Ventures | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Rock 'n' roll has always accommodated weirdos who took the received sounds of the day, processed them through their own mechanisms, and produced something new. And some became successful far beyond their wildest dreams--think of Elvis, John Lennon, Joey Ramone, or Bob Bogle and Don Wilson. What they have in common is a--Bob Bogle? Don Wilson? They founded the Ventures, a collection of eccentric autodidacts who grabbed an obscure Chet Atkins tune, turned it into the hit 'Walk Don't Run' and invented a uniquely obsessive brand of guitar rock in the process. And successful? Billboard ranks them as the second most successful 60s rock band on the album charts (after, of course, the Beatles). The Ventures have released something like one hundred records--you can surf, swim, and, for all I know, watusi with the Ventures--and they all have that same dab of tremolo, that same dash of vibrato, and that percolating rhythm section. And they're steamy live. Spies Who Surf open. Saturday, the Vic, 3145 N. Sheffield; 472-0449.

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