Wednesday Weekend Roundup – Jan 22, 2020

Another busy weekend of music awaits and it all can start tonight.

Wednesday – Jan 22

Dead to Rights will be at the Cubby Bear in Chicago tonight.

Joe Marcinek is in town for a brief stay and 2 shows locally this weekend before heading down to Florida for his next run of shows. Tonight he will be appearing at Off Square Brewing in Crown Point.

If you’re up for playing a bit yourself, meet up with Fresh Hops and Friends at The Jam at Beer Geeks in Highland.

Thursday – Jan 23

Thursday brings us another acoustic open mic at Paul Henry’s Art Gallery.

Strings Beyond Description will be pickin’ at Finnegan’s Pub in Dyer.

Friday – Jan 24

The Rusted Strings Band returns to Duffy’s Place in Valparaiso.

Joe Marcinek with special guests will be at the Brauer House in Chicago.

Saturday – Jan 25

Dead to Rights will be at the Grand Armory Brewery in Grand Haven, Michigan.

If you don’t make it out Saturday night, show Fresh Hops some love and stream their show at the Mousetrap on the Mousetrap’s YouTube channel.

As always, follow the NWI Jam calendar for updates and more information. Location along with links to the event in the description are contained in the calendar you can link to your own Google calendar.

30 Days to Hotel Blotto!!!

Catch NWI Jam out this weekend and you may get your own window sticker.

Tommy Thompson II at (219) Taproom

Tommy Thompson II is one of those performers that always leaves an impression when you hear him. Friday night Tommy was solo at the (219) Taproom in Chesterton. His smooth vocals over his Americana Folk mixed with Chicago Blues and rock make him another unique performer in the NWI area to be heard.

Local legend Ronn Barany performs tonight at (219) Taproom. And as always check the NWI Jam Calendar for more events in the area tonight.

Hotel Blotto Tickets on Sale Now!

Mike Bolger of Mr. Blotto has announced that Hotel Blotto 2020, scheduled for February 21st and 22nd, are officially on sale. Hotel Blotto is a winter festival that takes over a hotel for a weekend with 3 separate stages and music all weekend.

The bands include:

  • Mr. Blotto (both nights)
  • Chester Brown (both nights)
  • Mace Hathaway
  • Fuzzlove
  • Miles over Mountains
  • Alias Hillman (formerly Double Starch)
  • EGi
  • Alabaster,
  • and more…

The Cost is $40/day and you must have a Wristband to be anywhere in the Hotel for the weekend.

The event is at the same place it has been in the past but under a new name (#ITSNOTABESTWESTERN):

The La Porte Hotel and Conference Center
444 Pine Lake Ave.
La Porte, IN 46350
(219) 362-4585

In order to book a room, call The La Porte Hotel & Conference Center and tell them you are calling about the Mr. Blotto Event or they will tell you that there’s nothing available.

In the event that the Hotel sells out of rooms, don’t worry. The Stages all are designed to handle way more people than the Hotel can provide rooms for, so you can still attend. There are a number of Hotels very near by that Mr. Blotto will have information on if need arises.

And here’s a link to the Facebook Event sites for each day if you want to catch up on Commentary, etc…



Finally, the Saturday theme is The Blues Brothers movie.

Information about the event and tickets can be purchased through this link:

Wednesday Weekend Roundup

Who isn’t ready for the weekend and music? This weekend we are going to start early by showing today through Saturday since there is so much happening around the area.

Wednesday – January 15th

  • Starting tonight, at 8 PM we have Fresh Hops and Friends Host The Jam at Beer Geeks in Highland.
  • Also tonight at 8 PM Chris Love and Greg Ashby will be at Finnegan’s Pub in Dyer.

Coming soon we are going to start a separate open mic calendar so be sure to send in your open mic schedules to

Thursday – January 16th

  • Thursday there is an Acoustic Jam and Open Table Potluck at Paul Henry’s Art Gallery in Hammond at 7 PM.
  • Gato members Darren, Rocco, and Kevan are playing acoustic at Duffy’s Place in Valparaiso also at 7 PM.

Friday – January 17th

  • The (219) Taproom in Chesterton has Tommy Thompson, a local favorite, at 7 PM.
  • Tracy Glover’s Birthday Open Mic is also happening at 7 PM at McGinnis Pub in Michigan City. Tracy hosts many open mics around the MC area.
  • CAT MAN DOG (a Fresh Hops side project?) is playing at Longshot’s Sports Bar in Schererville at 9 PM.

Saturday – January 18th

If you haven’t had enough music this week, get your grooving shoes on for Saturday.

  • Starting the day off is the Long Johns on Winter Warmer Bash 2020 at Burn’em Brewing in Michigan City at 11:30. New brews on tap and jams in the heated tent.
  • At 7 PM, local legend, Ronn Barany is playing solo at (219) Taproom.
  • At 7:30 PM is the Mega Beatles benefit for the Memorial Opera House. The Mega Beatles are formed by a local supergroup of musicians and the Memorial Opera House is always a good cause.
  • At 9 PM Phantom Zone is going to be rocking 2 Bill’s Tap in Winfield just outside the 4 Seasons entrance.
  • Also at 9 PM Dead to Rights, a local favorite Grateful Dead tribute, take the stage at Martini’s in Valparaiso.

For more information refer to the events in the calendar page which will usually have a link to the event.

As always, if your band wasn’t listed and want to be, send your schedules to Have a great weekend!

Joe Marcinek @ Mousetrap Jan 3rd – Full Video

Did you miss out seeing Joe Marcinek at the Mousetrap down in Indy on January 3rd?

If you’re unfamiliar with The Mousetrap in Indy, it is the jamband bar to see shows. Plus they stream the shows live on YouTube (we need this in NWI).

Fresh Hops with special guest Dartanyan Kane will be at The Mousetrap January 25th.

You can tune in live to watch them at The Mousetrap’s YouTube Channel.

Here’s Joe’s video to watch!

Marrakesh Express Rolls into Buddy & Pals in Crown Point

It was a snowy night after a long rain but Buddy and Pal’s in Crown Point was standing room only long before the show even started. The fans were ready for Marrakesh Express.

Marrakesh Express is a tribute to Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. They are well worth the jam thumbs up when they roll into the region. Their vocals will take you back to the times of CSNY.

Greg Ashby (vocals, acoustic guitar, and harmonica), Daryl Grady (vocals and acoustic guitar), and David Varella (vocals and acoustic guitar) front the band while backed by Joe “Joe Kidd” Baranowski (electric and acoustic guitar), Pete Calacci (electric guitar), Rick Hemphill (keyboards and vocals), Mike Flannery (bass guitar) and Glenn Miller (drums). The talent is amazing reminding myself of days listening to WCKG out of Chicago.

Set 1

  • Sea of Madness
  • Wooden Ships
  • Almost Cut my Hair
  • Marrakesh Express
  • Old Man
  • Helplessly Hoping
  • Southern Cross
  • 49 Bye Byes
  • Everybody I Love You
  • Love the One Your With
  • Find the Cost of Freedom
  • You Don’t Have to Cry
  • Long Time Gone
  • Harvest Moon
  • 8 Miles High

Set 2

  • Cinnamon Girl
  • Ohio
  • Immigration Man
  • Guinevere
  • Deja Vu
  • Down By the River
  • Chicago
  • Our House
  • Carry On
  • Judy Blue Eyes


  • Helpless
  • Woodstock

Guests were treated in the second set to Guinevere and Deja Vu which they normally only play in theatre settings.

just Just @ 219 Taproom

Many came early Friday night to get a seat just to hear Justin Golday from Allgood come out and play a solo acoustic set for the evening at the 219 Taproom in Chesterton, IN. He said it had been awhile since he had been out solo, but he kept everyone glued from the start.

Songs for the evening included:

  • Stage Fright
  • Southbound
  • Friend of the Devil
  • Ain’t Wastin’ Time
  • Cripple Creek
  • Dire Wolf -> Jack Straw
  • Space Oddity
  • Can’t Explain
  • Little Wing
  • Nurse -> Black Peter
  • A Little Help -> Feed the Fire
  • Everlong
  • Castles
  • Man Who Sold
  • Naive Medley
  • Instant Karma
  • Cumberland Blues
  • High Time
  • Midnight Moon
  • Rock&Roll
  • Lovely Rita
  • Where’s my Guitar
  • Miss Half Step
  • Can’t Stand Losin’
  • Althea
  • Scarlet Begonias
  • Badge
  • Dangerous Type
  • Sweet Angel
  • Candyman
  • Brown Eyed Woman

If you get a chance, be sure to check out the 219 Taproom. The Philly Cheesesteak that was on the menu that night was delicious. The menu changes, so check with their site. Kid friendly and non-smoking.

Additional blog coverage can be found here:

Feel free to send us your blog links, photos, or video links (to your YouTube) and we’ll add to the stories.

Wednesday Weekend Roundup for January 10-11th

Getting ready for the weekend? Just a quick highlight on the calendar for this weekend where we have a great selection of music in store.

Friday Night:

  • Beer Hippies and Burn’em Brewing are taking over the taps at Matey’s restaurant in Michigan City starting at 7 PM.
  • At the same time “just Just” (Justin Golday from Allgood) will be solo at the 219 Taproom in Chesterton.
  • For the adventurous, Mr. Blotto’s Acoustic Trio is at the Old Shoe 10 Year Anniversary with Family Groove Company which starts at 8 PM at the Chop Shop in Chicago
  • If you’re still in the NWI area at 9 PM check out Gato at Knuckleheads in Michigan City.

Saturday Night:

  • Strings Beyond Description will be making their first appearance at Hickory Creek Brewing Company at 6:30 PM in New Lenox, Illinois
  • Marrakesh Express – a CSN&Y Experience will be at Buddy & Pal’s Place in Crown Point, IN starting at 8 PM. This is a FREE show.

If we missed your booking, please be sure to submit gig information through the contact form prior to Wednesday.

As always, follow the NWI Jam calendar for updates and more information. Location along with links to the event in the description are contained in the calendar you can link to your own Google calendar.

Joe Marcinek Adds Punta Gorda Funk Fest to Florida Run for Valentines Weekend

Will you be my Funky Valentine? – The Punta Gorda Funk Fest is February 14th and 15th in Florida where Joe Marcinek is a featured performer that includes Lettuce, Robert Randolph & the Family Band, Here Come the Mummies, the Main Squeeze, The Nth Power, Funk You, Voodoo Visionary, The HeadTones, Jamar Woods, and Dr. Bacon.

His lineup for this event will include Tony Hall of Dumpstaphunk, Nikki Glaspie of Nth Power, and Jamar Woods of The Fritz.

Special thanks to Rich Woodrick for pointing this one out, I couldn’t find it on Joe’s calendar yet.

Punta Gorda Funk Fest information can be found here:

More information regarding Joe Marcinek dates including tickets can be found through his band website at or his Facebook page at

Chester Brown Announces Browntown 11 Dates

The “best weekend ever” is back and Chester Brown has announced Browntown 11 will be June 12th and 13th again at Rising Sun Campground. Be sure to mark your calendars for this years festival.

Tickets should be available starting early February.

For more information visit or stay tuned to NWI Jam for updates.