Saturday, August 8, 2015

July 30, 2015 The Beginning Of My Lollapalooza Weekend

When I was a kid, going to a concert was a chance to party with friends, see a band we all loved and buy a cool concert t-shirt. Oh, that was so many years ago. One thing hasn't changed...I still love music, especially live music. So tonight I find myself at Thalia Hall in Pilsen for the first time. I also had to drag myself to the show...alone...because my friend Patty is once again battling a foot injury that was surgically repaired but hasn't healed enough to have her on her feet all day and all night.
I stopped for dinner at my favorite 24 hour restaurant Lawrence Fisheries on Canal St. I enjoyed my shrimp dinner on the dock on the Chicago River. It was a beautiful summer night in the city.
There is something about eating dinner on the water's edge with the setting sun that is so damn relaxing. I even laughed at the sounds of the city interrupting me while I was lost in my own mind.
This was my first time at Thalia Hall. What a great place to see a show. The building is 123 years old. The concert hall reminds me of a miniature Aragon Ballroom. So I grabbed a Brooklyn Summer Ale at the bar and settled in for a night of good music.

The opening act was a extremely talented young woman from New Orleans...Kristin Diable. It was her on vocals and guitar and her drummer. It was a mesmerizing set that had the crowd cheering louder and louder after each song. The video above is a great Nina Simone cover. 

"When we called it the American Dream, what we really meant was “the American Myth.”
That myth convinced us that the right house/car/bank account/voting card could punch our tickets to a happily-ever-after, but for reasons too numerous and depressing to note, that myth is finally dying. Somewhere along the way, we realized the secret to mythology is not letting anyone sell it to you. You have to create your own. And now something new is springing up as we cast off the strange rules and crushing expectations of old. We’re rediscovering that freedom comes from the inside out, not from the outside in." - taken from her website bio. 
I really enjoyed her set. This is why I always try to catch the opening acts. I also thought her thoughts on the American Dream were worth reposting here.
She ended with this incredible a capella song that just blew everyone away. Once again music has taken me away from my real world realities and into a special place that I love to worries, no troubles, no aches & pains...just complete immersion in the moment...the sounds...the words...funny that I no longer feel tired...great music has a contagious energy. I love this feeling when it hits me.
I saw Birmingham Alabama's St. Paul & The Broken Bones at the Life Is Beautiful Festival in Las Vegas last year. They had me and everyone around me saying things like..."that was fucking amazing"..."they were fantastic"..."the best band I've seen so far". So to say I was excited to be here tonight would probably be understating my level of anticipation for this band.

"Grit, elemental rhythm, tight-as-a-drumhead playing, and a profound depth of feeling: these are the promises of a great soul band. And St. Paul & The Broken Bones deliver on those promises." - taken from the band's website

So here's my review of the show. The band is amazing. I am partial to bands with a horn section and these guys deliver the old school soul with a modern twist. Paul Janeway knows how to put on a show...a real old school preacher type of can feel the music this band plays...if you don' couldn't possibly have a beating heart. I left this show so full of energy that I couldn't get to sleep an hour later when I got home. That is why I drag myself into the city to see live music as often as I can.
Since I had to DJ a wedding the next day, I missed St. Paul & The Broken Bones at Lollapalloza. I found this clip on You Tube.


  1. Damn Gregg............I'm going to remember St. Paul & The Broken Bones. Got chills listening to "I've Been Lov'n You". If you saw the singer on the street you'd never imagine he was so raw and soulful. I'd definitely add their upbeat tunes to your wedding jams selection. And that "Be My Husband" and the other songs by Kristin Diable were fantastic. Good music really does move the soul. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Marilyn, glad you liked the bands. Both of them were really good live.