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What local artists are listening to. This week: Waylon Thornton of Bob on Blonde

click to enlarge PHOTO BY JIM LEATHERMAN
  • Photo by Jim Leatherman

"Right around this time of year, when the weather changes, something in my brain says, 'You haven't listened to 5ive Style in quite a while.' So, I will get on a 5ive Style kick for a couple of weeks. I will go back and forth between their self-titled debut album and their second album, Miniature Portraits. I love Billy Dolan's creativity and guitar work on these albums, and John Herndon's drumming always puts a smile on my face. Plus, after a long night at the bar, it's nice to sit back and relax to some good ol' '90s instrumental/indie tunes."

If you're unfamiliar with 5ive Style, you might recognize guitarist Billy Dolan from The Fire Theft or drummer John Herndon from Tortoise. Their two albums were released on Sub Pop in 1995 and 1999, with the lag in releases primarily owing to the activity of each member in other projects during a thriving time for Chicago's music scene. The band called upon many of the elite musicians of the Chicago music community during the late '90s, and the result was funk fusion carried demonstrably well on the shoulders of skilled musicians, which, as Thornton says, can't help but be addictive.

Thornton plays drums in the two-man slop rock band Bob on Blonde, who play next at Stardust Video and Coffee on Sunday, Dec. 16, for the Grandma Party Bazaar. Admission is free. Listen to them now at

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