Musical Memories from Chicago 1963 to 2000

A collection of excerpts from films by Tom Palazzolo focuing on music in Chicago, from street performers on Maxwell St to folk and rock bands at neighborhood festivals.

0:05Copy video clip URL A one-man-band plays “Puttin’ on the Ritz” with various instruments and recorded sound effects.

1:15Copy video clip URL New segment. A man plays accordion while girls stand in the background looking out toward an audience in the distance. Someone off-screen is singing. People applaud as a girl comes up on stage dressed as royalty. She is Miss Eastside 1977-78. Some clowns also come on stage.

2:08Copy video clip URL Brief shots of the festivities, including a marching band, as well as men boxing intercut with images of the clowns pretending to fight.

2:37Copy video clip URL Miss Eastside 1977-78 talks about her “Year of Reign” after being chosen the previous Labor Day. Footage of her coronation the previous year plays over her speech about what she did, what she learned, and her advise for the next winner of the title.

4:08Copy video clip URL Boys press against the stage and shout numbers, possibly indicating which girl they want to win the Miss Eastside crown. More shots of the marching band, as well as a boy who seems to have passed out.

4:27Copy video clip URL The next Miss Eastside is chosen and crowned. The previous winner hands over the crown and raiment. The new winner is speechless, and after struggling to find something to say for a few moments, goes to hug her parents.

8:00Copy video clip URL New segment. A non-diegetic blues song plays over black and white footage of people standing in the middle of Adams St in Downtown Chicago. They are throwing masses of paper streamers around. The lyrics make reference to the “Super Bowl champions ’85 Bears.”

8:59Copy video clip URL New segment. A brass band comes up out of the sewers and then parades down the sidewalk with women in clown makeup and yellow dresses. At the end, the band and women enter the Biograph theater. The clip uses some stop motion animation, and all the onlookers are portrayed with papier-mâché heads.

9:53Copy video clip URL New segment. On Maxwell St, the camera records Casey Jones, a man with a live chicken, baby dolls, and an accordion. Non-diegetic music by Paul Garstky plays over the footage as Casey busks for money outside a storefront.

11:50Copy video clip URL New segment. A blues band plays music on Maxwell St. The performance is intercut with black and white footage of people walking along the market, as well as footage of the audience smiling and dancing to the blues band.

13:13Copy video clip URL Black and white footage of other musicians, most likely also on Maxwell St.

13:57Copy video clip URL New segment. The Lt. Governor of Illinois presents a man with a fuzzy red pillow. The man explains how he won it in a raffle: “First time I’ve ever won anything in my life. … The Lt. Gov. of Illinois pulled my number, so… that’s it…”

14:47Copy video clip URL A woman plays guitar and kazoo at the same time while a man sings.

15:19Copy video clip URL New segment. A rock band performs in a tent. A sign in the back says, “Old Town School.”

17:06Copy video clip URL New segment. Violin music plays over footage of old women walking in the park. One of the women shows off a ceramic snail. The violinist is shown: an old man on stage.

18:17Copy video clip URL A lady plays guitar and sings “Enjoy Yourself (It’s Later than You Think).” She is the same lady who was playing kazoo in the earlier segment. Various people dance in the park. She also plays another song on guitar and kazoo while people sing along.

19:57Copy video clip URL Footage of a rooftop, and then Casey Jones playing accordion. End credits.

20:52Copy video clip URL A man dances and jumps around as part of a band, then old women kick the shoes off their feet.



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