Taste of Chicago 2018 concert lineup

The concert lineup at Taste of Chicago is almost as enticing as the delicious dishes being served
The Flaming Lips at Warner Bros. Records Summer Sessions
Photograph: Jakob N. Layman The Flaming Lips at Warner Bros. Records Summer Sessions

The smorgasbord of local food may be what Taste of Chicago is best known for, but the lineup of free concerts at the Grant Park festival is just as enticing. With five nights of headlining performances and sets from local acts, it's kind of like a miniature summer music festival. While you're enjoying food truck fare (or a slice of Eli's Cheesecake), you'll be able to catch performances from the likes of the Flaming Lips, Brandi Carlile, George Clinton and more.

All performances are free to attend (just like Taste of Chicago itself), but you'll need to purchase a ticket if you want to snag a seat at the Petrillo Music Shell concerts.

RECOMMENDED: Our complete guide to Taste of Chicago

Petrillo Music Shell lineup

Brandi Carlile
Photograph: David McClister
Music, Folk, country and blues

Brandi Carlile + Martha Redbone Roots Project

Americana singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile belts out impactful anthems about empathy and motherhood on her latest album, By the Way, I Forgive You. A skilled lyricist (who has been covered by the likes of Adele, Dolly Parton and Pearl Jam), Carlile's folk, country and rock ballads betray a contemplative outlook on the world that still seems wise beyond her years. Blues and soul singer Martha Redbone and her Roots Project band open the show.

Photograph: Courtesy the artist
Music, Latin and world

Juanes + La Santa Cecilia

Latin pop star Juanes headlines an evening of rock and pop en español at the Taste of Chicago. Formerly a member of Columbian rock group Ekhymosis, Juanes combines traditional musical styles with pop songcraft and has collaborated with the likes of Nelly Furtado and Kali Uchis. He's joined by La Santa Cecilia, a Mexican-American band that provides a contemporary, rock-influenced take on cumbia and bossa nova.

Photograph: Max Herman
Music, Rap, hip-hop and R&B

Black Star + Madame Gandhi

Two decades ago, Yasiin Bey (formerly Mos Def) and Talib Kweli—two of hip-hop's most conscientious emcees—joined forces as Black Star. Now the pair has a new record produced by Madlib on the way and is taking the stage in anticipation of its release. Nevermind that Yasiin Bey announced his retirement from the music industry back in 2016—we're just happy that Black Star is rising, once more. L.A. musician and activist Madame Gandhi opens this Taste of Chicago concert. 

The Flaming Lips
Photograph: J. Michelle Martin
Music, Rock and indie

The Flaming Lips + La Butcherettes + Half Gringa

Oklahoma weirdos the Flaming Lips have been mining various strains of psychedelia for the past 35 years, but the group's confetti-covered live performances backed by costumed dancers are where it has always shined brightest. Touring behind a new collection of the band's greatest hits, Wayne Coyne and his band will bring their falsetto philosophizing and outrageous (not always family-friendly) stage show to the Taste of Chicago. Mexican garage rockers Le Butcherettes and local singer-songwriter Half Gringa support.

George Clinton
Photograph: William Thoren
Music, Funk, soul and disco

George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic + BJ the Chicago Kid + The Boy Illinois

George Clinton (a.k.a. the Godfather of Funk) recently announced that he'll hang up his hat and retire from touring with Parliament Funkadelic in 2019. Before that happens, you'll get at least one more chance to see him fronting the modern incarnation of P-Funk, which incorporates hip-hop arrangements and dancing contortionists amid renditions of classic tracks like "One Nation Under a Groove" and "Give Up the Funk." Local singer-songwriters BJ the Chicago Kid and the Boy Illinois open the show.

Bud Light stage lineup


Wednesday, July 11

noon–1pm - Raii and Whitney
1:20–2:20pm - You Are Here
2:40–3:40pm - NDPNDNT
4–5pm - Kiara Lanier
5:20–6:20pm - Archie Powell & The Exports
6:20–7:20pm - DJ Mike P

Thursday, July 12

noon–1pm - Co-still
1:20–2:20pm - Lester Rey
2:40–3:40pm - Aniba Hotep & the Sol Collective 
4–5pm - Dave Weld
5:20–6:20pm - Marina City
6:20–7:30pm - DJ Mike P

Friday, July 13

noon–1pm - Black Bear Combo
1:20–2:20pm - Friday Pilots Club
2:40–3:40pm - Beats y Bateria
4–5pm - Matt Muse
5:20–6:20pm - MASN
6:20–7:30pm - DJ Mike P

Saturday, July 14

11–11:40am - DJ Mike P
noon–1pm - CASE
1:20–2:20pm - Kingfatz
2:40–3:40pm - Fee Lion
4–5pm - Emann & Jojo
5:20–6:20pm - Bianca Shaw
6:20–7:30pm - DJ Mike P

Sunday, July 15
11–11:40am - DJ Mike P
noon–1pm - Young DRA
1:20–2:20pm - The Claudettes
2:40–3:40pm - Adam Ness
4–5pm - Emily Blue
5:20–6:20pm - Sa’Rayah
6:20–7:30pm - DJ Mike P