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LouieB

Going to Chicago....what to do, see, stay, etc.

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Good place as I recall, but a total hipster joint if ever there was one.

 

LouieB

 

Yes, it definitely falls into that category. Come to think of it, that is the case for a lot of vegetarian diner/cafes I've been to in North America.

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Yes, it definitely falls into that category. Come to think of it, that is the case for a lot of vegetarian diner/cafes I've been to in North America.

Right you are. My favorite veggie spot was Blind Faith in Evanston, which started out as a total hippie place, morphed into a moderate and tolerable neighborhood spot and has since transitioned into an upscale(ish) hipster joint. I no longer go there because the prices are so high. It is just vegetables after all. What the hell do they cost? Slaughtering seitan is an expensive process I guess.

 

For a semi-veggie, still hippie place try the Heartland Cafe. The food is uneven, better sometimes then others, but it isn't really hipster, still pretty solidly hippie.

 

LouieB

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My favorite veggie spot is

AMITABUL:

AMITABUL"]http://amitabulchicago.com

 

Creative, tasty vegan food that doesn't leave this carnivore missing the meat. Definitely try the Soy Pancakes.

No, they are not sweet breakfast-style pancakes, they are crispy-on-the-outside, soft-on-the-inside beauts with shredded veggies mixed in. Served over rice. Top 'em with the watery plum sauce and the spicy miso paste and it is heaven!

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Thanks for the tip on this place (although the link does not seem to work). Looks good and I have not been there.

 

If you are a vegetarian and want to visit, but not eat at Super Dawg, it is right down the street.

 

LouieB

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Thanks for the tip on this place (although the link does not seem to work). Looks good and I have not been there.

 

If you are a vegetarian and want to visit, but not eat at Super Dawg, it is right down the street.

 

LouieB

 

Did you ever eat at a place on Irving Park called "Jim's Grill"? (Smashing Pumpkins were regulars there, back in the day.)

Same owner. Although Jim's is now long-gone.

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No but I just got some french fries at Jimmy's Red Hots at Grand and Pulaski. A true Chicago institution.

 

LouieB

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No but I just got some french fries at Jimmy's Red Hots at Grand and Pulaski. A true Chicago institution.

 

LouieB

 

My dad used to take me to Jimmy's about once a year when I was a kid.

NO CATSUP!

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My dad used to take me to Jimmy's about once a year when I was a kid.

NO CATSUP!

That's exactly right......

I brought my own catsup yesterday, because I got the fries and really wanted them with catsup. Crazy old place to be sure.

 

Regarding Blind Fatih in Evanston; I had dinner there the other night. Still a bit overpriced, but the food quality was very good. Just a far cry from it's old hippie roots.

 

LouieB

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If you like Jazz, Take the Red Line north to the Lawrence stop in Uptown and check out The Green Mill.

 

Its an awesome jazz club, open til 4am every night. Its actually an old speakeasy.

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If you like Jazz, Take the Red Line north to the Lawrence stop in Uptown and check out The Green Mill.

 

Its an awesome jazz club, open til 4am every night. Its actually an old speakeasy.

All of us Chicagoans will second that one. Weekends and even some week days can get pretty crowded, but it is a wonderful and unique place. Just saw Dave Douglas and his quintet there a couple weeks ago.

 

And if you are into Wilco nostalgia, feel free to hang out in front of the Riviera for awhile, espeically if it is cold. The Riv is just across the street. Also Check out Shake Rattle and Roll right next door (not open at night) or any of the fine restaurants in the area, particularlly the Vietnamese and Chinese ones down by Argyle Street.

 

LouieB

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All of us Chicagoans will second that one. Weekends and even some week days can get pretty crowded, but it is a wonderful and unique place. Just saw Dave Douglas and his quintet there a couple weeks ago.

 

And if you are into Wilco nostalgia, feel free to hang out in front of the Riviera for awhile, espeically if it is cold. The Riv is just across the street. Also Check out Shake Rattle and Roll right next door (not open at night) or any of the fine restaurants in the area, particularlly the Vietnamese and Chinese ones down by Argyle Street.

 

LouieB

 

I haven't been to GM in a few months but I typically show up there on weekends around 2am if I dont feel like doing the late night bar scene.

 

I live in the West Loop now so its kind of a hike for me

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As long as we are talking about stuff; It is again time when folks are coming to Chicago for the Tweedy solo shows.

 

A couple record stores off the beaten paths and a whole lot different than our favorite hipster record hangouts like Reckless, Permiment, and Lauries (we love all of them so not dissing them...but they are close to the hip neighborhoods and within everyone's comfort zones.)

 

One I like but which is out in the middle of nearly nowhere (Midway Airport) is the Record Dugout at 6053 W 63rd Street. Really inconveniently located and run by some really strange guys, this place is packed with old LPs and 78s and an amazing collection of 45s. They discount stuff at checkout as well. They carry baseball cards and other quirky stuff. Not the highest quality records in town, but kind of fun.

 

Now for a totally different record buying experience, travel to Out of the Past Records at 4407 W Madison Street on the west side, I don't recommend this for the casual record collector or the casual tourist. This place is deep in the heart of the west side, one of the roughest neighborhoods in town. The store is several large rooms just packed to the gills with LPs and 45s. When I say packed I mean just that, it is harder than hell to actually look for stuff here. On top of it, nothing is priced, so they price it at the register. But if you are looking for old soul, blues, or gospel records, this is the place to go (not so much for jazz, since their jazz records are in crappy shape and expensive.) Actually many of the records here are in crappy shape and the store is absolutely filthy and disorganized. But if you can handle it, give it a shot. Watch out for the cats wandering the place too and don't expect any customer service either. Plenty of parking on Madison though.

 

But if you are killing time in front of the Vic and can get away, Groovin High at 1047 W Belmont Avenue is run by a nice guy who has decades in the record business. They aren't always open, but I have found interesting stuff there.

 

If I have mentioned any of these places before on this thread, so it goes.

 

LouieB

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People may want to avoid the city during the weekend of May 19-20, 2012 - the G8 Summit will be held here. It should be interesting, though.

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People may want to avoid the city during the weekend of May 19-20, 2012 - the G8 Summit will be held here. It should be interesting, though.

True that. If you are coming to protest though, feel free to do some sightseeing as well. Otherwise I would agree, don't come that weekend.

 

LouieB

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David Hoekstra has a nice piece on Out of the Past Records, 4407-09 W. Madison St. I no longer have a record player, so I never been to this place, but it sounds like it might be a worth while visit, for some.

 

http://blogs.suntime...re_that_sp.html

 

While in that part of town, definitely hit up the Garfield Park Conservatory - a nice place.

 

http://www.garfield-conservatory.org/

 

The neighborhood may be a bit rough, just mind your surroundings.

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I would also recommend the Garfeild Park Conservatory. Just down the street from it is the Inspiration Kitchen which is part of the Inspiration Corp, a Wilco supported organizaiton (see Lincoln Hall show) and the food is excellent and the room nice. If you are bored with the usual tourists destinations, hitting the west side is a good antidote.

 

A drive down any of the east west streets, such as Madison, Washington or Roosevelt are all interesting to me. As mentioned, Out of the Past Records is an interesitng place, but I must admit I found it slightly intimidating and over paid for a rather beat up Funkadelic LP. I figured I needed to buy something though. I do plan to go back when I am out that way. And seriously, the place has major organizational issues and if you are OCD, skip it entirely.

 

LouieB

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I just wanted to add another possibility for people looking for a place to stay other than a hotel when visiting Chicago or any other city. The link is www.airbnb.com People will rent out their apartments or rooms in their apartments for a specific period of time. I am trying this out for the first time when I come to Chicago at the end of March so I will repost in April to let you know how it went.

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If folks who come to town for the solo shows or vacations and stay places and do stuff can post up their experiences it will really help those coming afterwards. Thanks.

 

LouieB

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A few years ago I visited the Polish American Museum in Downtown Chicago. It was really interesting. I remember some of the exhibits offered information on Lithuanian history.

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I just wanted to add another possibility for people looking for a place to stay other than a hotel when visiting Chicago or any other city. The link is www.airbnb.com People will rent out their apartments or rooms in their apartments for a specific period of time. I am trying this out for the first time when I come to Chicago at the end of March so I will repost in April to let you know how it went.

I'm using airbnb too! Used it the first time when I went to Nashville for the Ryman shows and it was an amazingly good experience. This time I'm directly across the street from the Vic for $50/night. I'll PM you, Deb.

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Wow, I'm paying a lot more than that. Great deal-see you in Chicago Diane-hopefully the weather will stay as nice as it is now

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A few years ago I visited the Polish American Museum in Downtown Chicago. It was really interesting. I remember some of the exhibits offered information on Lithuanian history.

While the Polish American Museum is near downtown it is actually in Wicker Park. For those really interested in eastern European stuff, there is also an actual Lithuanian musieum here as well. I have not been to any of the ethnic museums, but there is also a Mexican Arts museum in Pilsen that I understand is very good.

 

LouieB

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The Pritzker Pavillion concerts (in Millennium Park) have been released - usually always a nice relaxing time in the park - it's free (at least for now). Bring a picnic and your beverage of choice.

 

The new Loops and Variations series looks pretty cool.

 

http://www.chicagotr...854,full.column

 

Following are performances currently planned for Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park, 201 E. Randolph St.; for details, visit millenniumpark.org or phone 312-742-1168.

Downtown Sound

6:30 p.m. May 28: Kelly Hogan + Scott Lucas and the Married Man

6:30 p.m. June 4: Jonathan Richman and act to-be-announced

6:30 p.m. June 11: The Eternals + Wild Belle

6:30 p.m. June 18: Cloud Cult + Judson Claiborne

6:30 p.m. June 25: Occidental Brothers Dance Band International + Chico Trujillo

6:30 p.m. July 2: Joan of Arc + Daniel Knox

6:30 p.m. July 9: The Sadies + James Vincent McMorrow

6:30 p.m. July 16: Charles Bradley and his Extraordinaires + Abigail Washburn

6:30 p.m. July 23: Ana Tijoux + Sidi Toure

6:30 p.m. July 30: SMOD + M.A.K.U. Soundsystem

Made in Chicago: World Class Jazz

6:30 p.m. July 19: "Blowing in From Chicago." Chicago saxophonists Edward Wilkerson, Jr., and Ari Brown revisit the classic album by Clifford Jordan and John Gilmore.

6:30 p.m. July 26: "Erwin Helfer: A Life in Boogie and Blues." The venerable Chicago pianist collaborates with saxophonist John Brumbach, bassist Lou Marini, drummer Bugs Cochran and vocalist Katherine Davis, with pianist Barrelhouse Chuck.

6:30 p.m. Aug. 2: "Roots of Routes: Makaya McCraven's Global Unit." A rising Chicago drummer, McCraven partners with guitarists Nathaniel Braddock and Jeff Parker, pianist Tewodros Aklilu, saxophonist Melvin Butler and trumpeter Corey Wilkes.

6:30 p.m. Aug. 16: "By a Little Light: Matt Ulery's Loom with special guests." Bassist Ulery will partner with members of eighth blackbird, singer Grazyna Auguscik, pianist Rob Clearfield, drummer Jon Deitemyer and violinist Zach Brock, among others.

6:30 p.m. Aug. 23: "Frank Rosaly's 'Todos de Pie!" ("Everybody Stand Up!"). The adventurous Chicago drummer applies an experimenter's sensibility to traditional Puerto Rican musical forms, with vocalist Jaap Blonk, bassist Nathan McBride, guitarist Alex Farha, trombonists Jeb Bishop and Nick Broste.

6:30 p.m. Aug. 30: "Exquisitely for Ella: A Songbook Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald: Jeff Lindberg's Chicago Jazz Orchestra." The evening – which also serves as opening night of the 34th annual Chicago Jazz Festival – features vocalists Dee Alexander, Frieda Lee and Spider Saloff in music from the Fitzgerald songbook.

Classical

Millennium Park has filled out its summer schedule of classical music events at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion.

The early-evening Loops and Variations series, June 7-Aug. 26, will combine new music with electronica. Here are the dates and ensembles announced so far:

June 14, 6:30 p.m.: The San Francisco art-rock group Deerhoof shares the stage with Chicago's Ensemble Dal Niente.

June 28, 6:30 p.m.: The dynamic Chicago contemporary ensemble eighth blackbird performs.

July 5, 6:30 p.m.: The post-rock duo A Winged Victory for the Sullen joins forces with ACME (American Contemporary Music Ensemble).

July 12, 6:30 p.m.: Chicago's virtuosic Third Coast Percussion collaborates with...itself.

Aug. 26, 5:30 p.m.: The maverick composer John Luther Adams’ evening-length percussion piece, “Inuksuit,” is performed by eighth blackbird and musicians from New Music Chicago.

Also due this summer at Millennium Park:

Aug. 19, 6:30 p.m.: Young pianists chosen by the Lang Lang Foundation perform Grieg and Chopin concertos with members of Chicago's Midwest Young Artists, culminating a week of workshops and master classes.

Sept. 8, 7:30 p.m.: Lyric Opera's annual musical gift to Chicago includes stars from the fall roster along with a concert performance of the fourth act from Bizet’s “Carmen.” Stephen Lord conducts.

Sept. 21, 6:30 p.m.: Riccardo Muti leads the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, choruses and soloists in a free, hands-across-the-community performance of Orff’s choral blockbuster, “Carmina Burana.”

Chicago Gospel Music Festival

6 p.m. June 21: The opening night of Gospel Fest will feature excerpts of Regina Taylor's musical "Crowns," plus performances by JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound.

Broadway in Chicago at Millennium Park

6:15 p.m. Aug. 6: The show will present highlights of celebrated musicals, including "Sister Act," "Les Miserable" and "Million Dollar Quartet."

National Museum of Mexican Art

6:30 p.m. Aug. 28. Mariachi Divas will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the National Museum of Mexican Art and its 2012 Sor Juana Festival: A Tribute to Mexican Women.

34th annual Chicago Jazz Festival

6:30 p.m. Aug. 31. The second night of the annual event plays the Pritzker Pavilion.

Dance

Dance events include a performance by River North Dance Chicago, in its first full-evening concert at the Prizker Pavilion, at 6:30 p.m. June 5, in a program including the troupe's rousing signature "Habaneras, the Music of Cuba"; an outdoor video simulcast 7:30 p.m. June 27 of the Paris Opera Ballet in "Giselle," an actual performance broadcast live from the nearby Harris Theater; and the 7:30 p.m. Aug. 25 Pritzker finale of this year's sixth annual Chicago Dancing Festival, whose complete programming and additional dates and venues will be announced later.

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