An e-zine for happenings of local culture in Milwaukee and elsewhere

Radiant, Jazz Estate, Sidewalk Chalk

Expecting the same old dusky jams you can count on at the Jazz Estate, I stepped to that night more for the dim ambiance than the music. Though the music is always a big  plus. I get the per usuals and the main act is preparing to go on. Then this trumpet leans on the silence.

It blows the cob webs off of everyone with a slow tenor drawl. Hi hat taps in the snare, and rim shot. A melodic line is sung-spoken by Maggie Vagle, keys trickling notes around her words,’I have seen the break of day, rising glistening, Im transfixing…’ It’s an exquisite lead in for Rico Sisney to begin his reminiscent verse about a person he knew.

Sidewalk Chalk, Vibrate

Sidewalk Chalk marked a high-point late in 2014 for sneakily good shows, a feat pulled easily by a such an obviously good band of musicians. Based in Chicago, Sidewalk Chalk touts a vintage brass section featuring a Trumpet (Sam Trump) and Trombone (David Ben-Porat), that build on the foundations set by urban R&B electric Bass (Garrett McGinn) and drums (Tyler Berg), and a hip deck of Keys (Charlie Coffeen). Sidewalk chalk has all the parts needed to steer an a all-terrain course through music’s soulful parts.

Their second album, Leaves, prepares to bud late in February and they treated the crowd a Jazz Estate to an early sampler. Sidewalk Chalk has a ton of moxie to go with their stage presence, striking the right balance of justified confidence needed in the urban fusion genre. Most of all they are a lot fun.

Sidewalk Chalk, Them Us

Sidewalk Chalk weaves in and out of dreamy and contemplative pieces, and go quickly from sentimentality to good times. When they get introspective you have a musical pal to accompany you on your daily laments and social tithing. At their upbeat best, they will give you perfect soundtrack to do something uplifting. Sidewak Chalk’s sophomore album leaves drops February 25.

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