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Transmission
« Feel the Beat Connection Contest: 3-Day Passes to Pitchfork Music Festival 2012 »

Preview Tue Jul 10 2012

A "Taste" of Chicago's Festival Music

It's that time of year again, folks; the Taste of Chicago frenzy has descended upon us. Countless numbers of individuals filling our city streets, the all too delicious food options that I always overindulge myself with, and my personal favorite part of the Taste, the stellar concerts that come along with the event, are back in full force. Even though the Taste will be emerging in a new format this year due to a condensed time span, this doesn't mean that there isn't the same caliber of music options for fans to enjoy from the Taste's run from July 11 through July 15.

This year, the Taste of Chicago headlining concerts each day present listeners with two ticketing options. Lawn seating is available for free as always, but this year, tickets are available for purchase for each of these concerts that give listeners access to general admission seating closer to the Petrillo Music Shell. Tickets can be purchased via Groupon links for each of the individual shows costing $25.

The first night of the Taste, July 11, opens the festival with some crooning from pop up-and-comer Luke James beginning at 5:30pm, followed by powerhouse singer Jennifer Hudson. This Chicago native is loved by her numerous fans, and she'll put on a sensational, soulful performance for her listeners.

July 12 presents the concert which I am personally most excited for during the entire fest; I still love indie rock group Death Cab for Cutie just as much now as I did when I took my first listen to Transatlanticism as a teenager. They'll likely play a range of ballads from their first debut to their newest album, Codes and Keys, and this show is sure to be captivating. Calexico will open the show; if you're unfamiliar, you may recognize their sounds from their 2005 collaboration with Iron and Wine for their In The Reigns EP. Their Latin grooves and scintillating rhythms will get everyone in the crowd moving to the beat before Death Cab mellows out the evening with their emotionally laden, distinctive sounds. Take a listen to "You Are A Tourist" below. This concert begins at 5:30pm.

Michael Franti & Spearhead's sound is infectious and joyous, and will set out to make everyone in Millennium Park smile on July 13, with the show starting at 5:30pm. Blending many different musical styles, their sound is deliberate and strong. Following their set is revered band Fitz & The Tantrums, six-member soul outfit that will keep the energy going. Their live presence is filled with so many surprises and so much energy and funk that it will be hard to take your eyes off these performers, let alone stop dancing for a second.

Geared towards the family crowd, the daytime concert on July 14 is sponsored by Radio Disney and features pop acts Roshon Fegan and Shealeigh. Beginning at 11:30am, this concert will be one that young pop lovers will delight in. The nighttime headlining act beginning at 5:30pm features longstanding musician Chaka Khan who will no doubt be churning out her funky hits which we all know the words to whether we want to or not (let's be real, everyone knows at least some of the words to "I'm Every Woman" or "Tell Me Something Good.") Raphael Saadiq opens up the show and will transport listeners into his R&B world, emitting the sounds of his own signature style blended with those of the motown greats, leaving you to question what decade this music is originating from. With several albums under his belt, Saadiq is primed to put on a stellar show. Get groovin' to "100 Yard Dash" below.

The last day of the fest, July 15, is tailored to you country lovers out there. This concert begins at 3:30pm and features Lindi Ortega's breezy, energized country ballads. Country contemporary favorite Dierks Bentley headlines this show, so expect a cowboy hat donning, toe-tapping good time at the last day of the Taste.

Beyond the established headliners, the Taste also features a plethora of free concerts at the Taste's Bud Light sponsored stage. The music goes from 12pm until 8pm each evening, with many notable acts featured. Indie rock group The Kickback will play July 11 from 6:40pm to 8pm, with their dreamy riffs and bold sound. Local Chicago favorites Kids These Days take the stage on July 12 from 4pm to 5pm, and are sure to garner a massive crowd with their unique jazz and hip hop fusion style. Don't miss Mucca Pazza from 6:40pm to 8pm; I don't think I can adequately explain how cool it is to see a group that is described as rock 'n roll combined with a marching band, and all the surprises that come with this. The Bud Light sponsored stage features numerous acts throughout each day of the fest beyond what I've mentioned, spanning many different genres and focusing on up-and-coming acts.

Although this year's Taste of Chicago festival is shorter in duration, the music lineup in its condensed format presents an array of options for listeners to enjoy throughout the entire day. The music acts are suitable for all style preferences and present a range of talent for listeners to enjoy. During these five days, we'll be able to get a taste of not only delectable Chicago food, but a taste of distinct sounds and styles that in concert with one another make this festival such a special one in the hearts of Chicagoans.

 
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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

Our Final Transmission Days

By The Gapers Block Transmission Staff

Transmission staffers share their most cherished memories and moments while writing for Gapers Block.

Read this feature »

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