On Monday, May 24, 2021, Chicago lost a legend: Aniello “Red” Fontano. Known all over Chicago for his famous “Fontano’s Subs,” Red’s story is emblematic of the Little Italy neighborhood. In 1963, Red opened a small grocery store on the corner of Polk and Carpenter with his wife, Gilda nee Eterno, where they would sell authentic Italian submarine sandwiches for over 50 years. While Fontano’s Subs would become successful enough to franchise all over the city and suburbs, the original … Continue reading
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On March 12, legendary Chicago blues musician Dion Payton passed away. In an obituary for the Chicago Sun Times, Zac Clingenpeel writes that Payton’s “style, talent and personality inspired many musicians.” With his signature Gibson Les Paul 25/50 Anniversary Edition, Payton entertained Chicago crowds with crisp and climbing blues riffs for over three decades. With his 43rd Street Blues Band, Payton played regular gigs at Kingston Mines as well as the Checkerboard Lounge. Skeptical of the big business of music and dubious … Continue reading
For three decades, Roger Mudd epitomized network TV news. It is difficult now, in an age saturated with media personalities, to imagine just how influential anchors like Mudd were in their time. Serving as a primary face of news networks from CBS to PBS, Mudd played a crucial role in shaping the political consciousness of the US from the 1960s to the 1980s. Working alongside such noteworthy anchormen as Walter Cronkite, Dan Rather, and Tom Brokaw, Mudd addressed viewers with … Continue reading
Longtime political activist Rennie Davis died on Tuesday, February 2nd at his home in Colorado. He was best known for his role in as one of the “Chicago 7” co-conspirators charged with crossing state lines to incite a riot after the anti-war protests at the Democratic National Convention in 1968. All seven were acquitted from all charges by the Appellate Court. The cause of death was lymphoma, a condition that had been diagnosed only a few weeks before his death. In this … Continue reading
Last November, we shared a slice of media history with you: The AIDS Connection, an all-night special broadcast intended to address misinformation surrounding the AIDS virus in 1987. Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), was a featured panelist. Now, we’re sharing another historic example of the fight against AIDS – venturing outside the experts on television to protestors in the streets. ACT UP and other activist groups called on Dr. Fauci to provide equal access … Continue reading