Terry Adams Rock & Roll Quartet | FitzGerald’s | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Terry Adams Rock & Roll Quartet Soundboard Recommended Critics' Picks

When: Fri., July 23, 9 p.m. 2010

On "Imaginary Radio," from NRBQ's 2004 album Dummy, keyboardist Terry Adams sings, "I heard Sun Ra / His song was number one." I'd expect to see proof of life on Mars before I found a radio station with a playlist like that, but Adams is such a true believer in the power of American music that I'm sure he's still holding out. A new spin through that tune appears on Crazy 8's (Clang!), the debut album by his Rock & Roll Quartet, along with two songs from last year's Holy Tweet. Ever since NRBQ went on hiatus six years ago, Adams has played mostly with a revolving assortment of musicians in one-off bands only marginally different from one another in style and substance. The quartet is a regular working group, though, and features Chicago wunderkind Scott Ligon (also on Holy Tweet), drummer Conrad Choucroun, and Figgs bassist Pete Donnelly. Ligon's singing and guitar playing complement Adams's more pop-inclined tunes—including "My Girl My Girl" and "'Til It's Over," which recalls Alex Chilton's brilliantly obtuse solo work—and true to form, Adams can't help but at least hint at, if not indulge in, most of his other interests, like hard rock, country, free jazz, and rockabilly (the last with "Get Down Grandpa," which is basically a bald-faced rewrite of "Roll Over Beethoven," and a nice treatment of Johnny Cash's "Get Rhythm"). —Peter Margasak

Price: $15

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