Robert Crenshaw, Don Dixon, Jamie Hoover & Bill Lloyd | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Robert Crenshaw, Don Dixon, Jamie Hoover & Bill Lloyd

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By the standards of mainstream rock history this bill looks like a meeting of the footnotes, but for pure-pop fetishists the appearance of these four friends and frequent collaborators on a single stage rates as a fairly momentous occasion. Arguably the biggest name in the bunch, Don Dixon spent about a decade and a half playing with North Carolina legends Arrogance before attaining college-radio prominence in the early 80s as coproducer (with Mitch Easter) of the first two R.E.M. albums. He's been working behind the board ever since, with a variety of jangly acts ranging from the Smithereens and Matthew Sweet to (shudder) Hootie, while sporadically putting out sharply crafted Beatles-go-Stax solo LPs, which include Romeo at Juilliard (1987), Romantic Depressive (1995), and his latest, the 2001 workbook collection Note Pad #38 (released on the Dixon Archival Remnants imprint). After releasing the power-pop cult classic Feeling the Elephant in '86, Nashville tunesmith Bill Lloyd went on to mainstream country stardom with partner Radney Foster. On the newly released Paparazzi (Paisley Pop) he's back in duo mode, as he and Jamie Hoover of the Spongetones (another fine but unheralded Carolina combo) run a few laps with the baton the Byrds handed off to Big Star. Hoover will also be previewing tracks from his fine forthcoming odds 'n' sods disc, Jamie Hoo-Ever (Kool Kat Musik). Rounding out the lineup is Robert Crenshaw, who spent the late 70s and most of the 80s drumming behind his older brother Marshall but has recently emerged as a solo artist with three innocent-sounding albums, including 2000's Victory Songs and last year's Hoover-produced Dog Dreams (both on Gadfly). The quartet will play two sets as an electric rock band, with an acoustic round-robin sandwiched in between. Sunday, January 11, 8 PM, Schubas, 3159 N. Southport; 773-525-2508.

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