1. The outdoors festival season is upon us. Will the Blues, Brews & BBQ Festival happen again this year?
Yes, June 27-28 in downtown Champaign. Most of the schedule is set in stone except for the children/family stage, festival director Mike Galloway said.
The lineup will feature national and local acts, with a little zydeco flavor this year with lead acts Rosie Ledet, and Buckwheat Zydeco.
Other acts: Johnnie Mae, Holle Thee Maxwell, Curtis Salgado, Cody & The Gateway Drugs, Nikki Hill, Albert Cummings, The Surreal Deal, Maurice John Vaughn and Eddie Shaw.
Admission is free; donations will be taken at the gate. The suggested donation is $5.
2. What is this new Illiac Spring Festival happening on May 10 all about?
At first, I thought it might be a festival to celebrate the "Illiac Suite," considered the first piece of music composed by an electronic computer, at the University of Illinois.
Actually, Seth Fein's Nicodemus Agency and The Canopy Club are organizing the new outdoor concert event (no computer music, Fein said) in Urbana to help boost the city's efforts to redevelop its downtown.
"In this first year, we're going to keep things really simple and most importantly, FREE to the public," he told me. "One stage of great live music, refreshments served all day long and great food trucks and promotions at nearby restaurants as well.
For more, visit theilliac.com.
3. How will the HBO hit series, "True Detective," continue?
Reportedly with new characters, a new storyline and a a new locale, and without first-season stars Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson.
"Like 'American Horror Story' and basically unlike every other series on TV, 'True Detective' was conceived as an anthology show, each season telling a discrete story with a different locale and group of characters," Jonathan Ringen wrote for the March 13 issue of Rolling Stone, in which he profiled show creator Nic Pizzolatto.
Pizzolatto is now working on the second season; he told Ringen he has three unique characters and none is like Rustin Cohle, played by McConaughey, or Martin Hart, played by Harrelson. The two were tracking a serial killer along the swampy coast of Louisiana; the first season ended March 9.
Interesting fact: Before moving to Hollywood, Pizzolatto, 38, taught literature and creative writing in our neck of the woods, at DePauw University in Greencastle, Ind.
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