Formed in 1967 in the Music Department of DePaul University, as cover band, the Big Thing. comprising (1) saxophone, (1) trombone, (1) trumpet, (1) guitar, (1) keyboard, (1) drum kit, and (1) bass.
Self-titled debut released under the moniker Chicago Transit Authority. The 171 weeks the album spent on Billboard charts is exactly 19 more than the real Chicago Transit Authority's number of bus routes (152).
Band left Chicago in summer of '68, citing general fascist militarism surrounding Mayor Daley's crackdown on protests during the Democratic National Convention, including Jeeps wrapped in barbed-wire running amok through Grant Park. Debut album carries chants from the DNC as middle-finger reminder to Chicago (the city) of why they left.
Heart of Chicago 1967-1997 and 1967-1998 were the band's fourth and fifth Greatest Hits compilations, respectively (both utterly superfluous and blatant money grabs), which is a striking though probably unintentional parallel to the actual heart of Chicago (the city). Called the Loop, it's the historical center of the city and is the second-largest business district in America, after midtown Manhattan. The first of these two comps, though, charted a No. 1 adult contemporary hit, as if anyone needed proof of the band's demographic.
Chicago at Northern Quest Casino on Sunday, Aug. 27, at 7 pm. The show is sold out.