WBEZ | Nirvana http://www.wbez.org/tags/nirvana Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Happy Birthday to Metro http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-07/happy-birthday-metro-100993 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/5378034349_7d825accf2_z.jpg" style="height: 412px; width: 620px;" title="Metro on Chicago's North Side. (Flickr/vxla)" /></div><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe frameborder="0" height="250" src="https://rd.io/i/QX9-5DNPc_8" width="500"></iframe></p><p>Bob Dylan, R.E.M, James Brown, Nirvana, Iggy Pop and Prince:&nbsp;Those are some of the big names that have graced the stage of Chicago&rsquo;s venerable independent music venue Metro Chicago over the past three decades.</p><p>I should be able to say I saw one of those bands, but I didn&rsquo;t and here&rsquo;s why: When R.E.M. played Metro back in 1982, they were hardly a household name. In fact, the Athens, Georgia band was an opener that night for the British band Gang of Four. That was the band I was excited to see; having just purchased their seminal Entertainment! record at Val&rsquo;s Halla in Oak Park. So I didn&rsquo;t even bother trying to make it for the R.E.M. set. At that time, their music was a bit too mellow for me compared to the jagged punk funk of Gang of Four.</p><p>Even before that show, there was Depeche Mode and Ministry sharing a bill at what was still called Stages Music Hall; I had never seen a group of guys singing to recorded music before that. The reel to reel tape machines were on stage behind them! What did we care? We were 18 years old and had gotten into a 21 and over show dancing to one of our favorite bands. And Ministry was in its earliest incarnations.</p><p>Black Flag, Skinny Puppy, Naked Raygun; those were some of the shows I&rsquo;d seen during the early days of what was then called Cabaret Metro. By the late &#39;80s through the early &#39;90s, my excursions to that great big music room had dwindled considerably due to fatherhood and a busy work/school schedule. But by the late &#39;90s I was back and one memorable show was the acid jazz ensemble The Greyboy All-Stars; funky!</p><p>It&rsquo;s amazing when you look back at the history of this place and realize all of the bands that have played Metro. So I tip a glass and toast the main man behind all my fun at Metro &mdash; Joe Shanahan. Here&rsquo;s to your dedication and love of music and of course, your curiosity and courage to take chances on so many artists.</p></p> Wed, 18 Jul 2012 08:29:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-07/happy-birthday-metro-100993 Before Kurt Cobain was famous http://www.wbez.org/story/kurt-cobain-was-famous <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2010-October/2010-10-28/Kurt picture.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Do you remember where you were when Kurt Cobain committed suicide? Ok I know it&lsquo;s no Kennedy assassination, but for those of us who came of age in the early &lsquo;90s, it was a cultural moment. I was in middle school at the time, and I remember that girl on the school bus with the purple hair looking so, so sad.</p> <div>Emily White&rsquo;s book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Will-Make-Money-Your-Sleep/dp/0743259963">You Will Make Money in Your Sleep</a> is set before all that. Before the suicide, before the <i>Spin</i> magazine covers and the <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTWKbfoikeg">MTV videos</a>. Before Kurt was Kurt.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>White&rsquo;s husband was the general manager of <a href="http://www.subpop.com/">Sub Pop</a>, the indie label that put out Nirvana&rsquo;s first record and then put out <i>Nevermind</i>. As part of her tale, White chronicles the surreal moment when people at Sub Pop realized that &ldquo;the world loved Kurt&rdquo; and that the so-called Seattle sound could be turned into a brand.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In the audio posted above, White paints a haunting portrait of the artist on the eve of <em><span>Nevermind</span></em>&rsquo;s release &ndash; before he was a legend undone by his own fame. White was recorded by <a href="../../../../../amplified">Chicago Amplified</a> at <a href="../../../../../episode-segments/you-will-make-money-your-sleep">a 2007 reading</a> produced by <a href="http://www.stopsmilingonline.com/">Stop Smiling</a>.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/dynamic-range">Dynamic Range </a>showcases hidden gems unearthed from </em><em>Chicago Amplified</em>'s<em> vast archive of public events and appears on weekends. </em><em>Click <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/wbez/id364380278">here</a> to subscribe to the Dynamic Range podcast, and click <a href="http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/you-will-make-money-your-sleep">here</a> for the full reading by author Emily White. </em></div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 26 Nov 2010 23:29:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/kurt-cobain-was-famous