Creating filtered version of banner image.


SATURDAY SHOW, The Small World of Attorneys and Musicians, Patronage



Phil Circle and Hassan El-Tayyab have a couple things in common that brought them together for this show. It was teaching that caused their paths to cross, as they contract with the same store once a week. Upon closer inspection, however, you see the bigger thing; They are both pursuing their careers on their own terms and enjoying the pure love of the music.

Stylistically, they occasionally may run across common ground, but for the most part, this show will promise the audience a wonderfully wide spectrum of musical styles while bringing plenty of very accessible songwriting to the stage in this fine venue.

Hassan El-Tayyab was honored as a finalist in the 2017 Telluride Troubadour Song Competition, for best vocal performance in the 2013 Berkeley Old Time Music Competition, as a finalist in the 2011 International songwriting competition, and was recognized in the 2013 and 2011 Rocky Mountain Folk Festival Songwriter Competition. Smart songwriting, catchy lyrics, and strong musicianship have earned Hassan a reputation as a musician that can intrigue listeners from a wide variety of musical tastes and backgrounds. Keeping in line with the ancient troubadour tradition, his music draws from the spirit of travel and authentic life experience.

Phil Circle has always preferred to pursue his career on his terms, mostly by disregarding the much sought-after “record label” in favor of his own, booking more intimate venues that appreciate the musician and his work, and receiving radio play on stations all over the country and world that look for independent talent.

Phil is by no means your ordinary songster picking away quietly on his acoustic guitar. He manages to blend elements of rock, jazz, blues, folk, and even classical, to seamlessly create a style truly his own. Add to this his often flawless and always energetic live performance, and he lands far away from what most people think of as "Singer/Songwriter."

Phil's debut release in the 90s was hailed by In The Mix as "just what the doctor ordered" and they pointed out that his music "defies rock, jazz and blues" saying his songs were "from the master class." 20 years later, Illinois Entertainer referred to his latest full band effort as proof that Phil is "one of our town's most unique voices."

All ages may attend this show.

The food is outstanding.

The cover is $12 and reservations are highly recommended.


I have a student named Eric Matlin. He's taking ukulele as a past time and in hopes of learning a list of songs he has in the back of his book, "Not Dead Yet, So Plan Your Estate." Eric's an estate attorney and author. "That's nice," you say, "clever book title, too." But that's just the beginning.

At his first lesson, we were getting to know each other, as I do with every new student. It helps me to get a sense of the person I'm dealing with, what their goals are, where they may have an advantage or disadvantage, etc. Upon learning that my wife is an actor, Eric mentioned that his sister is an actor, as well. I'd noticed his last name and wondered. I'll leave it at that. Please don't go bothering him for autographs... except from him in his book. I've got one. It's cool. He created a graphic novel and combined it with basic text to give you two options for how to read the book. It's so damn clever nobody may catch on for another decade, as can happen with brilliant ideas. Here's hoping otherwise.

So, now the small world stuff kicks in. Eric is left-handed. He's an estate attorney. After his initial lesson, I was out at Flatts & Sharpe Music in Norwood Park. I teach there every Tuesday. I was talking to one of my students. He's also left-handed. He's also an estate attorney. I mentioned Eric to him in passing. He laughed and told me to look at who wrote the forward for Eric's book. He had. So, I have two southpaw attorneys as students and they know each other and have worked together. Sometime later, as Eric was making his way through my book (we traded copies of each others work), he sent me a message about scheduling his next lesson. At the end of the email, he said, "Oh, by the way, I know Barrett Tasky. His dad and I are good friends." Barrett is in my book. He's a local musician who's played with me many times. That happened again with another reader. Dave Arcari, an alt blues player from Scotland was touching base about our Chicago show in October. He'd been reading my book, too. He mentioned he knew Donna Frost, who's also in one of the stories. Small world, huh? Oh, Eric is also my brother's name. He's not left-handed and doesn't practice law, but our biological father was an attorney.

Here's a recent feature from North Shore about Eric Matlin...

Fun stuff! He's as amusing as they make him out to be. He's also a patron of my work, for which I'm appreciative. In case you're interested...


I'm looking for patrons to join in providing scholarships and internships.

I have always offered discounted lessons when students have run into financial difficulty. After the 2008 crash, several of my students paid lower rates. Now, through patronage, I would like to offer on-going scholarships for students who qualify.

I have also had interns from Columbia College Chicago work for me in the past. They worked for free, getting only some school credit. Now, through patronage, I'd like to provide paid internships.

What's patronage? This is an age old approach to funding in the arts. You pledge any monthly amount from $1 to $500. You will not only have the satisfaction of providing a creative artist the means to do more, you'll actually be rewarded for your involvement. You can cancel at anytime.

We're just getting started on this, but there's a whole lot already under way as always. To learn more details and see recent posts related to what I'm doing, what you get, how it helps, etc...



Please feel free to share and forward this message to anyone you like.



Be the first to respond!

Post a comment