Saturday, December 15, 2012

8 Dec 12


“...he’s [Adam] cheating on us with another band...” ~ JB of A Friend Called Fire

Hey, blogspot readers, tonight they were rockin' the stage for a good cause. Local musicians and artists as well as fans gathered together at Elbo Room recently for Chords For A Cure IV to raise money for the Leukemia Research Foundation.

This annual event was started a few of years ago by Jon Allegretto (lead vocalist and guitarist of A Friend Called Fire) as way for his band and others to give back to the community and also to bring fans and music together under a relaxing atmosphere while raising funds for a good cause.

“...a lot of stuff [that] we do keeps the community in mind...” according to Jon when SouthSide interviewed him before his set.

After the death of his grandfather and friend to cancer, it seemed like a no-brainer to him in how he and other musicians within Chicago’s local scene take time out from busy schedules and help others. In the past events, half of the moneys raised would go to leukemia research and the rest to someone they knew. Now, all of the proceeds is donated to the Leukemia Research Foundation.

“’s a grassroots organization and they’re excited about this event...” Jon stated also adding, “...[it’s] a nice thing to do..."

Gunnar's Daughter Gunnar's Daughter

This event has been staged at the acoustic lounge (upstairs bar floor of Elbo Room) but this year, Jon wanted people and musicians to have more room while listening to hot acoustic/alternative rock performances. Tonight’s lineup featured Xoe Wise, Gunner’s Daughter (check out this band’s electrifying thrill ride of a song title Thunder Road) and John (drummer from Board of Governors) performing on guitar with Robyn Starkey with Jon and JB from A Friend Called Fire. DJ Orange Crush closed out the event with a DJ set.

A Friend Called Fire_4 A Friend Called Fire_2

SouthSide was about to check out the 2/3 version of this local trio known as A Friend Called Fire where this unique performance was made up only a guitarist (Jon) and drummer (JB). Though missing their bassist (Adam Powers also Talent Buyer of Elbo Room), the duo rocked out the stage with a fine yet powerfully energizing set featuring songs like New Shadow, East Town and single The Lightning in which the audience was treated to moving yet heartfelt display of harmonizing vocals as well as lively, upbeat rhythmic tempos and hot drum and guitar solos. For example during the bridge of Drain You, there was a fiery Latin tango between guitar and drums that added a lot of hot, spicy flavor. Meanwhile during The Lightning, there was a moment of calmness to highlight Jon as lead vocalist within this emotionally heartfelt and soul-searching type of song. The song itself was performed dramatically to accentuate the mood and tone of not only the music but the lyrics too. Even its downtempo rhythm, you could still feel the passion and fire within until the very end. AFCF’s performance also included two hot renditions of Dion’s (with The Belmonts) Runaround Sue and Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb – one of the best cover versions heard which gave their fans and audience one electrifying finish to their set.

A Friend Called Fire_3

For more information about A Friend Called Fire, visit

Until next time, support your local scene,

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