Chicago Like a Local Blog

Unique perspectives on the city from the people who live here.

Tag - music festival

All over the U.S., fireworks and barbecues are Independence Day hallmarks, but Chicago offers extra fun with the annual African/Caribbean International Festival of Life. This four-day cultural celebration features music, food, dance and fashion from African and Caribbean countries and hosts the best live reggae and calypso shows in the city. This year's 25th annual festival, July 1-4 in Union Park (1501 W. Randolph Street), promises good music and good times for the whole family.

Summer in Chicago means music flows everywhere, inside clubs and concert venues and through the streets and neighborhoods. Check out these great upcoming shows for your summer music fix, including a FREE festival that celebrates the season by presenting concerts all across the city for one music-filled day.

Common at AAHH! Fest Chicago

Music fans will have a busy weekend soaking up live sounds at Common's hip hop event AAHH! Fest and at the Hyde Park Jazz Fest running through Saturday and Sunday, September 24-25. Although both fests feature popular mucisicans from across the country, homegrown talent is also a highlight.

Lee Scratch Reggae Fest

Explore the variations of reggae music, including ska, rock steady and reggaeton at the first annual Reggae Fest Chicago, Saturday August 13 in Pilsen's Adams Medill Park. The one day event highlights a line-up packed with reggae musicians and headlined by icons Toots & The Maytals and Lee "Scratch" Perry.

Blues Festival 2013

With the arrival of summer quickly approaching, make sure to jump right into the festival season with the 31st Annual Chicago Blues Festival! Blues icons Bettye LaVette, Aaron Neville and Dr. John will all headline Chicago Blues Fest next weekend, June 13-15 in Grant Park. Celebrating "Blues by the Lake," the festival is free admission and open daily from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.

A Guide to Wavefront Music Festival

Tuesday, June 25, 2013 12:00 AM by


Summer is here, bringing with it festival season. Techno tourists around the country are plotting their dance destinations as we speak. Today you'll find more electronic dance music festivals in North America to choose from than ever before, but those selections are starting to feel more polarized than ever.

Chosen Few DJs Picnic

Back in the ‘70s and ‘80s, house music was birthed right here in Chicago. As you already know, it didn't take long for this new dance genre to spread across the globe and today house music still thrives from Chicago all the way from the South to the North sides. That rings truest during the Chosen Few DJs annual Family Reunion Picnic over the July 6 weekend. Founded in 1990, the Chosen Few DJs Picnic is one of the largest single-day dance festivals in the country, raking in up to 30,000 attendees every year.


In addition to a wealth of awesome local street festivals, Chicago summers are also generously seasoned with big scale music festivals throughout our city's parks. When you only have so much time though (not to mention money in your bank), sometimes it's hard to decide which festivals you'll enjoy the most.

Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park

Millennium Park combines nature, art and architecture. It's one of the most beautiful places in the world." It's crowning centerpiece, the Jay Pritzker Pavilion is a truly spectacular place to enjoy a summer concert and Chicago knows it. That's exactly why the Park stocks its summer schedule full of truly impressive musical performances. 

Ravinia Festival 2012

Outdoor concerts are a summer tradition almost as old as picnics in the park. That's what makes the Ravinia (located just north of metropolitan Chicago, in Highland Park) so special: it combines both experiences. The Ravinia is known for its consistently well-rounded music schedule as well as its ability to appeal to families, friends and dates.

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