Local Scene

LOCAL SCENE: Chicago's proud folk heritage shines with Sons

2012-09-14T00:00:00Z LOCAL SCENE: Chicago's proud folk heritage shines with SonsTom Lounges Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
September 14, 2012 12:00 am  • 

Americana music with an indie–rock hipness is being brewed tonight along with tea and coffee at The Front Porch, 505 E. Lincolnway, in Valparaiso, as the venue welcomes Chicago's favorite "Sons" to its intimate confines.

Though more famous for its deep blues roots, Chicago has long been a hub for folk music as well — dating back to the 1960s Old Town scene and venues like the Earl of Old Town, Quiet Knight and Holstein's, which gave birth to such icons as Steve Goodman, John Prine, and Bonnie Koloc.

Sons of the Never Wrong carry on that proud tradition but with a decidedly modern 21st century twist that is eclectic, with influences of jazz, pop and rock woven into the mix. This talented trio — Bruce Roper, Deborah Lader, and Sue Demel — have been a fixture of the Windy City scene for nearly 20 years and has developed a cult following with what they coin "turbo–charged folk," delivered with stellar three–part harmonies and solid instrumentation.

All three members write and their high–energy performances feature original songs rife with humor from the half dozen albums they have recorded between 1995 and 2009. Their unique sound falls somewhere between The Roches, Bright Eyes and Richard and Linda Thompson

Though a frequent headliner at the venerable Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago, the trio tour extensively. Over the years, the Sons have shared stages with such top names of the genre as Livingston Taylor, Odetta, Patti Griffin, and Nanci Griffith; while also headlining performances on their own at such notable venues as The Kennedy Center in Washington, The Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts in California, and The Ark in Michigan.

Tonight at The Front Porch, region music fans of all ages have a chance to catch the trio in an intimate environment for an 8 p.m. performance for $12. FYI: (219) 464–4700


• Northwest Indiana's long running heavy rock group, Sickfrown, left today for a multiweek Midwest tour kicking off tonight at the Machine Shop in Columbus, Ohio. The tour features the hard-rocking Hoosiers supporting national headliners Hed pe, SOiL and Jeffery Nothing (of Mushroomhead fame).

Sickfrown just finished recording a new collection of songs with Rick Thomas, of Mushroomhead, producing. The band recently revamped its line–up with the addition of guitarists Kenny Gannon (ex–Gravelbone) and Sin Seven (ex–Methods of Mayhem and Vanilla Ice), who are reportedly a perfect fit along with bassist Ron Holley and co–founders vocalist Dustin Novath and drummer Glen Novath. Region fans can keep up with Sickfrown on Facebook as they check in from the road.

The opinions expressed are solely the writer's. Reach him at beatboss@aol.com.

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