Posted inArts & Culture

The Clumsy Guy

EIGHTEENTH SPECTACLE (SPAGHETTI WORKS) Stuart Sherman at Randolph Street Gallery, February 25 and 26 The ambitious four-week “Manipulations 2” series at Randolph Street Gallery presents eight very different artists who all use objects and text. The work shown so far has been by Crisus (a New Orleans-based group), Iris Moore, Christina Cobb, and most recently […]

Posted inNews & Politics

More Margasak

Dear Editor, I applaud the recent addition of Peter Margasak (Spot Check) to your music section. Mr. Margasak’s command of the English language and his impeccable taste are a wonderful improvement to the Reader. His reviews are informative and entertaining. My only complaint is that his column is too brief. Elizabeth Biron Executive Producer Blackball […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Vernon Garrett

“Sweet” may sound like the wrong word to describe something as gritty as Vernon Garrett’s gospel-rich vocal imprecations, but rest assured: he makes some of the sweetest soul music around. His recorded output has been modest–he made some noise on the charts in 1969 with “Without You” and then again in 1977 with “I’m at […]

Posted inFilm

Why Is This Movie a Hit?

* ACE VENTURA: PET DETECTIVE (Has redeeming facet) Directed by Tom Shadyac Written by Jack Bernstein, Jim Carrey, and Shadyac With Carrey, Sean Young, Courteney Cox, Tone Loc, and Dan Marino. Why go back to a movie that affected me the first time like a piece of chalk squeaking across a blackboard? Well, for one […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Working With Judy Chicago

Dear editor: I am writing in response to Fred Camper’s article entitled “The Banality of Badness” [January 21]. Although I respect Mr. Camper’s right to his own opinion I have a problem with his inaccuracy of statement. Most importantly, Mr. Camper’s statement regarding the collaboration between Judy Chicago and weaver Audrey Cowan on The Fall […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Dave Alvin & the Guilty Men

As a solo artist Dave Alvin continues to mine the rich lore of American roots music he first drew on as the songwriter and guitarist for the Blasters–blues, R & B, rockabilly, country, jazz, gospel, and more. He mixes these genres with the relaxed assurance you’d expect from a man who learned his chops from […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Brutality of Fact

BRUTALITY OF FACT Goodman Studio Theatre From a distance of, say, three rows from the stage all playwright Keith Reddin’s relationships begin to look the same: all those failing marriages, hellish dynamics at work, twisted family interactions, all those glib, hip, half-witty conversations that never get to the point or leap to it so quickly […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Minor Candidates

I’ve been thinking about gubernatorial candidates James Gierach [February 18] and Sheila Jones, who are being denied the opportunity to flex their political muscles in the televised debates. The two were described in a recent Chicago Tribune article as “minor” candidates. It sounds like they ought to have a curfew. “Now I want you to […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

“There is no soil on vacant lots in Chicago,” Elizabeth Tyler told a food conference last month at Northeastern Illinois University, speaking from her experience as supervisor of the Green Chicago community-garden program of the Chicago Botanic Garden. “Our lots grow rubble. We always have to haul in soil.” But once that is done, she […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Cactus Brothers

Country rockers the Cactus Brothers marked their turf by kicking off their 1993 debut with a cover of Merle Travis’s “Sixteen Tons.” Tennessee Ernie Ford’s 1955 version of the song was an exercise in finger snapping and studied cool, but the Cactus Brothers rock down to the center and come up with an ominous dose […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Wyman Exposed

I’m sure I speak for many readers when I say that I was absolutely delighted with Steve Albini’s recent letter to Bill Wyman [January 28]. Steve articulated perfectly the frustration and disgust many of us have with Wyman and his propensity for promoting mediocre, completely unspectacular Chicago rock acts like Liz Phair, Shrimp Boat, Red […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

I’m 48 years old. A few months ago a small growth appeared on the upper side of my left forearm. It looked like a wart, but I went to a doctor recently and had it excised and biopsied. It was a squamous-cell carcinoma. The doctor told me there was almost nothing to worry about since […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Hitsville in the ‘Hood

Dear Bill Wyman, If you’re going to make part of your living from being a typical white “cultural tourist,” you should make an effort to be more accurate in your depictions of the flora and fauna of “black kids’” lives [Hitsville, February 11]. (By the way, Black men sporting full beards aren’t “kids” even though […]