Smile Politely

The Overture: June 20-26

WHAT: CJ Boyd/Bryce Hays/ARTHUR

WHERE: Library House (free)

WHEN: Monday, June 20th at 7 p.m.

Library House has got a drone/synth lineup on Monday to blow your dreamy mind. Bryce Hays is leaving C-U in a few short months, so come wish him a swirling and spacey fond farewell. Makers will no longer be playing the event.


WHAT: Vic Ruggiero

WHERE: Sipyard (free – donations suggested)

WHEN: Tuesday, June 21st at 7:30 p.m.

Vic Ruggiero is a folk and blues singer-songwriter from New York, and front man of The Slackers. He’s got some acoustic tunes to fill up the alley beer garden on your warm Tuesday evening.



WHAT: Joshua Powell & The Great Train Robbery/Eric Stanley

WHERE: Confidential address (message for details)

WHEN: Wednesday, June 22nd at 7 p.m.

Euriah’s Eric Stanley is teaming up with Indianapolis group Joshua Powell & The Great Train Robbery for a surprise house show on Wednesday. It’ll be a house show of the emo-indie variety. Message the contact for more details.



WHAT: The Tillers/Hobnob String Band

WHERE: Cowboy Monkey ($7)

WHEN: Thursday, June 23rd at 9:30 p.m.

The Tillers make folk and bluegrass music with an alternative flair, playing everything from traditionals to contemporary work to original songs. This will make for a fun country-fried Thursday.



WHAT: May the Peace of the Sea Be With You/Dylan Earl/Sleeping Jesus/Evan Opitz

WHERE: Institute 4 Creativity ($5)

WHEN: Thursday, June 23rd at 8:30 p.m.

This I4C show will make your Thursday night even sweatier. Three touring acts and a local artist will bring you plenty of rock music bang for your buck.



WHAT: Summer Twilight Concert on the Quad

WHERE: The U of I Quadrangle (free)

WHEN: Thursday, June 23rd at 7 p.m.

The University of Illinois Summer Band meets during the summer session and performs two “Twilight Concerts” on the U of I Quadrangle. The summer band’s repertoire includes standard works, contemporary works, and popular selections from a wide array of musical styles. Support the students as they take part in this tradition, which boasts over a century of performances.


WHAT: Tokyo Police Club, We Were Promised Jetpacks

WHERE: The Accord ($20 in advance/$25 at the door)

WHEN: Thursday, June 23rd at 8 p.m.

The Canadian Tokyo Police Club makes energetic power pop with a Vampire Weekend-esque sunniness, accompanied by breezy melodies and lyrics. Their opener, the Scottish We Were Promised Jetpacks, add a bit more guitar to that exuberance. Together, they’ll make a show that will be well worth going out on a Thursday night.


WHAT: Blues, Brews and BBQ Festival

WHERE: Downtown Champaign (Free admission, $5 suggested donation)

WHEN: Friday, June 24th at 4 p.m. and Saturday, June 25th at 12 p.m.

Champaign’s annual two-day Blues, Brews, and BBQ Fest will have a packed lineup, featuring Reverend Horton Heat, the Fabulous Thunderbirds, and tons more. There will also be all sorts of local food and beverage vendors to check out. With free admission, you have no excuse not to booze it up while bluesin’ it up. Here’s the full lineup:


5:00 – 6:30 – The Smokers Blues Band

6:50 – 8:20 – Edward David Anderson

8:40 – 10:10 – Kris Lager Band

10:30 – Midnight – Reverend Horton Heat


2:25 – 3:55 – David Dunavent

4:15 – 4:45 – Motorcycle Awards Show

5:00 – 6:30 – The William Marsala Band

6:50 – 8:20 – Slam Allen

8:40-10:10 – Howard and the White Boys

10:30 – Midnight – The Fabulous Thunderbirds


WHAT: Elsinore/Tigerbeat/Again is Already

WHERE: Cowboy Monkey ($10)

WHEN: Friday, June 24th at 9 p.m.

All three of these C-U bands have a huge year ahead of them: Tigerbeat is working steadily on new material, Elsinore’s latest release will come out soon, and Again is Already will be celebrating their new album release with this very show. Come to the ber garden and support C-U’s growing indie talent as they flourish.




WHAT: Dizzy Ape/Rogue Tendency/Khyran Shank/Patrick (Prince Aki)

WHERE: Institute 4 Creativity (Cost not yet released)

WHEN: Friday, June 24th at 9 p.m.

I4C has got hip-hop rolling on Friday with four different acts. All these young musicians are itching to spin and spit rhymes while surrounded by the good vibes of the Institute. Stay tuned to the event page for more details as they are released.



WHAT: Discoverer Record Release Party

WHERE: Library House (free – donations suggested)

WHEN: Friday, June 24th at 7:00 p.m.

Indie band Discoverer is another C-U band who will be celebrating their album release on Friday. Some folky acts will also be there to help celebrate, including Emily Blue of Tara Terra and Boycut. 



WHAT: RACES Benefit Bonanza

WHERE: Institute 4 Creativity ($5)

WHEN: Saturday, June 25th at 7 p.m.

On Saturday, I4C will be hosting a benefit for the local organization RACES, which works to challenge rape culture and find advocacy for victims. The event will have performances by Love Handles, Penny Horses, and a still-unannounced special guest. With all proceeds going to benefit RACES, there is no reason not to come support this important cause.


WHAT: Give a Little: A Benefit for Girls Rock! C-U

WHERE: Exile on Main Street (free, $5 suggested donation)

WHEN: Saturday, June 25th at 1-4 p.m.

On Friday between 1 and 4 pm, Exile on Main Street and Dandelion will donate 10% of their sales towards the establishment of the Girls Rock! Camp in C-U, coming summer 2017. The global organization Girls Rock! Camp Alliance strives to help girls build self-esteem and find their voices through unique programming that combines music education and performance. The event will feature performances by local ladies, including Mari McNabney (Wolves To Whales), Kayla DeSouza (Kayla and the Moon Lace Band), and Elizabeth Majerus (Motes). Majerus will also be reciting some poetry.



WHAT: Tell Mama

WHERE: Cowboy Monkey ($7)

WHEN: Saturday, June 25th at 9:30 p.m.

Get funky on Saturday with local soul, funk, jazz, and R&B group, Tell Mama. They’ve got a big, bold sound that’ll help shake things up if you’re burnt out on indie gigs. 



WHAT: Flaccid

WHERE: The Accord ($7)

WHEN: Saturday, June 25th at 9 p.m.

The Bloomington-based jam/funk band Flaccid has played Canopy Club a few times over the years, but they’ll be trying something new with The Accord as their venue this Saturday. The band’s flowing vibes mesh well with those of Vimana, a Danville-based funk band who will open and close the evening up. This gig will help you beat the summer heat with chill jams.


WHAT: Decadents at Sounds at Sunset Concert Series

WHERE: Sunset Ridge Park (free)

WHEN: Sunday, June 26th at 6 p.m.

Bring a chair and a picnic basket to the family-friendly Sounds at Sunset series, this time at Sunset Ridge Park. Don’t expect an entirely tame evening, though, with the debauched rockers Decadents headlining this one.

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