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What's up with Wilco: Summer 2014

Wilco front man Jeff Tweedy announced a new tour and an upcoming solo album today.
Wilco front man Jeff Tweedy announced a new tour and an upcoming solo album today.
Associated Press

Although summer doesn't officially start for over a month from now, we've got a pretty good idea what's in store for the members of the Chicago band Wilco this coming season.

As widely reported on these here internets today, Wilco front man Jeff Tweedy has announced a tour this summer unlike his previous solo outings in that he will be accompanied by a band.

The band will be made up of guitarist Jim Elkington, bassist Darin Gray, keyboard player Liam Cunningham, and Tweedy's 18-year son Spencer on drums. Tour dates are listed below. Ticket info at Wilco's official site, wilcoworld.net.

Tweedy also announced that he will soon release his first solo album, but no title or date of release was given.

This doesn't mean that Wilco has broken up, mind you - they will perform at the Lockn' Festival in Arrington, Virginia in early September. I'm also sure that they will have something special planned after that as the 20th anniversary of their first show - at Cicero's in St. Louis (under the name Black Shampoo) - will be on November 17th, 2014.

Meanwhile, Wilco members John Stirratt and Pat Sansone's side-project-that's-more-than-a-side-project band The Autumn Defense will be touring this summer promoting their new disc, Fifth, mostly on the East Coast including stops at NPR Music's Mountain Stage in Charleston, WV and the Taste of Chicago festival that Tweedy and his band are also performing at (on different days). Tour dates for The Autumn Defense are below, following Tweedy's. See: autumndefense.tumblr.com.

Tomorrow, May 20th, Wilco pianist/keyboardist Mikael Jorgensen's 2009 instrumental album The Cheetah, a collaboration with Chris Girard and Greg O'Keefe, will be re-issued. The album, recorded at SOMA Electronic Music Studios in Chicago between 2001 and 2003, has been remastered by Allen Farmelo, head of Butterscotch Records. Check Jorgensen's official website for more information.

On the heels of the release of the Nels Cline Singers album Macroscope, Wilco guitarist Nels Cline will also be touring this summer with jazz guitarist/composer Julian Lage. The tour dates, which are mostly Canadian venues, are listed at the bottom of the page. Visit Cline's site for more info.

Wilco drummer Glenn Kotche has a few gigs coming up too. Kotche plays as part of an all-drummer version of Fred Lonberg-Holm's Lighbox Orchestra at The Hideout in Chicago on Wednesday, May 21st, and at Celebrate Brooklyn! at Prospect Park, in Brooklyn, NY on July 5th. Visit glennkotche.com.

Finally, it should be noted that today is the 10th anniversary of Cline and Sansone first live performance with Wilco. Their debut was at Otto's in Dekalb, Illinois on May 19th, 2004, which was the band's first appearance since Tweedy's stint in rehab for an addiction to painkillers earlier that year. Halfway through the concert, Tweedy introduced the audience to Wilco's new recruits -“I’m going to take this opportunity to welcome our two new members: Nels Cline, Pat Sansone” - resulting in huge applause. Wilco's line-up has been the same since that great gig, a field recording of which is findable online.

Jeff Tweedy Tour Dates:

6/5 Masonic Temple Detroit, MI
6/6 Three Rivers Arts Festival Pittsburgh, PA
6/7 Mountain Jam Hunter Mtn, NY
6/9 Meyerhoff Symphony Hall Baltimore, MD
6/10 Lincoln Theatre Washington, D.C.
6/11 The Brown Theatre on Broadway Louisville, KY
6/16 The Pabst Theater Milwaukee, WI
6/17 Missouri Theatre Columbia, MO
6/18 Cain’s Ballroom Tulsa, OK
6/21 Texas Union Ballroom Austin, TX
6/22 Majestic Theatre Dallas, TX
6/24 Ryman Auditorium Nashville, TN
7/4 Ottawa Bluesfest Ottawa, ON
7/6 Toronto Urban Roots Fest Toronto, ON
7/12 Taste Of Chicago Chicago, IL
7/27 Newport Folk Festival Newport, RI

The Autumn Defense Tour Dates:

6/5 Club Helsinki, Hudson, NY
6/6 Edmond Town Hall, Newtown, CT
6/7 Rams Head Live, Annapolis, MD
6/8 NPR Music’s Mountain Stage, Culture Center Theater, Charleston, WV
6/20 Two Brothers Summer Festival, Aurora, IL
7/9 Taste of Chicago (Grant Park), Chicago, IL
8/7 Mile of Music Festival, Appleton, WI

Nels Cline w/Julian Lage Tour Dates:

6/23 The Little, Rochester, NY
6/24 Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto, ON
6/25 NAC 4th Stage, Ottawa, ON
6/26 Ironworks, Vancouver, BC
6/27 Habour Towers Hotel, Victoria, BC
6/28 The Bassment, Saskatoon, SK
7/1 Dakota Jazz Club and Restaurant, Minneapolis, MN

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