Gary Jackson: Fire When Ready Pottery
A Chicago potter’s somewhat slanted view of clay & play
Categories: family, music, Taylor

Last night was a fun night with my sister Jen, brother-in-law Scott and niece Taylor.
It was Taylor’s VERY FIRST CONCERT!!! So exciting for her… and fun for me to see!
The concert was at the Gennessee Theater in Waukegan. Beautiful little theater… not so good with the kerning on their marquee!!!

For those who may not know of them, Straight No Chaser is a fun accapella group singing a wide range of songs. Many of which I had to try REALLY hard not to sing outloud with. Tried… not always successful…

Click here for the song that made them “famous”… “The Twelve Days Of Christmas.”
Click here for their hysterical “Broadway Medley.”
Click here for their version of “It’s All About The Bass.”
Click here for their “Lady Gaga Medley.”
Click here for their version of “Sittin’ On The Dock & Proud Mary.”

Here’s a shot of the audience the group took from onstage. Their idea was that they would post it on their Facebook page, and then you “Tag” yourself on your page to spread the word… and with that, this is their marketing plan!!! I love that they’re using Social Media as their plan. A grassroots plan… spread the word. They were also the very first concert that I’ve had tell the audience at the very beginning that they WANTED you to take pictures & videos during the show!!! More videos.. more photos… more “free marketing” for them!!!

And if you look close, there we are… third from the left, second from the back, behind the tall guy, next to the big woman singing with her hands up, beside the lady in red, around the corner from the family of four… behind a COUPLE THOUSAND other concert goers!!! So?… do you see us?!!! Ha.

Categories: kiln firing, music

I’m headed over to the studio soon to see if my second kiln firing attempt was successful or not. While I’m gone, here’s a little video clue of the new Ghouls inside the kiln… and no, she’s NOT my sister!

Click HERE for the video clue.

Click HERE for the video clue.


Categories: friends, music

Tonight we spent the night singing our ABBA favorites from The Eighties.
Yes, those of us old enough to remember know all of the words to all of the ABBA songs. Sure, the original members of ABBA are no longer together, but luckily we have a great cover band “Arrival From Sweden” to fill the void. We had a great night, albeit unusually chilly, at the Ravinia Festival in Highland Park. A fun night with Pam & Susan snacking, chatting, singing & dancing under the stars. Oh… Mamma Mia… here we go again…

Part of the fun of Ravinia is the “fun in the park” & picnic time prior to the show. And what better way to makeour time a little “brighter” with some special blinking LED bling I brought with for the girls! Pam & Susan never looked so sparkly!!!

Categories: Chicago, music, theater

Last night I went to see “Motown: The Musical.”
It was like spending the night at the best concert ever with all of the musical groups we loved in our childhood. The Supremes. The Four Tops. The Temptations. Diana Ross. Gladys Knight. Jackson Five. Stevie Wonder. Smokey Robinson. Marvin Gaye. Martha Reeves. All of ‘em on one stage!!! Yes, I’m showing my age… and I don’t care.

I may not have known the whole Motown / Berry Gordy story…
but I did know EVERY word. And I was NOT afraid to sing along!!!

Click here for the trailer video for “Motown : The Musical.”

And here’s another fun video… showing Motown Opening Night when the actors were performing in front of the original stars themselves!!! Click here.

Oh yeah… and the theater itself was pretty darn impressive too!!!

Although it was a little bit over the top. In a weird way, it kinda made me feel like I was in Las Vegas?! Not that that’s a bad thing… I LOVE VEGAS!!!

Categories: music, special events

The concerts are over. The guests have packed up. And we’ve begun the arduous task of taking everything down and packing the semi-trucks to head home. It’s been a great project to be a part of once again. This was my third Firefly… and hoping for many more to come. It’s a lot of hard work, but also a lot of fun.

Good news… they’ve already announced Firefly Music Festival 2015!!!
And pre-sale tickets go on sale tomorrow!

Categories: music, special events

Sure, it may look like I’ve just been “vacationing” in Dover… playing on my bike, riding to the Bay, enjoying a few sunrises here & there. But in reality, we’ve been working long hours every day setting up the Firefly Music Festival. And tonight was the first of the headliner acts on the Main Stage. Here’s a quick shot of the Foo Fighters performing with just a “few” concert-goers enjoying the show!

Categories: music, special events

Love the morning sunrise glow… coming soon to a Dover Speedway near you. We’ve got about three more days to get everything ready!

Categories: music, theater

At the end of the day you’re another day older.
And that’s all you can say for the life of the poor. It’s a struggle. It’s a war.
And there’s nothing that anyone’s getting.
One more day standing about. What is it for? One day less to be living.

Okay, so maybe it’s not the most upbeat of shows… but it is my all-time favorite!!!
Tonight we enjoyed a wonderful performance of “Les Miserables” at the Drury Lane Theater in Oakbrook. This production was incredible, but then again, I’ve never seen a bad version of the show. Is it even possible?! The story is incredible, the songs are moving, the characters memorable. I’ve seen it live on stage FAR too many times… and fall in love with it again & again every single time. And let’s not even mention the DVD versions of the Anniversary Performances?… or the CD soundtracks!!!

Categories: music, special events, Taylor

Who can resist an adorable 8-year old singing Les Miserables at the school talent show?
Not me.

So when Taylor called to invite me I knew that I had to make the drive out to the ‘burbs tonight to see her big stage debut. She auditioned & decided to sing “Castle On A Cloud” from my favorite musical. And although she had a few technical “issues” along the way, I think she had a wonderful performance! And could she be any cuter??? Really?

Click here to see the video footage from her big debut!


Categories: music, special events

Paul & Ringo. And lots of other artists celebrating 50 years!!!

And how adorable was Anna Kendrick singing along to “Yellow Submarine” and grabbing her boyfriend like “Hey, I can’t believe we’re seeing The Beatles live!” Only to be out-done in the cuteness category by Dave Grohl’s adorable little girl singing along as well.

Thank You CBS for celebrating the past 50 Years of Beatles history & music.
It was fifty years to the day & time that they first debuted on “The Ed Sullivan Show.”
We may be missing two of The Beatles… but their music still sounds incredible!!!

And always will.