19 June 2008

The Swell Season & Blogger event!

By: Jessica B.
Big post tonight, my randomness from last night is g-o-n-e, for now.

Tuesday night Anne and I went to the lovely Chicago Theater for the second of three sold-out concerts with the Swell Season a.k.a. Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova from the indie movie “Once.” Oh they also won the Oscar last year from Best Original Song.

Glen is already a star with the band the Frames (which I had not heard of before the concert) but after watching the movie and hearing the Oscar-winning song “Falling Softly” (video below), it moved me to tears so I had to see them live. And last night at their final show, Barack Obama was in the audience, how cool is that? 
The opening act was a super cute, super nervous guy from Kentucky (whose name I didn’t catch) who commented that the Chicago Theater crowd was easily “36x larger” than any audience he has ever played before. Random guys were handing out samples of his upcoming CD (from Jewel plastic bags) after he finished playing, but I couldn’t grab one in time. Shoot. But I can download the entire concert from a Web site for only $5.95! They gave us cards about it as we were leaving so I’m totally going back to save it to my computer.

It’s been a long time since I’ve been to the lovely Chicago Theater and the sound inside was insanely awesome, the acoustics were amazing. So while we were regulated to the rafter seats, it was still a fun time with beautiful music. I highly recommend checking out the movie and the Swell Season tour if you can. I would definitely see them again.
Taking off for Air One!

I love many things, one of which is shoes made in Italy. Another thing I love is meeting bloggers, especially local ones so tonight, I was invited to nearly combine these loves by attending a blogger event for Air One airlines at Gioco’s in the South Loop. And joining me were three lovely Chicago bloggers, Jenn, Joy and Angela. Great company.
Air One is an Italian airline who is starting US routes to Milan this month, but only from Chicago and Boston, so to celebrate the new flights, they hosted a blogger event to mingle and learn more about Italian culture. I do have to disclose that Air One is a client at my company, but I was officially “off the clock” when I attended and I don’t work in the department that organized the event.
Marco from Air One talked for a bit about airline and then shared with us some differences in English and Italian cultures. How do Italians spot tourists? Drinking espresso after 10:30 a.m. and/or wearing shorts. I did hear about the “shorts red flag” from friends overseas so I trust him on that one. And they said chef Phil Stefani is creating the flight’s menu. Sounds good to me. Air One was even doing a drawing for a free round-trip flight from Chicago to Milan. Fingers crossed that this girl gets chosen (please, please, momma needs a new pair of Italian leather shoes or a Prada bag). Plus it’s a partner with Lufthansa and speaking from experience, that is a good airline. German!
We enjoyed some lovely wine (which we couldn’t remember the names of so Jenn and I ordered them by numbers 1, 2 and 3) and the food was great too, or as Joy would say as the waiter’s approached, “kay.” It’s tough to pick a favorite from all the nummy options but I would have to say that the fried meatballs and the pesto/mushroom and margarita pizza were the big winners. Plus we got some free SWAG before leaving, which included a new flash drive. Score. That will make a lovely addition for my Lulu. Check out some pictures below.
Four lovely Chicago bloggers
Marco introducing us to Air One (above)
Q&A about how to spot American tourists (below)


  1. Lauren says:

    AH! I love that movie and am so envious that you got to see The Swell Season live. They’re not coming anywhere close to Florida, so I’ll just sit here being…envious. :)

  2. K says:

    looks like a damn good time. italian man and wine. Geesh. Im sorry I missed it.

  3. Princess Pointful says:

    I saw that Chicago sign today! eek! (notice a theme)
    And I am jealous of the concert. The Once Soundtrack is so phenomenal.

  4. Maxie says:

    I would lose my shit if I was even in the same room with Obama. I’d probably get tazed for being so excited. LOL

    Oh- and I agree with jenn… next blogger meetup ITALY! that’d be amazing. LOL

  5. Marianne says:

    I heard the tourists in shorts thing too, about Paris, although for the record, I’ve seen some tres chic French girls wearing smart short shorts with long tops and little play-suits, so it might actually be ok. As long as they’re not huge bermuda shorts obv!

  6. Rachel says:

    I would love to go to one of those blogger meet ups but I’m nervous (I know, surprising!). It’s easy for me to be funny on the blog, but in person I’m afraid that I’ll revert to telling poop stories….

  7. Joy @ Big Time Fancy says:


    Was LOVELY to meet you ma’am! Can’t wait for next Friday. :)

  8. redstaplernation says:

    Ooh, I want to meet you lovely Chicago bloggers too! I’ll be in the city for a conference July 30-Aug. 2. Mini BlogHer, anyone?

  9. megkathleen says:

    I think Falling Slowly would have to be one of my top three favorite songs. I’m so jealous you got to see them in concert!

  10. Katherine says:

    so i have MAJOR issues with “once.” we must discuss some time. :)

  11. Angela says:

    Oh how FUN! It sounds like you’ve had an exciting past couple of days!

    I LOVELOVELOVE the “Falling Slowly” song. I should really go see the movie! I bet the rest of the music in the concert was just as good.

  12. L Sass says:

    I saw Swell Season last month in NYC… it was spectacular. I just love them!

  13. Amanda says:

    Hey! I found you through Jenn’s blog. I just wanted to say how incredibly jealous I am that you got to see Glen and Marketa live. “Falling Slowly” is one of the most beautiful songs I’ve ever heard. I can’t even imagine how amazing it would be in person!

    I think I might have cried when they performed at the Oscars… I’m so lame. :)

  14. ~Angela~ says:

    Dude, I am so down for a meet-up in Italy.

  15. ANG* says:

    A) i am BEYOND jealous you got to see swell season! i didn’t even know about it till it was sold out :( i was listening to the album this am while getting ready wishing i had been there…

    B) looks like the meet-up was great fun! i’ll make sure to get my ass to the next one :)

    C) working on those cards – *promise*

  16. Cass says:

    LOVE gioco so much! next time try the salad with pear and candied hazelnuts. Mmmmmm…

    p.s. glad you enjoyed the chicago theater…must have been a really awesome architectural firm that restored that… wink wink! ;-)

  17. Jenn says:

    Next blogger meetup: Italy.

    Yay for open eyes, free wine and tasty food!

  18. deutlich says:

    So. Yeah. I’m going to meet ALL of you guys IN A WEEK!!!!!!


  19. thegoodnamesaretaken says:

    another way to spot tourists is by their white gym shoes.

    this totally made me want to a) meet fun bloggers and b) go to italy. maybe we should all take a trip to milan? ;)