Chicago Entertainment Videos

May 20, 2009

What to do on a nice summer day in Lincoln Park… recreation, shopping, food and drinks.

After all that shopping and eating you might want to take a stroll through the Lincoln Park Zoo. And the best part is, IT’S FREE!


Summer Camp for Big Kids

May 17, 2009

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Still don’t have anything to do next weekend for Memorial Day? Consider Summer Camp, a 3 day long music festival at Three Sisters Park in Chillicothe, Il. Summer Camp features over 60 bands on 5 stages and offers a wide variety of music genres so anyone can enjoy. Bands from Moe., Willie Nelson, and Umphrey’s McGee to Method Man and Redman will all be playing at the festival.

The festival also features many less well known and local bands. I’m looking forward to Daphne Willis & Co, a band that I have heard many times at bars in Chicago. I am glad to see this band play at such a big event.

Also at this years festival is the 2009 MLB road show and hot air balloon rides. The road show includes an MLB authentic collection merchandise room, a gaming lounge featuring MLB titles on XBox 360 and Playstation3 on plasma screen TVs, live broadcast of MLB games, batting cage, and a speed pitch cage.

Tickets are on sale now for $155. However, this does not include late night shows (of course they make you pay for the good shows). Late night shows are an extra $15 each.


Festival Season Begins in Chicago

May 15, 2009

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Cold beer, 80’s cover bands, and a pet parade… What a way to start the 2009 Festival Season in Chicago. The season kicks off this evening, May 15th, at Mayfest located at the corner of Ashland and Barry. The festivities begin at 5 p.m. and continue until Sunday at 10 p.m.

One of the many attractions at Chicago summer festivals are the awesome cover bands. Feature at this year’s Mayfest will be many Chicago favorites. Playing tonight at 7 p.m. is 80’s cover band Hairbangers Ball. Tomorrow at 5 p.m. will be hip-hop cover band Too White Crew followed by 16 Candles, another 80’s cover band, at 8 p.m. The festival will end Sunday night with a performance by Mike and Joe at 8 p.m. Mike and Joe cover popular bands from the 90’s to the present.

While Mayfest has all of the expected festival goodies (local culinary treats, beer, shopping, and art), the festival also features a Pet Parade with awards for “Best Looking”, “Largest” and my personal favorite “Owner Look-A-Like”. If you want to enter your own pet in the Pet Parade, registration is at 11 a.m. on Sunday morning and the parade begins at noon.


Here are some pictures from the Pet Parage 2004 courtsey of Fuzzyco.com.

Start the summer off right and help kick off Festival Season 2009!


Cohen Wows at Chicago Theater

May 9, 2009

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In one of his first U.S. shows in a decade and a half, Leonard Cohen took the stage Wednesday night and delivered a knockout performance.  Cohen filled a two and a half hour set with classic songs from his 4 decades and counting career like “So Long, Marianne,” “I’m Your Man,” and the oft-covered “Hallelujah.” At 74 years old, Cohen’s voice has lost none of its baritone power, and it’s picked up a Tom Waits-like raspiness that only adds to his vocal prowess.  He brought with him a nine-piece band consisting of guitarists, back-up singers, pianists and more, and the band itself was excellent, lovingly performing Cohen’s classic tunes.  The set leaned heavily on his beloved sixties, seventies and eighties material, with a particular emphasis on his first two albums, and 1988’s legendary I’m Your Man album.  The massive crowd at the Chicago Theater, which predictably consisted of middle aged and older concertgoers, showered Cohen with ovation after ovation. He returned for three encores, each time dragging out yet another of his classic recordings. “Bird on the Wire,” “The Partisan,” and “Famous Blue Raincoat” stood out, among others as highlights during a night filled with them. Indeed, even if some of the members of the audience had been waiting a decade and half to see him, I can’t imagine anyone left disappointed.


Oprah Offers to Feed America

May 6, 2009

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KFC and Oprah have teamed up to give away coupons for a free meal from KFC that includes 2 pieces of KFC’s new Kentucky Grilled Chicken, 2 sides, and a biscuit. Tickets can be printed out at unthinkfc.com until 11:59 p.m tonight, Wednesday May 16th. The coupons can be used until May 19th (The coupons can’t be used on Mother’s Day. Sorry to those of you planning on “treating” Mom to a KFC dinner.)

Who better to promote your product than one of America’s most influential people of 2009, Oprah. I don’t know a single stay-at-home mom that doesn’t religiously follow Oprah’s every command.

The promotion appears to be working. Twitterers have been tweeting about the long lines and other troubles at the fast food restaurant. It seems that people are even rioting and staging sit-ins because some stores were refusing to let people use coupons. I guess KFC underestimated the power of Oprah and they were unprepared for such large crowds of hungry Americans.

I printed out two coupons from my computer yesterday. Apparently you can only print up to 4 coupons per computer. I haven’t made it to a KFC yet to witness the madness, but I definitely plan on making a trip.


The Boss Is Back

April 28, 2009

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One of the greatest recording artists of all time will be gracing Chicago will his presence once again in just a couple weeks. That’s right, Bruce Springsteen is bringing his beloved live show to the United Center on Tuesday May 12th. The show is part of a four and a half month world tour in support of Springsteen’s latest album “Working on a Dream” which was released in January, and is his sixteenth studio album since his first in 1973. The show will be the twenty-third of the massive sixty plus shows currently planned for the tour, which will take The Boss and his E Street band all the way from New Jersey to Spain and just about everywhere in between. Springsteen’s reputation for spectacular live performances landed him a spot doing this year’s Super Bowl halftime where he did not disappoint. He’s sure to wow the sold out crowd at the United Center with his massive catalogue of classic material and world famous stage presence. Set lists from the tour so far have included unassailable classics like “Darkness On the Edge of Town,” Born To Run,” and “Johnny 99” among many, many others, so there shouldn’t be too many lulls in the set. If you’re interested in tickets, at this point it’s pretty much eBay, Craigslist, or scalpers, but of course, be prepared to throw down for them.


Pitchfork Invades Union Park Once More

April 27, 2009

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Now in its fourth year, the Pitchfork Music Festival is set to once again give independent music lovers something to look forward to this summer. Offering a large number of indie music’s best and brightest acts at a great price, Pitchfork Fest seeks to give fans an affordable and positive experience for a few days in July in Chicago’s Union Park. Having gone to the previous two year’s events, I can say from experience that the festival is some of the most fun one can have in Chicago during the summer. The food is cheap, the music is great, and the atmosphere is quintessentially summer. In 2007, the festival expanded to three days, and featured legendary acts performing their classic albums in their entirety on the first night, and then two days of bands playing non-stop from noon until late in the evening. The same format was used for last year’s festival, but this year, the first night will instead feature classic acts performing set lists voted on by attendees. Anyone who buys a ticket receives a link to vote for what they want to opening bands to play. Want Built to Spill to play “Car?” Are you dying to hear The Jesus Lizard do “Mouth Breather”? Well now you have a say in the matter. Tortoise and Yo La Tengo are also playing the opening night. The other two days will stick to the tried and true non-stop format of previous years, and even in its partial (but slowly growing) form, the list is looking awesome. With heavy-hitters from recent years like M83, Grizzly Bear, and The National, and excellent up and comers from the past few months like Wavves, The Very Best, and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, among many others, both days promise to be fantastic. Plus, The Flaming Lips are closing the festival on Sunday night, which as anyone who has seen them will testify, is worth the festival’s $75 three day admission price alone. This year’s festival takes place from July 17th to the 19th, and tickets can be purchased on TicketWeb.

Pitchfork