Recent Posts in books

February 18, 2015

King Gordon

Kim Gordon's much anticipated Girl in A Band: A Memoir is set for release Feb 24. In promotion of the book's release, Gordon will be stopping by the Music Box Theatre on Thursday Feb 26 for a conversation with former WBEZ 9.5 host Alison Cuddy, as well as a book signing. The event is part of the 25th Chicago Humanities Festival. Tickets for the event (price includes a copy of the book) are on sale now.

Unabridged Books is currently taking preorders. A full list of book tour dates are over at BrooklynVegan.

November 3, 2014


This sums it up nicely:

Stephin Merritt, songwriter and frontman of the critically acclaimed Magnetic Fields, will be in Chicago on November 8 for a rare, intimate solo performance at the Old Town School of Folk Music at 7:00pm. For this show, Merritt will be performing selections from his extensive back catalogue in alphabetical order. Tickets are available for purchase HERE.

Merritt is on tour now promoting his first book, 101 Two Letter Words, published through Norton. This is a one-of-a-kind book of poems for Scrabble enthusiasts and their wordy friends, with illustrations by Roz Chast. Merritt can also be seen in conversation with Peter Segal of NPR's "Wait Wait! Don't Tell Me," as part of the Chicago Humanities Festival, on November 7.

The Chicago Humanties Festival began 10/25 and contninues through 11/9.

Advance Base opens the concert.

October 8, 2014

Billy Idol at Bonnaroo 2013 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)

Billy Idol is a busy guy these days-- he welcomed an autobiography titled Dancing With Myself earlier this week, and is slated to release his first new studio effort since 2005's Devil's Playground, called Kings & Queens Of The Underground, on October 21. The LP was produced by Trevor Horn and Greg Kurstin, and includes guitar work from longtime collaborator Steve Stevens. You can get a feel for the album by checking out the cuts "Postcards from the Past" and "Can't Break Me Down" at the bottom of this post. Idol's autobiography is available for purchase via his website, where you can also read the prologue and a chapter excerpt.

Billy will support Dancing With Myself this week with an appearance at NYC's CBGB Fest. He'll play an acoustic set and will also participate in a Q&A as part of the festival's keynote address. He's also announced a January/February North American tour with direct support from Broncho. That tour includes a show at the Riviera Theatre on February 7. Tickets for the Chicago show go on sale this Friday (10/10) at 10AM CST; stay tuned for presale information.

All Billy Idol dates and those song streams lie after the jump...

Continue reading "Billy Idol autobiography out now, new LP coming soon; playing the Riv on 2015 tour w/ Broncho (dates, song streams)"

August 16, 2013


Comedian // Twitter-fiend Rob Delaney is set to release his first book, Rob Delaney: Mother. Wife. Sister. Human. Warrior. Falcon. Yardstick. Turban. Cabbage., on November 5 via Random House. Here's what you can expect from the autobiography...

Rob Delaney is a father, a husband, a comedian, a writer. He is the author of an endless stream of beautiful, insane jokes on Twitter. He is sober. He is sometimes brave. He speaks French. He loves women with abundant pubic hair and saggy naturals. He has bungee jumped off of the Manhattan Bridge. He enjoys antagonizing political figures. He listens to metal while he works out. He likes to fart. He broke into an abandoned mental hospital with his mother. He played Sir Lancelot in Camelot. He has battled depression. He is funny as s***. He cleans up well. He is friends with Margaret Atwood. He is lucky to be alive. [Random House]
Mother. Wife. Sister. Human.... is now up for preorder.

Delaney will also be embarking on a U.S. tour in support of the book this fall. That tour hasn't been announced in full, but includes a performance at the Music Box Theatre on November 14. That show is being presented by the Unabridged Bookstore, and each ticket purchased comes with a copy of the book. Tickets for the Chicago show are on sale now.

All known Rob Delaney dates are listed below...

Continue reading "Rob Delaney wrote a book, playing the Music Box Theatre in November"

January 25, 2013


Demetri Martin is gearing up for the release of his second book, Point Your Face at This, which is due out on March 19. Unlike 2011's This Is a Book, Point Your Face at This is "devoted entirely to his trademark one-liners and drawings, as well as short prose and poetry, leaving the longer-form material for his next hardcover." You can preorder the book via his website.

Martin will be going on a spring US tour in support of his forthcoming book. That tour includes a performance at UP Comedy Club on April 1. Advance tickets for the Chicago show are on sale now.

All Demetri Martin tour dates and a few videos are below...

Continue reading "Demetri Martin releasing new book, playing UP Comedy Club on tour"

August 30, 2012

How Music Works is David Byrne's remarkable and buoyant celebration of a subject he has spent a lifetime thinking about. In it he explores how profoundly music is shaped by its time and place, and he explains how the advent of recording technology in the twentieth century forever changed our relationship to playing, performing, and listening to music.

Acting as historian and anthropologist, raconteur and social scientist, he searches for patterns--and shows how those patterns have affected his own work over the years with Talking Heads and his many collaborators, from Brian Eno to Caetano Veloso. Byrne sees music as part of a larger, almost Darwinian pattern of adaptations and responses to its cultural and physical context. His range is panoptic, taking us from Wagnerian opera houses to African villages, from his earliest high school reel-to-reel recordings to his latest work in a home music studio (and all the big studios in between).

Touching on the joy, the physics, and even the business of making music, How Music Works is a brainy, irresistible adventure and an impassioned argument about music's liberating, life-affirming power.

Chicago Tribune critic Greg Kot and Thrill Jockey Records founder Bettina Richards will talk with David Byrne about his new book, How Music Works, at The Music Box Theatre on September 17. Tickets are on sale now.

David will play with Saint Vincent the next night (9/18) at The Chicago Theatre and tickets are still available.

August 17, 2012

Bettye LaVette @ Highline Ballroom in 2010 (NYC) (more by Jacob Blickenstaff)

As seen on BrooklynVegan, Bettye LaVette is celebrating the 50th anniversary of her music career with a new LP, called Thankful N' Thoughtful, due out on September 25 via Anti-, and an autobiography, A Woman Like Me, co-written by famed music biographer David Ritz due to hit stores on September 27 via Blue Rider Press/Penguin. The album was produced by Craig Street and features songs written and/or performed by Tom Waits, Neil Young, The Black Keys, The Pogues, and others. Check out LaVette's version of The Black Keys' "I'm Not The One," which appears on Thankful N' Thoughtful, at the bottom of this post. Thankful N' Thoughtful's tracklist and an album trailer are also below.

In celebration of her 50th anniversary and in support of her new LP and autobiography, Bettye LaVette will be heading out on a fall US tour. That tour begins in September and visits City Winery for a two-night stand on November 9 & 10 with Eilen Jewell. Advance tickets for both shows are on sale.

All dates, album info, and a stream of LaVette's Black Keys cover are below...

Continue reading "Bettye LaVette celebrating 50th anniversary w/ new album, book & tour, playing two nights at City Winery"

July 2, 2012

Saul Williams @ Afro Punk Fest in 2009 (more by Tim Griffin)

As seen on BrooklynVegan, Saul Williams will be heading out on a spoken word tour later this summer, which he's calling the Chorus tour. It hasn't been announced in full yet, but there is a Chicago stop at Schubas on September 12. Doomtree's Dessa will act as main support and advance tickets are on sale.

Chorus is also the title of Williams' new poetry book, which is set to arrive in stores this September. There is also a ticket package available for the Chicago show that includes a copy of the book.

All Saul Williams tour dates are listed below, along with some videos.

Continue reading "Saul Williams visiting Schubas on spoken word tour"

June 6, 2012

Ray Bradbury

Ray Douglas Bradbury was born Aug. 22, 1920, in Waukegan, Ill., to Leonard Spaulding Bradbury and the former Esther Marie Moberg. As a child he soaked up the ambiance of small-town life -- wraparound porches, fireflies and the soft, golden light of late afternoon -- that would later become a hallmark of much of his fiction...

[Bradbury's] books took readers on imaginary journeys to the outermost edges of the galaxy without leaving their own back yards, has died at age 91, according to published reports. The author of classic books such as "Fahrenheit 451" and "The Martian Chronicles" was born in Waukegan, Ill, on Aug. 22, 1920, the son of a utility lineman. He was living in Los Angeles at the time of his death, his home for the past several decades.

Bradbury's daughter confirmed his death to the Associated Press on Wednesday morning. She said her father died Tuesday night in Southern California. -[Chicago Tribune]

To point out that Ray Bradbury was one of Illnois's favorite literary sons is definitely a moot. Bradbury not only wrote classics like Fahrenheit 451, The Martian Chronicles and The Illustrated Man, but was also responsible for writing children's literature, nonfiction, screenplays (Something Wicked This Way Comes), television (like Twilight Zone, Alfred Hitchcock) and much more.

RIP to a science fiction giant.

Continue reading "Ray Bradbury, RIP"

June 5, 2012

Wilco @ Civic Opera House in December (more by Matt Ziegler)

You might remember what we called "Wilco week" in December, the band's five-night run of hometown shows ordered by decreasing venue size (Civic Opera House, the Riv, the Vic, Metro, and Lincoln Hall). Today (6/5) Wilco released a FREE iPad book dubbed The Incredible Shrinking Tour of Chicago, which includes photos, setlists, posters, backstage videos, and more from the week of local shows.

Wilco have also recorded a Spanish-language version of The Whole Love track "Dawned on Me," titled "Me Avivé," to thank Spanish-speaking Wilco fans for coming to their headlining set at the Primavera Sounds Festival. Take a listen to the song at the bottom of this post and purchase it via iTunes. The band's Popeye the Sailor-themed video for "Dawned on Me" is also below.

Wilco's only area show this summer is a performance at Fifth Third Bank Ballpark in Geneva, IL on July 8, with support from Andrew Bird and The Congregation. Tickets are still available.

Stream of "Me Avivé" and video for "Dawned on Me" below.

Continue reading "Wilco release 'The Incredible Shrinking Tour of Chicago,' Spanish version of "Dawned on Me" (stream it)"