The Chicago Blues Festival is the largest free blues festival and remains the largest of Chicago’s Music Festivals in the world and held usually lasts three days in June. Held on Chicago’s lakefront Grant Park, each year the organisers choose a theme, generally to
honour a recently departed blues musician.
Interesting Features of Chicago Blues Festival
- During three days on five stages, more than 500,000 blues fans prove that Chicago is the “Blues Capital of the World.”
- Past performers include Bonnie Raitt, Ray Charles, B.B. King, the late Bo Diddley, Buddy Guy and the late Koko Taylor.
- The Chicago Blues Festival has always been programmed as an educational tool. Since the 60’s the Blues has become a cross cultural experience and has provided a deeper understanding into American Society.
- The Chicago Blues Festival greets music fans with lakeside lounging for three days of free outdoor concerts in early summer. Over three festival days, musicians perform at five stages throughout the day (and evening). Often, there are at least two stages with acts at the same time, and a wide variety of acts ensure that you’ll find plenty of bands to enjoy.
- With one exception, the small stages are scattered around the park and provide comfortable, intimate settings to enjoy music. That exception is the Petrillo Music Shell, which is larger and where the headliners perform.
- One of the best ways to enjoy the festival and get an earful of just about everybody is to stroll around and catch different bands, rather than parking your blanket in one place.
- In addition to great music, you can get a taste of some quality barbecue and other culinary options from local food vendors. If you’re not from Chicago, pay attention to the lines at the food stands, because sometimes they signal a huge crowd favorite.
- While the music is playing, don’t forget to glance around at the crowd, because this event presents some great people watching. Get fashion tips, watch some interesting dance moves, snark at clothing choices, or be amazed at attendee behavior (in a good or bad way). It’s especially helpful when you’re far from the stage.