Archive for October, 2009

The Ten Commandments of Rocking

Posted by Jason Petros on October 23, 2009
On Our Radar / 3 Comments

The Ten Band Commandments – brought to us by The New York Times Culture Beat.

1. Thy main goal, and what it’s really all about, is putting on a great show, with great songs. Thou shalt have no other goals before this.

2. If possible, thou shalt refrain from using painful strobes, pointing stage lights directly into the eyes of thy crowd and projecting corny psychedelic images onto thyself. It hath been done.

3. Thou shalt put real thought into choosing a name. There hath been enough bands named after wolves and bears and whales and goats and every other beast that creepeth upon the earth.

4. Thou shalt not be late for thine own gigs.

5. Honor thy publicist and thy booking agent and whoever is doing thine sync rights.

6. It’s O.K. to slay, and it’s O.K. to shred, but thou shalt not murder the vibe by complaining too much about the sound or being unprepared for common occurrences like broken guitar strings. See No. 1.

7. Thou shalt not commit adultery while on the road. It’s just a sleazy thing to do.

8. It’s O.K. to wear thine influences on thy sleeve, but thou shalt not make a habit of stealing from other bands, especially ones from the 1980s. For that hath been done an awful lot.

9. Thou shalt not bear false witness to journalists by being coy about thine ambitions or artistic influences. No one will begrudge thee for wanting to be a rock star, or for loving the Jesus and Mary Chain. Actually, wait, that last one might be a bad example. Let’s say loving the Velvet Underground.

10. Thou shalt not covet other bands’ success. Work hard, write great songs and keep an eye on thy business, and thou might get a break too.

Written with the inspiration of “The Ten Commandments” by the Fugs.

Grand Prize Winner – Chicago Public Library’s Sound Off contest is…

Posted by Jason Petros on October 19, 2009
Reviews / 1 Comment

ChiPubChicago, IL – The submissions have been viewed, the judges have deliberated, and the long awaited decision has been made. Psalm One was announced today as the Grand Prize Winner of the Chicago Public Library’s CHIPUBLIB Sound Off music contest.
 
Chicagoans can hear Psalm One’s Grand Prize-winning submission, “My Bucket Song,” along with a set of her other music, live at the CHIPUBLIB Sound Off concert at Pritzker Park, located at 344 S. State Street across from the Harold Washington Library Center, on Thursday October 22nd; doors open at 5 p.m. and admission is free.
 
“Being in Chicago inspires me, and it makes me proud to be chosen to represent the city in my own special way,” says Psalm One of her being chosen as the winner. As a self proclaimed “Chicago Girl,” Psalm One, also known as Cristalle Bowen was born and raised in the city, attending the University of Illinois, and currently residing in ­­­­­­­­­­­Wicker Park. “I traverse the city every day, from Rogers Park to Ogden Park to Wicker Park, and all points in between. I wanted to capture the spirit of Chicago with my song,” says Psalm One.
 
Psalm One’s musical submission “My Bucket Song,” stood out among the dozens of entries submitted by local musicians. The entries crossed all musical genres, from Hip Hop and Rock to Blues and Pop, from acoustic guitars to mandolins. “Psalm One’s, ‘My Bucket Song,’ a shoulder-shaking salute to her hometown of Chicago, stood out among the surprisingly creative and talented submissions to the Chicago Public Library’s ‘Sound Off’ contest,” says judge Chris Force.  “The applicants ranged in age and approach. Two recent high school graduates submitted a startlingly sincere goodbye song titled ‘Beddy Bye,’ while veteran musicians Opportunity School entered the song, ‘Wicker Park,’ a more traditional love song. It was great to see the variety in the submissions.”
 
 The inspiration behind “My Bucket Song” was one of love and leaving. “I took a brief leave of absence from Chicago in 2008 to pursue musical endeavors in San Francisco, California, but returned in June of this year and was elated to be back,” says Psalm One. “I missed Chicago like a long-distance lover and I think Chicago missed me too! Ethan Stoller and Kaotic Drumline provided me with the perfect backdrop to write a song about loving, leaving and returning home.”
 
 Psalm One will headline the event opened by the People’s Choice Award Winner Shawn Pennington with “Doors Closing”. Decided by voters online, Pennington’s Chicago composition placed first out of the nearly 11,000 votes received. “I’ve been interested in music since I was seventeen,” says Pennington. “We’re feeling great about getting the chance to perform.”
 
Also in attendance at the concert will be the Chicago Public Library judging panel that includes music & culture critic Jessica Hopper, Alarm Magazine’s Chris Force, Visual & Performing Arts Librarian Matthew Genthe, and Hip Hop song writer and artist Rhymefest. Attendees can also sign up for a library card, which gives them access to the large catalog of free music the library offers, such as CD’s, performance DVD’s, music downloads, and sheet music.
 
“This is a fantastic opportunity for Chicago to see one its own singing about the city we all live in and love,” says Ruth Lednicer, CPL’s Director of Marketing. “It’s going to be a wonderful night.”