Gramps the Vamp is Not Afraid

If you see Maxx McGathey, bandleader of Gramps the Vamp, walking around Chicago with headphones on, there’s a good chance he’s not listening to music. Or a podcast. Or whatever the kids are into these days. When the band was writing the songs that ultimately became their new self-titled album, McGathey roamed the streets, he says, “listening through hours and hours of old-time radio shows.”

Down Yellow Brick Road with a Sunshine Fix

[Updated]This Week's Soundtrack on Spotify

1. "I'm Aquarius" - Metronomy: The English electro pop outfit returned last week with its fourth studio album, Love Letters, featuring this Zodiac-centered cut.

2. "Chemical Dizzy" - The Casket Girls: From the Girls' True Love Kills the Fairy Tale, the Savannah, Georgia, group plays Circle Bar tonight.

Evan Christopher Wants a Place to Play

Clarinet player Evan Christopher has been one of the leading figures in the current conversation about noise and neighborhoods, but that didn't come from an inherent desire for activism. He was looking out for his own interests as well as those of other musicians when he would periodically write me at OffBeat to express concerns about tip jars as the primary source of income, and how that practice compromises the artist and leaves many underpaid.

Can't We All Just Get Along?

"Our job tonight it to turn down the heat," announced Scott Aiges, Director of Programs, Marketing & Communications for the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation. He spoke Thursday night to a full-ish house gathered at the Old U.S. Mint for this year's Tom Dent Congo Square Symposium on the theme of "Culture and Regulation," a timely talk considering the recent penalties handed down to St.

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