Since forming in the early 70s and becoming the #1 regional band in the summer of 1980 via their breakthrough hit "Rock And Roll Chicago," M&R RUSH has kept its original line-up intact and continued releasing original music albums, the latest being 2018's "Between The Lines."
The senior rockers roll throughout the Midwest annually on a summer tour with high energy concerts, featuring material from their seven-album catalog. This Saturday at 7:30 p.m. (Eastern), the band performs at Acorn Theater (104 Generations Drive) in Three Oaks, Michigan.
Opening will be very special guest Jamie Harrison, an East Chicago native and the son of iconic '70s rocker Jim Skafish. Signed to 829 Records, Harrison has built an impressive resume since relocating out West as an in-demand session player/sideman, while also emerging as an original solo artist. Catch Harrison live on 89.1FM-Lakeshore Public Radio this Friday from noon to 2 p.m. More: facebook.com/jamiemichaelharrison.
"We play songs from all of our albums in the show," said drummer Marty Mardirosian of M & R Rush. "We do about 60% of our music and 40% covers by artists we like and who have inspired us; like Styx, Kansas, Head East and Uriah Heep.
Songs from "Between The Lines" to be included in the live set are the title track and "Restless Love," a hook-heavy song written by Grammy Award winning Chicago songwriter Jim Peterik (of Ides of March/Survivor fame). "That song came to us through a mutual friend who thought it was a perfect fit for M&R Rush."
"What's kept us going and what's kept the band together all these years with the same guys, is that we love the music we make together, but we also like being around each other," said guitarist John McFarland. "We aren't just a band, we're a family."
"That hits the nail right on the head," Mardirosian said. "We've all been friends for decades now, our wives are friends, we've watched each others' kids grow up, we golf together, we hang out together socially. Sure it's about the music and playing, but it's the friendships that keep us going this all these years later." Tickets and more: acornlive.org.
• Bulldog Park's live music series continues tonight as live music is featured with the weekly Thursday Classic Car Show. Opening things will be The Bill Hayden Group mixing original music from his new album, "Eureka" with classic rock and pop covers. Closing the night is veteran Chicago music maker Dave Rudolf and his band doing what he calls, "The British Re-Invasion" show. "It's us doing our take on a lot of well known hits made famous by British artists like The Yardbirds, The Hollies, The Kinks and others," said Rudolf. "There's even a few in there by a little group called, The Beatles, that I think folks will enjoy." More: daverudolf1.com.
• The 2019 Wicker Memorial Park Tribute Concert Series (Ridge Road & U.S. 41) in Highland kicks off tonight with Pearl Jam Chicago, a tribute to the Seattle grunge music pioneers. The 10-week Thursday night series for 21 and older audiences is "rain or shine," and runs 7:30-10:30 p.m. Upcoming concerts in the series feature: KICK (Inxs trib.) on June 20, Queen Flash (Queen trib,) on June 27, and Southern Accents (Tom Petty trib.) on July 11. Tickets: $7 all shows. Full schedule, tickets and info: 219- 932-2530 (ext 324).
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• The Thursday evening Lakes of Four Seasons Summer Concert Series carries on tonight with Highway Band delivering classic rock and Southern Rock covers mixed with a few of their original songs. The weekly series runs 6:30 to 9 p.m. Lawn chairs, blankets and coolers are recommended. There is a $5 per carload parking fee to attend.
• The eclectic Rockopelli Music Festival produced by Joel Ratajack to raise monies for charitable causes happens Saturday at Central Park (just north of downtown on Broad Street) in Griffith. Among artists scheduled to perform are: The Crawpuppies, Dirtymac, Fay Ray and Today's Trade. More: rockopellifest.org.
• Catch the blues rock of perennial favorites Shuddup & Drive at Leroy's Hot Stuff (333 West U.S. 20) in Porter on Friday at 8 p.m.; followed on Saturday by rock band Chronic Flannel at 9 p.m. More: leroyshotstuff.com or 219-926-6211.
• The weekly Highland Parks & Rec Music & Market series continues Saturday (5-8 p.m.) in downtown's Main Square Park with classic rock band, Got Issues.
• Fresh from his performance with M&R Rush at the Acorn Theater, Jamie Harrison gives a free performance Sunday for the latest installment of the weekly internet radio broadcast "Live From The Record Bin" (218 Main St.) in downtown Hobart. The 4-6 p.m. all ages performance is free with complimentary refreshments provided. Space is limited. More: facebook.com/LiveAtTheRecordBin or 219-945-9511.
• Rick Lindy & The Wild Ones perform '50s and '60s hits on June 18 from 6-7:30 p.m. at Woodland Park for the weekly 2019 Portage Summer Music Series of free, family-friendly Tuesday concerts in Woodland Park's Oakwood Grand Hall (2100 Willowcreek Road) in Portage. More: portagemusic.com or 219-762-1675.
• The Room (8353 Indianapolis Blvd.) in Highland presents its "Region Acoustic Showcase" on Saturday at 7 p.m. with featured artists Cody Krilich, Acoustic Abrasion, and Nate Venturelli. More: 219-838-5909.
• Head-turning 20-year-old blues guitarist/vocalist, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, supports his Alligator Records' debut album, "Kingfish," with two shows on Friday in Chicago. Catch his 8 p.m. performance at "Ribfest" (4165 N. Lincoln Ave.), followed by his 11 p.m. show at Schuba's Tavern (3159 N. Southport Ave.). More: christonekingfishingram.com.
• Just announced and now on sale! Iconic Chicago folk singer/songwriter Bonnie Koloc, a staple in the music haunts of Chicago's Old Town during the late 1960s and early 1970s, will perform with her trio on June 30 at Acorn Theater in Three Oaks, Michigan. With her is special guest, Ed Holstein. More: acornlive.org.