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Musical Healing

By Scott Smith in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 5, 2005 6:14PM

While the recent Band Aid 20 single did little more than make most Americans say “Wait…Bob Geldof’s still alive?”, music is often the best way to people's hearts, minds and--most importantly: wallets. As private donations to various relief efforts in this country have topped more than $200 million, several local music venues have started efforts to assist those in need.

HotHouse in the South Loop leads the pack with a pair of benefit shows. No surprise there as Hothouse has always had 2005_01_05_hothouse.gifan international concern and tried to educate and inspire as well as entertain. Their first show is “Chicago Responds” this Sunday from 2 PM to 10 PM. Your $25 ticket includes Southeast Asian cuisine (noodles! yes!) and live music from Funkadesi, Frank Orrall from Poi Dog Pondering, Sam Prekop of Sea and Cake along with several groups representing Chicago’s Southeast Asian community. They’ll also be hosting a January 28th show featuring Funkadesi. Every last cent of your ticket price for both shows will go to either the American Red Cross or the American Friends Service Committee.

January 28th is also the date that several clubs around town will be donating a portion of their take at the door to relief efforts including Metro (Chicago Drop CD Release Party) and Smart Bar (DJ Heather and Malcolm Charles), Empty Bottle (The Life and Times), the Velvet Lounge and the Note.

In the next week, dance moves and good deeds can be done at Cherry Red on Friday with Hideout’s Relief Raga putting the capper on the weekend on Monday the 10th featuring music by Freakwater and Mucca Pazza. The suggested donation is only $5-10 dollars so you can put the rest of your cash down for items in their silent auction.

If you’re looking for something less-musically inclined and more family-oriented, the Bubbles Academy (which we know is an arts and music studio for kids but honestly sounds more like a school for strippers) will be hosting a pasta dinner and showing Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and The Wizard of Oz on January 9th for only $20.

Or you could always stay in one night this weekend and give the cash you normally spend on Old Style directly to one of many worthy organizations. Chicagoist is donating its own iTunes budget for this month so that sum alone will probably feed a small village.