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concerts

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Thigh Master at the Hideout

Thigh Master, a rock band from Brisbane, Australia, played on Friday, March 10, at the Hideout — and like so many of …

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Big Thief at Schubas

The Brooklyn band Big Thief released a great album last year called Masterpiece — and the group, led by singer-songwriter-guitarist Adrianne Lenker, …

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Favorite Concerts of 2016

1. Bill Callahan Sept. 26 during the Cropped Out festival at the American Turners Club in Louisville. After 7 p.m., as the sun …

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Joan Shelley at the Hideout

Joan Shelley’s album Over and Even was my favorite record of 2015, , so of course I’m thrilled to hear that she’s working …

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Ultimate Painting at the Hideout

The British duo Ultimate Painting keeps turning out one splendid record after another — three albums in the past three years. James …

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Poster Children at Schubas

Sadly, doctor I arrived a bit late for the Poster Children’s early concert on Wednesday, diagnosis Nov. 23, at Schubas. Rather than …

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Joshua Abrams’ Hideout residency

The masterful Chicago musician Joshua Abrams played five concerts at the Hideout in November, tadalafil playing with different collaborators on each Tuesday …

Pissed Jeans

Cropped Out: Day 2

This is my report from Saturday, Sept. 24, the second day of the 2016 Cropped Out music festival in Louisville, Kentucky. To …

Giving Up

Cropped Out: Day 1

Cropped Out feels like a homemade music festival. The website for the annual event in Louisville, Kentucky, hasn’t been thoroughly updated for …

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The Mekons at the Hideout

The Mekons have a new record called Existentialism — a lo-fi live CD of new songs performed into one microphone, site with …

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Hideout 20-Year Reunion

The Hideout, one of my favorite music venues, celebrated its 20th anniversary with a daylong mini-festival on Saturday — billed as a “20-Year …

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The Flat Five at the Green Mill

The Flat Five — that wonderful Chicago group I’ve photographed and written about many times before — played three sets on Saturday, Aug. 27, …

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The Rizdales at the Hideout

The Rizdales — a country band from London, Ontario — played Aug. 20 at the Hideout, apparently playing in Chicago for the …

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Mbongwana Star at Millennium Park

The African band Mbongwana Star got the audience dancing on Aug. 11 at Millennium Park’s Jay Pritzker Pavilion, playing wildly infectious beats …

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LCD Soundsystem at Lollapalooza

One of the main reasons to attend Lollapalooza this year was the reunion of LCD Soundsystem, and the band did not disappoint. …

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Radiohead at Lollapalooza

As expected, the highlight of this year’s Lollapalooza for me was Radiohead. It was great to see the band again after an …

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GØGGS at the Empty Bottle

The prolific Ty Segall has yet another new band — GØGGS, which also includes Chris Shaw from the Memphis punk band Ex-Cult …

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King Sunny Adé at Millennium Park

It had been years since the legendary Nigerian singer King Sunny Adé played in Chicago. He was scheduled to perform in Millennium Park’s concert …

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Bully at West Fest

The Nashville rock band Bully played a rousing, pharmacy energetic set on Saturday, July 9, at West Fest, a street festival on …

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Femi Kuti in Millennium Park

Femi Kuti‘s father, the legendary Nigerian bandleader Fela Kuti, created the extraordinary and exhilarating style of music called Afrobeat. As Fela’s eldest …

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Waco Brothers at Wire

My photos of the Waco Brothers — as fun and lively as ever — on Saturday, order May 21, at Wire in …

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The Sadies at Wire

My photos of the Sadies — as always, troche one of the best live rock bands — on Saturday, try May 21, …

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Rhys Chatham at Constellation

My photos of Rhys Chatham’s performance on Friday, May 20, at Constellation, along with a picture of opening act Natural Information Society.

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Cross Record at Schubas

In 2013, I saw a couple of concerts by Cross Record, a group led by the promising Chicago singer-songwriter Emily Cross. (See my blog …

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Record Store Day 2016

My photos of musical performances I saw on Record Store Day, Saturday, April 16 — mostly at Permanent Records, plus a picture of …

Songhoy Blues at Martyrs’

There’s a serious and sobering story behind the band Songhoy Blues. These four musicians are in a sort of exile — as …

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The Necks at Constellation

The Necks have been improvising beautiful music for many years now. You might call them a jazz trio — after all, they …

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Freakwater at the Hideout

Freakwater is the sound of two pining, earthy, twangy voices coming together — the voices of Janet Bean and Catherine Irwin, who …

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Spunk at Constellation

The concert Wednesday, March 16, at Constellation was the first U.S. performance by Spunk, a quartet of Norwegian woman who have been improvising music …

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Wussy at the Red Line Tap

The great Cincinnati rock band Wussy has a new album out, Forever Sounds — an outstanding follow-up to its 2014 album Attica! — …

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Music Frozen Dancing 2016

For the last three years, the Empty Bottle has hosted an outdoor winter concert called “Music Frozen Dancing.” It’s a somewhat ridiculous …