Friends and Fans of HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! we are alive and well! It’s been a tough life stretch the past few months, and I haven’t been able to take care of the band as much as I would like. We have had many lineup changes over the past year and a half, but we are still plowing ahead with the original core of the band still intact. We are in the middle of a new recording that we hope to have out in the next few months. We have a big show coming up this Friday, July 29 at The Wild Hare in Chicago with Special Guests Ifficial Reggae Movement. We hope to see some of you there! – Ted
We’re very excited to anounce that HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! will be starting a steady Tuesday night gig at The Wild Hare in Chicago. The residency will kick off on 2/24 @ 9:30. The Wild Hare has been a vital Chicago institution since 1985, and has hosted a who’s who of Reggae artists over the years. We are honored to be invited to become part of the Wild Hare family. The Wild Hare and it’s owners have been to hell and back to keep this club open. If you don’t know the history of the battle the club had to fight in order to host live music at the new location,2610 N. Halsted Ave) do a web search (click here for one example). The owners have sacrificed so much and fought so hard in order to keep the Hare open so that people can still experience LIVE Reggae music on a regular basis. The venue is so important, not just for Chicagoans, but for touring acts coming through the Midwest, it is an Oasis. The Wild Hare got the nickname of “Reggae Capital USA” for a reason. We want to help them restore that title and give it even more punch. What can you do? Come out on Tuesdays starting 2/24! You’ll have a chance to hear the band evolve on a weekly basis. We are all about helping to create a home base for Reggae & Dub lovers in Chicago. Check out the club even if we’re not playing. There is live Reggae Wed-Sun as well. Special parking rates at the Home Depot garage across the street. They’re serving killer food there now as well. It’s well worth it even to just grab a bite. There is a Reggae and Dub revival happening in Chicago – be a part of it!
More About This Show…
I’m finding that many people didn’t realize that The Wild Hare is open AND has live music once again. For those unaware, the venue has moved from it’s longstanding location in Wrigleyville to it’s new location at 2610 N. Halsted. The club was in a battle for it’s entertainment license for a long time but music resumed a few months ago. For anyone involved in the Chicago Reggae scene these past 30 years, the Wild Hare has been an indispensable venue. I played my first Reggae shows in Chicago there back in the early/mid 90’s, but saw many more shows there when I was a teenager in the 80’s. The Wild Hare has an important role in bringing Reggae fans and musicians of all persuasions together in this city and is an important venue for all Reggae touring acts. I’ve been in a number of times since they re-opened and the food is outstanding. The room is great – although smaller than the previous venue I prefer the atmosphere of the new location. HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! will be making it’s Wild Hare debut on Tues, Jan 27 with special guest DJ Shottas. We hope that you will come hear us. If you can’t make it that night, please stop in the club soon and support the music and the venue. Chicago without the Wild Hare would be like Chicago without Joe & Wayne Segal’s Jazz Showcase. These are institutions that we would miss dearly if they were to disappear tomorrow. Take advantage of their existence and help them continue to keep the doors open!
More About This Show…
We’re excited to announce that HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! will be playing the 4th Friday of each month at Emporium Arcade Bar in Wicker Park (1366 North Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago). The first of the series is 1/23/15. No cover. If you like 80’s video games and Dub this is the night for you!
More About This Show…
First and foremost it is important for you to know that I am wearing a black turtleneck and blue jeans as I type this message. But seriously folks, I would like to share some band news with you as we wrap up 2014.
I started Ted Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub as a “project” with the thought that I would see where it leads. We started rehearsing just drums & bass in January of 2013 and played our first gig at the end of March of the same year. By April 3rd I had somehow managed to talk with The Scientist. We decided to do a record together, and embarked on a Kickstarter campaign. The Kickstarter ended successfully on May 3. From May 3 – July 1, I wrote and arranged the material for the record and searched frantically for musicians who could learn and play this music for the recording. To make a long story short, we did complete the record and released it on Sept 20, the day of our CD Release Party as part of the Chicago World Music Festival 2013 at Martyrs’ in Chicago.
Since that CD release we have gone through many different lineup changes and musicians until we arrived at our current lineup. I’m happy to say that with this roster of musicians the group has progressed from a “project” to a true BAND. The musicians who have been playing with the band have been dedicated to the music and the mission and are starting to see it as their own – not just a project in which they are sidemen.
In order to reflect this development we are shortening the name of the band from “Ted Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub’ to HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! That’s right! All caps AND an exclamation point! BOOM! We feel that this more condensed band name will be easier for people to remember and will reflect more of the collective sense of the band. This should eliminate people erroneously calling the band names such as “Tom Sriracha’s Reggae Band” or “Ted Sirota and the Heavyweights” or “Todd Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub Champions”. At least that’s what we’re hoping. So, you will start seeing the band listed as HEAVYWEIGHTDUB! Don’t be alarmed. Same great music, new and improved packaging. Help us spread the word about the name change if you don’t mind.
We are in the pre-production stage of recording our new record. We plan to record in the first quarter of 2015 and hope to have it released shortly thereafter. We are excited about recording because we feel that we have developed a distinctive band sound over the past stretch of time and are anxious to let the world know what we sound like with our own King Tony on the mix. We will definitely be pressing vinyl this time so fret not DJ’s and analog heads! We’ll keep you posted on our progress.
Our monthly residency at the Whistler, “The Dub Connection”, has been a success and has been extended at least through the first half of 2015. Thanks to all that have supported this night. For those of you who haven’t made it out, it’s not too late! Starting in January we will be switching to the 2nd Thursday of the month, so our next Whistler date is Jan 8. We will be celebrating the tenor sax and featuring the music of Tommy McCook and Cedric IM Brooks.
In other exciting news, we are pleased to announce that we will be starting another monthly gig at Emporium Arcade Bar in Wicker Park. We will be at Emporium every 4th Friday of each month. Like the Whistler, there is NO COVER. Somehow our Dub seems to fit right in with the Pac-Man, Galaga, and Dig Dug machines and we are looking forward to playing there each month. Our first gig of the series is Jan 23. Mark your calendars!
We would like to thank EVERYBODY that came to one of our shows, liked us on FB, followed us on Twitter, bought the CD or MP3, told a friend about us, or hired us for a gig in 2014! We are on a mission to bring great Dub/Reggae music with a massive sound, played and mixed by great musicians, to the world and we want you to take the ride with us. FORWARD!
Peace & Dub,
If a gang of Black men jumped a police officer and strangled him to death for no apparent reason, you could be damned sure that EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM would rot in prison for life or close to it. Not just the one who strangled the cop, but every single person that touched the cop, the person waiting in the car, the person that wandered on the scene and didn’t do anything to stop it. Not only that, you could be damned sure that the families of the Black men would all be continually hounded and harassed for years. They would be pulled over, evicted from housing, arrested for this and that. Yet all of these cops that took part in this murder got off scot-free, not just Pantaleo, and that’s not even addressing the EMT’s who didn’t do their jobs. A miscarriage of justice is a vast understatement in the case of #EricGarner.#ChokeTheSystem.