· The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber has commissioned local singer/songwriters Jake Speed and Tracy Walker to record an original duet/love song to the Queen City. The result is Speed's "All Roads Lead To Cincinnati," which revolves around a man and woman who meet at Arnold's Bar and have a discussion about why Cincy rocks, with references to everything from Nick Lachey and Bootsy Collins to the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, Ken Griffey and flying pigs. The song was commissioned as a kind of theme song for the city's efforts to draw "young professionals" to the area. It is being made available for download at CincinnatiChamber.com, iRhine.com and iTunes. And keep an eye on YouTube.com for a video for the song.
· Local septet The Jazz Circle play Saturday at the Fairfield Community Arts Center (411 Wessel Drive, Fairfield).
The 8 p.m. show is a part of Fairfield's Jazz Alive Series (Jazz Alive is a local nonprofit "dedicated to the promotion and advancement of the uniquely American art form of jazz and its practitioners"). The Jazz Circle -- which released its debut album, Joshua, last year -- does re-workings of classic compositions by Jazz greats like Miles Davis and Charles Mingus. Besides some stellar playing, what sets them apart is singer Steve Coghill, who adds vocals and original lyrics to those old classics from the '60s Jazz era. The group also contains some of the best players on the local Jazz scene -- Bill Cunliffe (piano), Mike Wade (trumpet), Mike Sharfe (bass), Brent Gallaher (tenor sax), Bill Gemmer (trombone), Steve Hoskins (alto sax), Dan Dorff (drums) and Phil Willis (guitar). Tickets for the show are $12 and available at fairfield-city.org or by calling 513-867-5348. (thejazzcircle.com)
· Local Folk/Rock band Second Sister is reuniting for a few appearances this week. The band formed in 1998 and released their debut album, A Thousand Lives, but broke up just a couple of years later. Guitarist Scott "Snake" Miller is in town from New Hampshire, where he moved in 2005, to play the reunion gigs. Most of the other band members have kept active in Greater Cincinnati's music scene -- singer Kelly Thomas formed the music/charity organization, Rivertown Music Club, and bassist Chris Perrault plays with her in Kelly Thomas and the Fabulous Pickups. Singer/songwriter Laurie Lehrter Burnham currently teaches art at Northern Kentucky University. Drummer Glenn Kukla and guitarist Jeff Bolin are sitting in for the reunion run, which starts Friday at the Poison Room. Tupelo Honey, Pike 27, Sweet Ray Laurel and Thomas' and her Pickups are also on the bill. Friday at 1 p.m., the group performs on WNKU (listen online at wnku.org). Sunday, the band hits the Blue Note for a show that also features The Libertines US, Bob Cushing, Robin Lacy and DeZydeco, Strange, Stash, Pete Dressman and S.U.N., Kinsey Rose, Kristen Key and others. (myspace.com/secondsisterreunion)
· Acoustic duo The Great Depression is releasing their self-titled debut long-player this Saturday at Covington's Mad Hatter. Featuring Jeremy Pinnell of The Light Wires, the twosome weave soaring harmonies and evocative, gut-churning songwriting. The band is joined by Angels of Meth and Squall Line for the 8 p.m. show. (myspace.com/timandjeremy)
· Everyone would like to come back and see how their funeral goes. Local group The Terrors are going to experience that sensation Saturday as they host their own funeral at The Mad Frog. The progressive Pop/Rock group has called it quits because bassist Shane Wingert recently moved to Hawaii. The band's Luke Pace and Nick Mitchell have formed a new band, Kumasi (myspace.com/onyxsalt), and they're currently working on a CD. Saturday's funeral also features Michael McIntire and the Marmalade Brigade and Dayton's My Goodness Gracious. (myspace.com/theterrors)
CONTACT MIKE BREEN: mbreen(at)citybeat.com