By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Jan 20, 2012 at 11:58 AM

Back at the start of December, we talked to local musician Trapper Schoepp about "Run, Engine, Run," his and his band The Shades' musical love letter to Wisconsin.

Apparently the rootsy rock and roll record has also caught some ears more influential than mine.

When the band plays The Hotel Foster at 9 p.m. on Jan. 26, the gig will serve as a showcase for a respected and high-profile Los Angeles-based indie label that's considering inking a deal with Schoepp and company.

Though I'm sworn to secrecy, I threatened to quote publicist Heather West when she told me, "We are super excited. Especially because they are universally known for treating their bands like human beings."

So, it the Hotel Foster on Thursday. You'll get to hear a great Milwaukee band – two, actually, as The Championship is also playing – and maybe help take Schoepp to the next level, too. If Trapper Schoepp and the Shades become huge, bragging rights were included in the $5 cover charge.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.