Become a Member

Now Playing

Current DJ: Wildewoman

Tennis In the Morning I'll Be Better from Yours Conditionally (Mutually Detrimental) Buy Tennis Yours Conditionally at Reckless Records Buy Tennis at iTunes Buy Tennis Yours Conditionally at Amazon Add to Collection

Listen Live

Requests? 773-DJ-SONGS or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

The CHIRP Blog

Shawn Campbell writesCHIRP loves Record Store Day

As if last weekend’s CHIRP Record Fair & Other Delights hadn’t already enticed you into spending an abundance of your hard-earned cash, this Saturday, there’s no letup for music lovers — it’s Record Store Day, the national holiday for fans of independent music stores across the country.

Record Store Day offers up an abundance of special limited edition releases, live performances, DJ sets, promises of freebies and refreshments, storewide discounts and all sorts of other special goings-on. It’s designed to make shoppers realize the importance of supporting the indies — more than 3000 independent record stores have closed over the past decade, and one of every five albums in America is now sold by Walmart. Record Store Day hopes to help reverse the trend.

So don’t fight it — feel it! Hit your favorite record stores on Saturday, and show them some love in the form of dollars. That’s what we’ll be doing.

Share April 16, 2010 http://chrp.at/1g0r Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: Community

Shawn Campbell writesIt’s Record Fair Weekend!

Next Saturday might mark Record Store Day (something we heartily support, and hope you do too), but the next two days in Chicago mark Record FAIR Days — in other words, the two days of the annual vinyl extravaganza that is the CHIRP Record Fair & Other Delights !

Plumbers Hall at 1340 W. Washington Street will be filled to the brim with new and used vinyl, CDs, DVDs, posters, crafts, and god knows what else. Live entertainment will be provided by Pretty Good Dance Moves, Coins, Judson Claiborne, and the Loneliest Monk. DJ sets courtesy of Alla, Mannequin Men, Disappears, and Deia Does Dylan. Plastic Crimewave will offer up caricatures, Irazu offers up Costa Rican deliciousness, Goose Island brings the beer. How could your weekend be any better? It couldn’t. That’s why we’ll see you there.

10AM-5PM Saturday and Sunday, April 10th and 11th, $7/$5 with CHIRP Record Fair flyer or ad.

Share April 10, 2010 http://chrp.at/1g5d Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: Event Previews

Mike Bennett writesiPod/MP3 Friday Shuffle — Happy Birthday Carl Perkins Edition

There was more to Carl Perkins than “Blue Suede Shoes”. Perkins was a great songwriter and guitarist who brought a stronger country influence to rockabilly and rock ‘n’ roll (as compared to Sun Records colleagues Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis). The Beatles knew that, covering a number of his songs, including “Honey Don’t”. And if you want to hear Carl at his best, track down classics like “Movie Magg” and “Dixie Fried”. The last time Perkins played Chicago before he passed away, he was at the House of Blues. Two of his sons were in his backing band (his third son worked in Western Tennessee at the same company as my Uncle Frank). During the set, one of his sons had a heart attack. Really. An ambulance came and took him away. There was a delay, as you can imagine. But eventually, Carl came back out and finished the show. What a trouper! Carl Perkins always let the show go on and you should let the shuffle go on. Get out your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 tunes that come up.

  1. The Insomniacs — Crystal Clear (Out Of It): A really durned good garage rock band with a mod orientation. The Insomniacs are super tight, with powerful drumming, a mix of fuzzy and jangly guitars and some deceptive melodies. This song sounds like The Jam mixed with the best of the Nuggets collection.
  2. Northern State — Signal Flow (You Can’t Fade Me)(Dying In Stereo): A mid-tempo number from these three ladies who conjure up memories of the Beastie Boys. Of course, they aren’t that good, but they have loads of personality, and with decent tunes like this one, it entertains me.
  3. Translator — Come With Me (Translator): Translator had many facets, from songs that blended the Paisley Underground with post-punk vibes to jamming bluesy rock. They also had a pure pop song, best represented by this soaring jangle rocker that is inspirational and has an indelible chorus.
  4. Jerry Lee Lewis — Red Hot Memories (Ice Cold Beer)(Southern Roots & Boogie Woogie Country Man): A basic honky-tonk number with a big chorus of back up singers, a weepy harmonica and just a little bit of The Killer’s piano magic. Oh, and Jerry Lee’s oversized personality. He refers to himself about 20 seconds into the song.
  5. The Balancing Act — Fishing In Your Eye (Curtains): Overlooked folk-pop group of the ’80s who recorded for a subsidiary of the IRS label. This song is premised on a cool offbeat jazz rhythm, with the bands usual smooth vocals and a good use of a melodica (though is there ever a bad one?).
  6. Franz Ferdinand — Send Him Away (Tonight: Franz Ferdinand): A mid-tempo tune from last year’s FF release. I don’t think they’ll ever top the debut, which was pretty much perfect. But Tonight has some really good songs, and this was a respite from the more upbeat numbers.
  7. Nicole Atkins — Neptune City (Bleeding Diamonds): This is a stripped down version of the title song from Atkins’ debut album. Here, Atkins and her amazing voice are accompanied primarily by a piano. Though the Neptune City album is characterized by lush production, Nicole’s songs are so strong that she doesn’t need all those extras to impress.
  8. Pernice Brothers — The Ballad Of Bjorn Borg (The World Won’t End): One of my five favorite Pernice Brothers songs. This has Peyton Pinkerton’s wonderful guitar embellishments accompanying a melancholy and romantic melody, which all leads to gigantic chorus: “And we killed the endless summer.” It’s pithy and memorable phrases like that which I offer as proof of Joe Pernice’s brilliance as a lyricist.
  9. Thee Oh Sees — Peanut Butter Oven (Help): Primitive songs with oddball production. I’m not sure that low-fi is the right way to describe it, as there is a lot going on in the mix. This song just works a two chord vamp with ghostly male and female vocals, punctuated with guitar at just the right time. This band shows that you can always find new wrinkles for old garage rock tropes.
  10. Lilys — The Lost Victory (The 3 Way): A pithy Kinks-y pop tune from an album that is generally complex as all hell. Lilys have dabbled in a few different sounds, but I’m most taken by their forays into this fey ’60s pop that goes in totally unexpected directions. The songs are catchy but never obvious. Even this short song has a curveball or two.

Share April 9, 2010 http://chrp.at/1fb1 Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: Friday MP3 Shuffle

Topics: ipod

Nicole Oppenheim: Ear Candy writesMidwestern Housewife - Let The Wild Rumpus Begin!

I take my camera with me wherever I go. You never know when something noteworthy will reveal itself and I like to be prepared. (Oh, and before you ask, no, I was not a Girl Scout.) For instance, yesterday while running some errands, I noticed an excellent juxtaposition of storefronts. In a strip mall up here in Rogers Park, there’s a very large candy store right next to a dentist’s office. Cause and effect? That’s probably overstating it, but there has to be some kind of cosmic symbiosis at play here. And, like every Gen Xer, I appreciate irony above all else, so I snapped a quick photo.

Generally, this photo-snapping habit is enough to quench my thirst for irony and humor in everyday life, but there have been a few times when I’ve wished for a video camera to record entire events in real time. This past Saturday was one of those rare times when I wished to all that’s holy I’d had a video camera on me. The resulting film would have been an instant classic (a term that is not thrown around lightly here at CHIRP). There was drama. There was action. There was comedy. There was even real vomit! It was a three-year-old’s birthday party and it was fantastic. Never before have I been so happy not to have been involved in any way with the success or failure of an event. I was a guest, as were my three-year-old twins and my husband; but truthfully, we were peripheral actors in a carnivalesque scene of absolute mayhem.

First, a little background: My kids attend preschool in the Gold Coast. Ironically, my husband and I chose this particular preschool for our kids not because it was posh and all the moms/nannies dropped their kids off in Lexus SUVs; no, we chose it because it was the cheapest we could find. (And for the record, I drop my kids off in a hand-me-down Ford with a huge dent in the front, a peeling bumper, and a semi-functional defrost system). Posh Preschool is even cheaper than the preschool classes offered by our neighborhood Chicago Public school—no joke! Oh, and the quality of education my kids receive at Posh is amazing. For what we pay, comparatively speaking, it kind of feels like stealing. (Win!)

So my kids attend Posh with other toddlers who will, no doubt, grow up to attend private schools around the city and then go on to become international ambassadors, brain surgeons, and multi-billionaire real estate developers—or so said schools would have you believe. Knowing that this road-to-achievement mindset is shared by school administrators and most of the parents of my kids’ classmates, it gives me so much joy to attend early birthday parties where these little would-be rocket scientists and diplomats behave like complete barbarians. Throwing tantrums, throwing shoes, in one case throwing smaller siblings…nothing is out of bounds for toddlers jacked up on sugar and adrenaline.

My son is usually freaked out by birthday parties, with good reason given the attendees, so he tends to hang out with me. My daughter, on the other hand, is content to find something to play with (at this last party, it was fairy wings and a magic wand) and will watch the wanton destruction from the sidelines with a friend or two. This is not to say that they abstain from barbaric behavior the whole time, comporting themselves with the utmost in proper etiquette. Quite the opposite. Yesterday, Squeaky and another girl rolled a third child headfirst down a slide and giggled maniacally all the while. The third child, understandably, was in tears. Winchie, who despises sitting in a circle for reading time, exacted his revenge on the unsuspecting leader of Birthday Story Time by hurling a large metal watering can full of fake flowers in her general direction and roaring at her like a monster. And while I quickly stepped in to curtail this kind of behavior in my children, I also enjoyed getting a glimpse of their completely unhindered ids at play.

Enter the wish for a video camera. When my kids are all grown up and have the obligatory white collar desk jobs that modern middle-class education prepares them for, there won’t be any opportunity for them to let their ids run free and participate in a truly wild rumpus Maurice Sendak-style. Instead, they’ll bottle it all up inside and release it in the form of mid life crises. At least, that’s my theory. How else does one explain old men with combovers buying up the world’s supply of virility substitutes—oops, I mean sports cars—and marrying bubble-brained bimbettes like it’s a perfectly natural thing? It’s funny, sure, but also kind of sad.

So I want a video of kids being kids because it’s such honest behavior. They’re too little to subscribe to the rules of society that further schooling and class consciousness will put upon them. It’s so great to watch them roar their little hearts out over the injustice of that kid over there getting a cupcake first and getting to see them stomp their little feet with righteous indignation over having to wait for a turn on the slide. I mean, really. Don’t we all want to get the first cupcake and be the first one down the slide? And when that doesn’t happen, don’t we want to scream and stomp our feet, too?

It would be so great to capture, just for a minute, the essence of all these little developing people. And before you run for your tinfoil hats or accuse me of stealing the plot of Dr. Strangelove, here’s what I’m getting at: One day, the little people engaging in birthday party shenanigans will be all grown up and messed up just like their parents. But they’ll still be the same basic person inside. Temperaments generally don’t change with age, barring unfortunate accidents and/or abuse of some kind. So here would be this little recording of a room full of toddlers just having a great time running, pushing other kids, screaming, chasing, pounding fists, eating too much cake, and generally behaving like the little primates they are. No lame posturing, no inhibitions, no affected ideological philosophies, nothing fake. Seeing how little people navigate the world in this state is one of the best parts of parenting. (Well, that, and getting to re-watch your favorite cartoons while eating ludicrous amounts of Rice Krispie treats). It’s nice to be reminded that we all start out on pretty much the same level and while we’re all destined for different things, there once was a time when even the seemingly all-powerful CEO of Amalgamated Conglomo Widgets R Us picked her nose and cried for her mommy when another kid stole her favorite My Little Pony toy.

Share April 5, 2010 http://chrp.at/1eIs Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: Midwestern Housewife

Topics: midwestern housewife

Mike Bennett writesiPod/MP3 Friday Shuffle — Happy Birthday Serge Gainsbourg Edition

Let’s pay tribute to a French legend and the father of someone who we’ve played a fair amount of at CHIRP Radio (his daughter, Charlotte). Serge Gainsbourg is the poster child for post-war French decadence, his pop songs drenched in sex, cigarettes and copious amounts of alcohol (and come to think of it, copious amounts of sex). He evolved as an artist, making increasingly outrageous statements about many aspects of life, while steeping himself in controversy after controversy — the biggest, perhaps, being his duet with a young Charlotte, “Lemon Incest”. Many have tried, but no one can equal the sleazy cool of Monsieur Gainsbourg. So let’s pay tribute to Serge. Grab your iPod/MP3 player, hit shuffle, and share the first 10 tunes that come up.

  1. Sparks — Saccharin and the War (Sparks): One of two songs on the original Halfnelson demos that made the band’s first album (with Halfnelson changing its name to Sparks a few months after their first album’s release). Producer Todd Rundgren captured the demo’s wiggy twee psychedelia on this bizarre song about women and weight loss that must have made sense to Ron Mael at the time he wrote it.
  2. The Lilac Time — She Still Loves You (Paradise Circus): Stephen Duffy was an original member of Duran Duran who left to form the synth-poppy Tin Tin. After that well dried up, he did u-turn and put out pastoral pop music as The Lilac Time (and he obviously tired of double names). His songs have an elegant air with precise vocals that remind me a bit of Al Stewart. Really good folk pop.
  3. James Brown — I Got You (I Feel Good)(50th Anniversary Collection): Hmm…a classic JB tune. But one that has been done to death in commercials and soundtracks of movies that aren’t so hot. Granted, they only play the first 40 seconds usually. Nevertheless, this is a great song that I’m tired of hearing. Maybe this will have to be taken off the iPod.
  4. *Paul Revere & The Raiders — Just Like Me (Just Like Me): A classic Paul Revere garage rock tune. Songs like this had to have been influential on Tommy Boyce & Bobby Hart, as this sounds like the template for the garagier songs that duo penned for The Monkees. Mark Lindsey does a great job building up from his measured singing in the verses to more passion and frenzy as the chorus builds.
  5. Roger Miller — Train Of Life (King of the Road: The Genius of Roger Miller): The ’60s revival on my shuffle continues. This is a wonderful country blues about a guy who is worried that he’s sitting on the sidelines while life passes him by. This has characteristically sharply observed lyrics, a great economy of language, and Miller’s singing has rarely been better. This builds on the great work of Hank Williams.
  6. The Morells — I’m a Hog For You Baby (The Morells): A slice of roadhouse R & B from the great Springfield, Missouri bar band led by Lou Whitney and D. Clinton Thompson. When The Morells originally dissolved, Whitney and Thompson formed The Skeletons, who were a little less roots rock then the Morells. About 10 years ago, they revived The Morells, and the new stuff came a bit closer to The Skeletons’ sound. Regardless, this is simple fun rock ‘n’ roll.
  7. Rod Argent & Chris White — Unhappy Girl (Into the Afterlife): A demo recording by two-fifths of The Zombies, from a cool compilation that collects the immediate post-Zombies work of Argent, White and Colin Blunstone. This song sounds like an outtake from the Odyessey and Oracle sessions — a classic moody mid-tempo ’60s pop song.
  8. Roger Miller — When Two Worlds Collide (King of the Road: The Genius of Roger Miller): This is a tender ballad from Miller. Miller posits that opposites attract is not a truism. The lyrics on this song are so simple and say all they need to say, with the weepy music taking care of the rest.
  9. Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band — Alley Oop (Gorilla): A bonus track from a reissue of a classic album from the comedic British band. This is a cover of the old Hollywood Argyles’ hit, with Viv Stanshall practically narrating the lyrics in his veddy proper English. A band made for Dr. Demento.
  10. Chuck Berry — Back in the U.S.A. (Gold): This oldies laden shuffle ends with a classic Chuck Berry song. Berry’s genius lay in his ability to: 1) rev up 12-bar blues into a pop context, while learning lessons from country and jump blues (especially the influence of Louis Jordan), helping create rock ‘n’ roll, and, 2) his amazing skill as a lyricist. Berry loved iconic images and notions, as exemplified on this celebration of America that looks at it from a contemporary teenage pop culture context. He simultaneously fueled and chronicled the post-war rise of youth culture, and because of that, his influence is still felt to this day, albeit indirectly.

Share April 2, 2010 http://chrp.at/1elQ Share on Facebook Tweet This!

Categorized: Friday MP3 Shuffle

Topics: ipod

  1. ««
  2. 311
  3. 312
  4. 313
  5. 314
  6. 315
  7. »»