As a die-hard Blackhawks fan, it's been a rough few days. Obviously, there was the dud performance on the cruddy Boston slush, er, ice in game three of the Stanley Cup Finals. Hossa was hurt in warm-ups. The squad's power play, face-offs and special teams in general have been rather dire. Rocky Wirtz claimed the team is still not profitable, which means ticket prices will inevitably rise again. And now these wannabes in Young Regime have to go and drop this frat rap on YouTube, the wackest shit since Tom Hanks's kid went hard on the mic for Northwestern. It's enough to make me root for the Bluejackets.
Five years ago Al Jourgensen of Ministry penned a metal anthem for the team, "Keys to the City." That stunk, too.
Look, everyone, the Blackhawks already have an anthem, and it is awesome and it was written by Richard freaking Marx's dad.
Can't these bros just stick to cheering for the Cubs?
ART & DESIGN
"Gertrude Abercrombie/Julia Thecla" Corbett vs. Dempsey showcases two masters of Midwestern surrealism: Abercrombie, who churned out small paintings from her home studio in Hyde Park, and Thecla, whose captivating magical realist paintings incorporate fairytale-like creatures and heavenly bodies. Corbett vs. Dempsey. 10am–5pm.
GAY & LESBIAN
Burly Burliness is optional at this night for bearded boys, funky folk and all other queers and allies. Gregg Medley spins punk, disco and new wave galore. The Burlington. 9pm.
Bad art, good walls. The CTA today released renderings of artwork that will be permanently installed at seven rehabbed North Side Red Line stations. It's the kind of stuff you'd normally see being sold for insanely optimistic prices at a coffee shop: cartoonish grass intertwined with a painter's palette, a bright urban landscape, abstract flowery globs. And the agency got it all from Target! Just kidding. The CTA paid $621,000, using Federal Transit Administration funds.
Theatre Seven of Chicago and Stage Left Theatre announced their upcoming production seasons today, including a co-produced world premiere by Chicago playwright Joe Zarrow.
Zarrow's Principal Principle, a dark comedy about teachers'-lounge intrigue at a Chicago public high school, will make its debut April 12–May 18 at Theater Wit.
Theatre Seven's season will also include the previously announced Unwilling and Hostile Instruments: 100 Years of Extraordinary Chicago Women, comprising eight short pieces about notable Chicago ladies of the past century to mark the 100th anniversary of suffrage in Illinois. Though the eight playwrights on the project remain to be announced, it's set for a September opening at American Theater Company. Theatre Seven will also continue its Shikaakwa monthly reading series.
Stage Left's 32nd season opens with Barbara Lhota's Warped, about a woman accusing two police officers of raping her after escorting her home drunk. The world premiere, presumably inspired by the highly publicized 2011 court case in New York in which the cops were acquitted, runs August 31–October 6. A revival of Peter Nichols's A Day in the Death of Joe Egg follows in the new year, running January 11–February 16. Both shows will be staged at Theater Wit. Stage Left's 11th annual LeapFest slate of new works will take place in summer 2014 at a venue to be determined.
The Bloomingdale Trail project finally has a name. Well, sort of. It's really more of a number: the 606, as in the the first three digits of all Chicago zip codes. The trail of the 2.7-mile elevated park, set to open next year on a former rail line, will still be known as the Bloomingdale Trail; the entirety of the project is the 606, a name befitting a vintage drum machine or a Lake Shore Drive condo building. ("Lux living at the 606" sounds arguably more natural than "Let's take a walk on the 606.") It is also the area code for eastern Kentucky.
Initially, Rahmbo's Deputy Mayor Steve Koch was puzzled by the 606 branding: "I have to confess, I didn't immediately get it."
"When it was first presented, we all sort of went, 'huh?'" Beth White, who has overseen the plan for the nonprofit Trust for the Public Land, told Chicago Tonight.
The numeric designation is the brainchild of Matt Gordon, who has one of those jobs you didn't know was a job: director of naming and writing in the Chicago office of the creative agency Landor Associates. "Through his naming work," Gordon's bio says, "he develops compelling names that help brands articulate their positioning to prospects, customers, employees, and shareholders." He has done work for Charles Schwab, Coors, FedEx, Microsoft and Frito-Lay.
Corn chips, a new Chicago park—same dif. Gordon's ultimate goal was to generate a name generic enough to appeal to all potential donors. On that task, he succeeded. But the 606 brand carries at least one depressing inevitability: that people are going to call it "The Six."
As we were just walking down State Street to lunch, we overheard a man behind us ask his friend, "Have you heard that new Kanye out today? Man, I heard it was weak." Certainly, the Chicagoan's sixth album is entertaining. Yeezy always has something funny to say—intentionally or not. However, for all the hype of this being the rapper's "punk" record, it turns out to be frustratingly juvenile and cock-centric. Tough Daft Punk beats and clever mash-ups go to waste underneath more Auto-Tune emoting and Lil Wayne–like sex talk. While the new musical directions are appreciated, Kanye West the lyricist of old is sorely missed. The MC is a smart marketer, but his mic skills are, well, weak, like the man on the street said. Read my full review.
Chicago's Emerald City Theatre will join forces with Broadway in Chicago and Milwaukee children's theater First Stage to mount a stage adaptation of the iconic TV special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer this holiday season at the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place.
The adaptation, penned by First Stage artistic director Jeff Frank and first mounted in Milwaukee last winter, appears to be quite faithful to the 1964 Rankin/Bass stop-motion special in both its visuals and its plotting. The stage show reportedly includes all of the songs from the original, including "A Holly Jolly Christmas" and "The Island of Misfit Toys." (It's not to be confused with Hell in a Handbag Productions' long-running drag parody Rudolph the Red-Hosed Reindeer, which isn't expected to return this year.)
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is scheduled to run November 14 to December 29. Emerald City Theatre's The Cat in the Hat is currently onstage at the Broadway Playhouse. See emeraldcitytheatre.com and broadwayinchicago.com for more information.
By now, Lollapalooza ticket holders have the lineup memorized and have probably figured out which bands they're seeing. But do you know what you'll be eating at the fest? Lollapalooza officials just announced the lineup of this year's Chow Town, the restaurant village within the fest grounds. Once again, MasterChef star Graham Elliot had a hand in curating the restaurants serving up the offerings. You'll see some familiar booths (grahamwich, The Smoke Daddy, Burrito Beach) alongside a few newbies such as Bar Toma and Glazed & Infused. There'll also be Lolla farmers' market and stations from La Colombe Coffee Roasters set up around the fest. Check out the full food lineup here.
Another new Lolla foodie event this year: the Lolla-Late Night Supper Club. This dinner, hosted by Esquire Magazine, takes place Saturday, August 3 at Tavernita at 10:30pm. In addition to food prepared by Tavernita chef Ryan Poli, other chefs such as Jason Vincent (Nightwood) and Sarah Grueneberg (Spiaggia) will also contribute to the menu. The $100 prix fixe also includes cocktail and wine pairings. Who says Lollapalooza after-parties have to be just about bands?
Lakefront Neighborhoods Tour This bike tour makes lots of best-of lists and with good reason: It showcases some of Chicago's hidden (at least to tourists) gems: the charming, tree-lined streets of the North Side, Gold Coast mansions, the Playboy Mansion, Oprah's digs, the Old Town Historic District and more (including, of course, the lakefront). See Chicago as the locals see it. Bobby's Bike Hike, River East Docks at Ogden Slip. 9am, 1pm. $35, students/seniors (65+), kids under 12 $20, kids under 4 $10.
Nathan Rabin The former head writer of the A.V. Club delved into two very specific music fan cultures for his latest memoir, You Don't Know Me But You Don't Like Me: Juggalos and Phishheads (fans of Phish). Spoiler alert: While exploring these oft-maligned communities, Rabin learns things about himself. Anderson's Bookshop. 7pm.
Chief Keef has more arrests on his record than he has proper records.
Before we could digest the infamous Chicago rapper's appearance on "Hold My Liquor" from Kanye West's new Yeezus, the 17-year-old, whose legal name is Keith Cozart, pled guilty today to a speeding violation. The authorities took the opportunity to slap Cozart with his second paternity suit and to arrest him on a misdemeanor trespassing charge just minutes after the emcee exited the Skokie courthouse. These are the latest additions to the growing rap sheet of a teen who's had way more run-ins with the law than run-ins with the singles chart.