notes from a journey through Chicago's cultural landscape...

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Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States

...this is not about me, this is about my city - a living document of Chicago's art's scene, a memoir of concerts I've been to & performances I've seen, a jaded scribe's small sampling of the many offerings of this vibrant cosmopolitan city that I'm lucky enough to call home. I work the city as the city works me, all of us connected in varying degrees, here i pay tribute to our evolving soundtrack, I plug praiseworthy endeavors & try to give a little back... Together with my peers we paint this crossroads with every shade we can find, in your mediums & mine, i run with deep house deviants & wrinkled blues cats, youngun' b-boy crews & quirky circus brats, snobby eclectic DJs & electric painters laboring on projected displays, film makers armed with mini-DVs & picky chefs sculpting tricky masterpieces out of vegan grease... i kick it with slam poets & theater geeks, powerbook producers & fashionista freaks, photoshop fellowships & choreographer hips, while jazz cats blow digital epics through pursed bebop lips... i'm at the nexus of the next wave of Chicago sound - this is where i share the stories of all the beauty I've found...

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Bossacucanova & Chicago Samba @ Hot House

Tabled tonight at Hot House on behalf of Six Degrees Records & Bossacucanova, my newfound friends from Rio. I met up with DJ Dalua & his manager Dado in March when they were on tour to support his solo album Tranquilo. They're quite the duo, after their March show in Chicago they kindly handed me copies of Tranquilo & an album of remixes that the Mad Professor had reworked, and both those disks are HIGH on my list of HOT Brazilian Drum n' Bass. So I was looking forward to seeing Bossacucanova live, as they're traveling as an 8-piece band with DJ Dalua delivering a significant amount of their rhythmic power via turntables... Bossa Nova with a DJ, ya gotta love it, these cats are eloquent in the way they incorporate breakbeats & hard digital elements into the weave of what is relatively traditional Brazilian music. In their hands, though, you get a very clear look at how this tradition will manifest for future generations...

It was a great show, but I was relegated to the side room selling albums, so I didn't have a good look at the stage and only caught the music peripherally. Still, I sold 26 albums, which is a number that I usually only hit when the act is really tight and delivers a hot set. Bossacucanova definitely threw down, and Chicago Samba followed up with a banging live PA. You really can't go wrong with a roomfull of Brazilians determined to dance and a bunch of badass musicians playing for them... It was a hot party, and I got a chance to meet the rest of DJ Dalua's posse. In a few days they'll be opening for Basement Jaxx @ the Hollywood Bowl. I love it that I'm running with folks poised to rise to the next level of their respective careers....

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