCR Gruver original “36 Cars” as well as a few other band originals interspersed with coversongs. In 2012, the Suspects produced and released Caught Live at the Maple Leaf, a lovingtribute to the nightclub where it all started and a testament to the band’s increasing skills.Their 2014 studio album, Ouroboros, released on Louisiana Red Hot Records, generatedsubstantial radio play, both in the terrestrial world and on multiple Sirius/XM channels for focustracks “Get Back What You Given,” Soothe Me,” and “Magdalena” as well as rave reviews andfeatures in publications such as Stereophile, Downbeat, Modern Drummer and RelixMagazine. Kaleidoscoped will be released digitally and on CD on September 16th and on vinyl onSeptember 30th on Louisiana Red Hot Records. Headquartered in New Orleans, LouisianaRed Hot Records has released over 200 albums of the hottest Blues, Jazz, R&B, Gospel,Funk, Zydeco, Cajun and Rock, and is a leader among Southern independent labels with titlesby a plethora of New Orleans acts including Rebirth Brass Band, Dumpstaphunk andTrombone Shorty
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Sat, Apr 15 - 9pm - $15
The Joe Marcinek Band is an ever evolving mixture of original compositions and incredible musicians. Each show has a slightly different lineup and interpretation. The music is a blend of jazz and funk with a cerebral emphasis on groove and improvisation. They dropped their latest album ‘Slink’ via Hitman Records in December 2016, featuring Bernie Worrell’s (P-Funk, Talking Heads) last recording and produced by Joey Porter (The Motet).
Drummer for Lotus, Mike Greenfield has also played with the Disco Biscuits, Conspirator, the New Deal, State Radio, JM2, Xylos, the Ally, the NuYorican Salsa Boys, Rhett Tyler, and many more.
Hammond B3 virtuoso Ike Stubblefield is a music industry legend. With almost 50 years in the business, you may think he’s seen and done it all, but he’s just getting started.He cut his teeth backing Motown legends like the Four Tops, The Temptations, Marvin Gaye, Martha Reeves, Stevie Wonder and Rare Earth. He lent his soulful R&B style to Al Green, Ike & Tina Turner, Curtis Mayfield, B.B. King, The Pointer Sisters and George Benson, and helped create the classic B3 sound that others would imitate for generations to come. In 2010, he collaborated with Grammy-winning Atlanta soul man Cee Lo Green, recording organ and keyboards on 9 tracks.These days, the B3 icon and mini-Moog master stays busy jamming with Papa Mali in New Orleans, rocking with Big Hat in Nashville and producing out of his Atlanta studio. Drawing from his recent time with the Derek Trucks Band and years on the road as a musician-for-hire, Stubblefield is finding his true passion collaborating with old friends and bringing the loose ends of an illustrious career together on his new project, The Ike Stubblefield Trio.“I’m combining all elements of my 46 years of playing,” said Stubblefield. “My style’s kind of all over the place so it’s not a jam band, or jazz or funk necessarily, but it has all those elements.”Stubblefield’s craft and ingenuity on the keys landed him a plethora of jobs within the music field. Always busy with a new project, his career twists and turns have involved writing and scoring music for commercials, TV shows and film; founding clubs in Vancouver, Toledo and Atlanta; and performing as one of the world’s premier organ players.“The B3 organ at the hands of a player like Ike Stubblefield becomes a force of nature,” one reviewer wrote following his headlining of the 2011 Savannah Music Festival.A fixture of San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury neighborhood in the early 1970s, Stubblefield broadened his sound to fit the rock stylings of Janis Joplin, Eric Clapton, Jerry Garcia, Rod Stewart and Boz Scaggs. His reputation as a musician’s musician ensured his spot at the top of industry insiders’ lists of the most sought-after supporting band mates.After traveling the world as a performing artist, Stubblefield took to the studio in 1976, producing, composing and writing songs with the likes of Phil Spector and Quincy Jones. Other world-famous collaborators would include Jim Capaldi of Traffic and singer-songwriter/guitarist Larry Lee.Following 13 years of studio work through the 80s, Stubblefield spent much of the 90s performing in jazz clubs across the Pacific Northwest like Vancouver’s The Purple Onion and Seattle’s Jazz Alleywith his band Is Not Was. After relocating to Atlanta in 2001, he Packed folks in at The Roxy, Variety Playhouse and The Dogwood Festival.After 10 years of fighting with Cancer , Ike's back up and running stronger than ever..kicking off 2012 with a new CD, featuring 5, new 2012 Grammy winners performing on it, and he himself performing on 29 Cd's last year CeeLo, Jimmy Herring and most recent Ruthie Foster"s "Let It Burn" to name a few..2013 Ike has been Headling major theaters such as The Georgia Theater, The Orange Peel.etc.. and major festivals,New Orleans Jazz Festival, Savannah Jazz Fest., Lionel Hampton Jazz Fest. to name a few.. and countless Special guest appearances with Friends such as The Warren Haynes Band, Widespread Panic, Gov.Mule. Zac Brown, Derek Trucks, The Allman Bros. Jimmy Herring and many others...But no matter the job, Stubblefield continues to earn accolades from his peers and critics alike.Ike Stubblefied is more than just a performer, he’s an artist in the true sense of the word, and whether writing, producing or composing, he is always working to perfect his art.
Simply put, MELK is instrumental melodic dance rock. Hailing from Chicago, MELK is committed to throwing the best musical parties around. With their energetic performances, memorable melodies, captivating improvised compositions, and deep grooves, a MELK show is guaranteed to have something for all fans of live music. Above all else, fans of MELK have the opportunity to experience live instrumental music that celebrates life with a rockin’ dance party! Come check out a live MELK show near you and see why this band is something you won’t want to miss! Brad Miller - Guitar / Dave Brandwein - Drums / Daniel Ranieri - Bass / Jason Kearney - Keyboards.
For over 10 years, the Western Illinois based roots rock/jam band "The Dawn" has been spreading their love of cutting edge improvisational rock throughout the Midwest. From their humble beginnings in the shadow of the Mississippi River, they have crafted out their place as one of the premier up and coming jam bands. The Dawn's live show experience has proven contagious and is tightly gripped in spacious jams, roaring guitar and soulful harmonies. These four accomplished musicians push the envelope at every performance and audiences are rewarded with an experience that can only be described as "The Dawn Effect." Coupled with an equally adventurous light show, The Dawn concerts keep their dedicated and growing fanbase coming back for more.
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Mon, Apr 17 - 8pm - $8
Louder Than a Mom because everyone has a depressing, shocking, miserable, vulgar, hilarious family story! Storytelling is one of the oldest human traditions. Come and share yours. If you’re not ready to talk about your family tragedy, your judgmental mother-in-law, your drunk Uncle Pete who ruins every holiday, or why you hate your four-year-old, come and listen. We all love a good bedtime story!!
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Tue, Apr 18 - 9pm - $10
Comprised of some of Chicago's top musicians, 40,000 HEADMEN performs the hits and deep - cuts of British Jamband TRAFFIC! Featuring Wavy Dave Burlingame and Scott Tipping of Cornmeal,John Reed of Helping Phrendly Orchestra and Terrapin Flyer,Packy Lundholm of Terrapin Flyer,and special guests
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Wed, Apr 19 - 9pm - $7
Jasmine Lorraine “Wonky Tonk” Poole grew up in the hard scrabble portion of the American heartland. Kentucky, to be precise. Her world of loss and longing is familiar terrain for lovers of country, bluegrass and folk music but, just as Kentucky can be viewed as a bridge between north and south, Wonk’s music blends elements of Indie/Alternative rock with old school country. It’s hard to separate the wonk from the tonk. Nor should you try.
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Thu, Apr 20 - 8pm - $10adv/$12door
Originally from Iowa City, IA, recently relocated to Fort Collins, CO, EUFORQUESTRA (pronounced "yoo-fohr-keh-struh" -euphoria+orchestra) has been touring more than ever and is continuing to take its progressive, genre-crossing afro-jazz-funk fusions to new horizons. Emerging as a musical powerhouse, Eufórquestra is quickly spreading its self-proclaimed “Afro-Caribbean-Barnyard-Funk;” a unique, rhythmic blend, integrating such genres as Afrobeat, Reggae, Afro-Cuban, Samba, Soca, Funk, Salsa, and Dub.Eufórquestra’s music appeals to anyone and everyone, with a sound that “explodes, dances and melts in your ear with sheer bliss” (Chris M.Slawecki; AllAboutJazz.com). As percussionist and lead vocalist Matt Grundstad puts it, "Eufórquestra just wants to make people dance.”
"Grew up on the south side / Made friends with the east side / Made love on the north side," Dustin Smith coos as Love Lines, the debut album from his band the Maytags, gathers force like a summer thunderstorm... These phrases are specific to the cultural geography of the singer, guitarist, and songwriter's Des Moines, Iowa hometown, a music and arts community with a rising national profile highlighted by praise from the Talking Heads' David Byrne and glowing explorations from Politico and The Atlantic. But Smith's words also help evoke the Maytags' journey to this sultry nine-song set, one that also runs through Smith's time in New York — where studied jazz as a drummer — and the band's recording sessions in Tennessee. Other band members have roots in St. Louis; all studied jazz, mainly in central and northern Iowa. If there can be a New South, then there can be a sound that's Midwest Nouveau. Love Lines smolders with the intensity of a relationship that just ended — "both the good and the bad," Smith says. Recorded at Nashville's the Bomb Shelter with Andrija Tokic, who has also recorded Benjamin Booker and Alabama Shakes, the album sees Smith achieving a bit of the latter band's gut-busting, almost-preternatural howling on cathartic opener "Pushing Up Rivers." A three-part "Suite for Green Eyes," written as a whole by Smith and Tim Sanders (sax), inhabits the aftermath of a breakup: bittersweet acceptance, tempestuous reflection, and the lustful confusion of running into an ex once it's all over: "Fourth of July we'll be holding hands," Smith belts out on "Street Clothes," knowing full well he'll likely be watching the fireworks with somebody else. As much as Love Lines is born out of a breakup, it's also an artifact of a seven-piece band that has been honing its chops on the road. "Musically we worked our asses off on this," Smith says. "Me and Tim got together for the initial writing sessions and really tried to draw a lot of inspiration from the Daptone crew, Stax, Al Green. Just to name a few." The songs were then taken to the band and arranged as a unit, with each member having creative input on each song. The Maytags then tracked the whole album to 2 inch tape in less than 30 hours." That follows December 2014's Nova EP, recorded at the same studio and tracked to 2 inch tape in 19 hours. As Love Lines ends, with the rhythmically and emotionally tricky "Problems," Smith's weary purr fades away: "Someone call the doctor, the doctor, the doc-doc-doc..." The cure is already there, in a balmy sound that must've blown in from some fantastical Iowa coast: a flyover that flew away and returned wiser for the voyage.
The music played by Zoofunkyou is a blend of blues soaked psychedelic funk. The freedom to explore our instruments is endless and what ever comes to mind will be played through a stream of sonic bliss.
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Fri, Apr 21 - 7pm - $25
Whether seen on HBO’s Treme or at their legendary Tuesday night gig at The Maple Leaf, Grammy-winning Rebirth Brass Band is a true New Orleans institution. Formed in 1983 by the Frazier brothers, the band has evolved from playing the streets of the French Quarter to playing festivals and stages all over the world. While committed to upholding the tradition of brass bands, they have also extended themselves into the realms of funk and hip-hop to create their signature sound. “Rebirth can be precise whenever it wants to,” says The New York Times, “but it’s more like a party than a machine. It’s a working model of the New Orleans musical ethos: as long as everybody knows what they’re doing, anyone can cut loose.” In the wake of the sometimes-stringent competition among New Orleans brass bands, Rebirth is the undisputed leader of the pack, and they show no signs of slowing down.Following the Grammy-winning Rebirth of New Orleans, Rebirth Brass Band is at it again with Move Your Body, an infectious, groove-laden collection of hip-shakers sure to saturate the dance floor.Rollicking originals like "Who's Rockin, Who's Rollin'"? and "Take 'Em to the Moon" reaffirm the band's position as head of the brass throne while the rasta-esque "On My Way" and leave-nothing-to-the-imagination lyrics of "HBNS" showcase the unit's talent for penning unabashed party starters.Boasting a mastery of Rebirth's signature "heavy funk" sound, Move Your Body pushes and swings, leaving behind an 11 track thumbprint, approved by the Frazier brothers themselves, of a sultry Tuesday night spent dancing on their home court at the Maple Leaf Bar in New Orleans.
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Fri, Apr 21 - 10pm - $25
Whether seen on HBO’s Treme or at their legendary Tuesday night gig at The Maple Leaf, Grammy-winning Rebirth Brass Band is a true New Orleans institution. Formed in 1983 by the Frazier brothers, the band has evolved from playing the streets of the French Quarter to playing festivals and stages all over the world. While committed to upholding the tradition of brass bands, they have also extended themselves into the realms of funk and hip-hop to create their signature sound. “Rebirth can be precise whenever it wants to,” says The New York Times, “but it’s more like a party than a machine. It’s a working model of the New Orleans musical ethos: as long as everybody knows what they’re doing, anyone can cut loose.” In the wake of the sometimes-stringent competition among New Orleans brass bands, Rebirth is the undisputed leader of the pack, and they show no signs of slowing down.Following the Grammy-winning Rebirth of New Orleans, Rebirth Brass Band is at it again with Move Your Body, an infectious, groove-laden collection of hip-shakers sure to saturate the dance floor.Rollicking originals like "Who's Rockin, Who's Rollin'"? and "Take 'Em to the Moon" reaffirm the band's position as head of the brass throne while the rasta-esque "On My Way" and leave-nothing-to-the-imagination lyrics of "HBNS" showcase the unit's talent for penning unabashed party starters.Boasting a mastery of Rebirth's signature "heavy funk" sound, Move Your Body pushes and swings, leaving behind an 11 track thumbprint, approved by the Frazier brothers themselves, of a sultry Tuesday night spent dancing on their home court at the Maple Leaf Bar in New Orleans.
Chicago bassist/composer, Matt Ulery, is known for leading a diverse variety of bands in jazz and chamber music spectrums. With his freshest project, Ulery presents rousing new music with his modern-hot jazz brass band, Pollinator.Dustin Laurenzi / tenor saxophoneJames Davis / trumpetSteve Duncan / trombonePaul Bedal / pianoQuin Kirchner / drumsMatt Ulery / sousaphone
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Sat, Apr 22 - 7pm - $25
Whether seen on HBO’s Treme or at their legendary Tuesday night gig at The Maple Leaf, Grammy-winning Rebirth Brass Band is a true New Orleans institution. Formed in 1983 by the Frazier brothers, the band has evolved from playing the streets of the French Quarter to playing festivals and stages all over the world. While committed to upholding the tradition of brass bands, they have also extended themselves into the realms of funk and hip-hop to create their signature sound. “Rebirth can be precise whenever it wants to,” says The New York Times, “but it’s more like a party than a machine. It’s a working model of the New Orleans musical ethos: as long as everybody knows what they’re doing, anyone can cut loose.” In the wake of the sometimes-stringent competition among New Orleans brass bands, Rebirth is the undisputed leader of the pack, and they show no signs of slowing down.Following the Grammy-winning Rebirth of New Orleans, Rebirth Brass Band is at it again with Move Your Body, an infectious, groove-laden collection of hip-shakers sure to saturate the dance floor.Rollicking originals like "Who's Rockin, Who's Rollin'"? and "Take 'Em to the Moon" reaffirm the band's position as head of the brass throne while the rasta-esque "On My Way" and leave-nothing-to-the-imagination lyrics of "HBNS" showcase the unit's talent for penning unabashed party starters.Boasting a mastery of Rebirth's signature "heavy funk" sound, Move Your Body pushes and swings, leaving behind an 11 track thumbprint, approved by the Frazier brothers themselves, of a sultry Tuesday night spent dancing on their home court at the Maple Leaf Bar in New Orleans.
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Sat, Apr 22 - 10pm - $25
Whether seen on HBO’s Treme or at their legendary Tuesday night gig at The Maple Leaf, Grammy-winning Rebirth Brass Band is a true New Orleans institution. Formed in 1983 by the Frazier brothers, the band has evolved from playing the streets of the French Quarter to playing festivals and stages all over the world. While committed to upholding the tradition of brass bands, they have also extended themselves into the realms of funk and hip-hop to create their signature sound. “Rebirth can be precise whenever it wants to,” says The New York Times, “but it’s more like a party than a machine. It’s a working model of the New Orleans musical ethos: as long as everybody knows what they’re doing, anyone can cut loose.” In the wake of the sometimes-stringent competition among New Orleans brass bands, Rebirth is the undisputed leader of the pack, and they show no signs of slowing down.Following the Grammy-winning Rebirth of New Orleans, Rebirth Brass Band is at it again with Move Your Body, an infectious, groove-laden collection of hip-shakers sure to saturate the dance floor.Rollicking originals like "Who's Rockin, Who's Rollin'"? and "Take 'Em to the Moon" reaffirm the band's position as head of the brass throne while the rasta-esque "On My Way" and leave-nothing-to-the-imagination lyrics of "HBNS" showcase the unit's talent for penning unabashed party starters.Boasting a mastery of Rebirth's signature "heavy funk" sound, Move Your Body pushes and swings, leaving behind an 11 track thumbprint, approved by the Frazier brothers themselves, of a sultry Tuesday night spent dancing on their home court at the Maple Leaf Bar in New Orleans.
ESSO (El Sonido Sonic Octopus) perform funky Afro-Latino and roots rock inspired dance music. The ethnically diverse crew of musicians establish rustic polyrhythmic grooves and combine biting twang guitars with the strength of brass horns, coro group singing, and urban poetry. Members: Armando Pérez, Kevin Miller, Dan Lieber, Ezra Lange, Julian Harris, Diana Mosquera, Puerko Pitzotl, Juan Lugo and Luis Tubens all bring a vital cultural contribution to the band's unique "afrojam funkbeat" sound. Inspired by the Chicago streets that radiate: blues, jazz, house, and global thinkers that praise unity through consciousness, the band unapologetically believes in the healing nature/power of music. Having just released their full length self-titled debut album, the city is listening back.
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Tue, Apr 25 - 8pm - $15
With feet firmly planted in the old-time song tradition, hands soiled by the dirt of rock n’ roll and eyes fixed steadily on the future of real country music, the Hackensaw Boys are among the most exciting groups charting new territory in today’s diverse Americana music scene. Everybody sings a bit of lead, everybody sings a bit of harmony and most members know when to shut up. Instrumentation includes banjo, guitar, mandolin, fiddle, harmonica, upright bass, charismo (a home-made tin can contraption) and the occasional trap kit. The Hackensaws have toured with a bevy of diverse acts that were quick to embrace the group’s sound and songcraft, including: The Flaming Lips, Cracker, Modest Mouse, Camper Van Beethoven, The Detroit Cobras, Cake, Railroad Earth, Cheap Trick and De La Soul. In 2003, the Hackensaw Boys were honored to serve as Charlie Louvin’s backing band on that Country Music Hall of Fame member’s nationwide tour. “The band infuses their grassy tornado with brazen punk attitude and catchy pop structure, while simultaneously remaining vehemently sincere.”— Pitchfork. “Before string bands were a “thing” in popular culture, there was the Hackensaw Boys. Before The Avett Brothers were selling out arenas, before Mumford & Sons were becoming the biggest band in music in a given year, before everybody and their brother was growing a beard and wearing suspenders and playing in jug bands, the Hackensaw Boys were mixing bluegrass and old time music with a punk attitude, and reshaping what a modern old school string band could sound like.”— Saving Country Music.
The Tillers got their start in August 2007 when they started thumping around with some banjos and guitars and a big wooden bass. Their earliest gigs were for coins and burritos on the city’s famous Ludlow Street in the district of Clifton. The songs they picked were mostly older than their grandparents. Some came from Woody Guthrie, some were southern blues laments, and many were anonymous relics of Appalachian woods, churches, riverboats, railroads, prairies, and coal mines. Their look didn’t fit the stereotype. They were clearly recovering punk rockers with roots in city’s west side punk rock and hardcore scene. The punk influence gave their sound a distinctive bite, setting them apart from most other folk acts- a hard-driving percussive strum and stomp that brought new pulse and vinegar to some very old songs. But their musical range soon proved itself as they floated from hard-tackle thumping to tender graceful melody, all the while topped by Oberst and Geil’s clear tenor harmonies. They began picking up weekly gigs around the city’s bar scene. It didn’t take long before their signature treatment of classic folk songs became the preferred versions of Cincinnati locals. Their audiences swelled, growing into an assortment of grey-haired mechanics, neo-hippies, farmers, punkers, professors, and random strays all stomping, clapping, singing, and belting outbursts of “John Henry!” “Darlin’ Corey!” Ever since, the band has come to each show with the same energy. They are magnetic showmen, mature musicians, and colorful storytellers. The Tillers have since won over Cincinnati’s bar and festival scene, and launching tours with tireless momentum. They were awarded CityBeat Magazine’s Cincinnati Entertainment Award for best Folk and Americana act in 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014 & 2015. Their relentless gigging has taken them throughout the East coast, the Midwest and West, the Appalachian south and to the UK and Ireland opening for the St.Louis crooner, Pokey LaFarge. In the summer of 2009, veteran NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw featured the Tillers on a documentary about US Route 50. Brokaw showcased the group’s song “There is Road (Route 50)” as a testimony to the highway’s role as a connective tissue of the nation. Musically, the band wears many hats. Their sound has proven to be an appropriate fit with a wide range of musical styles- traditional folk, bluegrass, jazz, punk rock and anything else they might run into. They have shared the stage with a broad swath of national touring acts, ranging from renowned folk legends such as Doc Watson, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Guy Clark, Country Joe McDonald, Jerry Douglas, Iris Dement, Pokey LaFarge and The Carolina Chocolate Drops to rambunctious rock daredevils like the Legendary Shack Shakers. Always moving, the Tillers continue to enter new territory. Their musical growth can be heard through the scape of their many releases, 2008′s debut record Ludlow Street Rag, 2010′s By The Signs, 2011′s Wild Hog in the Woods, 2012′s Live from the Historic Southgate House, 2013′s Hand On The Plow and many more bootleg releases. The band’s lineup has also taken new shape. In February 2010, long-time bassist Jason Soudrette fondly parted ways with the group, being replaced by Aaron Geil, brother of guitarist Sean. In 2015 the band added fiddler Joe Macheret (Joe’s Truck Stop/Urban Pioneers) to the ranks. Recalibrating has not slowed their pace. They continue to plot their travels around the map, electrifying new places and making new friends wherever they go. From place to place, they carry with them more instruments, new songs, and funnier stories. They are Cincinnati’s traveling minstrels. Expect to hear from them soon.
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Wed, Apr 26 - 8pm - $10
Friends of the Devil honors the timeless music of the Grateful Dead, played by the finest musicians in Chicago.
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Thu, Apr 27 - 9pm - $15adv/$20door
Terrapin Flyer began in 1999 as the house band for the Sunday Grateful Dead Jam at the Boulevard Cafe in Chicago. Through the many associations developed there and many that have continued since, the band has grown into one of the premier Grateful Dead inspired touring acts in the nation. Terrapin Flyer has been performing with a revolving cast of some of the finest musicians in the Grateful Dead family and continuing the tradition of bringing the familiar music of the Grateful Dead and Jerry Garcia Band to bold new improvisational places. The band draws from the a variety of skilled musicians including Grateful Dead keyboardists Tom Constanten, Bob Bralove and Vince Welnick (RIP). They also tour with Jerry Garcia Band organist Melvin Seals and Ratdog guitarist Mark Karan. Additionally, they have done one off shows with guest musicians such as grammy award winning blues harpist Sugar Blue, guitar prodigy Fareed Haque, Furthur guitarist John Kadlecik and musician, songwriter and music journalist David Gans. With these icons of Grateful Dead music, Terrapin Flyer has performed at prominent venues and headlined large festivals across the United States keeping the spirit of the Grateful Dead alive.
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Fri, Apr 28 - 8pm - $30adv/$35door
Martin Barre has been the guitarist of Jethro Tull for 43 years, his sound and playing having been a major factor in their success. Album sales have exceeded 60 million units and they continue to be played worldwide, representing an important part of classic rock history.Martin’s guitar playing has earned him a high level of respect and recognition; his solo on the song "Aqualung" is consistantly rated one of the best solos of all time. His playing on the album ‘Crest of a Knave’ earned him a Grammy award in 1988.As well as numerous Jethro Tull albums, Martin has worked with many other artists including Paul McCartney, Phil Collins, Gary Moore, Jo Bonamassa and Chris Thompson and has shared a stage with such legends as Hendrix, Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin.As Jethro Tull are taking a long break from touring, Martin has put together a band to play the "classic" music from the Tull catalogue. His band is a total commitment to give the Tull fans and a broader audience the chance to hear tracks not performed for many years. The band includes Dan Crisp: guitar and voice, Alan Thomson: bass, George Lindsay: drums.
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Sat, Apr 29 - 8pm - $30adv/$35door
Martin Barre has been the guitarist of Jethro Tull for 43 years, his sound and playing having been a major factor in their success. Album sales have exceeded 60 million units and they continue to be played worldwide, representing an important part of classic rock history.Martin’s guitar playing has earned him a high level of respect and recognition; his solo on the song "Aqualung" is consistantly rated one of the best solos of all time. His playing on the album ‘Crest of a Knave’ earned him a Grammy award in 1988.As well as numerous Jethro Tull albums, Martin has worked with many other artists including Paul McCartney, Phil Collins, Gary Moore, Jo Bonamassa and Chris Thompson and has shared a stage with such legends as Hendrix, Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin.As Jethro Tull are taking a long break from touring, Martin has put together a band to play the "classic" music from the Tull catalogue. His band is a total commitment to give the Tull fans and a broader audience the chance to hear tracks not performed for many years. The band includes Dan Crisp: guitar and voice, Alan Thomson: bass, George Lindsay: drums.
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Tue, May 2 - 8pm - $10
Bob Mamet is a 7-time chart-topping Jazz pianist and composer known for his uniquely melodic and vibrant style.Bob’s three major-label albums as a solo artist and two critically acclaimed releases with his prominent Bob Mamet Trio have garnered rave reviews and Top-Selling status around the globe. The Trio has recently sold out top Jazz venues in New York, Los Angeles, Philidelphia, Chicago, Houston, and Paris. The debut of the Bob Mamet Trio at the legendary Paris Jazz venue “Sunside/Sunset” prompted the French magazine Jazz Hot to declare: “What a discovery it was! ….their dichotomy of sweetness and fire, always to arrive at a beautiful osmosis.” Bob enjoyed success in Los Angeles as a lauded film composer, studio musician, and recording artist with Atlantic Records for 12 years. During his time with Atlantic, Bob continuously resided in the top ten on the national Jazz charts, hitting Number One 7 times. After Bob moved back to his hometown Chicago in 2014, his internationally hailed CD “London House Blues,” a tribute to the classic Chicago Jazz clubs of the 50’s and 60’s, received instant acclaim. Howard Reich of the Chicago Tribune wrote: “There's real musicality at the heart of Mamet's work” citing his "delicacy of tone and openly emotional style… A serious artist addressing important compositions [with] a silvery touch, a polished delivery and a fluency of expression.” Bob’s melodic-yet-authentic acoustic style has been well documented. The San Francisco Chronicle calls Bob a “master melody maker” and the Chicago Sun-Times calls him simply “The Natural.” His music has been played over one million times on radio throughout the world and is heard every day on Sirius/XM satellite radio. His one-of-a kind sound and ability to connect with audiences sets him apart as a true Jazz artist for the 21st Century.
Subhi is a singer, songwriter, composer based in Chicago. Her debut album (out this summer) is a Hindi Pop-Jazz album in collaboration with renowned musicians from the Chicago Jazz scene including Joaquin Garcia (Piano), Ivan Taylor (Double Bass), Gustavo Cortinas (Drums) & Rajiv Halim (Saxophone). Born in New Delhi, Subhi moved to New York when she was 16 years old. Later, she moved to Chicago and kept actively traveling to Mumbai for work on several music projects. Being in Chicago, she wanted to embrace the city’s vibrant jazz into her music. She started working with local musicians and this collaboration helped her discover a unique style. Today, her music highlights her journey as an artist between two cultures & showcases a blend of her Indian roots and the prominent Jazz scene of Chicago. Subhi recently performed at the 'Eye On India' festival in Chicago and her songs have been featured on NPR and WGN TV. She began her career working as a music assistant on Monsoon Wedding Broadway show in New York. She went on to compose, write, and sing for Bollywood movies and leading Indian digital studios.
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Thu, May 4 - 9pm - No Cover
free
After 25 years, The Big C Jamboree, will be ending in May 2017. A night of drinking, dancing, socializing, networking and non-stop music since 1992. For die hard rockabilly devotees and civilian music fans. Over the last decade, this highly organized vibrant jam session, held the first Thursday of every month at Martyrs', has become rockabilly central for many of the musicians & fans of Chicago's American roots scene. Although the monthly jam is devoted to rockabilly, the Big C Jamboree has also offered the span of '40's-'50's Amereicn roots music from Hillbilly Boogie to Western Swing, Jump Blues and 1st generation Rock-n-Roll. The night is run swiftly and simply: a host band performs a short set, followed by a myriad of roots musicians who do 3 songs each. The party like atmosphere includes socializing, drinking & dancing galore while the rotating line-up onstage usually features the raucous sounds of pompadoured rockabilly musicians wailing away on upright basses and hallow-bodied electric guitars; and there's NEVER a cover! It's one of the most dedicated evenings of music in the city.
AMAZING HEEBY JEEBIES members have got fired, arrested, incarcerated, shot, killed & resurrected. They're the worst of the worst & will scare you out of your pants. Fans are convinced if (The Cramps) Poison Ivy & Lux Interior had a twisted hipshakin' love child, it would be Ary. The Jeebies also invoke The Gun Club, Roky Erickson, Esquerita, The Sonics & The Blasters In their gritty roadside garagabilly terror drawing on 50's boogie to 60's garage horror punk deep from the underworld of moody psychotic rock n roll!
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Mon, May 8 - 8pm - $12
Dance Tribute is an annual series, in which a collection of songs from a single musician/band/artist are selected and paid tribute to through choreography and live performance.Over 60 Chicago dancers/movers/actors/choreographers are involved with every Tribute. It is a night of dance, happy chums, drinks, grub, laughs, art, and only a few uncomfortable moments.This year's Dance Tribute is especially exciting because it is the first tribute to a local composer; the man himself, the dreamy, McSteamy, Mark Messing!! Who is he?"Mark Messing is a performer, composer, and collaborator in interdisciplinary art groups. He co-founded local band, Mucca Pazza, as well as a number of artist-initiated projects including: The Human Television Network, The All American Anti-War Marching Band, and commercial music and sound design company, Maestro-Matic. He serves as a liaison to the artists, and is the Executive Director of Opera-Matic, NFP, an organization that activates public spaces for community engagement through people-powered sound, story, and interaction. He is a builder of community, an avid bicyclist, and a tremendous advocate for the Chicago neighborhoods. The man shops local people. More about the composer part: he is a music genius. I love the dude, and this Tribute is to say thanks for all of his efforts and excellence."Following every Dance Tribute is the greatest dance party of your life, inspired by the music of the night. This year, we'll have a live band for everyone to bump their booties to.
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Tue, May 9 - 9pm - $10
The Grateful String Band puts an bluegrass spin on the music of the Grateful Dead! Anything related is fair game too. Peter Rowan, Tony Rice, David Grisman, Old & In The Way, and of course, Bill Monroe! TGSB's family includes Jim Boukas - guitar, Kris Nowak - guitar, Duff Driscoll - upright, Eric Lambert - guitar, Matt Arendt - guitar, Ben Wright - banjo, Jason Berger - mando, Steve Haberichter - mando, Pat Lyons - mando/dobro, Tom Murray - fiddle, Wavy Dave - banjo, Greg Morland - mando, Dan Andree - fiddle, Spencer Savoie - banjo, Grateful Gary - upright bass, James Chrzan - keys, Mike Krieglstein - upright bass, and more!
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Thu, May 11 - 8pm - $10adv/$12door
Railway Gamblers is a four-piece Americana group that originated on the Southside of Chicago. The band consists of primary songwriter, Brendan Folliard, as well as Matt Fricks, Joe Sexton, and Sean Wilmsen. Having extensively played at a number of Chicago’s famous independent venues and having booked shows alongside a number of notable acts (Tom Hamilton’s American Babies, Head For The Hills), Railway Gamblers have been very active in the music scene, composing original material with storytelling lyrics, a vibrant folk rock sound, and a warm country twang that provides listeners with a fresh take on the classic Americana music genre. In April of 2015, the group recorded their debut album, Heart Of The Sun, at Kingsize Sound Labs with Mike Hagler (engineer on Wilco’s ‘Summerteeth’ and mastering engineer on My Morning Jacket’s ‘At Dawn’). Two singles from the album were released in June 2015: “Fade Away” and, “Diamond Road.” Heart of the Sun was officially released on July 10, 2015 in CD format and on a number of digital outlets (iTunes, Spotify, Amazon). The album received very positive reviews and the full recording, as well as individual tracks, was covered on several media outlets, including The Barn Presents and Indie Obsessive (a blog contributor to ‘Hype Machine’). The musical success of Railway Gamblers has prompted festival appearances in Battle Creek, MI and at the 11th Annual Rossaroo Music Festival in Watseka, IL. “Fade Away” received attention as the group’s first single and was played on the nationally recognized radio station, 93.1 WXRT. The Railway Gamblers will head back to Kingsize in November of 2015 to record their second album, Shadow of the Moon, set for release in Early 2016.
Anyone that has witnessed Lavengood perform will attest to these three key attributes: his big heart, wild energy on stage, and the aptitude on the many instruments that he plays. Having released 2 LPs and a 7 inch vinyl under his own name in conjunction with 2 LPs, an EP, and an album on the way with International touring act, Lindsay Lou & the Flatbellys, Mark Lavengood is no stranger to the hustle of the music industry. He is currently planning his third full length album, “We’ve Come Along,” to be released in May with Earthwork Music.
From the depths of Urbana, IL Bones Jugs has emerged as the premier xylophone driven roots Americana act in the country. With bones, jug, xylophone, kazoos, resonator guitar, 6-string banjo, upright bass, trap kit, horns, washboard and a medley of knick-knacks and noise makers Bones Jugs conjures up their eclectic acoustic sound. It’s a 21st century spin on early American music, that includes, but is not limited to, ragtime, dixieland, jugband, bluegrass, blues, string band, skiffle, spasm, swing and more. Whether it be with original songs, with hidden gems of the written or recorded archives, or with their own take on modern music, Bones Jugs places their unique stamp on everything they play. If you’re looking for a sound that you’ve heard around town, Bones Jugs may let you down, if you expect the unexpected you’ll get just what you expected!
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Sat, May 13 - 9pm - $18adv/$20door
Legendary guitar virtuoso Harvey Mandel, aka "The Snake," truly one of the most distinctive and innovative musicians, continues to perform throughout the world, captivating audiences with his inventive style of electric guitar playing. Lead guitarist of the legendary Californian R&B band Canned Heat, recruited by British blues man John Mayall to be a member of the Bluesbreakers, recorded on the 1976 The Rolling Stones LP "Black and Blue",his unique style is evident on the song "Hot Stuff." Harvey Mandel was a pioneer of modern electric blues from Chicago. He developed and mastered sustained and controlled feedback, displaying both extroversion and musical virtuosity. He has performed with many blues legends including Howlin' Wolf, Muddy Waters, Otis Rush, Albert King, and Buddy Guy. Harvey Mandel, "The King Of Sustain", has been cited as a major influence by many of today's music superstars. The critics call him "an unsung hero," "a hugely influential but almost forgotten giant of instrumental rock" and "the best known unknown in pop guitar." As roots music has gained prominence through the 90's, purists such as Mandel have had the opportunity to forge a path of musical integrity and expose new audiences to the original Harvey Mandel sound!
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Tue, May 16 - 9pm - $10
Comprised of some of Chicago's top musicians, 40,000 HEADMEN performs the hits and deep - cuts of British Jamband TRAFFIC! Featuring Wavy Dave Burlingame and Scott Tipping of Cornmeal,John Reed of Helping Phrendly Orchestra and Terrapin Flyer,Packy Lundholm of Terrapin Flyer,and special guests
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Fri, May 19 - 9pm - $12adv/$15door
Making Movies makes music that matters:Built upon a heavy foundation of Afro-Latino rhythms, they have created a bilingual,psychedelic re-envisioning of theLatin American “son.”The band’s second album, A La Deriva,(“adrift” or “swept away”), produced bySteve Berlin of Los Lobos, tells a storybased on the struggles of an immigrantfamily that tragically falls apart in America,and the consequential impact on thefollowing generation. Taking cues fromLatin American folklore, the band's soundswings intensely, at times sounding likeCompay Segundo being played by JimiHendrix and at other times like The TalkingHeads digging deep into a dembow. WhenFelix Contreras at NPR described the titletrack ‘Deriva’ he stated, “...the young bandMaking Movies (and its producer, SteveBerlin of Los Lobos) shows us how deeplythought-out lyrics sound next to a rhythmtrack that somehow both propels and floatswithout violating the laws of physics.”The band’s strong lyricism, persistentpercussive waves, and deft ways ofstraddling two cultures flowed easily intobecoming a bilingual recording. “SinceI was six years old my life has been inboth English and Spanish so I find itnatural to make music the same way,”explains singer/guitarist Enrique Chi.Enrique and his brother, bassist Diego Chi,grew up in Panama, listening to classicrock from their Papá’s collection. Mama,on the other hand loved to dance to thetraditional sounds of salsa, merengue andcumbia, and the entire family agreed on theinspiration of Panamanian musician RubenBlades. "A huge influence,” says Chi. Evenas a child, he understood the Blades epic,“Pedro Navaja,” to be a dark song you stillcould dance to, and turned a paradox into apersonal credo: “Music should have a deepermeaning, More than just a feel-good time;it needs to make you think a bit.”The brothers formed the band in KansasCity in 2009, with percussionist Juan-CarlosChaurand and drummer Brendan Culp.Upon releasing an EP, Aguardiente, in 2012,the band's sound was described by The K.C.Star’s Ink Magazine as "Cuban dance hallmerged with blasts of scabby guitar straightout of Sonic Youth's Day dream Nation, asif reinterpreted by Santana."
Radio Free Honduras is a mostly acoustic Latin folk-rock band, fronted by Honduran music legend and guitar virtuoso Charlie Baran. Before relocating to Chicago, Charlie was a fixture in the Honduran music scene. He became well known by those in the music industry as a composer and songwriter, and was revered by audiences for his talent as a performer. In Honduras he is best known as a founding member of the Honduran punta-rock band Banda Blanca. Charlie teamed up with Dan Abu-Absi (of JT and the Clouds and Birds of Chicago fame) to put together Radio Free Honduras a band of seasoned Chicago players who bring a wide range of influences to the music. The main focus of the band is on original music, but performances will often feature well known hits from Latin America, and Spanish language versions of American music of the 60's and 70's as well.
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Sat, May 20 - 9pm - $12
Chicago's own Hiber is a brand new pop-rock band, nodding to influences in electronic music, indie rock and R&B. The group's name plays off the inevitable hibernation of Windy City-dwellers every winter. Fresh off of 5 showcases at Austin's big spring music festival, this year Hiber opted for a studio den filled with frenetic creativity, emerging with a project that is the vision of frontman and primary songwriter Danny Surico (Chicago's The Future Laureates - US top 10 alternative rock specialty radio). With songs helmed by producer, Yoo Soo Kim - whose work has been featured in BMW, Nissan, Bing, and NPR - Hiber is poised to release their debut EP, What You Wanted, at Martyrs' in Chicago.
Forest & The Evergreens from Columbus, OH are recieving great praise at home after the release of "Young Funk." "Light shining into a prism and refracting in unexpected directions is a glorious sight to behold. Sonically, Forest & the Evergreens is that sort of prism — one of the brightest and most colorful in town."- Chris Deville, Columbus Alive "Best Local Band of 2013" - (Columbus Underground)
It’s another steamy day in Nashville and I’m hanging with Christian Luthi at his pad on the east side. We’re sharing a coffee at three in the afternoon as he begins to come-to after an evening of work and play. Originally from Hartford, WI, his musical journey began at the age of five. However, the story really begins when he packed up everything he owned in his mini van, gave up music school in Madison, WI and headed south to Nashville. He had never stepped foot in TN and was pumped to start fresh. He went to work making cronies and “faking” Belmont. After playing Americana for five or six years, writing with and for various artists in the city, he’s decided to pursue his long-time vision of a funk crew. “I felt like I was writing what I was writing because everyone was doing it,” he says. “I’ve always just wanted to create something that people can boogie to — something that’s timeless.” Now, rolling with a big band including various horns and a variety of saucy vibes, he's beginning the next part of the saga. The band is a true melting pot, no one is from the same place. LUTHI has a bit of something for everybody. It’s time for people to get down. That's really it. So put on something weird, take off your shoes, and come on.
Consistently delivering catchy hooks and 3-part harmonies, HandGrenades have made quite a name for themselves since their formation in 2008. Brothers Andrew and Tom Pawelski, Nick Chevillet, and Joby Kaslowski cite Motown and the British Invasion as primary influences, coupled with modern acts like The Walkmen and French Kicks. In 2011, The HGs hit the studio to record Three Cheers for the Wonder Years – an EP mixed by Kevin McMahon (Real Estate, Titus Andronicus) and released by Sound Artifacts Music. Following a stint at 2012’s SXSW, The HandGrenades partnered with Jim Diamond at Ghetto Recorders (The White Stripes, Electric Six) to independently release their full-length record, The Morning After. Both albums are available online in the US and EU via digital distributors, and the band is currently in-studio recording tracks for a third record.
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Tue, May 23 - 8pm - $7
Oh Malô (oh muh-low) presents a shape-shifting sound through their dynamic arrangements as delicate vocals intertwine with ambient guitars and powerful, aggressive drums. They combine influences from rhythmically innovative indie outfits such as Local Natives and Bombay Bicycle Club, vocalists Patrick Watson and the late Jeff Buckley, and the chilling ambiance of Radiohead and Sigur Rós to create an unpredictable blend of timbres.
Mash up Sonic Youth ripe bananas, Garbage flour + The Cranberries (optional ingredient) to make Menacerno muffins. Similar to the muffins recipe, our name is a concoction of musical tastes and our individual personalities to make a very Googleable name. Pronounced me-nuh-sir-no. Tah-dah.
Regarded for their unique cross-genre music styling's, Earth Program have extended their unique singular vision by creating an entire universe around it. The group incorporates various multimedia elements including projected visuals & theatrics into their on-stage repertoire. The "fictional" Earth Program story line, which coincides with live performances, takes place in a abandoned amusement park themed universe known as Obbityville. These antic filled adventures generally find the Programmers in the midst of an ongoing battle in pursuit of restoring intergalactic rock'n'roll unity to the galaxy against their greatest archenemy, to date, a deranged green skinned mad scientist & host of the notorious Earth Program game show, Dr. Mondo. "A grungy sounding outfit that pulsates with an updated garage sound. Tempos are up & hooks rain down from the ceiling. This is a band to watch for very good reason" - Chicago Tribune. "The Earth Program is about to blow the roof off the Chicago music scene." - Loud Loop Press.
Arising from the remnants of the band formerly known as Vanarays, Stardusk Encounter takes a fresh approach in sharing the musical vision of it's members. Drawing elements from ALL genres of music, they are determined to develop a sound that is unparalleled.
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Thu, May 25 - 8pm - $10adv/$12door
Detroit-based prog/metal band Imminent Sonic Destruction, was formed in 2008 during an unexpected lunar eclipse, which wiped out vast swaths of humanity and ushered in the so-called New Age of Progressive Super Metal. Maybe you remember. It was a Tuesday. Even though some of that is made up, the band was initially formed around the strong songwriting of guitarist/vocalist Tony Piccoli, and consists of Pat DeLeon (drums), Pete Hopersberger (keyboards/vocals), Bryan Paxton (bass) and Scott Thompson (guitar/vocals). Imminent Sonic Destruction’s sound is a satisfying blend of styles, at times melodic, complex, epic and crushingly heavy, drawing on the members’ various influences, which cover the full spectrum of prog, rock, and metal. Imminent Sonic Destruction recorded and released their debut full-length CD, Recurring Themes, in 2012 to critical acclaim. Based on the strength of that album and an energetic live show, they toured North America with prog giants Pain of Salvation and Fates Warning, among others. In between tours, the band spent time excitedly writing and demo-ing a diverse collection of songs. Which brings Imminent Sonic Destruction to 2016, and the announcement of Triumphia, an ambitious concept album featuring over 69 minutes of music, including the 22+ minute epic “Arborous Calm.” Triumphia will be released worldwide on Luxor Records on September 2, and features artwork by acclaimed artist Travis Smith.
Bill Bruford (Yes, King Crimson, Genesis etc.): I love the CD...the sheer skill and gusto with which they tackle it makes you laugh out loud. Great drumming. Jonathan plays and writes like a demon. Congratulations to them.John Wetton (King Crimson, UK, Asia): 'Can't take you with me' is dynamite. I wish you luck, you're a good band, and deserve success, see you on the broad highway.Roine Stolt (Flower Kings, Transatlantic): Your band is one of the very few I can see a real true potential in and I'm sure you have many new fabulous albums coming in the near future.Jim Derogatis (NPR's "Sound Opinions", Rolling Stone Magazine): District 97 is a wildly ambitious progressive-rock group whose youth belies its accomplishments onstage and on its new "Hybrid Child" CD.District 97 is undoubtedly the most musically adventurous rock band in the world to feature an American Idol Top 10 Female Finalist. The release of 2012's critically-acclaimed Trouble With Machines ushered in an exciting era for the Chicago-based Progressive Rock band; In 2013, the band toured both Europe and the US with legendary bassist and vocalist John Wetton (King Crimson/UK/Asia), which was documented on 2014's live release, One More Red Night: Live in Chicago. 2013 also saw the band nominated for a Breakthrough Artist Award by Prog Magazine. Rather than rest on their laurels, District 97 took to the studio in 2014 to record the new material they'd been honing at home and on the road. The resulting album, In Vaults (due in June 2015), continues and accelerates the upward trajectory of great songwriting and incredible musicianship that's been evident since the band's 2010 debut, Hybrid Child. One listen perfectly illustrates why John Wetton says, “I've said it before, and I maintain that D97 is the best young progressive band around right now. Gifted players, great material, and a brilliant, charismatic singer in Leslie Hunt."DISTRICT 97 was formed in the fall of 2006 by drummer Jonathan Schang, keyboardist Rob Clearfield, bassist Patrick Mulcahy and guitarist Sam Krahn (replaced in 2008 by current guitarist Jim Tashjian). The foursome from Chicago honed a no-holds barred style of Liquid Tension Experiment-inspired Instrumental Rock before deciding the right vocalist was needed to complement their sound; enter 2007 American Idol Top 10 Female Finalist, Leslie Hunt. With a look, sound and stage presence comparable to a young Ann Wilson from Heart, Leslie's dynamic performances pushed the band into a new direction that forged a unique marriage between accessible, catchy vocal melodies and an adventurous instrumental prowess. She was followed shortly thereafter by one of Chicago's finest young guitarists, Jim Tashjian. With this new blend of charisma and stellar musicianship in place, their live shows over the past several years at festivals such as RoSfest and Prog Dreams II, and numerous appearances across the USA, UK and Europe cemented the band as a force to be reckoned with onstage, as well as in the recording studio.In August 2015, Rob Clearfield and Patrick Mulcahy left the group and were eventually succeeded by Andrew Lawrence and TIm Seisser, respectively. The new lineup will debut in tours across Europe and the US in 2016.
Nomadic came together as a result of Eric and Tom's desire to create some music inspired by their mutual love of classic progressive rock, along with other styles that exhibit texture, dynamics, free-form creativity, and originality. They decided early on to go for it without a full-time keyboardist, but wanted another element to keep from being "another power trio" so to speak. That's where Chuck comes in. A fully trained classical musician who has done extensive theater work, and has performed with the CSO, Chuck has another side. With his 7 string violin through a full blown guitar rig, Chuck can go from beautiful violin melodies, to over-driven power chords. Henry and Tom have worked together with a variety of artists, both on stage, and in the studio, and have a great working relationship and understanding of each others' playing. Henry's impeccable timing, and solid, hard hitting style made him an easy choice for the drummer position. As a trained pianist, he also understands music and song structure as a whole. Eric's versatility and theoretical knowledge make for some great dynamics in the guitar department. A true "texturalist", he goes from clean, complex chords voicings, to shredding leads and crunchy rhythms. Tom adds his multi-tasking skills to the mix. Primarily a bass player, he also adds texture by way of bass pedals triggering various synth patches, and is also the group's lead vocalist. Originally a mostly instrumental band, Nomadic is gradually finding more and more vocal tunes coming into the mix.
What words define the Edensong sound? Even a term as unwieldy as “epic orchestral progressive acoustic metal-infused rock” does little to categorize Edensong’s music. Edensong draws deeply from classic symphonic progressive acts, with complex song structures that resemble those of early Genesis or Yes, but Edensong does not simply rehash the music from this Golden Age of prog rock. Edensong experiments with wide-ranging musical styles, adding orchestral instruments like flute, violin and cello into the mix of a versatile hard rock band. With what other act would you hear heavy metal guitar riffs, a classical guitar, flute and cello chamber trio, a full church organ, and North Indian tabla playing all in the span of a single album? Edensong’s music can be as serenely melodic as the music of Simon and Garfunkel and Cat Stevens, or as aggressive as that of Metallica or Opeth. Not even Jethro Tull (another important influence for the band) is quite as eclectic. Using sophisticated and unpredictable compositions, not unlike the large scale works of Dream Theater or Rush, Edensong’s music tells a story, at times attaining the epic feel of the scores of Hans Zimmer or Nobuo Uematsu, while at others achieving a “folkier” simplicity, a singer/songwriter sound that might be more reminiscent of Billy Joel or The Beatles. Edensong gains inspiration from many styles and eras of music, whether it be from the millennium-long history of Western classical music or the past half-century of rock. While influenced by so many from Gregorian chant to grunge, Edensong rejects any superficial trend in pop music and instead forges its own path through the droves of homogenous sound-alike acts. Edensong, along with a handful of other new bands, such as The Mars Volta, Coheed and Cambria, Three, and Dredg among others, attempts to creatively revitalize rock music in a movement away from the corporately-constructed “mainstream” and toward artist-driven freedom and true originality.
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Fri, May 26 - 9pm - $15
Bronte Fall was born out of a nostalgic sentiment brought to life by Ms. Emily Bronte years ago in her poem, “Fall, Leaves, Fall”. Lead by singer, songwriter and fiddle player Teri O’Brien, Bronte Fall is an honest and bold exploration into both the trials and tribulations of her life. The Chicago-based group only began officially performing in late Spring 2015. The words and harmonies that make up this project, however, started forming several years before. That is, when Teri was first starting out on her musical journey, in New England as the leaves were falling. With a Pop sensibility and Americana attitude, Bronte Fall is the result of realizing beauty in the darkness, thus finding that sweeter light.
Sean Watkins co-founded Nickel Creek when he was just 12 years old, kickstarting a career that's taken him from the stage of the Grammy Awards to the top of the bluegrass charts. Along the way, he's become an award-winning guitarist, a singer/songwriter and a member of several different bands, not to mention one of the early pioneers of a genre now known across the world as Americana. Now, after 25 years of being either a band member or sideman, Watkins is throwing his full weight behind a new solo album, All I Do Is Lie.
Nikki Morgan is a singer-songwriter based in Chicago but with the heart of a true Carolina girl. Singing songs about life, love, spirituality, and truth.
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Sat, May 27 - 9pm - $10
Annie and the Orphans is a Chicago cover band that performs a mix of high-energy bootie-shakers and introspective heart-breakers from the 1960s and 1970s through today. This 5-piece outfit is firmly rooted in the punk and post-punk music of the 1970s and 1980s but they also feature a number of songs that have either influenced or have been influenced by this genre. They routinely feature selections from The Police, INXS, The Church, Blondie, Joan Jett, and The Ramones.
Congress of Starlings is a long-time favorite on the Chicago indie folk rock scene. Aerin Tedesco and Andrea Bunch have been called ‘two of the most beautiful noises on the planet.’ Lindsay Weinberg rounds out the complex and heavenly harmonies. Greg Nergaard and Janet Cramer lay a skilled groove foundation under gorgeous original tunes. The Starlings have brought their music to dozens of famous venues like Milwaukee’s Summerfest, The National Women’s Music Festival, Halsted Market Days and to beloved Chicago venues like Martyrs'!
Lindsay Weinberg's soulful voice and colorful lyrics evoke the boisterous energy of Chicago summer, the dim corners of a cabaret, and the bright lights of Broadway. Fueled by joyous melodies, rich horns, and a driving rhythm section, the sound of Lindsay and the Lights Go Out is at once incandescent and insightful.
Rebecca conjures images with her lyrics to insert you into pictures from her own imagination. From soft, autumnal landscapes, to dark, Narnian scenes, each song is a journey into a new story. Her honest voice and beautiful songs will absolutely charm you.
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Tue, May 30 - 8pm - $10
Friends of the Devil honors the timeless music of the Grateful Dead, played by the finest musicians in Chicago.
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Tue, Jun 6 - 8pm - $10adv/$12door
Artists, activists, musicians, writers, architects, politicians, chefs, and people defying description all grace the stage at PechaKucha Night which brings prominent and emerging creative minds together for an evening of lightning-fast presentations, networking and fun. The PechaKucha format, where a dozen or so presenters are given 20 slides each shown for 20 seconds to reveal their passions, work and inspirations, is now held in over 430 cities around the world. Chicago events are among the most popular, with over 300 people in attendance at each event. It's an amazing, riotous and amusing evening.
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Thu, Jun 15 - 8:30pm - $20adv/$25door
The Bach and Beethoven Ensemble (BBE) brings artists from different traditions together to collaborate on cross-genre, multidisciplinary projects. Like Bach, we strive for the ideal. Like Beethoven, we push boundaries. We combine tradition and innovation: something old, something new. The BBE was formed in 2009 by a cohort of young musicians, new to Chicago and eager for performance opportunities in a saturated music market. They presented 3-5 traditional “early music” concerts a year until 2013, when the group began the process of reorganizing as a nonprofit.
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Fri, Jun 16 - 9pm - $15
Matthew Santos has established himself as one of the most exceptional talents to emerge from the Chicago music scene in decades. With a voice consistently compared to that of the late Jeff Buckley and likened to a male version of Adele, he has been the subject of praise from such artists as Kimbra, Eddie Vedder, and John Legend. His highly acclaimed collaborations with Lupe Fiasco for which he received two Grammy nominations, have served to broaden international awareness of Santos whose own style is a unique, homegrown hybrid touching on alternative/indie-rock/soul and folk genres. The Chicago Sun-Times recognized Santos as an artist who is “organic and soulful and moody, full of interesting musical ideas and dripping with serious vocal talent.”Santos says the musical diversity that marks his work is “the conflict of being a human being vs. being a brand. Obviously a human has multifaceted tastes. I’m trying to be as colorful on my palette as I can.” The painterly metaphor is one both well earned and underscored by personal experience.Born and raised in Minneapolis, a six-year-old Matthew Santos started flirting with music by picking out melodic themes from movies and TV on his mother’s old piano. While growing up, Santos always saw himself becoming more of a visual artist and exhibited a potent talent for photo-realistic drawings, and a clear knack for painting. Ironically, it was at the age of 17, while attending Oxbow, an art school, that he rediscovered the raw immediacy of musical expression. His own true passion for singing and writing songs began to flourish. Spending more time with the guitar than the paintbrush, it became evident to Santos that his future in the fine arts was in question.
Emily Blue is a pop artist of integrity. In November of 2016, Blue released her first solo record "Another Angry Woman," a completely nonprofit album that tackles womanhood and rape culture. Her vulnerable, yet strongly crafted lyrics combine with her dynamic vocals to create a truly memorable record, featured in Chicago Tribune, Huffington Post, Atwood Magazine, NPR Illinois, among others. Blue was also invited in December to perform at El Rey Theater (Los Angeles) for the celebration of Hulu's new documentary "8 Days a Week." There, she shared the stage with artists like Grammy award winner Gabby Moreno and renowned guitarist Adrien Belew. Blue herself appeared on the preliminary Grammy Ballot this year for her feature on Ira Antelis / Dr. Dexter's "Gone But Not Complete" album, which also features Chicago's Saba and Joey Purp. In addition to her budding solo career, she fronts Chicago/Champaign bands Tara Terra and BOYCUT, two very prolific Indie groups. Blue plans to release new solo material in March, and will celebrate at Emporium in Chicago on 3/2.
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Sat, June 17 - 9pm - $20
Dale Watson is a country music maverick, a true outlaw carrying on where Waylon Jennings left off. A member of the Austin Music Hall of Fame, he stands alongside Waylon, Willie Nelson, and George Strait as one of the finest country singers and songwriters from the Lone Star State.Although Dale has made his name as a Texas artist, he actually was born in Alabama. Moving to Houston as a teenager, his musical journey began right out of high school as he started playing clubs and local honky-tonks. In 1988, it led him to move to Los Angeles on the advice of rockabilly singer-guitarist Rosie Flores. He played in the house band at the legendary Palomino Club in Hollywood for a couple years and recorded a few singles before moving to Nashville to write songs for a publishing company run by Gary Morris (writer of such country/pop hits as “The Wind Beneath My Wings”). Commercial country did not fit the fiercely independent songwriter so Dale relocated to Austin, Texas where he got a record deal and wrote several songs poking fun at the industry side of Nashville, including “Nashville Rash” from his Hightone debut Cheatin’ Heart Attack and “A Real Country Song” from his 1996 follow-up Blessed or Damned.After making three albums with Hightone, Dale released The Trucking Sessions on Koch Records in 1998. Including 14 original driving songs, the album received high praise and caused critics to compare him to chart-topping writer Red Simpson, who was responsible for some of the most iconic trucking tunes in country music.Just two years after this success, Dale’s fiancee died in a car accident. As chronicled in the Zalman King documentary Crazy Again (2006), he turned to drugs and alcohol to cope with her loss and nearly died of an overdose. Dale then checked himself into a mental institution and left a year later, releasing his tribute album to her called Every Song I Write Is For You (2001). After recording a few more albums, he decided to take a break from touring and moved to Maryland to be closer to his daughters.Back in Texas and on the road in 2006, Dale has been trucking ever since and is now releasing his 20th album. His debut on indie label Red House Records, The Sun Sessions was recorded at Memphis’ legendary Sun Studios with The Texas Two (bassist Chris Crepps and drummer Mike Bernal) in the stripped-down style of Johnny Cash’s earliest recordings.Like the early country legends of the 1950’s and 1960’s, Dale has a style and sound all his own. Tattooed and always dressed to the nines, he is a true entertainer, mixing humor and pathos into his lively shows. Whether playing with his Texas Two or with his rocking band the Lone Stars, Dale is sure to take us on one hell of a musical ride.
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Sun, Jun 18 - 8pm - $15
In just a few short years, UK-based guitarist Nicolas Meier has carved a reputation out as one of the UK’s most original and uniquely talented guitarists. Drawing from a love of Turkish, Eastern & Middle Eastern music, Flamenco, Tango and more -- all mixed with jazz -- Meier is one of the rising stars in a vibrant British jazz scene, but his versatility and musical fluency extends well beyond that ... so much so, that his considerable talents drew the attention of rock guitar legend, Jeff Beck, who has since made Nicolas a mainstay in The Jeff Beck Group, carrying him on two world tours during the course of the last several years. Meier originally hails from Switzerland; born in 1973 to parents who are great lovers of the arts, with wide-ranging musical tastes extending to the Classical, Jazz, Latin, Flamenco, Rock and (even) Pop genres. A true gypsy spirit with a disciplined maestro's touch, Nicolas has embraced a number of different cultures and studied their music forms, nuances and idiosyncrasies. During the course of his six-string baptism and global sojourns, Nicolas has been the recipient of numerous awards. A truly dedicated student of the instrument, he has pursued advanced studies at Switzerland's prestigious Conservatoire de Fribourg, and subsequently earned a scholarship to Boston's illustrious Berklee College of Music. His burning passion for both rock and jazz persists to this day.
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Sat, Aug 12 - 9:30pm - $12adv/$15door
Formed in the late 80’s, Birds at the End of the Road first started playing “Rock Against Depression” shows at Metro in the fall of 88’. They came of age with acts like The Slugs, The Connells and pre-fame Smashing Pumpkins. After being asked back to open for 10,000 Maniacs they soon became regulars at Metro and other Chicago stops like Avalon, Gaspars, Batteries Not Included and the legendary Club Stodola. Evidence of their proud gait can be seen in some footage from the Vic Theatre, found here on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTJXWP7kSh0 .Comprised of singer Ken Fountain, Jason Lee (Guitar), Henry Jansen (Drums) and John Ryan (Bass). The members did go on to make more music; Fountain leading Red Elephant, Lee in EXO, Jansen with Dovetail Joint /Ivory Wire (and others) and Ryan involved with music management.Birds at the End of the Road were first heard locally on (the sorely missed) WCBR and their Compilation “Best of CBR/ Bear tracks 92”. Their first release was on Columbia College’s AEMMP records in 1993. Not long after that the Birds signed with Minneapolis based Channel 83/ Sci-Fi Western and put out a mix of studio and live tracks called “Chowderbox”. This record was toured mercilessly and with college radio support went on to sell 10,000 copies. In 1995 there was a new record in the can. Before its release in 1996 the group took a break and reorganized under the name Mother Factor and returned to release “Queery” on Channel 83. This was a proud studio effort and the band toured intensely in support of it until eventually calling it quits in December of 1997 with a record-breaking show at Martyrs’.
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