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The CHIRP Blog

Sarah A. writesCHIRP Goes to Kentucky: Forecastle Festival, Day Two

At every festival, there’s a day where you say, you know what, I’m going to take it easy. Saturday was that day for me. Most of the bands I wanted to see were at the end of the day, and besides, it was extra humid – the kind of day where you don’t think it’s too bad, because it’s pretty overcast, but before you know it, you’re covered in sweat. (It was also the kind of day where you don’t think you’re going to get a sunburn – overcast, remember? – until you get back to your hotel and realize you’re much more lobster-like than you were that morning.)

So for the most part, I kept Saturday nice and easy. Things started out with a set from Hurray for the Riff Raff. Their latest album, Small Town Heroes, was a regular play on CHIRP when it was released, and most of their set was made up of tracks from that release. Frontwoman Alynda Lee Segarra kept the mood light and easy with her upbeat folk songs, but they’re not a band that’s afraid to get political or challenge the status quo. While they didn’t play it, they have an unreleased song called “Everybody Knows”, written for Trayvon Martin, that’s absolutely chilling. Segarra also pokes at the folk tradition of murder ballads, which are almost universally about a woman being murdered. Segarra spins that into a song that’s almost, but not quite, going into revenge territory. “Delia’s gone, but I’m settling the score,” she sings, quiet and delicate, and you get the feeling that whoever did Delia wrong is going to regret it pretty soon.

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Share July 20, 2014 Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: Music In Pictures, Music in Words

Topics: band of horses, boy & bear, drew holcomb & the neighbors, hurray for the riff raff, jack white, jason isbell, lord huron, mount moriah, the soul rebels

Sarah A. writesCHIRP Goes to Kentucky: Forecastle Festival, Day One

CHIRP DJ and Volunteer Coordinator Sarah Avampato skipped out on Pitchfork this year in order to attend the Forecastle Festival in Louisville, KY. Founded in 2002, Forecastle continues to pick up buzz as a must-see festival, and combines music with art and activism, through its Forecastle Foundation wing.


This is my third year attending Forecastle, and while I don’t want to play the My Festival Is Better Than Your Festival game, I will say that this is the only festival that I trust enough to buy a ticket for before the lineup is released. While the music is, of course, the reason to attend any festival, there’s always plenty of other things to keep you entertained.


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Share July 19, 2014 Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: Music In Pictures, Music in Words

Topics: against me, benjamin booker, forecastle festival, foy vance, jj grey, leagues, outkast, public, spoon, the black lips, twenty one pilots, willie watson

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday M.I.A. Edition

Today, one of more talked about recording artists of recent times, M.I.A., turns 39 years old. Mathangi Arulpragasm was born in London of Sri Lankan decent. Her family moved to Sri Lanka where, according to M.I.A., her father was part of the rebel Tamil Tigers insurgency. Life in Sri Lanka with a rebel father was unusual, with constant threats, and eventually, her family, minus her father, came back to London. She first pursued visual arts, and only in 2001, with encouragement of Peaches, did M.I.A. start making music. Using basic drum machines, she cut her first demo, and eventually met up with Diplo and releasing the Piracy Funds Terrorism mixtape, which introduced a larger audience to M.I.A.’s multi-cultural music with some hip-hop aspects and sloganeering lyrics. This was a precursor to the more polished debut album, Arular, named after her father. With songs like “Bucky Done Gun” and “Sunshowers”, she established herself as a major new artist. The follow up, Kala, founder her expanding her artistry further, but the divisive Maya album, with radically altered song structures, stalled her momentum, along with controversies surrounding her authenticity as a politically motivated artists and stupid Super Bowl hi-jinks. She regained some artistic footing with last year’s Matangi album, as she still stands as someone who is imitated. In honor of M.I.A., please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Share July 18, 2014 Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: MP3 Shuffle

Topics: ipod, m.i.a., mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Andrew Bird Edition

Today is the birthday of a Chicago original. Andrew Bird went to high school in Lake Forest and got his degree in violin performance at Northwestern. After releasing a solo album, he spent some time working with The Squirrel Nut Zippers before forming his Bowl of Fire band. Their records were acclaimed, but they never broke through. Bird went back to solo work and his multi-genre stew and unique lyrics and melodies gradually gained an audience. Bird has certainly staked out his own turf and stayed true to the city, playing multiple show stands fairly regularly. Let’s pay tribute to the skinny whistling violinist by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Share July 11, 2014 Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: MP3 Shuffle

Topics: andrew bird, ipod, mp3

Falyn writesTour de Fat: New Belgium and West Town Bikes Give Back to Chicago

By Falyn Freyman

When music, bicycles, and beer come together, it's summertime bliss. When you add philanthropy into the mix, it' even better.

Colorado-based New Belgium Brewing is known for its delicious craft beers and generally rad approach to sustainability, community-building, and giving back. Their annual Tour de Fat returns to Chicago this year for another free, daylong festival featuring a costumed bike parade, live bands and performers, contests, and of course, beer, with all proceeds and donations directly benefiting Humboldt Park non-profit West Town Bikes.

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Share July 8, 2014 Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: CHIRP Radio Shows and Events

Topics: tour de fat

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