For all the talk about how the Internet is revolutionizing the way artists can find audiences, most musicians still do it more or less the same way they have for generations: playing shows, recording albums, and making connections with industry people who can help them level up. If you squint very hard you can see the basic outline of that path in the trajectory followed by local eccentric and polymath Willis Earl Beal in what I guess you’d call his “career” so far, except that instead of shows he’s used hand-drawn flyers posted around Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Chicago, asking strangers to call him, and instead of industry insiders giving him a boost it’s been Found zinester Davey Rothbart, and instead of actually releasing his recordings he’s yet to do more than leave burned CD-Rs in public places. But look at him now: Found‘s putting out a box set of Beal’s music, art, and poetry, and he’s on the cover of this week’s Reader B Side, which is not too shabby at all.

Also on this week’s B Side, I take a look at Danny Brown, the “hip-hop illuminati,” and DJ Khaled—which are, respectively, my favorite rapper of the year, my favorite conspiracy theory of the decade, and the man responsible (somewhat) for my second favorite ringtone ever. (It’s hard to beat my first favorite.) An especially entertaining installment of In Rotation brings together Peter Margasak, Drag City cofounder Dan Koretzky, and Miguel “DJ Dirty Migs” Castillo, who you may recognize as the former bassist for Catfish Haven. (True story: I actually own the guitar that Derek Kenney from Jihad played on that split with Ottawa.) Three Beats has news on a long-overdue solo debut by a ubiquitous jazz sideman, a beef over band names in the local indie-pop scene, and the latest Chicago label to start dabbling in cassettes. Gossip Wolf’s scoops this week are a unique blend of darkwave, twee pop, and old punks. We also have a guide for the Logan Square love-in known as the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival. And Soundboard plans out your next week of live music with shows from Jill Scott, Richard Buckner, Omar S, Dolly Parton, Paul McCartney, and more.