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Features Stories

Surround Yourself With Music: Getting To Know Jim Boukas

Dedication. Hard work. Vision. Networking. All words often associated with success in business, but they equally apply to the way that Jim Boukas has built up a Chicagoland jamband empire of sorts over the last seven years. By constantly tweaking the formula, breaking new ground, trying his hand at new things and fostering relationships with...

The 15 Greatest Muppet Musical Moments And Mashups

[fblike style="standard" showfaces="false" width="450" verb="like" font="arial"] The Muppets are back in theaters today.Despite what is sure to be an all out media blitz, I'll admit I just can't get enough. The simple fact is that Muppets are ridiculously appealing to fans of all ages and, from the beginning, Jim Henson's...

A Chat With Guitarist Mark Hague: Blotto, Helping Phriendly Orchestra and Beyond

[fblike style="standard" showfaces="false" width="450" verb="like" font="arial"]For fans, Mark Hague is the type of musician you just have to love. A key member of two of Chicago's premier jambands (and possibly cooking up a third?), he brings the attitude and perspective of a superfan to what he does on stage. And...

Winning The Game: Ralph Covert Discusses The Bad Examples, Working In Chicago and More

Weve all had at least one of our favorite bands take an extended break from recording, only to emerge with the fabled reunion album a label that practically telegraphs disappointment from the minute you read it.The Bad Examples leader Ralph Covert has spent a large part of the last decade exploring other outlets: a...

The Barn's Shoe Fest Preview And Conversation With Old Shoe's Matt Robinson

When details started to emerge about Shoe Fest, the first year festival taking place at Stonehouse Park in Earlville, IL on September 9th - 11th, I almost had to pinch myself.There is no denying the overwhelming amount of musical talent in and around Chicago, and the quality festivals taking place all around the region...

Phish @ UIC Pavillion: A Chicago Visitors Guide -- Pre-show and After-show Fun

Getting ThereYour easiest and safest route is public transportation. The Blue Line (Racine Stop) is about a half a block from the venue's front door. The main buses are the 60, 7, 120 and the 8 that will get you in the general area of the UIC Pavilion.There is paid parking in a covered lot adjacent to the...

Summer Camp Sunday: A Review In Chart Form

It took a little while, but I'm ready comment on my experience at Summer Camp Music Festival this year. I'll withhold detailed comment on the weather or conditions, but there is enough to say about the music, even with my Sunday only pass, to get on the page. So, in keeping with The Barn's sub-theme...

Keeper Of The Flame: The Barn's Melvin Seals Interview

As the self-proclaimed "Keeper Of The Flame", Melvin Seals is committed to honoring the Jerry Garcia Band songbook and carrying it forward through performance.Deliberately crafted with songs that span decades, songwriters, and styles, and with only a handful of overlapping tunes from the Grateful Dead's vast repertoire, it is no wonder that fans consider...

Spotlight Show: This Must Be The Band @ Brixie's 5/6/11

We're always happy to give a shout to a band that brings the funk as long and as hard as these guys. This Must Be the Band returns to Brixie's in Brookfield for another Barn Spotlight show this Friday, May 6th.To celebrate, let's revisit the five posts that made up our popular Talking Heads...

The Plan Was To Become A Rock Star: The Barn Speaks With 'Local Gal' Cathy Richardson

While VH1 would have you believe that the typical bands career narrative might flow like three-act play (discovery, fame, downfall), Cathy Richardsons is more like a Dickensian novel. From Chicagos western suburbs to the national stage (many times over), the hallmarks of her career have been opportunities presented and seized, a revolving cast of colorful...