Joe Shanahan founded sister venues Metro and Smart Bar in 1982, inspired by the adventurous punk and no wave he’d seen in the late 70s at New York venues such as the Mudd Club and CBGB. Shanahan was in his 20s at the time, but the Wrigleyville building his venues occupied had been built in […]
In 1997, Heather Robinson (aka DJ Heather), Colette Marino (aka Colette), Darlene Jackson (aka DJ Lady D), and Shannon Ialongo (aka Dayhota) debuted at Funky Buddha Lounge as the DJ collective Superjane. Superjane have since become a supergroup with their own center of gravity, but they’ve also functioned as advocates for other women fighting for […]
If you’re a fan of music and Reader staff writer Kelly Garcia’s Riot Fest coverage, this event is for you! From 2-8 PM, the all-ages People’s Music Fest, which calls attention to the impact of festivals on Douglass Park and its neighbors, is happening at Cermak and Marshall. Performers include Bussy Qween Power Trip, Ghost […]
Ten City’s fifth album, 2021’s Judgement (Ultra), was a long time in the making—and not just because the crucial Chicago house group’s previous album, That Was Then, This Is Now, came out 27 years earlier. The origins of Judgement arguably go even further back than 1986, when Ten City producer Marshall Jefferson issued the foundational […]
It’s romantic to imagine a DJ dropping a track so profound it can save your life, but what about a DJ who can open up possibilities away from the dance floor? Jeremy Alvarez, founder of a dark electronic DJ night called Research & Development, is known as much for his skill at connecting disparate people […]
Jill Hopkins is a Chicago broadcaster, DJ, writer, musician, and storyteller. After an eight-year stint at Vocalo Radio, Hopkins kicked off 2022 by joining the Metro family of venues (which also includes Smart Bar and GMan) as their new media and civic events producer. As told to Jamie Ludwig I was always a big radio […]
In summer 1979, Suzanne Shelton hatched a dream to open a punk dance club. She had two priorities: it had to play lots of new wave, and it needed clean bathrooms. Shelton had been DJing at a failing Lincoln Park disco called Hoots, but she spent all her free nights at O’Banion’s, a run-down gay […]
Daylight Saving Time ends this weekend, which will give you that wonderful overnight “extra hour” if you happen to be out and about around 2 AM on Sunday morning (you don’t have to go home, but you can’t “save” here, bwahaha!). And the time is going to change whether you’re awake or not, so don’t […]
Footwork music’s whimsical, tempestuous take on house wouldn’t exist without Chicago producer Kavain Space, better known as RP Boo. In the mid-90s, he drew from his experience DJing for House-O-Matics dancers to devise skittish, hyperactive tracks that proved too puzzling for Dance Mania, a staple label of the scene that provided a home for the […]
“I try and make the music for the dancers—like Teklife, Beatdown House, everybody in the footwork community. It’s all for them.”
Staff from 22 Chicago music venues talk about how far they still are from normal—and what it’ll take to keep them around till we all get there.
This week’s featured gig poster was created by Chicago artist Terrell Davis.
How three gay bars—La Mere Vipere, O’Banion’s, and Oz—became the cradle of the city’s punk scene
You can still support artists and staff by buying merch and donating to fundraisers.
Update: To help slow the spread of COVID-19, this show has been postponed until a date to be determined in the future. Contact point of purchase for refund or exchange information. In January 2018, Berlin-based dance producer, vocalist, and composer Laurel Halo tweeted that she’d written a score for Possessed, a documentary by Rob Schröder […]