April 6, 2015


In Chicago, spring isn’t just a sign of new beginnings. Spring is also a well-deserved prize for surviving another winter! After months of puffy black jackets and very flat hat hair, now we are all skipping through our days wearing light layers with our manes flying free! We at Sine Qua Non know this is the time to shed off our coats, winter pounds and old hairstyles.

To congratulate ourselves, we look for music from the people who understand what it takes to live in our trying city: homegrown Chicago bands. Luckily, JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound released their new single “You Can’t Break Me” just in time for our celebrations.


“You Can’t Break Me” is the song playing in your mind the first time you open your door and enter 50 degrees of pure sunshine. The single is a celebration of surviving Chicago’s latest onslaught of winter horror. JC Brooks sings the mocking hook, “you can’t break me” over and over in true victory lap style. Lyrically, the single is not afraid to remind us of the darkness of winter. Verses like “dig a shallow grave in the heavy snow, that’s the way you spell Chicago” testify to the violence the city is no stranger to but always manages to withstand. The single bounces back with a refrain of “Aint too cold in the city I love” to rally your souls, daring the winds of Lake Michigan to knock you down.

JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound are signed with Blood Shot Records, a Chicago-based record company. The band’s origins are simple, guitarist Billy Bungerot put out a Craigslist ad looking for like musicians that shared his vision of creating politically driven music with heavy soul influences. JC Brooks answered the ad after finishing rehearsals for Ragtime at Porchlight Theatre. They have been adding musicians and making some very sexy music since 2007.  They’ll be playing in Blood Shot Records Showcase at SXSW at the end of March.

Check out their video for “Rouse Yourself” starring Aubrey Plaza and Chicago native Jake Johnson. The video was filmed both in Chicago and LA!

Vivian Ellis is a Salon Coordinator by day and stalker of music by night. When not performing herself, she works at the historical iO theatre. Providing lights and sound for many a comedy shows.


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