OTL: Episode #533- A look back on 2016 Chicago entertainment, food, and politics

Mike Stephen takes a look back at 2016 and peeks into 2017 with:   Chicago Reader associate editor Brianna Wellen about women in the local comedy scene;   Chicagoist food editor Anthony Todd about some recent restaurant openings and closings; and   Chicago Sun-Times staff reporter Mick Dumke about the local political landscape.   Meanwhile, the OTL crew wishes you a HAPPY NEW YEAR!   This week’s local music is provided by The Flat Five.   OTL host Mike Stephen and his better half Jenny are ready to hit the town on New Year’s Eve 2012! 2016’s festivities include sweatpants, wine, and television.   To subscribe to the OTL podcast, please visit our iTunes page or RSS feed.

OTL: Episode #526- Film crew parking, Funding charter schools, The Secret History of The Imports

Mike Stephen talks with:   Chicago’s 2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins about media production companies paying for lost parking and extending The 606 past the Kennedy and the river;   33rd Ward Working Families spokesman Nick Burt about his organization’s successful referendum against charter schools in the election; and   Plastic Crimewave (aka Steve Krakow) about moody Hyde Park band The Imports for this week’s “The Fall of Punk” edition of The Secret History of Chicago Music.   Meanwhile, let’s take action. Now is the time to get your skin in the game.   This week’s local music is provided by The Claudettes.   OTL host Mike Stephen re-familiarizes himself with the microphone before broadcasting from a seventh floor radio studio in the Tribune Tower.   To subscribe to the OTL podcast, please visit our iTunes page or RSS feed.

OTL: Episode #524- Cook Co. back-taxing local music venues, Press START to Drink, The Secret History of Rude Guest

Mike Stephen talks with:   freelance reporter Lee V. Gaines for an update on Cook County’s ruling on what is “fine art” and their pursuit of back taxes from small music venues;   Chicago Loot Drop chairman Mike Chuck about “Press START To Drink,” their 7th annual holiday fundraiser for University Of Chicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital; and   Plastic Crimewave (aka Steve Krakow) about early ’80s ska band Rude Guest for this week’s “The Fall of Punk” edition of The Secret History of Chicago Music.   Meanwhile, we play a voicemail from #1 OTL fan Mrs. Stephen… who’s always looking out for her son’s safety!   This week’s local music is provided by Gramps The Vamp.   OTL host Mike Stephen has his very own nameplate to display in the WGN Radio Showcase Studio. This weekend it’s next to a Cubs W Flag sign! #AndyHermannReflection #FlyTheW   To subscribe to the OTL podcast, please visit our iTunes page or RSS feed.

OTL: Episode #516- Is Riot Fest a good thing?, More government transparency hurdles, The Secret History of Hamid Drake

Mike Stephen talks with:   Concerned Citizens of Riot Fest in Douglas Park co-founder Sharaya Tindal about her organization’s concerns about the annual music festival in their neighborhood;   Chicago Justice Project executive director Tracy Siska about filing suit against the Chicago Emergency Management and Communications office for more government transparency; and   Plastic Crimewave (aka Steve Krakow) about world-renowned drummer Hamid Drake for this week’s edition of The Secret History of Chicago Music.   Meanwhile, we discuss real estate prices around CTA stops.   This week’s local music is provided by Law of Keanu.   OTL host Mike Stephen wraps up his pre-show vocal exercises in a seventh floor radio studio in the Tribune Tower.   To subscribe to the OTL podcast, please visit our iTunes page or RSS feed.