A Country’s Colors

Lake Michigan. 4 July 20154 july

Nora Jean Bruso, blues singer with Mississippi roots

Kingston Mines Blues Club. Chicago. July, 2 2015.

Mississippi gave birth to the blues and graciously loaned blues singer Nora Jean Bruso to Chicago for a few decades. Bruso earned and maintains a strong fan following in Chicago. According to her biography, Bruso gets her blues fair and square. Growing up in Greenwood, Miss., her father, Bobby Lee Wallace, was a sharecropper and bluesman and her mother, Ida Lee Wallace, was a gospel singer. “In high school, Nora Jean won the West Tallahatchie High School Talent Show grand prize for singing, and she began to perform in other area schools with small groups. Realizing her opportunities for recognition and recording were limited in Mississippi, Bruso moved to Chicago in 1976 and began her professional singing career.”

lovely jazz woman

Joanna Connor, Chicago Blues

Kingston Mines Blues Club. Chicago. July 2, 2015

One of Chicago’s most popular blues guitarists and vocalists, Joanna Connor came to Chicago by bus from Massachusetts and never went back. In 2014, Connor was named a reader’s choice runner up to blues legend, Buddy Guy. During her decades-long career, Connor has shared the stage with a who’s who list of blues greats. She has a weekly gig at Kingston Mines.

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2015 Stanley Cup Champions

Chicago Blackhawks Stanley Cup Champions. After winning championships in 2010, 2013 and now 2015, the Commissioner called the Chicago Blackhawks a dynasty. Perhaps that’s true, but the Montreal Canadiens define dynasty for all sports. The Canadiens had a few hot streaks. 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959 and 1960. They took a breather for a eight years and then won the Stanley up in 1968, 1969, 1971, 1973 and 1976. Altogether, Montreal boasts 23 Stanley Cup titles. Toronto comes in second with 13 championship and Detroit, third, with 11 Stanley Cup wins. Boston and Chicago are tied with six championships each. There are six legacy teams in the NHL, the Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, and Toronto Maple Leafs. What a great season for the Blackhawks. I believe Chicago hockey fans are the best anywhere. Fiercely loyal. Nice to visitors. They know and respect the game. Go Hawks.DSC04219

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Ulysses S. Grant Memorial, Lincoln Park, Chicago

Ulysses S. Grant Memorial, Lincoln Park, Chicago

Quite a tribute. Huge.

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Newspapers remain in critical condition, the bleeding won’t stop

In better days of the past, advertising took up 60 percent of the space in newspapers. Advertising rates were based on a take it or leave it rate card. Current advertisers negotiate ad rates. Advertising versus editorial content is a fraction of what it used to be. The Chicago Tribune at one time was considered one of the best major city dailies anywhere. Todays front section of the Tribune is 22 pages. Ads make up just six pages or 27 percent of available space. The New York Times continues its reign as one of the most influential newspapers in the world, but lack of ads remains troubling. The Time’s front section of today’s paper weighed in at 26 pages. Only five pages or 19 percent of those pages consisted of ads. Yes, online advertising bolsters revenue for newspapers. However, digital advertising generates only a fraction of the money that ink and paper ads demand(ed). Fewer ads often mean a decent toward mediocrity. Over the past 10 years, newspapers jettisoned their best and best-paid journalists. New reporters tend to be younger, get paid less, but have better technology skills. New reporters lack the experience of journalists who worked a beat for decades. The business model for newspapers continues to morph. A successful business model remains elusive. newspapers

3-D life-sized advertising campaign from the Montana Tourism Office

I’m not sure the campaign will get more tourists to the Treasure State, but it will leave a lasting impression on the thousands of subway “L” commuters that walk into and out of the Chicago Avenue Red Line stop. TheseDSC00042

DSC00043 things are huge.

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