The Sidewalk Skipper Band's brush with fame was brief
Milwaukee's The Sidewalk Skipper Band -- which included long-time concert promoter Joe Balistreri -- recorded two 45s for Capitol Records. But, the band likely arrived on the national scene too late to ride the psychedelic wave.
A custom playlist, just for you
So I guess now that U2 is giving away their record on iTunes, we have an officially sanctioned "why buy it when you can get it for free?" attitude, and not just from an impossibly wealthy rock band or some young Internet savvy Torrentheads.
More reasons to attend the Concert 4 MACC
The inaugural Concert 4 MACC, a benefit event for Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer (The MACC Fund), is next week. And, there are many new reasons to support the cause.
Drummin' in the moonlight
From time to time there's sufficient pause in my schedule recording and touring to contemplate some related fields and how they might put food on the table. And then there's a bit of good old-fashioned moonlighting.
Ariana Grande adds Milwaukee gig next year
Breakout pop star Ariana Grande announced details for her first North American headlining tour this morning, including a stop in Milwaukee on Saturday, Feb. 28, at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra kicks off season at six Colectivo cafes on Saturday
The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra kicks off its 2014-15 season with six ensembles performing at six Colectivo Coffee locations around the Milwaukee area on Saturday, Sept. 6, at 2 p.m.
The duality of fame
Personally, I'm not so enamored with all this celebrity BS. I've never understood why one would be so willing to put people in the public eye on a pedestal, just because they play a guitar or act in a movie. There are notable exceptions, of course: I think I was more than a little timid when Stephen Dorf introduced me to Madonna. And it was a trip telling Bono about a church we were recording in, only for him to respond dryly: "Take the pews out, Jonny, but leave God in."
Journey brings a new face to vintage rock
Journey opened its hour-and-a-half set at the BMO Harris Pavilion with "Be Good to Yourself" and served a steady stream of its classics: "Separate Ways," "Any Way You Want It" and "Only the Young." No one can ever truly replace "The Voice" Steve Perry, but sound-alike Arnel Pineda comes damn close -- and, at age 46, he brings his own youthful vibrancy to the band's current line-up.
The most melancholy songs ever
It never fails to amaze me what goes bonkers on my Facebook page.
Greatest Alpine Valley shows of all time
Here are the best shows at Alpine Valley, according to Facebookers. The venue went up for sale earlier this week for a mere $8.4 million.
30 minutes that shook Milwaukee
As the 50th anniversary of the Fab Four's only Milwaukee appearance nears, Milwaukee Public Television launches a 30-minute documentary about the Beatles' half-hour performance at the Milwaukee Arena.
A day in the life on tour with Spacehog
For some reason most people think that artists read from a completely different rule book: You're not a "real' artist" unless you are in a constant state of purgatory. The only way to really enhance your credentials as a musical trailblazer is to jump off the nearest cliff! But I reject that completely. I am nobody's martyr!
Hunter Hayes coming to the BMO Harris Bradley Center
Young country star Hunter Hayes will bring his Tattoo Your Name Tour to the BMO Harris Bradley Center on Thursday, Nov. 13.
In the meantime, as it is
Thinking about this blog got me revisiting some of the times I came to Milwaukee with my band, Spacehog -- the countless times we played Summerfest, our appearance at Shank Hall, and random visits to the state to play places like Oshkosh and Sturtevant. The warmth of your average Midwesterner is noteworthy; I knew because I had tended bar with a couple back in New York, none other than Spoon's Rob Pope and The Hold Steady's Bobby Drake.
Flores to rock(abilly) Kochanski's
Legendary alt country / punk / rockabilly musician Rosie Flores makes a rare appearance in Milwaukee tonight at Kochanski's Concertina Beer Hall, 1920 S. 37th St.
Guitar competition combines contest, classroom and concert
This weekend, if you happen to be driving through or around Brookfield, you might hear a faint roar coming from the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts. That's the sound of fierce competition, of furious fingers flying up and down fretboards, of fun and of friendships - spanning the nation and even the whole globe.
Rock legends Elvis and Orbison come together for tribute show
Two of the seminal singers in the world of rock and roll were Elvis Presley and Roy Orbison -- contemporaries who never appeared on stage together. Until now. Kind of.
Counting Crows brings full house to its feet
From "Round Here" on its debut album "August and Everything After" to "Long December" from "Recovering the Satellites," the Counting Crows' played all the hits, to the delight of a big crowd, Wednesday night at The Riverside.
Country Thunder set to roll
Country Thunder takes place on 240 acres of rural farmland in Twin Lakes (near the Illinois border and close to Lake Geneva). From its humble beginnings in 1993, the all country-all the time, four day, music festival that takes place this weekend has endured and grown into a top headliner, mainstream, sold-out event.
Milwaukee artists cover the Wooldridge Brothers on "Cover Up"
As of July 5, the Wooldridge Brothers' Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for not one, but two new records - the band's next studio album and Scott Wooldridge's solo album - was a success. However, fans won't have to wait long for new Wooldridge Brothers music. Well, new-ish music.
Field Report premieres first song off upcoming second album
Milwaukee music fans - and fans of good music just in general - have been waiting since 2012 for news of a new record from Field Report and frontman Chris Porterfield. Well, wait no longer. Last month, Porterfield and company announced the name ("Marigolden") and release date for a sophomore album, and the good news keeps coming, as yesterday the band unveiled "Wings," the first track off the anticipated record.
Believe it: Journey returns to Milwaukee in September
With two performances - Vampire Weekend in June and Lorde coming up in September - already in the books, the BMO Harris Pavilion, in collaboration with The Pabst Theater, announced yet another big performance for 2014 this morning: Journey.
Chisel, Hugh Bob co-headline inaugural Concert 4 MACC
The inaugural Concert 4 MACC, a benefit event for Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer (The MACC Fund), has secured Cory Chisel and the Wandering Sons and Hugh Bob and the Hustle to co-headline an evening of music, charity and community.
Shank Hall announces concert lineup for 25th anniversary
Milwaukee concert venue Shank Hall recently announced the lineup of special shows to celebrate its 25th anniversary this November.
The Gobbler is coming back!
I can't believe it's true, but the iconic Gobbler in Johnson Creek is coming back. On May 22, Daniel A. Manesis, of Manesis & Associates of West Allis purchased the long vacant restaurant, that last was, as I recall, a barbecue place and served one of the worst meals I ever had in a restaurant.