Posted inMusic

Joey DeFrancesco

Joey Defrancesco You’d think twentysomethings would have latched on to Joey DeFrancesco in a bigger way: considering the jazz organ’s return to fashion in the 90s and DeFrancesco’s precociousness, he certainly ought to be a star with his own generation. He made his recording debut a decade ago, at the age of 17, with a […]

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Manuel Ocampo: God Is My Copilot

Manuel Ocampo: God Is My Copilot Engaging, observant, and wickedly ironic, Phillip Rodriguez’s 1998 hour-long profile of Filipino-born painter Manuel Ocampo belongs with the best of the genre. Ocampo, whose gaudy, surreal, disturbing canvases incorporate images and motifs from religious and pop culture, first won the attention of the west-coast art scene in the late […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

What’s the deal with genetically engineered food? I read that vast quantities of food crops are being genetically engineered to withstand the effects of herbicides better so that farmers can dump more herbicides in their fields without worrying about crop loss. Jeez. Other crops manufacture their own pesticides so they kill bugs having the temerity […]

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Digital Underground

DIGITAL UNDERGROUND Few groups in the history of hip-hop have had as good a grip on what’s funny about rap music as Oakland’s Digital Underground. DU peaked early with their 1990 debut album, Sex Packets (Tommy Boy), and its massive hit “The Humpty Dance,” a self-mocking manifesto that combined hip-hop braggadocio with unabashed geekiness over […]

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Days of the Week

Friday 4/9 – Thursday 4/15 APRIL By Cara Jepsen 9 FRIDAY One hundred years ago University of Chicago graduate student Henry Chandler Cowles wrote a groundbreaking dissertation about plant communities at the Indiana Dunes that introduced the study of ecology. Today the Field Museum will salute him with a symposium called Ecology and the Chicago […]

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The Dreamers

THE DREAMERS, ETA Creative Arts Foundation. Perhaps the strongest aspect of Christina Harley’s play–which explores the mounting tensions in a southern black family after Martin Luther King’s assassination–is its vivid portrayal of the tumultuous relationship between a mother and her rebellious daughter. While Lola waits stubbornly for her husband to return, daughter Princess searches vainly […]

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Orchestrating Change

“People have given us all sorts of names–avant-garde, free jazz, new jazz,” pianist and composer Muhal Richard Abrams says, pretty much right off the bat. “We don’t accept those names, and I’d appreciate it if you didn’t use them in connection with my work.”

Posted inNews & Politics

Stay Tuned

To the editor, Ted Shen’s article about the history of classical music broadcasting in Chicago [March 12] has just reached me by a circuitous route. I was an employee of ‘NIB for several years in the 1970s and commend Mr. Shen on the accuracy of his dates and places. The degree of hostility between ‘NIB […]

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Ever Changing Waters

Ever Changing Waters The line that begins Marcos Loayza’s enchantingly lyrical and romantic film–“Nothing extraordinary happened, but I’d never have thought water would leave such traces in my being”–accurately describes the profound sensation that lingers after the closing credits. The story may seem far from complex: Manuel, an unassuming but fiercely intelligent Buenos Aires teenager, […]

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Sam Prekop Band

SAM PREKOP BAND The multitude of scribes who’ve dismissed (or embraced) Sea and Cake front man Sam Prekop’s solo debut as “jazz” either haven’t listened to the record or have never listened to jazz. Their careless categorizing probably has something to do with the presence of cornetist Rob Mazurek, who contributes a few solos, and […]

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Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Good choreography is hard to find. But Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato is that rare bird who can do it all: Hubbard Street now has three of his dances in its repertoire, and all are musically, kinetically, and emotionally satisfying and tell elusive yet intriguing stories. The latest, receiving its Chicago premiere […]

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Bred in Isolation

Go-Betweens 78 ’til 79: The Lost Album (Jetset) By Jon Dolan Punk’s democratization of rock ‘n’ roll in the late 70s is perhaps the single most romantic moment in the history of the music–at least to those of us who weren’t there to step in the vomit. With the birth of DIY came a support […]

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On Film: going for the gross-out

Hanging out with Rusty Nails is like watching a performance of Dada nonsense–he’ll slip into the voices of different characters, cite health statistics, then suddenly belt out his favorite song. He seems to be incapable of providing simple answers. “I just had this weird idea,” he says when asked about the concept behind his first […]

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Chicago Improv Festival

Chicago Improv Festival Now in its second year and running through April 11, this annual celebration of the art of improvisational comedy brings together members of the international improv scene for performances and workshops. Featured out-of-towners this year include the formerly Chicago-based Upright Citizens Brigade; Minneapolis’s Brave New Workshop in a return visit; New York’s […]