April 1994: The Offspring releases Smash. The album features a cover of “Killboy Powerhead” by Champaign trio The Didjits, whose frontman Rick Sims gets rich from royalties.
February 2006: Cracker releases Greatest Hits Redux. The album features a cover of “Something You Ain’t Got” by Huntington-then-Champaign quintet American Minor.
“Something You Ain’t Got” is an old, unreleased American Minor song, although WPGU 107.1 FM sometimes airs an acoustic version. Cracker recorded “Something You Ain’t Got” with former Whiskeytown fiddler Caitlin Cary; it is the single off Greatest Hits Redux, out Feb. 21 on Cooking Vinyl. Cracker is famous for the hits “Teen Angst (What the World Needs Now),” “Low,” and “Get Off This.” March 24, American Minor returns to Champaign to play at Cowboy Monkey with The Blue Van (Copenhagen) and The Thieves (Oxford).
Episode #214 of Grey’s Anatomy, which aired Feb. 19, featured music from Headlights. In Europe, Mi Amante Records will release The Enemies EP by Headlights on white vinyl, with the bonus track “Pity City.” Its street date for Germany, Switzerland, and Austria is April 7, but it will become available online several weeks sooner. Headlights seeks an artist for its album cover, due August.
Tomorrow, Headlights keyboardist-vocalist Erin Fein gives a rare solo performance at The Iron Post alongside Eleanors guitarist-vocalist Adriel Harris and Staci Anderson. Show time is 9 p.m., and cover is $5. Another rare performance this weekend is the official farewell of Santanu Rahman, former Triple Whip frontman. Rahman is here from Austin to visit his family, record once more for Green St. Records, and play Saturday at Cowboy Monkey with The Vivian Girls (ex-The Hissy Fits) and Mit’n. Show time is 10 p.m., and cover is $5.
With advance notice of only one day, Cameo Turret made its Feb. 16 show a release show for its EP Withdraw. Cameo Turret describes Withdraw as “eight songs of gloomy goodness,” recorded and mixed at Toilet Tunes Studios in Champaign. Any songs available before have been remixed. Cameo Turret consists of guitarist-vocalists Kip and Rachel Braunstadter and drummer Mike Schmitt, also of Green Light Go/The Old Faith. Meanwhile, Robert Martz-Rachel Braunstadter side project Camouflage has a new name: King-like Orphans.
Feb. 18, the coldest night of the year, Joni Laurence performed 11 unreleased songs and five others to a full house at Unitarian Universalist Church in Urbana. The intent is to release 12 of the songs on her fourth album, due June. There were no false starts for the first seven songs, and Laurence entertained with stories between songs. “It’s all of you that keep my confidence high,” she thanked the crowd as she introduced the last unreleased song, “My Lost Confidence.” Matt Stewart, Jeff Magby, Josh Walden, and Ryan Groff made up her backing band; Jeff Janczewski provided live sound production, and Mark Rubel and Carl Lund of Pogo Studio provided recording sound production. Ricola donated a whole case of cough drops so no one would ruin the recording. The concert closed with two Laurence-Groff duets and two Laurence solos by request. While believed to be her last local performance before her move to Portland in May, Laurence has since scheduled two more: March 9 at Castle Theatre in Bloomington, and May 2 at the Biennial Conference for Women at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts in Urbana.
Todd J. Hunter hosts WEFT Sessions and Champaign Local 901, two hours of local music every Monday at 10 p.m. on WEFT 90.1 FM. Send news to firstname.lastname@example.org. Support your scene to preserve your scene.