Video Premiere: My Kind Of Town from Special Consensus

Compass Records has today released a new music video from Special Consensus, taken from their current, Chicago-themed album, Chicago Barn Dance. All the songs contained therein are about, or have some connection to, the hometown of founder and bandleader, Greg Cahill, who has helmed the group this past 45 years.

The video celebrates perhaps the most Chicago song ever, My Kind Of Town, famously recorded in the ’60s by Frank Sinatra, first in the 1964 film, Robin and the 7 Hoods, and then several other times throughout his career. The version that has most strongly stuck in the popular consciousness is the one he cut a year after the film was released, a big band with strings score that he continued to perform until he cut back on singing live in the early 1980s.

For Special C, producer Alison Brown – who also runs Compass Records – put together a terrific arrangement of the song as a banjo instrumental largely based on the Sinatra classic with double banjos and twin fiddles, which works incredibly well as a bluegrass number. They’ve sped it up a bit, and dropped the verse that opened Frank’s take, but largely follow the chart from the original, including the key changes.

The video features the band, with guests Mike Barnett and Patrick McAvinue on fiddles, and Brown on second banjo, set against iconic shots of Chicago, several of which are mentioned in the missing lyrics. Cahill appeared in the shots for real, with the others superimposed from Nashville through some clever green screen work. All together, it captures the joy that’s embedded in this Van Heusen and Cahn standard, and the liveliness that Special C brings to the table.


Rick Faris in on guitar, Nate Burie on mandolin, and Dan Eubanks on bass.

Well done all!

Chicago Barn Dance is available wherever you stream or download music online, and on CD directly from the band or the label.

Share this:

About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.