Friday, October 31, 2014

24 Oct 14 - 8th Annual Haunted Cupcake Contest

Something spooky yet very delicious happening tonight at this event, blogspot readers...

Welcome to the 8th Annual Haunted Cupcake Contest held at Esperanza Community Services, a non-profit organization which provides instruction and services to children and adults with developmental disabilities to help them become as independent as possible. Not only does this West Town center support over 250 individuals and their families, they also provide schooling for students from 5 to 21, adult day and vocational skill-building programs and so much more. For more information about Esperanza Community Services, visit

It was a friendly competition in which contestants entered 6 stand-alone deliciously decorated works of cupcake art in the Haunted/Halloween theme. SouthSide is so glad she wasn't picked as a judge, blogspot readers, because there SO many lovely decorated cupcakes that it would have been hard to choose amongst the 50 entrants the top 5 winners! All entries were judged on the following: visually haunting, funny and/or scary, originality, all elements are in pleasing proportions, selected colors to enhance or complement the subject matter, works is clean and figures must be life-like (or in the case of the competition - dead-like); and punctuality and professionalism. The last one was very important to the entrants. Points were deducted if cupcake entries arrived after the 5p deadline. And not be left out on this foodie competition, blogspot readers, even student teams of the Esperanza Community Services entered their own delicious works of art and were judged separately from the main entries.

Besides the cupcake competition, there was also a food decoration demo and food tasting of appetizers professionally prepared by Executive Chefs Will Hastert (and his Sous Chef Joe Quarello) with his take on the classic cerviche and Don Zajac who had yummy array of featured offerings such as Black Angus Sliders, Roasted and Stuffed New Potato (think Twice-Stuffed Potato) and Chorizo with Smoked Chicken Salad mini sandwiches, The sliders were the most popular appetizer of night, blogspot readers.


Before announcing the winners, blogspot readers, it was socializing time with neighbors and some of the Esperanza students as well as meeting some of the students from The French Pastry School or view one more time the decorated cupcake entries. SouthSide marveled at the intricate detailing each of the contestants had for their cupcakes. All contestants received a swag bag but only the top five (5) winners would received fabulous prizes featuring Kitchen Aid products and other things from the event's sponsors. This year's winners are: 1st Place-Takelya Weathers; 2nd Place-Mariana Jordan; 3rd Place-Clare Studwell; 4th Place-Cindy Negard; and 5th Place-Judy Trieu. 

Congratulations to all!

The next baking competition is Pastry Chicago's 4th Annual Brownie Competition to be held at Alliance Paper & Food Service Equipment  (located at 376 W North Ave., Lombard, IL) on Saturday, Nov. 8. For more information and how to register, visit Good luck!

Art lovers should check out Esperanza Community Services' next event happening Friday November 14 - Fall Arts Fest! Come meet Esperanza artists like Jorge, Bobby, Jaime and many more. Browse and purchase their works sample some of Esperanza Gourmet Fudge - a favorite holiday treat made by Amy's Candy and packaged by Esperanza participants, blogspot readers. Tickets are $10 (via the site or at door) and ticket cost will be deducted from art purchase at the event.

Here are some samples of artwork you'll see at Esperanza's Fall Art Fest:

 Cat by Veronica Sanchez

 Halloween Night by Edwin Mendez

 Go Sox by Jaime Ortega

Until next time, support your local scene,

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

November 2014

Autumn is full swing, blogspot readers, yet don't let the let the falling temps and change of season keep you away from rockin' at the following shows/events happening during the month of November!

Please note each show/event listed is 21+ unless specified...

Nov. 1:
The Burlington Bar – rock with The Flavors, The Elements of Style and Jesse W. Johnson.
$7 /9p

Neo – it’s the El Día De Los Moyer / Day of the Dancing Dead celebration …come attend the last night of Neo’s Six Nights of Halloween featuring DJs Moyer and Spatula.
Primary Nightclub – React presents Ben Pearce performing with special guests UK duo Billion. For tickets, visit

Constellation – singer/songwriter Angela James will be celebrating the release of her debut album “Way Down Deep”.

Mike & Denises (Joliet, IL) – attend this Day of the Dead Bash featuring rockin’ performances by Shiftwrekk and Wicked Deception.

Double Door – attend this show featuring The Hood Internet with Hologram Kizzie (aka Psalm One), My Gold Mask and Fluffy.
$15 / 8p doors

BrauerHouuse (Lombard,IL) – check out Dead On TV sharing the stage with The Timmys and Headspins. For tickets, visit
18+ / $5

Nov. 2:
Elbo Room -  check out Brett Newski entertaining the upstairs lounge along with Carl Hulsey.

Nov. 3:
Schubas Tavern – check out Sarah Marie Young when she celebrates the release of her sophomore album “Little Candy Heart”, a follow-up to last year’s “Too Many Februaries”.

Reggie’s – it’s Mandatory Abortions, Against The Grain, HEMI and Sacred Monster rockin’ the stage here.
$8 adv / $10 dos / 7:30p

Nov. 5:
Red Line Tap – it’s The Maxies along with The Smart Kids, Modern Advances and Amber Stereo featuring DJ set by DJ Bashert. For tickets, visit
City Winery – celebrate with Donna The Buffalo’s 25 years as a band with Adam Levy opening.
$16 SRO / $22 seated / 8p show

Door No. 3 – it’s Wednesday Night Blues with Keith Scott and friends.
FREE / 7p

Nov. 6:
Smart Bar – get ready rumble when Guilty Pleasures slugs it out against FABITAT …DJs vs DJs Adam El and Ldy Prblms (FABITAT) spins against Boy Alberto and Lolly Gagger (Guilty Pleasures) …host Lucy Stoole (FABITAT) vs host Madame Envy (Guilty Pleasures) …winners take all!
FREE / 10p

Concord Music Hall – FIGURE will be performing his unique “Terrorvision” show as part of Nightmare Festival.

Standard Bar & Grill - come here to watch Thursday night football and then stay for Monika & Jimmy's set afterwards.

The Throne Room - CAUdog Records presents a lineup featuring live performances by Greg Jackson Combs, Gunner Cleeman and Ellis Clark with special guests Justin Yates and Jake Foy.

Nov. 7:
Elbo Room – feel the heat when rockin’ Espanol with Sin Anestesia, King Cloud, The Friendly Lens and Rob Winn

Lincoln Hall – React presents Chris Malinchak performing here. For tickets, visit
18+ / 10p

Sammy’s Pizza (Kankakee, IL) – check out Digeometric sharing the stage with Todd Hazelrigg and Fried Egg Nebula.

The Empire Concert Club & Bar (Akron, OH) – it’s G$’s Annual Rock Concert/House Party featuring performances by Dakota Wilkinson’s Band, Devil Strip and We’re All Lost.
AA / $5 / 7p

Shark City (Glendale Heights, IL) – check out Catalano along with Lynch and Man The Mighty rockin’ the stage here.

Double Door – Super Happy Fun Club will be rockin’ the stage along with AM Taxi, That Lyring Bitch (featuring the members of Plain White T’s) and Love Me Electric.
$10 adv / $12 dos / 8p

Door No. 3 – attend Soft Leather #11, a pansexual dress to sweat event featuring DJs Deathface, Teen Witch, House of Szechaun and 100 LB Dead Lift.
FREE / 10p

Nov. 8:
Thalia Hall – yeehaw, come to the 10th annual Barn Dance Apocalypse featuring The Golden Horse Ranch Band performing on stage.

Double Door (early show) – check out the Art Battles!
5:30p / FREE

SPACE (Evanston, IL) – attend this special performance when Jann Klose opens for John Oates. For tickets and/or table reservations, visit
$22 - $46

Duke’s Alehouse and Kitchen (Crystal Lake, IL) – get cosmic with Fried Egg Nebula and Digeometric rockin’ the stage together.

Concord Music Hall – Riot Fest presents Yellowcard sharing the stage with Memphis May Fire and special guest Femarosa. For tickets, visit
AA / 6:30p

The House Cafe (DeKalb, IL) - Nobelieum 102 rocks the stage along with Phantom Maggots, The Usuals, Cheap Dates and Ness.
$5 / 7p

Nov. 9:
Chicago Street Theater (Valparaiso, IN) – Jann Klose will be performing here along with shop owners Chris and Megan Marolf. For tickets, visit

Reggie's Rock Club - Jack Rabbit will be competing for fabulous prizes at Gorilla Music's The Chicago Battle of the Bands.

Nov. 11:
Mojoe’s (Joliet, IL) – check out Wayne Static of Static-X sharing the stage with Powerman 5000, American Headcharge and Central Disorder.
AA / 21+ to drink / 6p

Elbo Room - it's poetry and spoken word night at the monthly Wormwood Collective Poetry Night. Stay for Wire Tripped afterwards.

Nov. 12:
Door No. 3 – attend this month’s FABITAT event Dancing With The Queens featuring KTF champions …it will be an epic dance off between KTF champions and the Stars of FABITAT with DJ sets by Adam El and Ldy Prblms and drag performances.
FREE / 9p

Reggie's Music Joint - it's She Rides Tigers sharing the stage with Handler and Ryan  Mumby & The Hundred Year Rain.
$7 / 7:30p

Nov. 13:
Double Door – React presents Ryan Hemsworth performing on stage here.
$12 GA / $22 VIP / 9p show

Berry United Methodist Church – check out the free screening of “The Homestretch”, a film about homeless Chicago youth, one who is LGBTQ. View the trailer here,

Nov. 14:
Touche Chicago – it’s Rock Against Ass …come here to hear everything hard, heavy and outside the mainstream, of top 40 dance/disco/techno music with your resident DJ Germ of Modern Day Rippers/Sexy Baby Records and Rotten Fruits

Liar’s Club – check out this Chicago punk show featuring HighBall, Avenues, Welfare Beer League and The Mudville Sounds

Constellation – singer/songwriter Quinn Tsan will be celebrating the release of her debut album, “Good Winter” with Passerines and Kelsey Wild.

Underground Lounge – attend this show featuring DJ Mark N of Bloody Fist Records along with Delta 9, Terror Byte, Terry Dux The Bit Jockey, Sir Vixx, Saskrotch and many more.

Double Door – attend the Bring It Up High Fest III featuring performances by The Paladins, Nick Willett (with Joel Patterson), Barbara Clifford, Kevin Flynn &The Avondale Ramblers, The North Ave Stompers and a special performance by The Roadburners.
$15 (all proceeds go to HiFI and The Roadburners Memorial Fund) / 7p doors

Elbo Room - Neon Hitch presents The Yard Sale tour with Jared Evan, Carmen and Camille and Miranda Wood.
$10 adv / $12 adv

Brauerhaus (Lombard, IL) - it's Pale Horseman with White House Burning rockin' the stage here.

Nov. 15:
Township – check out Dos Santos Anti-Beat Orquestra sharing the stage with ESSO Afro-Jam Funkbeat and Sanorama.

Bada Brew Bar & Grill (Joliet, IL) – it’s Ditchwater sharing the stage with Wayland, Rue The Day, Freak and the Ghouls, and Tempered By Trials.
21+ (18+ allowed with parent/guardian) / $10 / 7:30p

Nov. 16:
Cobra Lounge – check out this Chicago punk show featuring performances by The Howl, Honah Lee (NJ), 80 Proof Preacher and Death & Memphis.
$8 / 9p

Nov. 18 – 20:
French Pastry School of Kennedy-King College – spice up your Holiday Pies and Breads making skills with Master Baker / Chef Instructor, Chef Jonathan Dendauw…learn how to make Cherry Pie, Blueberry Crumble Pie, Apple Cinnamon Pie and more. For more information and registration, visit

Nov. 18:
Blue Lamp (Sacramento, CA) – check out SouthSide’s friend Magicks performing along with Moodie Black and DJ Nocturnal.
$10 / 8p

Nov. 19:
Double Door – it’s “Tiffany’s FUN-damental FUN-draiser” …a benefit event for Tiffany Dean featuring performances by Cochino Y Los Pistoleros, Anger, Dorian Taj, Ladies & Gentlemen, The Dead On, Sunken Ships, The Artist Formerly Known As Vince and Black Cat Heart Attack.
$8 / 8p show

Bada Brew (Crest Hill, IL) - check out Super Bob sharing the stage with Fist Funk Fury, Dustin Walker, and Catapult The Propaganda.
$10 / 8p

Nov. 21:
Double Door – rock out your Friday night at My My My’s record release show featuring support by Molehill, The Ivorys, The Central Standard and The Van Goughs.
$5 (with rsvp on http:/// /$10 (without rsvp) / 9p

Mayne Stage – check out The Future Laureates sharing the stage with The Lauren Wolf Band, Red & Reckless and Sister Speak.
$10 adv / $12 dos

Constellation – rock out the night when Beveled performs here.
Tonic Room – it’s Brain Child along with Glostik Willy and Rusty Gates rockin’ the stage here.

EndZone Tap – attend this performance featuring The Schiavos at this South Western bar.

Bada Brew (Crest Hill, IL) - Bada Brew is going punked featuring live performances by I Hate People, Step Right Up, The Audio Dead, Slow Form of Suicide and Light The Fuse.
$5 / 18+ (to enter) / 21+ (to drink) / 8p

Nov. 22:
Tonic Room – have your multi-pass ready when rockin’ with Leeloo Dallas, Steve Stone and Zack Champagne.
$10 / 9p

Throne Room – attend Aryk Crowder’s “One By One” video release party featuring special guests Zach Longoria Project and Swamp Heat.
$7 adv / $10 dos

Aragon Ballroom – React presents Atmosphere with Prof & Dem Atlas. For tickets, visit
18+ / 7:30p

Nov. 26:
Schubas – it’s Old Shoe sharing the stage with special guest Chicago Farmer during this Black Wednesday show.
18+ / $12 adv / $15 dos

Bent River Brewing Company (Moline, IL) – it’s The Dawn and Digeometric performing on stage together here.

Nov. 28 & 29:
Liar’s Club (Nov. 28) / The Mutiny (Nov. 29) – it’s Punksgiving 2014 …the 2nd Annual food drive punk rock shows …all proceeds and donations go to The Greater Chicago Food Depository featuring performances by Rhetoric Vendetta and Turbo Vamps (Fri) and Prison City Brigade and The Land Before Tim (Sat)

Nov. 28:
Debonair Social Club – it’s Chicago Heavyfest featuring Poontoof, Jack Rabbit and Speedfreak rockin’ the stage.
18+ / $10

Elbo Room - Vicarious Venues presents Business As Usual, Red Rose and Groove Canal rockin' the stage.

Nov. 29:
Double Door – check out Har Mar Superstar rockin the stage along with Pizza Underground and Toby Goodshank.
$16 / 8p

Until next time, support your local scene,

Saturday, October 18, 2014

06 Oct 14 - Bike Thief

" a sense, we are [stuck in a dream] ...we all have our ways of escaping [reality]..."
Hey, blogspot readers, SouthSide's rockin' the scene at an video arcade. However this isn't any ordinary arcade. It's a bar as well as a music venue too! Tonight, she's in the heart of Wicker Park at Emporium Arcade hanging out with the melodic indie rock band from Portland, OR  - Bike Thief. Currently on their US tour in support of the newest release, Stuck In A Dream, this quintet of musicians shared the stage with other local acts like Greg Jackson Combs band, Ariada and The Burning Ponies. So before wowing the audience of video gamers and music listeners with their performance, this reviewer had a chance to sit down with Febian (front man/guitarist) and Tom (bassist) of Bike Thief for an in depth look at band's music, songs and fanboy nerdism complex while on the road.
After describing the band as "...indie rock with other stuff...", this reviewer was very curious about what was so secretive about the "other stuff" that makes Bike Thief unique from other bands she has seen throughout the course of the year. For one thing, each member brings a little extra something to the music, blogspot readers. For example, Greg has classical background in which he pens the beautiful melodies meanwhile Steve adds a bit of jazz and Febian completes the group with his modern rock (mostly from the 80s, 90s and 2000s) fusion. "...we all come from a lot of different places..." especially since you might also hear some influences by Rush to Pink Floyd and Genesis within Bike Thief's soundtrack. Yet most of all, blogspot readers, this band is trying to stay original ...and don't want to be compared to someone else. That being said, what could you expect from a band with a vast musical background like this? SouthSide was told to expect a very theatrical performance with face painting and costumes because they are not the type of band who stand stage and stare at you. Right then and there, she got the distinct feeling she was going to be part of the performance too, blogspot readers.
And what a haunting performance it was. Melodic orchestral floetry of rhythms and sounds that surround the auditory senses with vibrant electro-pop rock sound while your eyes are kept busy with the silent Italian movie running on the screen behind them. She loved how they used the dark venue atmosphere to not only set the mood and atmosphere for their Chicago set but also to illuminate the stage with the orange neon glowing façade (including drum kit) which seemed to mesmerize the audience more about their music than them. Plus the movie had a unique role to play as certain scene ran in sync with Bike Thief's songs thus furthering your experience with this band, blogspot readers. She liked how the different musical backgrounds and genre combinations (for example in song "Kiss The Light", you might hear pieces of Klezmer-like folk music) had either a melodic flow and/or tempo setting to draw you closer into being stuck in Bike's escapism from reality. At times, Bike's orchestral music tends to have an air of seriousness in being so dramatic to it but then are others when you might find yourself dancing along to the fun upbeat rhythms like SouthSide did when Bike's added some hot spiciness of Latin-flavored sounds (in which spiced up the rain scene during the movie).

And when they perform instrumentally, blogspot readers, be prepared to have your mind blown from the hard crescendo rises and the heart-dropping falls from the electro-classical melodies that sometimes could be heard from the violin and Febian's guitar amidst the rest of the band. It was an intense experience to behold especially when feeling both music and lyrics flowing together to which (believe it or not) drown out the videogames that being used by gamers. In a nutshell, blogspot readers, this was one original show by one original band. During her interview with the band, SouthSide asked Febian and Tom to recommend songs off their current release Stuck In A Dream for blogspot readers to listen. They recommended first listening one of their older songs "Ghosts of Providence" because it's easy to get into plus it will help you move towards the next song recommendation "We Once Knew You". According to the guys, you get a taste of where the band is "...heading towards the future..." It features a backing choir, orchestral movements and guest vocalists. And finally, they recommend the album's title track "Stuck In A Dream" which they disclosed to this reviewer this is the song that's "...transcending where we want to be for the future..." because for them this album feels more like a debut than sophomoric release. As if the band is growing up towards maturity, blogspot readers. Yes, they did admit to SouthSide, they're stuck in a dream since in a sense reality can be so hard and it's fun to escape it for a bit.

So what's it like in Portland? "...cold ....rain ...and beer..." though they did like the weather SouthSide has here in Chicago since rain tends to keep people inside over there. However, they did mention that during the summertime, it's green and nice - that's when people out and about checking out what's happening in the local music scene. And speaking of their local music scene, Bike Thief called it "...weird but really unique ...but also consistent..." Like any other city, Portland has its share of unique bands like Bike Thief (and SouthSide's friends Die Robot) as well as its band cliques and those who dominate the scene. Still bands there are quite friendly. "'s all about who you know..." especially when performing at the bigger named venues yet at least it's not as cut-throat like it is in LA, blogspot readers. Yet, Bike Thief does have dream of one day performing at a venue like Metro ...or House of Blues here in Chicago.

Lastly Bike Thief wanted to say this before rockin' out the stage " our fan...". Honestly, blogspot readers, this reviewer has never met a group of humbled, modest quiet guys before now who are also HUGE fanboy nerds! While on the road, they're having discussions from everything Star Wars to Star Trek (probably who was the better captain - Kirk or Picard) and Game of Thrones. Interesting conversations to be had with them about the new Star Wars movie coming out next year. They are totally down-to-earth and quite easy to talk to if you should ever attend one of their upcoming shows soon. They did tell SouthSide about a recent show in Omaha, NE where they were in a lineup with three funk bands (one band had the fusion of metal-funk that's something SouthSide needs to check out herself).

For more information about Bike Thief, visit



Until next time, support your local scene,

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Halloween Weekend

Hey, blogspot readers, there's plenty of tricks as well as treats happening on Halloween. And just because it falls on a Friday this year, many venues have events that continue throughout the weekend! So don your spookiest costume and have lots of fun...

Please note all events listed are 21+ unless stated otherwise.

Oct. 31:
UIC Pavilion – it’s the I AM Hardwell World Tour 2014 with supporting act Dannic. For tickets, visit
NiteCap – it’s Halloween Havoc featuring Pound of Flesh sharing the stage with Sinister Fate, Psychopathic Daze, Dissona and burlesque by Jezzibel, Lenux, Antibiotix and Lady India.
$7 / screaming begins at 9p
Elbo Room – trick-o-treat at the venue’s annual Halloween bash featuring Bands On Bands theme with Ramones (Bambi Raptor) headlining the lineup that also includes Green Day (A Friend Called Fire), ZZ Top (Model Stranger), Elton John (Bullet Called Life) and Queen (Polarizer).
$10 / 8p
Brauerhouse (Lombard, IL) – it’s spooky night of Silent Horror featuring Goolsby From Blitzkid, The Fold as 90s Punk-o-Rama bands, The Blitzketins as The Riverdales. For tickets, visit
18+ / $8 adv / $10 dos / 9p
The Mutiny – ghoulish things are rockin’ this Bucktown venue when Will of Man becomes The Misfits, Bottle Kids are Bouncing Souls, Butchered rocks as Against Me, and The Cheap Dates turn into Golden Oldies.
Double Door – after trick-o-treating, attend the 18 th annual Halloween Bash featuring live performances by David Bowie (Rebel Rebel), Kinks (AM Taxi), The Police (The Noise FM), Oasis (Blackbox) and Guns-n-Roses (Hessler).
$10 GA / $20 VIP / 8p show

Metro - lots of spooky as well as fashionably dressed to be seen people will want to attend the Annual NOCTURNA All Hallow's Eve Ball ...this year on Halloween! From midnight to dawn, dance to your favorite dark music spun by DJ Scary Lady Sarah where she'll have some trick and treats for all who attend.
18+ / $15 (in costume) / $18 (non-costume).

Fiztgerald's (Berwyn, IL) - trick o treat Nola style when Suspects celebrate the release of their latest CD Ouroboros here.
$15 adv / $20 dos / 9p

Wire (Berwyn, IL) - it's Badge (Cream tribute band) sharing the stage with Kashmir (Led Zeppelin tribute band).

Mojoes (Joliet, IL) - Davey Suicide along with Twiztid will be dispensing your tricks and treats at this venue.

The Mid - ghostly things will be happening when the LA duo Classixx returns to Chicago for a special Halloween DJ set with guest Motez! RSVP at for no cover.

Original Mother's - swizzlesteve presents Barenaked Men rockin' this venue on Halloween night.
FREE with rsvp / 8p

Nov. 1:
The Mid - the tricks and treats continue when Arty performs his melodic masterpieces. Purchase tickets at

Cairo (West Chicago, IL) - attend the 4th Annual Galeforce Productions Halloween Party featuring Aria 51, Psycho Sister, Vortis, 13 Monster, The Darksiders and SoulSharer!
$10 / 7p

Until next time, support your local scene,