| Jan 31, 2013
| 11:57 AM
For Ralph Stanley, the road indeed seems to go on forever. The bluegrass legend, who turns 86 this month, says that touring has gotten easier than when he started out.
"It was harder then," he says by phone. "We have a lot better roads now." The...
| Jan 17, 2013
| 1:28 PM
A sampling of how it works for a rock 'n' roll band in middle age:
The bass player and drummer drive in for rehearsal from the suburbs where one of them is an interfaith counselor and the other, for a time, operated a fresh-bread franchise.
| Jan 22, 2013
| 11:30 AM
For decades, the defenders of the status quo have insisted that the Chicago Jazz Festival must remain anchored in Grant Park.
They said the dreadful acoustics there were just fine.
They said the dilapidated Petrillo Music Shell served the fest well....
| Jan 23, 2013
| 2:28 PM
Chicago has gotten its bluegrass due with this year's Grammy nominations. Noam Pikelny and Greg Cahill — two players with strong local connections — are competing in the best bluegrass album category.
Pikelny, a Skokie native currently based...
| Jan 23, 2013
| 2:58 PM
There's a question that someone paying close attention to contemporary pop music would not be considered crazy for asking:
What's with all the shouting?
Seemingly all of a sudden, bands have been having success punctuating their tunes with "hos" and...
| Dec 13, 2012
| 11:10 AM
Coming up on the second annual Afro-Caribbean Improvised Music Festival, organizer Omar Torres-Kortright isn't nervous. For him the success is that so many people have come together to help the micro-festival come into being — again.
| Dec 14, 2012
Columnists Mary Schmich and Eric Zorn joined musicians Thursday night at the Old Town School of Folk Music for the first of four Songs of Good Cheer programs. Click here for a photo gallery.
This is the 14th year for the caroling party, which grew out...
| May 14, 2013
| 9:55 AM
Let's raise a glass to Bob Koester, the single-minded Chicagoan who this weekend celebrates a remarkable anniversary: 60 years of producing jazz and blues recordings.
Koester's Delmark Records may not be the biggest indie in the country – or...
| May 16, 2013
| 12:39 PM
Though its population hovers at just 8 million, Israel has become a powerhouse in nurturing high-caliber jazz talent.
Chicago concertgoers are well acquainted with Anat Cohen, the uncommonly versatile Israeli clarinetist who's based in New York and...
| Apr 4, 2013
| 9:53 AM
We're about to begin a remarkably lively jazz weekend, even by Chicago standards. Among the highlights:
The Engines: This enterprising ensemble has been offering a stylistically free-ranging music for nearly a decade, but this weekend's engagement...
| Apr 5, 2013
Stephen Wade's affection for the Chicago in which he grew up and that he left long ago is passionate and palpable in the introduction to his astonishing book, “The Beautiful Music All Around Us: Field Recordings and the American Experience.”...
| Feb 28, 2013
| 9:42 AM
Twenty-five years ago, a talented young musician ventured here from Fort Wayne, Ind., to try her luck in the big city.
Today, Beckie Menzie stands at the center of Chicago cabaret, her work as accompanist indispensable to uncounted singers, her...