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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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News Tue Feb 10 2015

Mucca Pazza's Tiny Desk Runneth Over

Everyone's favorite punk rock marching band, Mucca Pazza, journeyed east recently and ended up at NPR where they broke some serious records. As a gang of 23 musicians and cheerleaders, they became the largest ensemble to wedge around All Songs Consdiered editor Bob Boilen's desk for their very own Tiny Desk Concert. Check it out, and breathe some life into your work day:

You can also download the band's 14 minute concert as an mp3.

Anne Holub

Radio Wed Nov 19 2014

The CHIRPs Are Getting Bigger

CHIRP radius.jpg

After much hard work, including a trip to Washington, D.C. to lobby for it, CHIRP Radio has been granted permission by the FCC to put up a low-power broadcast tower in Chicago. Soon, instead of just streaming online, you'll be able to tune in to 107.1 to hear CHIRP DJs from the comfort of your automobile or lakeside picnic blanket (within the station's broadcast radius, anyway). Congrats, CHIRP-ers!

Anne Holub

Radio Mon Dec 16 2013

A New Spin on Santa

christmas vinyl record.jpg

Throughout the year, you might catch Andy Cirzan and John Soss diving through crates of records with just one thing on their minds: finding the most ridiculous Christmas music out there. This isn't your Lite FM Mariah favorites, or even the weird B-sides from your favorite childhood Santa spin. These are some weird, strange, and otherwise non sequitur holiday oddities — and they're so much fun! All the effort starts to pay off as we creep closer to the 25th. Catch Andy and John on the radio several times over the next week.

I seem to always be go-go-go each year when Andy appears on WBEZ's Sound Opinions, but luckily we can download all his latest Christmas mix for free, or listen to the show online or below:

If you like your radio live, here's where you can catch John and Andy do their Christmas spinning on your FM dial over the next few days:

- Tuesday, December 17th from 10pm–Midnight on WXRT Radio 93.1 FM with "The Eclectic Company" hosts Marty Lennartz and Jon Langford. Listen online by clicking the "Listen Live" box.

- Sunday, December 22nd from 1–3pm and on Tuesday, December 24 from 10pm–midnight. Hear some vintage "Christmas Club with Johnny and Andy" programs on WDCB Radio 90.9 FM or listen online.

Anne Holub

Event Tue Apr 16 2013

Yours To Keep: Dispatches from The CHIRP Record Fair

Walking into the bright-lit auditorium of The Chicago Journeymen Plumber's Union, its stage playing host to a series of DJs spinning rare vinyl, its walls adorned with all manner of music ephemera long past their sell-by date, and its floors teeming with record collectors eager to share their collections with any and all passersby, was admittedly a bit overwhelming. The scent of dust that hung in the air was unavoidable, the result of the hundreds of cardboard boxes lining each vendor's table and, of course, the hundreds of pieces of vinyl that lay within each box. The effect was dizzying. When a friend asked me how many individual pieces of vinyl might be housed in this one room at any given point, I said that there had to be hundreds of thousands, if not more, on the right side of the room alone. This fact, combined with the constant, colorful barrage of organizers, small labels, "Flip Your Wig" Beatles board games, Dead-head vendors and greenhorn collectors, had me quickly ditching my punch list of desired titles, and what awaited me instead last Saturday afternoon at the Eleventh Annual CHIRP Record Fair was a lot more than the search for a few stray John Cale records.


The morning began at 10am (and even earlier for the dedicated, pre-admitted few) and lasted until just after 7pm, with hundreds of people filing in and out of the auditorium to get their vinyl fix. Local roasters Dark Matter and brewers Goose Island were on hand to keep people buzzed in one way or another, with food from local restaurants Irazu and Handlebar keeping people fueled if fatigue ever set in. The assembled dozens of vinyl vendors ranged from the casual two-man label to major collections from shuttered record-store owners, and even a handful of scrappy independent enthusiasts (one of whom found me an old copy of Europe '72, and another I spotted hawking beer as a vendor at the Cubs game the next day). Everyone was eager to help find whatever was being sought by whoever was seeking it out an all seemed to know their massive collections like the back of their hand.

Continue reading this entry »

Mike Bellis / Comments (1)

Radio Tue Sep 25 2012

WZRD: Radio in Exile

WZRD-FM 88.3WZRD 88.3 FM, Northeastern Illinois University's non-commercial, freeform student radio station known for playing an eclectic array of musical genres, was suspended from the airwaves this summer and replaced with an automated playlist.

On June 29, student DJs, known as the "Wizards," were called into a meeting on short notice by the Office of Student Leadership Development. Its former director, Sharron Evans, distributed a memo stating they were thereby banned from the WZRD office, canceling their scheduled radio shows, until further notice.

"We were handed a list of incredulous accusations," Jonathan Extract, a NEIU student and WZRD DJ, said.

Continue reading this entry »

Brianna Kelly / Comments (2)

Radio Fri Dec 16 2011

Boogie On, Santa Claus


Some of Chicago's crate-diving-est of holiday vinyl fans, Andy Cirzan and John Soss, are putting their collections once more on the local airwaves this December. They've already been guests on WXRT's "Eclectic Company" special Christmas music show (which will someday get a podcast, we all hope), but you can still catch them in the coming days. Andy was a guest on Sound Opinions last night (which will re-run on Saturday, December 17th at 11am, as well as on the Sound Opinions podcast) and you can already download his Christmas music set on their website. John and Andy will both host a special Christmas music show, showing off their kookiest vinyl finds on WDCB - Public Radio From College Of DuPage (90.9FM) on Thursday, December 22nd from 7-9pm. If you can't get WDCB on your radio, you can stream the program live on their website:

Of course, I don't think any kooky Christmas music compilation is good unless it includes Yogi Yorgesson's "I Yust Go Nuts at Christmas."

See past Cirzan-curated Christmas music covers from Sound Opinions in the slideshow below (his 2011 one is above):

Anne Holub

Video Thu Sep 08 2011

Wilco is Born Alone

Overshadowed by Jeff Tweedy's Black Eyed Peas covers at the @MayorEmanuel book release party, Wilco released a video this week for the new song "Born Alone" from the band's forthcoming album, The Whole Love. It was directed by Mark Greenberg, proprietor of Mayfair Workshop and a member of The Coctails. GB contributor Dave Elfving interviewed Greenberg in 2005 about music-making and odd instruments. Greenberg is credited as an assistant producer on the album, so it's possible some of those instruments are woven into the background.

The Whole Love is due out Sept. 27 on their own dBpm Records. NPR will stream the album at 1pm Chicago time on Sept. 19, and will have members of the band on afterward to answer your questions.

Andrew Huff

Radio Mon Jul 25 2011

Help Dry Out These Birds!

chirp.jpg The fine folks at CHIRP thought that this past weekend's storms would spare their studio, as it's up on the third floor of a building in Lincoln Square, but they were wrong. A drainage issue in the building meant that Saturday morning there was more than an inch of water in the studios where the Chicago Independent Radio Project broadcasts online 24/7. They've got a disaster recovery crew helping to tear out drywall, carpet, and ventilate the space (in the meantime, they're broadcasting an automated format via computer) as well as an electrician to help sort out the damage the water has done to the system. They do have some insurance money helping to pay for the recovery, but what insurance doesn't cover is quickly adding up. Please consider donating now to help make sure that CHIRP can get back on the air quickly. Keep up with their Twitter for the latest. While there are no specific flood-relief benefits planned, you can always donate online, or attend a CHIRP-sponsored event already on the calendar: the August edition of The First Time reading series at the Beat Kitchen on August 10th where invited writers share stories on a single topic. This coming month, it's The First Time: First High.

Anne Holub

Radio Mon Jan 31 2011

The New York Times Talks Up CHIRP

The fine folks at the NYT (via the Chicago News Cooperative) have taken some time to talk up the fine efforts of the Chicago Independent Radio Project (full disclosure: an organization of which this author is a member - ed.). President Shawn Campbell discusses the terrestrial broadcasting opportunities nearing possibility in the wake of Obama's signing of The Local Community Radio Act, as well as the challenges still left to overcome. (No word yet on whether the Wall Street Journal is preparing an article and hedcut drawing for Ms. Campbell.)

Dan Morgridge

Benefit Tue Jan 11 2011

CHIRP Celebrates 365 Live Days and the Local Community Radio Act

chirp.jpgIt's a big month for CHIRP, Chicago's independent, all volunteer run, online radio station (CHIRP is acronym for Chicago Independent Radio Project). Not only is CHIRP launching a month long celebration in honor of its first 365 days on-air, but CHIRP is also celebrating a major victory in the passage the Local Community Radio Act - the bi-partisan bill which will decentralize radio and expand community radio in urban areas.

From its launch on January 17, 2010, CHIRP has dedicated every on-air hour to providing Chicago with community radio focused on the representation of local people, events and issues alongside an eclectic array of independent, under-appreciated and local Chicago music. CHIRP volunteers have also dedicated many off-air hours to lobbying for the passage of the Local Community Radio Act.

Continue reading this entry »

Bonnie Page / Comments (1)

Radio Tue Dec 14 2010

Get Your Christmas Music Fix

The-Pops-Feliz-Natal-(1969)-300.jpgTune in to 93.1 FM WXRT tonight from 10pm-midnight for a special dose of the weekly "Eclectic Company" show with hosts Jon Langford and Nick Tremulis for their 6th Annual Eclectic Company Christmas Special. They'll feature tunes that aren't the anywhere near the same ones you've heard piped in to the grocery store for weeks now, and others you probably wish you could get out of your head at the end of the broadcast. Jam Productions staff John Soss and Andy Cirzan will play mixmasters, and are downright giddy over sharing their secret stashes of Christmas gems.

Catch the show online as well, at

(If you miss it, don't pout — the show will be repeated next Tuesday, December 21st.)

Anne Holub

Lollapalooza Wed Aug 04 2010

WLUW Live Broadcasts From Lolla Grounds

freeyrradio.jpgChicago's WLUW-FM 88.7 has teamed up with Toyota for Free Yr Radio to broadcast live all weekend from inside Lollapalooza. Festival-goers can stop by their stage just north of Buckingham Fountain to say hi to their favorite DJs and see live performances and interviews from Lolla artists such as The Antlers, Balkan Beat Box and Nneka. Even if you can't make it to the fest this weekend, you can listen in from 11am to 7pm each day locally on 88.7 FM, or globally at

Toyota's Free Yr Radio program (now in its fourth year) supports independent radio by providing unique opportunities like this all summer long to stations just like WLUW across the country. This year, in addition to Lollapalooza, you'll hear them at the music festivals Mile High, Outside Lands, Bumbershoot and Voodoo Experience. This will be WLUW's largest remote broadcast to date. WLUW's General Manager Danielle Basci says, "...the opportunity to broadcast live from inside Lollapalooza is something that wouldn't be possible without the support of Free Yr Radio. For three days we'll be able to directly connect with our fans at Lollapalooza while showcasing some of the festival's amazing artists."

Be sure to follow Free Yr Radio on Twitter and Facebook for schedule info.

Michelle Meywes

Radio Mon Mar 01 2010

Patti Smith Reading on Chicago Public Radio

Chicago-born punk rock icon Patti Smith read from her memoir Just Kids -- about her relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe -- last week at the Harold Washington Public Library Center. In case you missed it, Chicago Public Radio has an audio recording of Smith's reading and acoustic performance. "I'm very happy to be here for two reasons -- I love libraries and since I was born in Chicago, it's very nice to be in a library in Chicago," Smith says before beginning her reading.

At one point, Smith asks the audience to stop taking pictures because of all the clicking noises. "Sorry, it just breaks my concentration. And then I'll have to yell. Then I'll have to turn into the grandmother of punk rock," she laughs.

Be sure to listen to at least the beginning as Smith recounts her childhood memories of Humboldt Park and Logan Square.

Sheila Burt

Radio Wed Jan 13 2010

CHIRP Radio is Going Up (and Partying Down)

(In the interest of disclosure, Dan Morgridge is a current volunteer and DJ with CHIRP.)

While one gets antsy upon waiting two minutes for a sandwich at the local Potbelly's, try waiting over two years to get yourself a radio station. The 200+ volunteers of CHIRP have gone through almost 30 months of fundraising, venue searching, political activism and physical construction to get their station ready for launch. Now the station is all but ready to go, and the station is throwing a kick-off party before they flip the switch.

This coming Sunday eve, the Empty Bottle will host all all-local smorgasboard with The Hollows, The Yolks, Rabble Rabble, and a number of CHIRP DJs for a cherry on top. Doors open at 9:00PM, Cost is $8, and it's 21+.

Even if you can't make it out, fear not — provided you can defeat your hangover a little early, the true launch of the station won't happen until the next day at noon. Visit the station site to watch the hours count down, and then to start hearing local Chicago radio happen at the drop of mid-noon, Sunday!

Dan Morgridge

Radio Mon Sep 14 2009

Chip In and Help CHIRP

The Chicago Independent Radio Project (CHIRP) needs your help to launch the webstream for their up-and-coming radio station.

As CHIRP's physical station is nearing completion at 4045 N. Rockwell St. (and Congress and the FCC are in the midst of reconsidering the law that limits new low-power broadband FM radio stations in big cities), the group is asking for donations to help bring the noise via the Internet. Contributions start at $1 and can run up to as much as $10,000, if you're feeling like that. Through November 11, CHIRP is offering various premiums for donations, from buttons and tote bags to signed silk-screened posters and free CDs. Hell, if you donate $500, various CHIRP DJs are available to spin at your house party!

Kara Luger

Radio Fri Aug 28 2009

Mr. Tuten Goes Went to Washington

For the past five months, a certain someone has been notably absent from The Hideout. That someone is Tim Tuten, co-owner of the venue (and staunch Obama supporter), who followed Obama to Washington to work for Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

On September 1st at 9am, 89.5 fm will catch up with Mr. Tuten as they talk with him about schools, rock and DC. (via @hideoutchicago's Twitter stream)

Michelle Meywes

Radio Wed Jul 01 2009

Which Wilco Came First?

Wilco's Jeff Tweedy sat down with WBEZ's Alison Cuddy to talk about the band's newly released album Wilco (the album), Jay Bennett and the order of things.

Anne Holub

Radio Tue Jun 16 2009

Mariah on B96

On the off chance we've got a few Mariah Carey fans amongst our readership, you may be interested to know that B96 has the exclusive world premiere of Carey's new single, "Obsessed." It'll play at 2pm today.

Andrew Huff

Radio Wed Feb 18 2009

Soundtrack for Hard Times

Chicago Public Radio's latest project "Hard Working" posed the question on their blog late last week: What songs belong on a recession-themed mix tape? They've got some solid starters, but it got me wondering what would the slant of this mix? Would you want bluesy, soulful tunes or peppy mood lifters?

My vote: "Welcome to the Working Week" by Elvis Costello

Anne Holub / Comments (1)

Radio Thu Feb 12 2009

In The Year 2000...


If you've grown tired of Pandora or scouring MySpace pages for free music, then former Transmission writer Michael Schmitt has you covered. His most recent project, Future Perfect Radio, is a website that offers over 25 streaming channels of today's hottest indie music. The channels are organized by genres and geographic regions, and also offer convenient customization options. The site also highlights five artists each week so you can get acquainted with old favorites as well as up-and-coming bands.

The best part about Future Perfect Radio is its sense of community. Listeners are encouraged to complement or bash artists through Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, or a blog. In effect, listeners can influence what music is streamed on the channels through their suggestions. Unlike Pandora, you'll be constantly exposed to new music and changing playlists. For example, a new Michigan/Detroit channel will be launching soon because of huge listener feedback. Future Perfect Radio also offers sweet channels like Pitchfork's Top 100 Tracks of 2008, Indie Down Under, The Chicago Scene, and Lo-Fi. Check it out!

Raf Miastkowski

Event Wed Dec 03 2008

What is the future of music?

soundopinions.jpgGreg Kot and Jim DeRogatis have a ton of knowledge between them in rock music and the going-ons in the industry. You've heard them on "the worlds only rock 'n' roll talk show," Sound Opinions, and now you can join them live to discuss the future of the music industry in this uncertain time.

It's no secret that the Internet and the digital age have changed the way we listen to music, buy music, are exposed to music, and generally enjoy artists we like. Record companies are left scrambling to try to figure out how to still make a profit in this new time, but what does it mean for you the consumer/ listener, and for the musicians themselves? Kot and De Rogatis promise to break it down for you tonight at Columbia College's Conway Center (1104 S. Wabash). It's free, but space is limited so get there early. Doors open at 5:30, and the talk begins at 6pm.

Chicago Public Radio Event Details

Michelle Meywes

Radio Thu Nov 13 2008

Condemn the Musical Duds of 2008


Did you find the new Portishead album a bit dull? Were you expecting more from the Los Campesinos! debut LP after the hype generated from Sticking Fingers into Sockets? Think Way to Normal doesn't compare to Ben Folds' earlier works? Well, now you have the chance to air your grievances over the radio airwaves.

Each year Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis, hosts of Sound Opinions, call out the most disappointing albums of the year in their annual "Turkey Shoot". If you want to make your complaints known, tell them which albums left you disgruntled this year by emailing and they will contact you to be on air.

Tune in to Sound Opinions weekly on Chicago Public Radio (91.5 FM in Chicago) at 8 PM on Fridays and 11 AM on Saturdays.

Stephanie Griffin

Radio Fri Oct 03 2008

#680... Yankee Hotel Foxtrot?!

Thumbnail image for 51jaJ3ZbJ8L.jpg KEXP in Seattle has been counting down the top 903 albums of all-time over the last few days, and something shocking just happened. Sandwiched in between Alexi Murdoch's Time Without Consequence (#681) and Whiskeytown's The Ballad Of Carol Lynn (#679) was the Chicago classic Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. I know it is hard to please everyone in a fan based voting system, but I find it hard to believe that there are 679 albums better than Wilco's best. In fact, while Sons and Daughter's (677) and Ratatat (676) play, it is clear we need a recount! Regardless, if you are tried of debating Palin vs. Biden, check out the rest of the countdown at, and start debating Wilco vs. The Meat Puppets.

Jason Behrends / Comments (3)

Radio Tue Aug 19 2008

More of The Ex

If you enjoyed Graham's interview with The Ex's Andy Moor but missed of the band's shows with Ethiopian saxophonist Getatchew Mekuria, you have one more chance: Peter Margasak notes that WFMU will broadcast the band's Wednesday concert at Damrosch Park in New York live. Also on the bill are Extra Golden and Ethiopian singers Mahmoud Ahmed and Alemayehu Eshete performing with Either/Orchestra. Tune in for the online stream at 5pm (6pm EST).

Andrew Huff

Radio Tue Jul 15 2008

Radio on the TV

No, that's not a mistake -- I'm talking about vintage TV commercials for radio stations. Through the magic of YouTube, all sorts of embarrassingly bad commercials for stations of varying quality live on.

"If you haven't tried WXRT lately, give our rock a listen!"

"Q101. The Q stands for quality music."

You stay classy, WBMX.

The Loop presages the lip-syncing of the '80s.

The same actress returned a couple years later to lure people back.

This one from WMET is still pretty much in use today in one form or another.

Andrew Huff

Event Tue Jul 01 2008

KEXP Invades Chicago

For the third straight year, KEXP will visit Chicago and feature some homegrown talent live in the studio on their airwaves. On July 16, 17 and 18, KEXP hosts 4 bands each day at Engine Studios. Many local acts like Bottomless Pit, The M's, Mahjongg, Occidental Brothers and David Vandervelde will perform. And because they're such nice folks, KEXP is letting almost anyone join them to see and hear them play live. But you have to sign up. And you should do it sooner rather than later because these events fill up. Performers and times are listed at KEXP's Live from Chicago 2008 website. In addition to the studio sessions, Au and Sleep Out will perform for free at Darkroom on the 16th as part of KEXP's Midwest invasion.

James Ziegenfus

Radio Tue Jun 10 2008

Ephemeral Sounds

The Third Coast International Audio Festival and the Prelinger Library are looking for radio ephemera -- take bits from two out of five books posted on this site, add a recording of a stranger's voice and turn them into a short audio story.

Submissions are due by August 3. Four pieces will be selected to be included in the Third Coast Festival Conference in October. And there's a chance your piece will also be played on Re:sound or

Andrew Huff

Concert Fri Mar 28 2008

KEXP To Broadcast Live from Pitchfork Fest, More Bands Announced


Pitchfork Music Festival announced today that KEXP, the "where the music matters" public radio station in Seattle known for its innovative music and web programming, will broadcast live from the actual festival and from Chicago in the days running up to the festival.

The announcement helps bolster KEXP's efforts to become the nation's top new music/rock station via its internet stream. KEXP replaces KCRWMUSIC.COM (Santa Monica, CA) as the chief radio sponsor, and why KCRW did not grab this opportunity is unknown. The fact that, for two years in a row, public radio stations from other states have sponsored the festival seems to demonstrate how sorely lacking Chicago is of a great rock station, public or commercial.

In addition to the radio broadcast announcement, the festival announced the following newly added acts to the lineup, and expects to announce more in April.

Those newly announced acts are:

* Dinosaur Jr
* The Pitchfork Music Festival and All Tomorrow's Parties present "Don't Look Back" featuring Mission of Burma performing "Vs."
* Jarvis Cocker
* Ghostface & Raekwon
* The Apples in Stereo
* Jay Reatard
* Ruby Suns
* Dirty Projectors
* Cut Copy
* A Hawk and A Hacksaw
* Fuck Buttons
* King Khan & His Shrines
* Occidental Brothers Dance Band International

They will join the following previously announced performers:

* The Pitchfork Music Festival and All Tomorrow's Parties present "Don't Look Back" featuring Public Enemy performing "It Takes A Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back"
* Animal Collective
* Spiritualized
* !!!
* M. Ward
* Boris
* Vampire Weekend
* Dizzee Rascal
* No Age
* Atlas Sound
* Fleet Foxes
* Extra Golden
* El Guincho
* and more than a dozen others TBA

David Polk

Radio Fri Dec 21 2007

Speaking of Hearing Sound Opinions

If you're all geared up to listen to Kot and DeRogatis on the airwaves after reading this week's feature, but you still want to bask in the glow of the holiday spirit, then you're in luck. There'll be a special holiday edition of Sound Opinions this week, with all of the season's weirdest offerings, brought to the studio by special guest, and holiday music savant Andy Cirzan. The show airs tonight at 8pm and again tomorrow at 11am at 91.5 FM, or you can grab the podcast starting Monday. You can add even more to your Xmas tunage by downloading Andy's mix, titled "The Santa Set" here.

Anne Holub

Radio Thu Sep 20 2007

Radio Free Chicago

If you were at Delilah’s last night for the Future of Music Coalition’s “Rock The Music Party,” you might not have recognized Jon Langford’s guest harmonica player – but that was FCC Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein, who has been known to sit in with the North Mississippi Allstars. But now it’s time to get down to business: In about an hour, Adelstein and his fellow FCC commissioners will begin listening to testimony on media ownership over at Rainbow PUSH HQ. It’s the fifth of six national sessions the FCC is holding on the subject, and the opinions could decide who – or rather, what businesses – may be heard on your radio dial in the future. You can tune into the testimonials here.

JP Pfafflin

Radio Mon Sep 17 2007

Only You Can Prevent Radio Stagnation

This Thursday, for a change of pace, Chicagoans will get a rare chance to hassle the FCC. Officially starting at 4PM (with hopeful speakers lining up for the sign-up sheet as early as noon), The Rainbow-PUSH Coalition will host an FCC hearing "to fully involve the public in the process of the 2006 Quadrennial Broadcast Media Ownership Review". Many of the speakers will be panels of specially chosen representatives of various media faces, both commercial and independent. There will also be the aforementioned sign-up sheet for those Chicagoans who would like to voice their own opinions. The Chicago Independent Radio Project (CHIRP) will be sending several representatives to the hearing in the hopes of convincing the FCC to revisit (and re-assign) misused "translator" station licenses that offer no local broadcasting. To show your support, voice your dissent, or just learn first-hand about the politics of modern radio, the hearing will last from 4PM until 11PM (or later).

Dan Morgridge

Radio Fri Jul 13 2007

WLUW May Again Be Loyola's Own

Robert Feder in today's Sun-Times reports that Loyola is asking for WLUW to once again be under their management after essentially giving it to WBEZ in 2002 due to budgeting. If the red tape clears between Loyola and Chicago Public Radio, the station could be back in the university's hands by next summer. Right now it appears unclear how that switch will affect WLUW's programming and operations.

James Ziegenfus

News Tue Jun 26 2007

Internet Radio's Day of Silence

If you're not hearing anything on your favorite Internet radio station today, it might be a silence you'll have to get used to -- Today, online stations like Accuradio and Pandora, along with terrestrial, taste-making stations like XPN and WOXY, have stopped streaming in protest of a royalty rate hike for online radio stations that's set for July 15. Some stations say that the 17 months of back royalties that need to be payed up next month could put them out of business, therefore making today's planned silence a permanent vacation. For more about how the rate hike could affect Internet radio, and how you can still contact your representative in support, read up in May's Transmission feature.

JP Pfafflin

Radio Tue Jun 19 2007

What's Your Summer Music Pick? Let Chicago Public Radio Know

Once again, Chicago Public Radio is asking listeners to share their choices for the best music the area has to offer this summer. It's just a matter of clicking over and filling out their online form, letting them know who you're looking forward to hearing this summer in Chicagoland. Then, if they like what you have to say, you'll get a note back from the station along with a special hotline where you can call in and record a message telling them all about your picks. At the site, you can read the submissions, or Chicago Public Radio show Eight Forty-Eight might even air your message if you make the grade.

(And yeah, the station's doing that fund drive thing again right now. Maybe throw them some bones if you can? That would be real nice.)

Anne Holub

Radio Wed Apr 04 2007

Hump Day Dance Party!

Got the mid-week blues? Don't snap into a Slim Jim, friend -- tune into the Hump Day Dance Party on WLUW 88.7 FM (Wednesdays, 8-10 pm).

Tonight, DJs Dr. Drase and Michael Flavor will host guests The Black Bear Combo. I caught the Chicago-based quartet last week at the Beat Kitchen, and they got the crowd all in a tizzy with their gypsy-influenced brass band beats. It's good, and it's good for you. Best of all? No cover!

Kara Luger

Radio Wed Mar 28 2007

Ted Leo & RX on All Things Considered Tonight

If you're tuning into Chicago Public Radio, or maybe even streaming it here from the archives, you'll want to keep your ears tuned for the NPR All Things Considered piece on our recently reviewed Touch & Go Records artists Ted Leo & the Pharmacists. They'll be focusing on the band's politically charged rock.

Anne Holub

Radio Tue Jan 23 2007

Sound Opinions Celebrates an Anniversary with a Love Theme

It's been a year since Sound Opinions left their old radio home for WBEZ. And despite some perhaps questionable decisions about the actual music programming on the station, the world's only rock'n'roll talk show is doing well and will celebrate its first anniversary at Chicago Public Radio with a taping open to the public. Donna and Robbie Fulks will be featured during the show, which is doubling as their Valentine's Day episode. Audience members will have the opportunity to contribute some of their favorite love songs.

The taping will be at the Claudia Cassidy Theater in the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 East Randolph, at 7pm on Thursday, January 25. Seating is limited. The show will be broadcast on February 9 at 8pm on WBEZ.

James Ziegenfus

Radio Tue Jan 16 2007

Covering the Airwaves

WBEZ's "Eight Forty-Eight" news magazine is launching a weekly segment called "UnderCover," running every Thursday starting this week. It'll feature a local band or artist performing a cover song outside their typical genre. Sounds like it could be pretty good, especially based on the initial line-up.

Jan. 18: Occidental Brothers Dance Band International, performing “Bizarre Love Triangle” by New Order

Jan. 25: Don Stiernberg, performing “Something in the Way She Moves” by James Taylor

Feb. 1: Detholz!, performing “Electric Avenue” by Eddy Grant

Feb. 8 The Zincs, performing “Silver” by Echo & the Bunnymen

Feb. 15: Las Guitarras de Espana, performing "Killing Me Softly with His Song" by Roberta Flack, remake by The Fugees

Feb. 22: Puerto Muerto, performing "Be My Husband" by Nina Simone

Mar. 1: The Hoyle Brothers, performing "Go Home Girl" by Arthur Alexander

Mar. 8: Bobby Conn, performing TBA

Andrew Huff

Radio Wed Jan 03 2007

A Musical Resolution & The End of Jazz

Eight Forty-Eight interviewed musician and teacher Michael Droste this morning about his just-completed One Song Every Day project , which began as a New Year's resolution in 2006. Listen to the interview here (mp3).

Later in the show, Chicago Public Radio's decision to kill its nighttime jazz programming was defended by music critic John McDonough (mp3), who pointed out that many of the most vocal opponents of the decision don't actually listen to jazz on the radio.

If you do listen to jazz on the radio, your last chance to do so at 91.5 on your FM dial is tomorrow (Thursday) night beginning at 8pm, when Dan Bender, Richard Steele and Sarah Toulouse will host the final eight hours of jazz programming as a team.

UPDATE: Here's Peter Margasak's take on the McDonough piece.

Andrew Huff

Radio Wed Nov 15 2006

Pere Ubu this Saturday and Next

Cleveland post-punk band Pere Ubu will be guests of Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis on Sound Opinions this Saturday. The show begins at 7 p.m. on WBEZ and the band will be interviewed before playing a live set. (According to Pere Ubu's website, though, they only trust three European broadcasters to record them for radio.) A podcast will be available next Monday. The following Saturday, November 25, Pere Ubu will play at the Abbey Pub. For more information, check either the Abbey or Ubu Projex.

James Ziegenfus

Radio Wed Nov 01 2006

More Sound Opinions, less Piano Jazz

Speaking of Chicago Public Radio's upcoming program schedule changes, the time is nigh for the big music programming change at the station.

While we're losing a lot of jazz programs, local jazz authority Dick Buckley thankfully remains on the board at 2pm Sundays and Ken Nordine's Word Jazz seems to still there in the wee hours of Sunday, starting at midnight (it's only on the PDF version of the schedule).

Favorites bringing world music keep going strong as Passport stays with Chicago's Tony Sarabia at the helm at 9pm Friday and PRI's Afropop Worldwide still lives at 11pm Friday nights.

Positive gains include the rebroadcast of Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot's rock and roll talk show Sound Opinions at 11am Saturday morning (they'll premier each week's episode at 8pm Friday night) and the addition of New Orleans-based American Routes program at 2pm Saturday bringing a "broad range of American music".

The week's musical treat still might come at 9pm on Sundays with a return of the Sunday Special slot just right for great music programming, should they decide to feature it there.

I, for one, will miss Richard Steele's voice while he deejayed hours of jazz throughout the night, Blues Before Sunrise, and I'll actually be sad to lose kooky Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz on the weekends.

Anne Holub

Radio Thu Sep 21 2006

Would that be 26.2 miles of jazz?

Tonight, Chicago Public Radio celebrates jazz legend John Coltrane's 80th birthday (on a day darn close to it) by playing the master's music all night long. It's a Coltrane Marathon from 8pm till 4am! To prep, remember to stretch, and check out their website with all the background you'd ever need, plus listen to some past programs devoted to the saxophonist and his work. Got some feelings on Coltrane? Share them with WBEZ and they might just play your favorite tune.

Anne Holub

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

Our Final Transmission Days

By The Gapers Block Transmission Staff

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  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
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