Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

Django Django

Posted: March 21, 2013 in Lifestyle, Music, Personal, Uncategorized

I think everyone knows that I’m super into music. If I wasn’t a chef, I think I would have been a roadie or bass player or maybe just a groupie somewhere.

So when my friend Graham, who is also into the music scene asked me to check out a new band Django Django with him, I jumped at the chance.

They were playing at one of my favorite places to see a show in Chicago- The Metro and thanks to Graham… we had seats on the balcony next to the stage

They took the stage and after the first song I was hooked.  The band describes their music as; ” Neo-psychedelic, Electronic and Art Rock”-  and in Poli speak- I’d say it’s full of awesome funky dance beats. They sound very similar to Beta Band and Graham said the drummer’s brother founded Beta Band. So looks like he took some tips from his older sibling.

Default, Hail Bop and Waveforms were my favorite songs.  The band all plays different instruments and I think that lends to the unique sound.

Keep your eye in these guys… I think they will be huge really soon. I’m already applying to be a groupie.


I Want My LCD

Posted: October 30, 2012 in Lifestyle, Music, Personal

Originally posted in July 2012

As I get older, my passions in life have become fewer and stronger. Those who know me are aware that music is right up there with food and cooking. I’ve traveled countless miles to see shows and getting lost in the music is my way of decompressing.  One of the great regrets I have is not going to LCD Soundsystem’s final show at MSG.

Wednesday night my brother Matthew and I went to the next best thing- their documentary “Shut Up and Play The Hits”.  The fact that James Murphy decided to just pull the plug on the band is something I’ve never really understood when the music is so awesome. I dare you to turn on an LCD song and not start dancing or tapping your foot, or sing along to the awesome beats with deep lyrics. They’re such a diverse band- a mix of; hard to categorize them. They’re a little dance, punk, rock, blues and soul.

I was looking forward to James explaining his decision, but I wasn’t prepared for the way the film made me feel. It was interesting to me to feel the range of emotions I experienced throughout the show. The music had such energy, and feeling to it… then it would cut to an interview with James Murphy. It was the first in depth interview he had done since the band broke up and thru the interviewers questions, it showed him after the show picking up the pieces and starting a new life a life without LCD. It was both sad and powerful.

I identified with the moment when James questioned his decision of quitting too soon. That moment you doubt yourself, I’ve been there. Another point that struck home to me was when James talked about making music for the people who wanted to hear it, and enjoyed it. He talked about a time when he was playing in a punk band at bars and clubs and everyone would just stand there rather than dance like he prefers. This made me think of my life and how sometimes I also feel like I’m in that same “punk band” cooking for people who are not enjoying. I would rather cook at dance clubs with the party people.

The movie took the audience through the highs and lows. The highs- were during the final show at MSG when the band was playing their hearts out and laughing. The lows were the scenes of James tying up the loose ends to end the band.  The emotional high/low moment took place with James in the band’s storage space the day after the final show. He was looking at old pics of the band and all the equipment.  He was alone, it was queit and he started to break down in tears.  It was also a sad scene for all of us knowing it was the end of an era, the LCD era.

Originally posted in March 2012


My brother Matthew and I have bonded for years over our love of music.
So for his birthday Friday- a group of us went to The Mid to hear
James Murphy’s dj set. Our crew was made up of Matthew’s buddies and a
few of the waitstaff from Tavernita; Colby, Erin, Rachel, Dustin and
Linzi- just the right amount for a perfect dance party.

If you’re not familiar with James- you may know him as one of the
front men of LCD Soundsystem. We had a table with an amazing vantage
point of the stage and didn’t stop dancing from the time he went on at

The hilite was his remix of Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon”…the entire
place went insane when he played it!

It was the most fun I have had in a long time. Just listening to great
music and being able to unwind.

I think Matthew said it the best “great times with greater people!

Originally posted in March 2011

Let me state on the record- I love to go dancing.


There’s few things better than finishing a great service and celebrating with a few cold beers and friends.


But- if service didn’t go well…if even one guest is unhappy with their food- the last place you’ll find me is in a club.


Because to me- food always comes first.


Normally I let my work speak for it’s self- but today’s Time Out Chicago blog was so off-point, that I can’t let it rest.


It read:


The move Ryan Poli swaps Perennial for Tavernita, opening this summer

Analysis Poli’s departure for a Latin/Mediterranean small-plates/nightlife spot doesn’t gel with our impression of the chef, who has previously stuck with finer dining. But dude is definitely obsessed with Spanish food. And clubs. He likes clubs.

Verdict We don’t get it.

Here’s what MY verdict is: Tavernita will be a chef-driven concept where the food and diner’s experience comes first.


A wise man once said: “Why turn away money?” That same man (Rich Melman) is also one of the most successful restaurateurs in the nation…and guess what? His son’s (R.J. and Jerrod) own a successful club (Hub/Sub51) .


Why not invite Tavernita’s guests to stay for post dinner cocktails, or invite another late night set to drink and dine on small bites?


Makes sense to us.


And with that I’ll let my food continue this discussion when Taverinta opens it’s doors.