Taste of Chicago is best known for providing plenty of delicious foods for you to chow down on, but the annual event also provides a great soundtrack for your digestion—it's kind of like a miniature summer music festival. While you're enjoying some food truck fare (or a slice of Eli's Cheesecake), catch performances from acts like Passion Pit, Twin Peaks, Alessia Cara and more.
All performances free to attend (just like Taste of Chicago itself), but you'll need to purchase a ticket if you want seating at the Petrillo Music Shell concerts.
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Petrillo Music Shell lineup
Canadian pop singer Alessia Cara got her start doing acoustic cover songs on YouTube before she was discovered and signed to Def Jam Recordings—a typical millennial success story. Her 2015 debut, Know-It-All, demonstrated her R&B chops, but it's her vocals on the Lin-Manuel Miranda-penned "How Far I'll Go" (from Disney's Moana) that you're most likely to recognize. During her performance at Taste of Chicago, she's joined by Chicago vocalist Eryn Allen Kane, who developed her soulful pipes singing in church.
One of the biggest bands in Mexico (big enough to be referred to as "the Mexican Radiohead" on a regular basis), Café Tacvba makes grandiose rock that draws inspiration from traditional folk music and more contemporary electronic trends. The group's latest album, Jei Beibi, marks its 25th anniversary and its first release without the backing of a major record label. Outfitted with atmospheric ballads and jittery electronic tracks, Café Tacvba latest slice of rock en español doesn't sound all that different from America's latest alt-rock offerings. ¡Esso! Afrojam Funkbeat and Los Vicios de Papá support at this Taste of Chicago performance.
Ben Harper is a musical chameleon of sorts, shifting from bluesman to folk singer to soul crooner. His latest album, Call it What it Is, finds him reuniting with band the Innocent Criminals on a collection of songs that unflinchingly confront recurring instances of police violence in the U.S. He'll be joined by Chicago-based rockers Twin Peaks, whose recent live album, Urbs in Horto, does an excellent job capturing the group's energetic performances.
Michael Angelakos' latest collection of life-affirming synth-pop, Tremendous Sea of Love, is a self-released gift to his fans (who didn't have to pay a cent for it). Amid Passion Pit's latest batch of chirpy anthemic choruses and gentle ballads, there's a sense of joy and freedom that somehow outshines the most upbeat portions of the project's previous LPs. Local indie rockers the Kickback open this Taste of Chicago concert.
Formed as an R&B trio in 1958, the O'Jays weathered the changing tides of the music industry throughout the decades, becoming the face of Philadelphia soul and dipping their toes into disco. These days, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers (featuring founding member Eddie Levert) are still traveling the world, performing a catalog of familiar tunes, including the theme song to an NBC reality show that argulably launched a certain real estate mogul's political career. Chicago-native Maurice Jackson and the Independents (best known for their 1972 single "Leaving Me") help close out the 2017 Taste of Chicago concert series.
Bud Light stage lineup