I've got a whole city to hold down

March 14, 2005

Climate change?

It's mid-March and Chicagoans are still mired in midwinter cold and snow. When it comes to relations between local clubs and the city departments that regulate them, however, Greg Kot says the Ice Age may be over.

"After years of mistrust, fear, fines and music-club shutdowns, punctuated by the 2003 disaster at the now-shuttered E2 nightclub that claimed 21 lives, the City of Chicago and its music scene are for the first time taking tangible steps toward building a mutually beneficial relationship," Kot wrote in yesterday's Trib. "A multifaceted dialogue involving city officials, club owners, record-company and studio owners and music-industry veterans has created the Chicago Music Commission, which aims to raise Chicago's profile internationally, turn its musical variety into a major tourist attraction and bring millions of additional dollars into city coffers and businesses. One city official called it the Chicago cultural equivalent of the Czech Republic's 'velvet revolution,' in which the communist regime quietly gave way to the country's first free elections in 40 years."

Update: The commission's Web site isn't exactly promising. Judging by its calendar of "upcoming" events, it hasn't been updated since, oh, November.