Posts Tagged ‘Chicago’

Of The Poet

Of the Poet is an Americana/Urban Country Trio based in Chicago, IL comprised of Jordyn Dickson (vocals), Kyle Goeken (vocals/guitar) and Dan Tallian (guitar/mandolin). Their debut EP, “Standby” released July 2, 2013. Of the Poet spoke with Tuned In, Turned Up about their new EP, musical influences, and their goals for the future.

How would you describe your sound?

K: Americana/Homegrown/Sing It To The Skies/Urban Country

This record is far from perfect, and I’m glad it came out that way. We recorded it in 2 days at Earth Analog studio right outside Champaign, IL with my cousin Kyle Prillaman who not only engineered and mixed the whole thing, but played drums on it for us as well. The whole experience was surreal and quick and dirty and I think we all thrived on that energy and I’m really proud of what we accomplished.

J: Couldn’t have said it better myself

D: Kyle’s got it. Thanks, Kyle.

Who are some of the artists or musicians that have inspired both your overall sound and each of you as songwriters?

K: Neil Young, John Mayer, The Black Keys, The Gaslight Anthem.. Dan introduced me to Butch Walker and I’ve been lost in his writing style ever since.. Bands like The Lone Bellow, Young the Giant, The Last Bison, and The Civil Wars have been on repeat lately..

J: I think we can all agree that The Lone Bellow has been a big inspiration for us. They’re a three piece with chilling harmonies and insanely poetic lyrics. We listen to them as a group to get inspired. I recently started writing. I’ve always had a great connection to Bob Dylan’s early folk stage writing style and experimented in that sort of “walking blues” format.

D: I’ve always been inspired by and loved the Blues. Whether it’s old electric Buddy Guy type blues, Chuck Berry type blues rock, or newer stuff like Alabama Shakes and The Black Keys, I can’t get enough of it. Angus Young, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jack White too.. But I also came from a punk rock background so I still love heavy, fast, simple chord progressions. More recently, though, I’ve had on The Lone Bellow, Young the Giant, Dustin Kensrue, Johnny Cash, The Lumineers…

What are you guys most excited about with the release of your first EP, “Standby”?

K: Knowing so many of our friends and family are in our corner and rooting us on is super humbling and we’re really excited about playing for them. The response we’ve gotten already from this record is incredible and it’s been really fun seeing so many different people coming together and supporting us.

J: I’m most excited about our friends and family being able to hear what we’ve been working on for six months now! We’re ready to get out there and start playing shows. I think we have such a great connection and energy when the three of us are together, live.

D: To get back on stage! Before Kyle and I met, we had been in various bands playing shows since High School and when we got together a few years ago we both agreed we missed performing live. Now that we’ve written a handful of songs we’re proud of, we can get back to it. That, and just finally being able to get some new music out into the world for people to hear.

How did the three of you meet and what made you decide to form a band?

K: I owe a lot of this to a friend of ours named Eric Farias aka “This Guy”. I transferred to Columbia College in 2009 and sat next to Eric in my intro to typography class. Turns out, the guy sitting next to him was Dan. We all got to talking, and Eric, pointing to Dan goes, “Hey! You play guitar? This guy (pointing to me) can sing! You guys should play music together.” 4 years and a Jordyn later, here we are 🙂

J: Dan and I work together. One day he popped his head into my cubical and said: “hey you play guitar, right? Do you sing?” After that, I went and jammed with the two of them. They taught me the songs they had been working on and it sort of became a routine for us. I honestly feel so lucky to have fallen into this. They’re both so talented- it’s really awesome when we all get in a room together and start collaborating.

D: Haha! Eric. Funny kid. Yeah, I think we just all have a passion for creating some beautiful music.

If you could each select one artist or musician to collaborate with (dead or alive), whom would you choose, and why?

K: I would love to work with Jack White.. He’s incredibly driven.. The man simply handles his business and pays no mind to anything else. He’s motivated by positivity and I admire that incredibly.

J: I think I’d have to say Neil Young. His music has so much depth and range. What an amazing experience that would be.

D: Butch Walker. He’s an unbelievably talented artist and producer …and I’m a sucker for a good hook. I’ve been into his music for years, but saw him live recently for the first time and it was one of the best shows i’ve seen to this day. I love his energy. And he just seems like a cool ass dude to hang out with.

Aside from music, what is each of your favorite pastime activities?

K: I’m a graphic designer by trade, but I’m a huge nerd for hockey and baseball. The Hawks and the St. Louis Cardinals, respectively.

J: Professionally, I am an interior designer and enjoy all forms of art. I also really love doing yoga.

D: I’m also a graphic designer and love what I do, but if I’m not working or playing music, I love throwing on a movie, getting comfortable in a big blanket and eating a big ass root beer float.

What are some goals you have for your music that you’d like to achieve over the next few years?

K: We’ve built up a homegrown base we’re extremely thankful for.. we’ve just got to keep at it, keep writing, keep building the momentum, and remaining focused on the music above all else.

J: My biggest goal for us right now is to get out there and perform live as much as possible. Further down the road I would love for us to be able to put out a full length album.

D: Over the next few years I just want us to keep playing and writing new music. Recording a full length eventually would be great but I want to let this thing grow and see what happens next!


Listen to the entire “Standby” EP:


Of the Poet’s EP, “Standby” can be downloaded on their website.

Additional Of the Poet music and information can be found at:

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The Lollapalooza festival held every year in Chicago has become one of the country’s largest music festivals. What you may not know about Lollapalooza though, is that it originally started as a farewell show for the group Jane’s Addiction!

In 1991, Perry Farrell, lead singer of Jane’s Addiction, began planning an epic farewell show for his band that would bring music from all over the continent together for an incredible concert. The line-up included a diverse group of artists like Ice-T, Siouxsie and the Banshees, and Nine Inch Nails. After the first show, the festival began touring around the United States and Canada until it eventually stationed itself in Chicago, IL.


December 1st, 2012 The Empty Bottle, Chicago, IL

December 1st was a cool, crisp night in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago. I had successfully persuaded my girlfriend and some friends to come with me to a bar called The Empty Bottle. There were a few bands playing, but The Stone Foxes were the real reason for us going. My friends had never really heard them before, but I was well aware of what was in store. Having spent many hours listening to their albums and watching countless live videos of them on YouTube, I had set the bar pretty high for my upcoming experience. Shannon, Spence, Aaron, and Elliot (Aforementioned Stone Foxes) took my expectations and absolutely annihilated them.

I’m not entirely sure how many people attended that night, I’d guess somewhere around 100. The Stone Foxes had some kind of strange power over all of us, absolutely captivating. From the first few notes of “Beneath Mt. Sinai,” I could tell that my senses were going to be obliterated in the best way possible. This was a real show and they made sure that every last one of us were going to be a part of it. The atmosphere for this loud, energetic, dirty blues band could not have been more perfect. Personally, I enjoyed the packed, dingy, sweaty aura of that small bar. It was a wonderful garnish to the face melting that was served that evening.

I have seen a lot of great bands, such as Incubus, Rush, Roger Waters, Gorillaz, B.B. King, Alabama Shakes, and many more. However, not a single one of these artists can match the energy that The Stone Foxes are capable of producing. I have never had so much fun at a concert before. The great thing about them is that they can switch instruments and do something completely unexpected. Their drummer, Shannon, is also a great harmonica player and a very solid singer. His drumming is comparable to John Bonham’s (Led Zeppelin). He plays the drums the way they are meant to be played: BEAT THE HELL OUT OF ‘EM! His brother, Spence, is the guitarist. His playing is very precise and his slide playing is very fun to watch. My favorite thing about his style is that it’s loud. Very loud. Fearless.

Everyone in this band interacts so well with each other, which really lays the foundation for a truly enjoyable live experience. Their sound is heavily influenced by the blues, rock, and hints of folk. I understand that there are an infinite amount of bands out there doing the same thing. However, these guys really bring something different and savory to the table. They really know how to put on a good live show. No fancy tricks or acrobatics, just raw music delivered with passion and charisma. During one song, Shannon left his throne and left the drumming up to bassist, Aaron. This allowed him to be front and center for lead singing and harmonica duties. About half way through “Mr. Hangman,” he jumped down into the crowd, got everyone circled up, and started a chant. I can’t really remember what that chant was because I had treated myself to a few beers by that point. Anyway, I do remember that he had us all crouched down as low as possible and chanting softly. Then we elevated a little higher and chanted louder. Then a little more. Higher and louder. Higher! Louder! We did this until we were all screaming and jumping like heathens. The room felt like it was going to explode! The pure, raw energy that came forth was unforgettable. Any normal person after performing a set like this would have simply fallen over and plunged into a brief coma. These guys kept going.

Overall, the show was fantastic. Spence, Shannon, Aaron, and Elliot are all great musicians and each offer something unique that blends together perfectly. I highly recommend seeing The Stone Foxes, regardless of your musical taste. You will have fun, and lots of it. The guys are really easy to talk with, and they’re just good people. They currently have two albums out: The Stone Foxes and Bears & Bulls. February 12, 2013 marks the release of their new album, Small Fires. Make sure to check them out on their website, Facebook, and their PledgeMusic page. Buy some tunes, shirts, vinyl, tickets, or whatever you can to support this phenomenal band.

Set list: Beneath Mt. Sinai, Patience, Ulysses Jones, So Much Better, Cotto, Reno, Small Fires, Everybody Knows, Stomp, I’m a King Bee, Psycho, Jump in the Water, Mr. Hangman

Encore: Spoonful, Christmas Wave