This week's Culture Vultures recommend: 

How Was Your Week?, the Puppet Bike, and Spirit Family Reunion

click to enlarge julie_fin-magnum.jpg

Bree Housley, author of We Hope You Like This Song: An Overly Honest Story About Friendship, Death, and Mix Tapes, downloads:

How Was Your Week? I wake up every Friday with one goal: download Julie Klausner's podcast, How Was Your Week? Perhaps this makes me sound a bit lazy, but oh man, does she make me laugh.

Whether she's crooning along to Brian McKnight's "Ready to Learn" (look it up, people, so ridiculous) or getting to the bottom of important things with her guests, like why Mrs. Doubtfire holds up to repeat viewings, Julie is like the best friend you've always been jealous of because she's funnier than you. Her guests include fellow writers, comedians, podcasters, and generally interesting people. I loved her memoir, I Don't Care About Your Band, so I'm jazzed that there's a way to have a little conversation with Julie every week. She's funny, bright, and totally redheaded.

Subscribe to How Was Your Week? on iTunes. You won't be sorry . . . though the person sitting next to you on the train might be.

click to enlarge puppet bike

Monte Beauchamp, editor, art director, and designer of Blab World, is enchanted by:

Puppet Bike Recently one Sunday, after brunching at Andersonville's M. Henry, my girlfriend and I began strolling south on Clark Street when we spotted what appeared to be a wooden, outhouse-style structure on wheels, parked on a street corner several blocks in the distance.

My heart skipped a beat with delight, and without further ado, we made a beeline for it. Sure enough, it was what we had hoped for—the city's legendary Puppet Bike.

This particular hand puppet pantomime performance featured French-style accordion music while a whimsical duo—a cat and alligator—fought, danced, and sashayed about, blowing kisses to each onlooker who handed them a dollar bill. Not only did these cutesy rag-tattered performers delight and amaze me, over the course of the next ten minutes I eagerly doled out all of my one-dollar bills to them.

There's no telling when and where Puppet Bike will pop up—it's been spotted from downtown to Logan Square to Edgewater, but rest assured that each encounter is a most splendorous experience.

click to enlarge LAUREN SLUSHER
  • Lauren Slusher

Al Scorch, banjo player, songwriter, and bandleader, taps his toes to:

Spirit Family Reunion Spirit Family Reunion's music is jubilant and joyous. It will stick in your head and make you shake your ass. They play nonreligious gospel music that blends old-time, country, and soul so well Levon Helm had them at his last two Midnight Rambles before he passed. This is real-deal country-soul music: it spans the gap between country and town with string-band instruments, four-part harmony, and fantastic songwriting. Do yourself a favor and catch them at Schubas before they are huge and Old Crow Medicine Show is opening for them at some shitty arena.

Spirit Family Reunion play at Schubas on 12/8.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Meg Pier

More by Niel Spidle

More by Jerome Ludwig

Agenda Teaser

Galleries & Museums
Smoke, Nearby Museum of Contemporary Art
April 15
Galleries & Museums
Lincoln's Undying Words Chicago History Museum
April 14

Tabbed Event Search

Popular Stories

Follow Us

Sign up for newsletters »

 Early Warnings
 Food & Drink
 Reader Recommends
 Reader Events and Offers