The Spring in Chicago 2016 video project takes place from April through the beginning of June in 2016.
I started the spring making a trip on April Fool's Day to Pittsburgh by way of Amtrak primarily to go to the Pittsburgh Penguins final home game which happened to be against the Philadelphia Flyers. I wanted to treat my friend Joe who stood as a best dude in my wedding last year. I left Chicago on Friday night, saw a nice rainbow on our way out of the city & arrived very early in the morning in Pittsburgh. I rested for a short time in the station then walked to the Southside where I rested by the river for a bit. I ended up getting coffee & killing time at the Beehive coffee shop. Next I went over to Primanti Bros. to watch hockey & enjoy a sandwich. I walked around the Strip District for a bit then went to Roland's to enjoy dinner & see Joe to arrange our plans. I left in mid evening & walked to Hazelwood to where I would spend the night at the Lindsey Smith/Derek Zanetti home. The next day I walked back toward the city, riding the Incline for the first time. I met Joe on top of the hill then went to the game. The Penguins won 6-2. I used "Party Hard" by Andrew W.K. as a soundtrack to this portion of the video. After the game I hung out with Joe a bit longer then got over to the station to leave & head back to Chicago. I arrived Monday morning April 4th & went directly back to work. That evening Listener & '68 were playing at the Beat Kitchen so Elphie & I went to the show. It was a good show but we ran a bit late missing the beginning of Listener's set.
Later that week, Underoath was in town on the Rebirth tour playing at the Riviera Theatre near where I work. I got some food at a nearby taco shop then watched a bit of hockey before heading over to the show. They played through They're Only Chasing Safety & Define The Great Line for this tour. I captured To Whom It May Concern on video.
On Friday, I went to the Debonair Social Club to see Anti-World System & October Bird of Death. These are two relatively new punk bands from JPUSA. It was a good evening & allowed an opportunity to connect more with these folks who I would be working with on shows at the Catacombs. It also allowed an opportunity to talk with my friend Sid about some things going on in life which we haven't had much of a chance to do recently.
On Saturday, our friend Vanessa had a house show where she would be playing her electronic music. It was a first chance to experience this & it was pretty cool. It allowed some connection with folks in this music community as well.
Il Neige LIVE @ Norwood Den (04.09.16)
Lots of Easter candy makes its way to the shelter I work with. A perk I guess if you want to call it that, is having the opportunity to pick through some of that candy. On a Sunday evening after cooking meat on the grill I decided to try making some Peeps S’mores. After making these S'mores, we went to Reggie's to see 6'10 play with Mikey Classic & His Lonesome Spur. Austin Lucas was on this bill as well. It was another good night of music…the last of a busy week of rocknroll for me.
On April 12th, Cornerstone Community Outreach had a staff Birthday Party where I was given a Whoopie Cushion. Later in the week, Nocturna occurred at the Metro on April 16th.
I booked a show that occurred on April 17th with the Catacombs at Wilson Abbey. The show opened with October Bird of Death. Desiring Dead Flesh was on tour and played next followed by Leper. The show seemed to be a success & Desiring Dead Flesh was given the opportunity to return. You can read more specifically on that show here.
First Catacombs Show Promo (04.17.16)
Show Shenanigans LIVE @ Catacombs (04.17.16)
Later in the week, I went to a Timbre show at Wilson Abbey after work. I watched a bit of a playoff hockey game before leaving work. Timbre is always an enjoyable show.
On April 23rd, Elphie & I were invited to a Bonfire with friends. It was a good time of fellowship & s'mores…the traditional kind this time.
The night before my birthday, Leper played a show at the Live Wire. Elphie rang in my birthday with some shenanigans. It was a good show overall…the first I got to see with Justin in the band.
My birthday celebration consisted of listening to "Old" by Starflyer 59 & getting a panzarotti from Falco's. It was pretty low key. The next day, on April 30th we said our goodbyes at Laura’s going away party at Logan Arcade as I set a high score on Q*Bert & tried to do so on Ms. PacMan.
May was brought in with some eye issues for Stein so he became a Conehead Cat. On May 6th our friend Guy came to visit. We attended a gothic Art show & gallery opening before heading to Concord Music Hall to see mewithoutYOU.
On May 7th we visited the Baha’i Temple with Guy before he left. We spent the evening of Mother's Day listening to VON Strantz at Uncommon Ground.
The weekend of May 13th through 15th I alternated between baseball games at Wrigley Field between the Pittsburgh Pirates & Chicago Cubs & celebrating Elphie's birthday. On Friday night we got dinner. On Saturday we saw a red line gorilla dancing, Little Shop of Horrors at the American Blues Theater, then went Blacklight Bowling. On Sunday there was a party with some Cards Against Humanity played at our house. I used "Happy Birthday (My Olde Friend)" by Voltaire & "Glow" by Destroy Nate Allen as a soundtrack for Elphie's birthday shenanigans.
On Monday May 16th on my way to work, I noticed someone’s bad day.
We received free tickets to see Gary Numan on Tuesday May 17th at the Metro. It was a pretty cool show.
We left on May 20th to make a road trip to Kansas City for Cliff & Tianna's wedding. Nate & Tessa Allen were kind enough to let us stay with them. I had been working on archiving their last US Tour so we had been in communication a lot over the last few weeks so it made for an easy request. It was good to hang out with them in Kansas City & see the things that they enjoy in the city. Nate & I played some Ms. PacMan as well while on the Kansas side of the city. Cliff & Tianna's wedding took place on May 21st. It was a good time. I used "Punk Rock Girl" & "Turns Out You're Perfect For Me" by Destroy Nate Allen as a soundtrack. Since we had knocked Kansas off the list of states we needed to visit, we decided to drive the longer way home & knocked off Nebraska & Iowa too while squeezing in a visit with Ramona, & seeing The World's Largest Truck Stop. May ended with Bones & Cones which included Skot Shaw for the first time. I used "Blood Red" by Low & Behold as a soundtrack.
There is a lot of footage of Frank n’ Stein. I used "Bunny Hop" by Ball-peen Hammer as a soundtrack for this footage.
My friends in October Bird of Death asked me to make them a promotional music video for their upcoming EP release titled "Death Made Its Offer" using the LIVE footage of the song "Death Made Its Offer"filmed LIVE at the first Catacombs show. I used the black & white effect I always liked in Rancid & other punk videos & art. More information on this release is written here.
Soundtrack includes “Party Hard” by Andrew W.K., “Bunny Hop” by Ball-Peen Hammer, “Old” by Starflyer 59, “Happy Birthday (My Olde Friend)” by Voltaire, “Glow”, “Punk Rock girl”, & “Turns Out You’re Perfect For Me” by Destroy Nate Allen, & “Blood Red” by Low & Behold.
Footage filmed using an iPhone 6 & Sony HD Bloggie by Elphie & Joel A. Swanson. Edited using Final Cut Pro on a Mac Mini by Joel A. Swanson