Tag Archives: Electric Dirt

Good music available free and live music available free

arlington library

I went to the Arlington Heights Public Library today to drop off a few Poochamungas Cd’s they’ll be giving out for reading awards during the summer.  I always try to help out libraries as much as possible. For one they are a valuable resource in many places and secondly they always support the many kindie musicians plying their trade around the country.  The Poochamungas have definitely played more than a couple library gigs. So after dropping off CD’s I took a perusal of what kids music they had available.  Well right away you notice Disney and that kidz bob (cutesy no talent edited recycled garbage IHOP). What then struck me was the number of kindie artists available as well. Casper babypants, the Not-Its, Justin Roberts, Recess Monkey, Bari Koral, Ralph’s World and many others. They had a great selection of FREE kindie music for anyone interested in introducing their family to high quality family music. I also know the Des Plaines Public Library carries some great music as well.   If you live in either of these neighborhoods check out them out! You won’t be dissapointed.

electric dirt

As for the other free music my favorite cast of characters takes the stage at Simons tomorrow at 8:30pm as Electric Dirt.  They’ll be singing the songs that Levon Helm sang all to well and celebrating what would of been his recent 75th birhtday. This ones free as well but be sure to drop a few dollars in the hat. It’ll be worth it!

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Day of THE DOWD… or how all drummer are now called in my house.

dowd

Tomorrow is Saturday, November 8, 2014 and it is also the Day of the Dowd at Fitzgerald’s Nightclub.  Many of you who read this blog or are friends of mine on Facebook are aware that my son is the creator of THE DOWD.  Not Day of the Dowd (that credit goes to his smart and talented wife) which I will be supporting tomorrow. While he is best known as a drummer extraordinaire and in our family the drummer for the Justin Roberts band to which we have attended a few shows.  Somewhere along the way of seeing him at shows and festivals we became friends. Our two sons get along thick as thieves being only a year apart and living in the same neighborhood. So a  while back I was having a morning jam with my jam cartson which we are known to do on more than one occasion.  He will gather all of his drums, keyboards,ukes, guitars (some real, some toys) and bring them all out to the front room and say… “Daddy let’s Jam!”  He does this on occasion with his mom too but mostly me as I am usually practicing my guitar or attempting to write a new tune. Well on that day my wife was home and since he was jamming on keys and guitar and I had a guitar he asked his mom to play the drums.  Only he asked her “you be THE DOWD.”  We asked for clarification and he matter of factly explained “you play the drums, you be THE DOWD.”  Now I have a great drummer in my band named Frank Izzo and never have we referred to the drummer as “THE IZZO” or as his Pooch jersey saysJoe mendota “JOES DAD” (the original drummer was Frank’s son Joe).  Not sure if it was Gerald’s son’s influence or the beard or that he plays for Justin Roberts.  Whatever the cause all drummers in my house are now referred to as THE DOWD.  I’m sure this inspired Gerald to go write an album immediately as 3 year olds have the power to inspire.  Or maybe his many years of hard work, gigging, recording, practicing, singing, hanging around great musicgdowdians and life may have a small reason to do with him releasing a brand new album.  You go ahead and think that. But around here we know the truth. Go forth tomorrow and by a ticket for Day of the Dowd at Fitzgerald’s Nightclub and enjoy some great music. Hope to see you there and be sure to by a copy of the new CD ‘Home Now.  I’ve heard a few of the tunes and it sounds good!

Cheap night out

simons bar

If like to hear good live music and appreciate a fine dive bar have I got the place for you!  Tonight at Simons (5210 N. Clark, Chicago) the band Electric Dirt will be performing.  Like migrating birds this foursome (with the ocassianal special guest) return every fourth Wednesdayof the month to bring their Levon Helm inspired show.  What more could you ask for?  Good music, cheap beer, bring some friends and enjoy a “classic” Chicago tavern.  So stop on by, enjoy the music and throw a dollar in the tip jar and tell em’ I sent you.  Music starts at 8:30.

 

Just so good.

20140404_202918Sometimes life affords you opportunities and it’s your job to hear the knocking.  Last night the opportunity to go and listen to Los Lobos presented itself and I answered the door.  While I am entrenched in this world of music  booking,los lobos shirt rehearsing, writing, scheduling, etc (Then spend the last two week in school learning a whole new position on the fire department).   You forget why you make music.  Then you go see a band perform with such fluidity and excellence that even when one member makes an unexpected change… they all jump back in line. It’s a reminder of why you do it.  It’s about the music and the joy and the shared experience of the audience and band.   Where  music makes you forget all the worries and problems and there is just the band and you.   It doesn’t have to be a big name band.  I go and see bands like Electric Dirt, Expo 76, Great Moments in Vinyl, etc.  It’s about excellence and happiness whether your on stage or in the audience. So thanks Los Lobos for that moment where life paused momentarily and I got to catch my breath.  Reality becomes a bit easier after a show like last night.20140404_225915

Great Chicago music at a bargain

I have posted here before about concerts and gigs I have seen in this city that don’t break the pocketbook and are as good or better than anything your dumping $100 on.  The other day I saw Nora O’Connor at the Hideout who’s doing a Tuesday residency and boy can that girl sing!  There are 3 more shows this month.  For $10 bucks it behooves you to catch one of these shows. Next Tuesday, February 11 at 9pm they are performing the entire 1973 Buckingham/Nicks record. It should be pretty cool.  I should also mention that Robbie Fulks is continuing his Monday residency of amazing shows there (at the Hideout) as well and his shows cost… $10.  They both come HIGHLY recommended!

Another running gig I have mentioned here before is Brian O’Hern and the Model Citizens.  They play every third Monday of the month at the Gallery Cabaret.  How you ask do they fit an 11 piece horn section with a full rhythm section and a keyboardist in a rather small bar? Where they pass the hat (pitcher) to collect for the band because there is NO COVER. I leave these questions for others, put 5 dollars in the pitcher (a hat would be cooler), order a bar pizza and try something tasty on tap.  It’s great music and one of Chicago’s true gems in the music scene.

Which brings me to tonight. Electric Dirt is playing tonight at Fitzgerald’s in Berwyn.  You can Usually find them them at Simons in Andersonville the 4th Wednesday of every month. They too pass the hat (pitcher) and be sure to drop at least 5 dollars cause they’re worth it!  Tonight you gotta cough up a whole $8!  Crazy!  If you like the music of Levon Helm and The Band this is a must see.  So get out and hear some live music because CD sales ain’t paying the bills these days.  Go support you local musician today!  I leave you with a song (written by Springsteen) they will be playing tonight sung by the late great Levon Helm himself.