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Jamie Lee Rake

Jamie Lee Rake is a freelance writer based in Waupun, Wis. whose wide breadth of tastes in and studies of music and food put him in good stead to write about those very things for Shepherd Express. He aspires to make more of his living by way acting and voice-over work, so if you like his writing, you may want to see or hear him as well. When he's not consuming, reading or writing about food and music, he can be found taking online surveys, studying for and teaching mid-week adult class at his place of worship, listening to more radio (mostly online) than watching TV, and providing incidental humor and, it's hoped, intentional insight for those in his eclectic orbit.  

Fear of a Norb Planet: The Complete MaximumRockNRoll Columns 1994-1998 by Rev. Norb (Norbert Rozek) is a compelling read from a strangely, amusingly obsessive dude, who sometimes wrote entertainingly about rumblings on the punk-rock undergr... more

Books

On Flying Carpet, the German world music ensemble Quadro Nuevo collaborate with Cairo Steps, a German jazz band, on an album that explores the music of the Middle East. more

Album Reviews

With the release of Superbitch, Milwaukee’s Black Belt Theatre concoct a welcome tonic countering the emotional direness of current commercial radio hard music. more

Album Reviews

Milwaukee’s Altered Five Blues Band releases its fourth album, Charmed & Dangerous on the national label Blind Pig with notable producer Tom Hambridge. more

Album Reviews

European group Talinka releases an album of undefinable yet jazz-influenced music. more

Album Reviews

Milwaukee jazz singer Roxi Copland releases her third album, Bad Decision. more

Album Reviews

Ricky Phontaine, a Milwaukee rapper with an alias adapted from a minor character on Martin Lawrence’s ’90s sitcom, debuts as an album artist with his artistic persona fully formed. more

Album Reviews

In a reversal of the usual American order of the day, Stax’s stars were African American but behind them stood integrated ensembles such as The MGs. more

Album Reviews

Into its third generation as a tavern-restaurant, Dino’s Riverwest (808 E. Chambers St.) offers an unpretentiously homey decor in which to dine on Italian fare smartly presented. more

Short Order

Jack Rabbit Slims (8028 W. National Ave.) is a wood-paneled hutch of a sports bar and restaurant beckoning with a colorfully cartoonish neon depiction of its mascot critter. Slims meat-intensive menu features lots of hearty protein options.... more

Short Order

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Photo by Pat Robins

With a mirrored wall, portraits of jazz greats and a wide gamut of jazzy sounds coursing through its cozy confines, City.Net Café (306 E. Wisconsin Ave.) has a cosmopolitan, yet comfy take on a breakfast-lunch nook and coffee house. more

Short Order

Soul food is proof that adversity can lead to invention—delicious, filling invention. Milwaukee offers several great options. more

Dining Out

If the sonic attack on The Clitboys’ lone vinyl release, the just-reissued We Don’t Play The Game, differs little from what was coming from the punk undergrounds elsewhere, the band’s attitude was at least a bit more developed than many. Mi... more

Album Reviews

Muskego’s John Domanski and the Daydreamers reside in an almost deceptively airy space on their debut EP, Ignite. Consciously looking to the ’90s for inspiration, their sound approaches a masculine complement to the folk emphasis of Lilith ... more

Album Reviews

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit (five Southeastern Wisconsin locations) derives from BBQ styles native to the central and eastern regions of the Lone Star State. Dickey’s offers a wide variety of savory fare and don’t forget to ask for a free cone of... more

Short Order

Forever, the third album by Milwaukee folkie Francesc, rings with a generally more positive, even slyer, frame of mind than her previous Lucky One. It is carried confidently by Francesca and her mostly two-man acoustic band, the 440 Hum. more

Album Reviews

My Radio is Brookfield country singer Nora Collins’ most commercial release yet. Its radio readiness comes from recording in Nashville with the same sorts of studio gloss, heavy guitar tones and rhythmic inflections derived from hip-hop. more

Album Reviews

Paint Me a Picture, the second album by Milwaukee folkies Patty Stevenson and Craig Siemsen brings together two singular but complementary musical personalities. Stevenson’s songs tend toward personal vignettes from which she draws more uni... more

Album Reviews

The menu at Daddy’s Soul Food & Grille (754 N. 27th St.) includes a daily soul food buffet, as well as specialty items ranging including tilapia tacos, stuffed baked potatoes and chicken n’ waffles. Daddy’s is a soul food gem in the city si... more

Dining Out

The East Side corner spot that once housed Greek Village Gyros has become Baba Ghanouj, 1888 N. Humboldt Ave. Much has remained, including gyros, Greek salads and fries, a bright airy ambience and friendly service. more

Dining Out 1 Comments

With Milwaukee’s The Grovelers filling in on opening duties on short notice, outlaw country heir Shooter Jennings shared some fetching new tunes at Shank Hall. more

Concert Reviews

Nevería La Flor de Mayo (1117 W. Lincoln Ave.) offers a plethora of Mexican treats. more

Short Order

Waukesha’s Watchbirds call their music garage-folk. If the first word in their descriptor infers simplicity and the second word, gentleness, the co-ed quintet nailed it. more

Album Reviews

The Hideaway Pub & Grill is worth the drive for its great soul food, as well as Cajun and Caribbean dishes. more

Short Order

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Despite its unassuming location behind an Olive Garden, the Granville Blues and Jazz Festival didn't skimp on Midwestern talent. more

Concert Reviews

Juan Vega’s restaurant, Sofrito’s Vega Puerto Rican Cuisine, has been bringing uptown funkiness to the South Side for three years now. more

Short Order

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Photo credit: Dan Ojeda

The sonically omnivorous Australian psych-rock band King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard offered a sampling of the astounding five full-length albums they released last year. more

Concert Reviews

The baker’s dozen songs on BingBong’s Pop Restoration evince the influence of Badger State forebears in their genre such as fellow Madisonians Spooner and Milwaukee’s Shivvers. more

Album Reviews

Formerly known as La Isla, Shalom Puerto Rican Restaurant (3500 W. National Ave.) offers a variety of authentic island fare. more

Short Order

Nestled in a corner of Milwaukee Public Market, Margarita Paradise purveys imaginative Mexican fare prepared promptly within the indoor shopping and dining plaza. more

Short Order

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Last Saturday at Underground Collaborative, actors involved in some of Company of Strangers' productions and others from far away as Oshkosh put on an uproarious night of juried risk-taking. more

Comedy

The wide menu at El Greco Family Restaurant (9143 W. Appleton Ave.) should hold appeal for many diners, especially the unique offers on the all-day breakfast menu. more

Short Order

On her second EP, Trixie Mattel, the dolled-up alias of Milwaukee’s Brian Michael Firkus, comes to the country genre from a more traditional aural perspective than most of what passes for country on commercial radio nowadays. more

Album Reviews

On The River, the versatile veteran vocalist Barbara Stephan utterly sells the EP’s half-dozen songs, imbuing them with conviction commensurate to Dusty Springfield or Sharon Jones. more

Album Reviews

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Photo credit: Veronica Rusnak

Bandmates and admirers of Peder Hedman paid tribute to his music at a joyous show that underscored what a rare talent he was. more

Concert Reviews 1 Comments

It took an involuntary residency in Waupun Correctional Institution to bring Milwaukee’s Kenyatta Kuykendoll to hip-hop, and Prodigal Son marks the emergence of a considerable talent who could go in any number of intriguing directions. more

Album Reviews

Sharing a stage, the three singer-songwriters presented differing, complementary approaches to folk music. more

Concert Reviews

Restaurant names don’t come much more high-concept than House of Corned Beef. The minimally decorated Northwest Side location specializes in its namesake cured meat but offers plenty more. more

Short Order

On Just a Matter of Time, Katz Sass sound ready to follow fellow Milwaukee bluesmen Altered Five Blues Band into a wider spotlight for a familiar, yet inventive take on their music. more

Album Reviews

WMSE classical DJ Jason Wietlispach makes meditative use of his bass clarinet as well as multiple synthesizers, saxophones and basses throughout seven improvisational and otherwise experimental compositions. more

Album Reviews

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