Wednesday, February 25, 2009


This article in Wired about the rise of the Netbook is incredibly fascinating- not necessarily music-related, per se, but definitely has implications for how we listen to music on our computers.

Rock for Food

Obviously if you are a reader of this blog you, like me, love music. Perhaps you, like me, also have a deep love for fine dining and Top Chef. Maybe, unlike me, you have a lot of spare cash sitting around, which ostensibly could be donated to teaching low-income children to rock. Well then, this news is for you! Rock for Kids is auctioning off an excellent dinner experience for you and five of your friends on ebay. See details below.

Win a Top Chef Experience!

The Top Chef Finale is finally here! Who will be season 5's Top Chef? Will it be Hosea? Stefan? Carla? If you are as excited as we are to find out, shout Hoodie Hoo!

After the final dish has been prepared, and the winner has been announced, Rock For Kids knows you will still be hungry for more! That's why we're offering you the chance to move beyond watching Top Chef, and allowing you to experience a Top Chef contestant in action!

Top Chef Season Five contestant Chef Radhika Desai, in conjunction with Between Boutique Café and Lounge where she is a Chef, is offering a truly unique experience to one lucky Rock For Kids supporter!

Radhika will prepare a private dinner for 6 in the winner's home. This package includes wine pairings donated by Between Boutique Café and Lounge's wine distributor who is also a sommelier and will explain the pairings.

Following the dinner, Rad will give the party a dessert cooking lesson, and they can eat the dessert afterwards! She will also leave aprons for all of the guests.

100% of the proceeds go to Rock For Kids, and the winning bid is tax deductible.

Want a more affordable way to "check out a Top Chef in action", sans large tax-deductible donation? Check out Dine with Dale at Relax Lounge every Thursday, where season 3's runner-up is cooking a weekly $25 3-course meal until his new restaurant, Town and Country, opens later this year. I'll be there next week!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Book recommendation

If you're looking for a light, humorous read about the music industry, I recommend checking out Dan Kennedy's Rock On: An Office Power Ballad . Rock On provides an inside look into working for a major label in the midst of the industry's downward spiral. His overgeneralization of what it means to work in a 9-5 corporate environment gets a little old, but the insight he provides into the general patheticness of major label management is hilarious, and timely.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Iron and Wine News

Iron and Wine fans, take note: Sam Beam's putting out a double album of rare unreleased/out of print tracks called Around the Well, and he will be going on a 5 city, 10-date "intimate" tour in support. This is great news for those of us that loved his early solo work but have been less enthused by the more produced, full-band sound of late (i.e., me). Chicagoans will have two shows to choose from: the Lakeshore Theater on May 12 and Schubas May 13. The Schubas show will undoubtedly sell out quickly, so get your tickets when they go on sale tomorrow, February 20, at noon.

But wait, there's more! Beginning March 6 fans can go to the Iron and Wine website and vote on what songs he'll play at each show.

UPDATE: Tickets sold out in minutes, and the website seemed to have trouble handling the traffic. I'll be there though!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

WLUW news

With new WLUW management finally in place, changes are starting to happen at the station (none of which involves programming or volunteers, as I'd always expected). WLUW will be moving into a new and improved downtown studio space this summer at Pearson and Wabash, at Loyola's downtown campus. The tower will remain at the Rogers Park campus, however, so there will be no change to the broadcast area.

Also, check out the website to see what songs are playing now, which can be followed on Twitter (though why anyone would want to be updated with every song playing on WLUW at a time, I'm not sure). A brand-new website will also be put into place in the near future, something that has been on the agenda for quite a long time.

Meanwhile, WLUW turns 30 this year! Except a musical celebration in the next few months.

Friday, February 13, 2009

New-ish Beirut

Very cool under-the-radar Beirut news, courtesy of Gapers Block: Apparently Zach Condon composed the soundtrack for a Mexican film that ultimately was not used. A local Chicago record label, Obey Your Brain, is putting the score out on vinyl, along with a few other unreleased Zach Tracks. You can hear March of the Zapotec next Tuesday, February 17 at a listening party at Sonotheque. Performances by Golden Birthday Magical, Beautiful (ft. Mucca Pazza members) to follow.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Selling clothes is evil, except when its not

So within the span of a week, Pitchfork is up in arms about Liz Phair partnering up with Banana Republic as she further eschews an indie aesthetic she hasn't held herself to for 15 years, while Kim Gordon shilling for Urban Outfitters is virtually excused because Sonic Youth is "now on Matador". Nevermind how Urban Outfitters co-opts indie culture while the ultra-conservative CEO funds his right-wing ideologies (see: political contributions to Rick Santorum). Not to mention the number of times I've heard Cut Copy, TV on the Radio, Junior Boys and countless other Pitchfork favorites blaring in Banana Republic stores. Down with corporate suits, up with ironic PETA shirts!

I get it, Pitchfork thinks Sonic Youth is still making good music and Liz Phair isn't, but you can't pick and choose your sell-out stories, which in these days' indie-mainstream culture should be rendered irrelevant anyway.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Bling blong

CNN takes a look at how in this economy, hip-hop stars may be wearing less "bling". They also use the term "jewels". They ultimately determine that "it's unlikely that bling will go away completely." Thanks, CNN.

Thursday, February 05, 2009


Once again, a big thank you to for keeping me up with the latest indie news- surprisingly not about indie rock couples for once!- that a pregnant M.I.A. will be "rapping" at the Grammy's on her due date. I wasn't aware that she was a "rapper", or that her music could even really be called "hip-hop", but cheers for trying,

Apparently there will be also be a long-awaited(?) Blink-182 reunion post Travis Barker's plane crash. Tune in Sunday!

Bruce on Evilmaster

Last year I mentioned the news that Ticketmaster bought TicketsNow, a "secondary market" ticket broker (i.e., glorified scalper), and was directing traffic for sold out tickets from the Ticketmaster website over to TicketsNow. The amount of conflicts of interest in this set up are too numerous to count. Apparently Bruce Springsteen just realized this as his upcoming tour went on sale and is working with a NJ congressman to investigate. Ticketmaster agreed to stop directing Springsteen fans over to TicketsNow- for his show, at least.

From Gapers Block.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Secretary of the Arts Pt. 2

Last week I posted about a petition being sent around from Quincy Jones to get a Secretary of the Arts in place. NPR has a small piece on what this would entail, with point-counterpoint.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Les Savy Fav

I caught Les Savy Fav this weekend at the Epiphany Church, which as this Radio Free Chicago review points out, Tim Harrington fully embraced. Between the priest collar and the constant church and prayer references, Tim desecrated all that is holy with his constantly gyrating nude belly. As we made our way out of the venue, I saw him race through the crowd only to stop at the door, where I got to shake his hand as he invited me to come back next Sunday at 10.

Flight of the Conchords!

Flight of the Conchords* are coming to the Arie Crown Theater (2301 S. Lakeshore) on April 28. A variety of presales are going on this week, starting this morning at 10am; the official public onsale is Saturday at 10am. I've already secured my seats thanks to the presale; get yours quickly before Saturday at 10:05 as last time they came to Chicago it sold out in minutes! I'm also intrigued by this "Arie Crown Theater"- learn more about the venue here.

*I don't think I really realized "Conchords" was cleverly misspelled until Blogger's new spellcheck feature just told me it was supposed to be spelled "Concords". Call me slow.