02.15.09

Branson Comes to Wrigley: Sir Elton and the Pianoman to Play the Friendly Confines

Posted in Baseball, music at 12:42 pm by

[Probably not on Sam Zell's iPod, (l-r) Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon at LA's MOCA 02/14/09 - a Valentine of noise]

When CSTB’s owner sent me an e-mail with the header “oh fuck,” I thought Kerry Wood was coming back to Chicago.  Almost as bad, Gerard instead had stumbled upon a Big League Stew story I hoped to keep quiet around here: the booking of Elton John and Billy Joel’s Face 2 Face concert on the field at Wrigley.

http://www.whizzo.ca/elton/images/19751025.jpg

[A taste of what Wrigleyville can expect unless Mr. Zell is paid.]

How broke is Tribco?  So broke they’re taking in boarders, even “show folk.”  Last spring, the Tribune Co made clear to neighbors with rooftop views of Wrigley that Mr. Zell expects his cut of all rooftop tickets sold.  By booking Face 2 Face, apparently Sam Zell is letting his neighbors know in no uncertain terms things can get very unpleasant unless he gets paid.  In fact, Zell even muscled out any neighborhood opposition to it by scheduling the show before asking his neighbors about their taste in music.

I don’t know what it is about Wrigley, but Cub fans have been subjected to performances of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” by Jim Belushi, Eddie Vedder, Billy Corgan, Ozzy, and Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, who puts aside the Revolution to sing for the Machine itself, the Recublican Tribune Corporation.  Yes, apperances by Mel Gibson, Bea Arthur, and Jackie Mason put that in perspective.  But Wrigley has remained relatively unsolied by the rock world in terms of concerts in its storyless history, mostly because the good citizens of Wrigleyville won’t have it.  To date, they have been proven correct in their judgment, with concerts by Jimmy Buffet and a Police reunion to make their point.  Sometimes being a Cub fan from a distance has its advantages.

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