Here's a little something I came up with off of the top of my head, It's kind of long so bear with me.
* Dives w/ Live Music *
http://themutinychicago.com/ - Big sign painted on their window "Bands Wanted" so there's always some kind of band playing here. Sometimes you get lucky and the band is alright, other times you won't and they'll suck.
http://www.drinkatcalsbar.com/ - My personal favorite, small, dirty, and cheap. Could you ask for anything more? When there are bands the cover is usually $5, so if they're terrible you don't feel as cheated as if you payed, say, $10. The bands play right on the floor so it has that old school, basement punk rock show vibe.
* Just Plain Dives *
http://www.yelp.com/biz/two-way-lounge-chicago-2 - Really weird mix of people (Gangbangers/Hipsters/Old Drunks) but still recommended.
http://www.whirlaway.net/index.html - The bartender Maria is a total sweetheart. Protip: As tempting as it may be do NOT, I repeat, do NOT sit on the sofa. OK jukebox.
http://www.yelp.com/biz/l-and-l-tavern-chicago - They serve absinthe here and have a good jukebox. However, sometimes it gets overrun with annoying college students who are "slumming it".
http://www.yelp.com/biz/innertown-pub-chicago - A little divey oasis with a decent jukebox tucked away in a residential neighborhood. Got thrown out of here once, but I don't hold that against them.
http://www.yelp.com/biz/olas-liquor-chicago - Ahhh Ola's, what can I say about Ola's, Well it's small, the owner is Polish so you can never be sure if she's insulting you or not, and I once saw a man drink a flaming shot of Yukon Jack out of his glass eye here. I think it's safe to say that I love Ola's. You get the feeling that this is where Bukowski would drink.
* Semi-Respectable Drinking Establishments *
http://www.californiaclipper.com/ - Pretty cool bar. They play mostly Rockabilly/Country/Blues. I got thrown out of here once too, ahhhh good times. No cover so that's a plus.
http://www.myspace.com/liarsclub2006 - Cock Rock/Metal Bar Tolerable in very SMALL, and I mean REALLY small, doses.
http://www.delilahschicago.com/ - What was once the jewel in the crown of Chicago Punk Rock dives has now become a caricature of it's former self. I don't know if it's the Lincoln Park Chads & Trixies, the liquor snobs paying $30 for a glass of scotch and $10 and up for some obscure microbrew, or the nightly poser fashion show with outfits supplied by The Alley, but I totally hate this place now. If you've never been I suppose you should experience it at least once.
* Not worth your time or money *
http://www.exitchicago.com/ - The Exit is dead to me. Avoid at all costs. For all of the reasons I hate Delilah's I hate this place even more. It's like the Punk Rock episode of Quincy brought to life.
So there's my suggestions, brought to you by many years of black outs and behavior that had me apologizing to my friends the next day. Hope it helps. Cheers.
oh this must be a sign, i was just talking to a friend from LA about how cool is San Diego (never been there myself), and now i see you live down there. Yes, I do love Earthless, it's one of my faves. This documentary you talk about could be Such Hawks, Such Hounds I suppose. Hey would you get me in touch with this Earthless guy? (I assume it might be Mario) I'd love to get an interview with him for my stoner rock website, tell him to e-mail me to stonerrockmexico (at) gmail.com. Nice to meet you too. Hope we can chat some time. Cheers
"I love Bubblegum! People talk about the music of the late 60s-70s like it was all Janis Joplin or Jimi Hendrix, but Bubblegum is what actually got played on the radio (AM, at least). It was one of the only styles that kept to three…"
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