click to enlarge New year music news
Mace Hathaway with Pinch of Grace plays Starship Billiards this Saturday night.

Since we're only nearing two weeks into 20 & 23, I hope you don't mind that I am still wishing folks a happy and healthy New Year (here's to ya) and dwelling upon the fact that we turned the old calendar in for a new one. Now let's take a peek at what's going on in our second full weekend of live music for this still fairly fresh year.

In 2022, the live music action took off on Thursdays, and now we have something else going on then that's really neat. Kevin Roberts hosted years of jams at his "man cave" in the style of Daryl's House, a live, televised show hosted by Daryl Hall of Hall and Oates fame. Last year in April, he started doing a similar show every second Tuesday monthly in a more official capacity at the Route 66 Motorheads Bar & Grill, bringing in some 67 individual musicians and nine bands in just nine months.

Now he's moved the show to every second Thursday of the month (6-9 p.m.) and calls it "Motordome Thursday Night Live," with musical guests invited to participate in what Kevin affectionately calls "organized chaos" to bring a variety show-type feel to the stage. Sometimes it's an already formed band, sometimes it's a singer working with various musicians, and at other times more of an acoustic thing, but it's always about local music getting showcased. He is now really pushing the idea of pushing the envelope and plans to host more original-music makers and also suggested theater groups could use the space to perform and promote productions or doing something out of the normal bar act, such as getting a barbershop quartet to take the stage.

Kevin wrote to me in an email, "I am open to ideas from all and hope people that are interested in showing their talent (whatever it might be) will let me know, '' and they should do so. This week features Joe Cooke, Suzi Stephens, Rick Bietsch and Preston Searl jamming out on the extensive stage with sound and lights provided by Harris Brothers at the 'dome. Cool beans, man.

It's good to see Dumb Records lighting up their space with a live show again, this time featuring a Friday the 13th lineup of a bunch of bands. Starting at 7 p.m., in what order I do not know, comes Putrid Pile, Gored Embrace, Nest, Greed Worm and Sarin. More cool beans.

Check out other action on Friday the 13th at your own risk, including Jay Larson Band at Mowie's Cue, Lemon and Sweet Pickles at the Curve Inn, RockHouse at Danenbergers, the Tangents at Slaughterhouse Brewery in Auburn, Elvis Himselvis at Harvest Market, Carl Bopp at Lime Street, Al Kitchen with Nino & Trish at Goodfellas, Off the Wall at Motorheads, Frank Parker at Anchors Away and Julie Jules & Company at Boones for Friday Night Jazz. That ain't bad for a good showing of local talent in a new year of ol' music-making.

Jumping on to Saturday night, Starship Billiards kicks off their live music time with a show termed "A Family Affair," featuring a fantastic lineup of Mace Hathaway joined by Pinch of Grace (members of Sunshine Daydream) for a night of acoustic-styled Grateful Dead with added drums (8-11:30, $10 cover).

At Pier 55, Kathy Kitchen and Rick Meyers drop by to sing up a storm and they will have a whale of a time doing it from 7 to 11.

After all that, you're on your own to check the music listings for all the other hip happenings happening around town, and there are plenty of them to behold.

About The Author

Tom Irwin

Tom Irwin, a sixth-generation Sangamon County resident, has played his songs and music for nearly 40 years in the central Illinois area with occasional forays across the country. He's contributed to Illinois Times since 2000 by writing Now Playing, a weekly music column, as well as features stories and other articles...

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