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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Preview Wed Jul 20 2011

Preview: US Air Guitar National Finals 7/23

It's time: The US Air Guitar Championships National Finals arrive at the Metro, 3730 N. Clark St., Saturday night. The finalists are chosen (except for one -- the "Dark Horse Invitational" at Parlour Thursday night will settle that), with an amazing three Chicagoans in the lineup. Past champion Romeo Dance Cheeta, who supplied the amazing intermission performance in the Chicago regionals, joins them in this video:

Here's a full lineup of contestants, in order of their win on the regional circuit:

Chicago: Nordic Thunder* (Justin Howard)
Denver: Dreamcatcher (Ryan Alva Layman)
Kansas City: Mean Melin (Eric Melin)
Austin: Vlad DM Wailer (Kolb Ettinger)
Milwaukee: Dry Ice* (Aaron Alonso)
Kalamazoo: Thundergland* (Matt Barats)
Minneapolis: Airisol (Cami Phillippi)
Washington DC: Tommy Fretless (Adam Lee)
New York: Airistotle (Matt Burns)
Brooklyn: Shreddy Mercury (Seth Leibowitz)
Boston: McNallica (Erin McNally)
Philadelphia: Windhammer (Rob Weychert)
San Francisco 1: Shred Nugent (Kurt Brown)
San Francisco 2: Cold Steel Renegade (Matthew Feldstein)
Seattle: Lt. Facemelter (Jason Farnan)
Portland: Tony Tapatio (Antonio Cervantes)
Los Angeles: Shred Boy R.D. (Greg Pittelli)
San Diego: Six String General (Tim Granlund)
* Chicago-based

This is an exceptionally strong group of air guitarists, including several past champions. Expect our hometown heroes to do well, however. This is Nordic Thunder fourth trip to the Big Show, and Dry Ice nearly beat his veteran mentor his first time out. Thundergland won in Boulder's regional last year, so he's no slouch either. With the home town crowd advantage, my guess is at least two if not all three will make it to the final round.

Hot Lixx Hulahan and Björn Türoque return as host and head judge once again; stay tuned for the identities of the guest judges. Doors open at 8pm at Metro, 3730 N. Clark St. Tickets are $20 in advance or at the door.

But wait! You could win your way in! We've got two pairs of tickets to give away. Email us at with the subject line "GET AIR" by 5pm Thursday for your chance to win! We've got our winners! Congrats to Kurt and Aaron!

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

Our Final Transmission Days

By The Gapers Block Transmission Staff

Transmission staffers share their most cherished memories and moments while writing for Gapers Block.

Read this feature »


  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
Big Rock Candy Mountain
Boxx Magazine
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago
Can You See The Sunset From The Southside
Chicago Reader Music
Chicagoist Arts & Events
Chicago Music Guide
Chicago Singles Club
Country Music Chicago
Cream Team
Dark Jive
The Deli Chicago
Jim DeRogatis
Fake Shore Drive
Gowhere Hip Hop
The Hood Internet
Jaded in Chicago
Largehearted Boy
Little White Earbuds
Live Fix Blog
Live Music Blog
Loud Loop Press
Oh My Rockness
Pop 'stache
Pop Matters
Resident Advisor
Sound Opinions
Sun-Times Music Blog
Theft Liable to Prosecution
Tribune Music
UR Chicago
Victim Of Time
WFMU's Beware of the Blog
Windy City Rock


Abbey Pub
Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
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Buddy Guy's Legends
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Empty Bottle
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Mayne Stage
The Mutiny
Old Town School of Folk Music
Park West
The Promontory
Red Line Tap
Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint
The Riviera
Thalia Hall
The Shrine
Symphony Center
Tonic Room
Uncommon Ground
The Vic
The Whistler

  Labels, Promoters
  & Shops:

Alligator Records
Beverly Records
Bloodshot Records
Dave's Records
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Drag City
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Flameshovel Records
Groove Distribution
He Who Corrupts
Jam Productions
Jazz Record Mart
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Minty Fresh
Numero Group
mP Shows
Permanent Records
Reckless Records
Smog Veil Records
Southport & Northport Records
Thick Records
Thrill Jockey Records Touch & Go/Quarterstick Records
Victory Records

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