Among the cool things I received for my birthday:
- Beatles Gear (Andy Babiuk)
- White Knight (Todd Rundgren)
- An Evening with Todd Rundgren
Yesterday I heard the new single by The Dandy Warhols for the first time. “Thick Girls Knock Me Out (Richard Starkey)” provides the perfect antidote to what seems to me to be a dormant time for good new music. In addition, the Dandys have created the video I’ve always wanted them to make—no goofy scenes or themes, just great music with the focus on what I consider to be one of the best bands around. March is in like a lion, indeed. I give the band bonus points for mentioning a Beatle in the song title. Give it a listen.
It’s official: The Wind Cries Jerrys, a 6-song EP containing new original songs by Jerry Schwartz, will be released by The Jerrys in 2017. Recording is well under way and expected to be completed by spring, with mixing and mastering to follow. A new single, “Chicago USA,” which the band previewed live on WZRD Chicago in 2016, will be released ahead of the EP.
The new release also features Robert Porche’ (drums), Jim Losby (bass guitar), and a surprise guest. Stay tuned for new music by the Jerrys!
(Image is a photo of original print by ScottyRocks.)
You don’t see a lot of Sears Silvertone amplifiers out in the wild anymore, but there are actually two in this photo from 40 years ago. To the right is the amp I’m playing through, and to the left is a guitar case with a built-in amplifier and speaker. I received the latter for Christmas when I was in the fourth grade.
It’s Johnny Rivers on Hullabaloo! My dad and I used to watch Hullabaloo, which ran on NBC from January 1965 through April 1966. Repeat episodes aired in summer 1966.
Here’s “Space Cadet” from The Jerrys’ first album, Pop Go The Jerrys, performed at a Chicago rehearsal studio.
Here’s John Lennon singing in the rain in St. Louis, Missouri. This was the show that convinced Paul McCartney that The Beatles should stop touring.
Many songs about Chicago and songs that mention Chicago have been written and recorded over the years, and as one might expect, there’s a huge list of Chicago songs on Wikipedia. Among those about Chicago, here are the ones that stand out to me:
As a songwriter, I’ve always wanted to add to the list, and I’ve done just that with my upcoming single by The Jerrys, “Chicago USA.” Not just another Chicago song, the tune is also a tribute to two of my favorite childhood songs, “Downtown” and “I Know a Place”—both written by Tony Hatch and made popular by Petula Clark. Stay tuned.