This month we’re celebrating LGBTQ+ musicians from Chicago with our PRIDE 2021 playlist.
Mel Flowers curated the majority of our list with genres ranging from indie rock, to bedroom pop to horror-punk. We are thrilled and grateful to all the artists who submitted along with featuring music from friends, some of our current projects and former bandmates.
Mel is the bassist for Americana-Folk trio the Secret Lives and blackened hardcore group, Tides Cult.
|The Stone Wall||Mister E Machine|
|Bright Faced & Beautiful||The Locals|
|I’m Having a Tryst With a Narcissist||Bev Rage and the Drinks|
|Everything Is Everything||Modern Day Rippers|
|Beck||The Weekend Run Club|
|What Happened||Sammy Cannillo|
|Sunday Sure||The God Awful Small Affairs|
|Goodbye Horses II||Blush Scars|
|County Road Tonight||Katie Hibben|
|Who Do I Love||Aunt Kelly|
|Your Girlfriend||Cloud Houses|
|Mother Nature||Emily Franke, Sammy Haig|
|How I Dance||Spectra|
|You Are a Flower||Baby Money and the Down Payments|
|Let’s Drive||Kimi Hayes|
|At What Cost?||The Secret Lives|
|Holliday||The Weekend Run Club|
|Lovely Girl||Aunt Kelly|
PRIDE 2021Curated by Mel Flowers with Erik Oldman
Mister E Machine
MISTER E MACHINE is an Indie Band from Chicago that combines acoustic rock with indie/pop elements to create a layered rock sound. A key element of the sound is its textured vocal harmonies and personal lyrics that delve into the emotional, mental, and spiritual journeys of the GLBT and ally experience.
The Stone Wall is the sophomore album released on June 8, 2019 through Bubbly Creek Records. This 8 track record explores the world of post-marriage equality and digital dating apps from the queer/glam perspective. The title track ‘The Stone Wall’ is an anthem honoring the generation of The Stonewall Riots and their impact on the eventual passing of marriage equality. The album cover features The Bearded Lady, the Chicago icon whose infamous performances at Dugan’s Bistro made her the legend of her day in the late 70’s and early 80’s Chicago queer community.
Catch Manny Petty from Mister E Machine Live:
- One Eleven Wacker – 6/24
- Catalyst – 6/25 Avidor Evanston – 7/25
- Camp Buckwood – 9/10
“Emily Franke is an artist that submitted her music to me when I first started making the playlist. I initially added just the song she sent me (“Mother Nature”), but then Emily signed up to perform at the most recent open mic that I host at an art gallery in Joliet. One of the songs she performed is the song “Normal.” It was just such a well written song that I had to add that one too! I cannot wait to hear more from Emily.” – Mel
“I played in Katie Hibben’s band many years ago. She is an incredibly talented songwriter. A couple songs on her latest album are a reimagining of songs we used to play back in the day. The song I included, “Country Road Tonight,” is my favorite on the album Oliver’s Blessing. The whole album is fantastic, so it was hard to choose just one!” – Mel
“Sammy Cannillo was first introduced to me via a message about a compilation comprised of queer Chicago artists performing covers with all proceeds going to Center on Halsted. Not is Sammy amazing at getting musicians together for a good cause, but she is also a talented musician and songwriter. The track on the playlist, “What Happened,” is a collaboration with her producer and roommate Joseph Marcus. This song is just plain catchy. It had dream pop elements but also has this really intense groove that carries the song along. I recently went down the rabbit hole into her Bandcamp and discovered all kinds of cool things. From original music to Haim or Phoebe Bridgers covers to her own version of the Halloween theme song, there’s something for everyone there.” – Mel
“splits is another band that is relatively new to me, and they became one of those happy discoveries. I want to call this pop punk, but that genre has become somewhat formulaic in the last fews, and labeling splits at that would be a disservice. There’s elements of punk, pop, indie rock, and even a little emo sprinkled throughout their EP “vice versa.” splits is reminiscent of when Cassadee Pope before the country career and The Voice when she was in the band Hey Monday…..but way more modern and even better.” – Mel