Smile Politely

The Overture: June 26 – July 2

A main with a black tank top playing guitar and singing onstage
Derrick Philips

The Overture is a rundown of live music and performances happening in and around Champaign-Urbana each week. All of the information is as accurate as we can publish; however, all shows and performances are subject to change at any time. Thank you for understanding.

Did we miss something this week? Have a show coming up you think we should know about? Email us at [email protected] with the details.

Monday, June 26th

An older man and woman in a wheat field looking off into the distance. The man is kneeling and holding a guitar. The woman has a pink sleeveless blouse and is standing
Doty and Dexter

Doty & Dexter

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 5:30 p.m.

Come out to the Rose Bowl patio for a live performance by Doty & Dexter, featuring Stacy Doty, a versatile musician with over 50 years of performance experience, and Wendy Dexter, who is known for her harmonious vocals. Expect a wide variety of rock, country, and folk music from this duo who cherish meeting new people and reconnecting with old friends.

Tuesday, June 27th

Sara Siders in a blue denim shirt and curly hair with her arms crossed and an impish grin. Blurry white light bulbs can be seen in the background.
Sara Siders on Facebook


Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 5 p.m.

Experience the soulful sounds of Sara ‘Sass’ Siders at the Rose Bowl Tavern on the Rose Bowl patio. Known for her captivating voice and diverse musical styles ranging from ska and reggae to rock and country, Sass’s performances promise a unique blend of genres, which she calls “Cali-country,” creating an unforgettable musical journey.

And so on for the remaining events in chronological order, with the correct formatting for dates, times, ticket prices, and venues. Please note that because my knowledge is cut off at September 2021, I may not have the correct day of the week for the dates provided in 2023. You will need to ensure that the dates align with the correct days of the week.

Wednesday, June 28th

A man dressed in a suit holding an upright bass and looking down in a hallway
Andrew Binder

Andrew Binder Trio

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 5 p.m.

Enjoy some jazz on the patio with the Andrew Binder Trio.

Mank and Sass performing on stage. Mank is closest to the camera, holding his bass and looking down. Sass is off to the right and back a bit, holding a guitar while looking at Mank and smiling.
Mank and Sass on Facebook

Urbana Neighborhood Nights: Mank and Sass with Uniting Pride at Victory Park

► Victory Park // free // 6:30 p.m.

Join your Urbana neighbors at Victory Park for Neighborhood Nights, where the Urbana Park District continues its 35-year tradition of showcasing top local musicians, this time featuring the dynamic Mank and Sass. Pack a picnic, get cozy with your chairs and blankets, and enjoy an evening of free music, complimentary popcorn and lemonade, engaging activities, community resources, and a chance to discuss your neighborhood with district officials.

Thursday, June 29th

Six members of Merry Travelers either sitting on, sitting next to or standing behind a couch that looks like it's in a parlor. Three band members are looking into the camera. The band member sitting on the chair on the right is drinking something out of a cup.
Anna Longworth-Singer

Krannert Uncorked with The Merry Travelers

Krannert Center for the Performing Arts // free // 5 p.m.

Join us for Krannert Uncorked with Merry Travelers on Stage 5, a perfect platform to appreciate local and regional artists. Immerse yourself in the band’s feel-good sound, influenced by soul, R&B, blues, and 70s psychedelic rock, creating a unique and mesmerizing vibe that will undoubtedly captivate you.

Americana Happy Hour ft Greg Klyma

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 5 p.m.

Enjoy Happy Hour at Rose Bowl Tavern with Greg Klyma, a seasoned artist inspired by the likes of Willie Nelson, Tom Petty, and AC/DC, delivering a fusion of old-school country and rock ‘n’ roll. Based in Boston, he’s back in the Midwest to promote his 17th album, “Singing For My Life.”

Friday, June 30th

A white man with a black tank top playing guitar and singing on the left and a white man with a black t-shirt and a white ballcap on backwards singing on the right
Derrick Philips

EDITOR’S PICK: Everclear with Lit and Unchained

Devon Lakeshore Amphitheater // $25 to $43 // 7 p.m.

90’s hitmakers Everclear and Lit come rocking into the area with more hits than a heavyweight boxing match. Everclear’s “Santa Monica” and Lit’s “My Own Worst Enemy” were 90’s smash-hit anthems about being young and taking your own path through life. Local act Unchained opens.

A man with a beard holding a guitar and singing expressively into a microphone.
Uncle Lucius on Facebook

Uncle Lucius

The Castle Theatre // $25 // 8 p.m.

Join us for an evening with Austin-based band Uncle Lucius, celebrated for their unique fusion of classic rock, blues, soul, and country. Enjoy the band’s diverse style and infectious blend of soul and rock groove, which have earned them a loyal fan base over the years.

Anika Emily and Jake Fava

Huber’s // free // 7 p.m.

Anika Emily and Jake Fava will hit the stage with their unique sound and vibe around 7 p.m. at Huber’s.

Four members of Astrofix lit up in red light against a dark background.
Astrofix on Facebook


Pour Brothers // free // 11 p.m.

Head to Pour Bros patio on Friday night, to experience Astrofix, an energizing rock band hailing from Springfield, IL. With their dynamic mix of classic, grunge, and modern rock influences, Astrofix delivers both original songs and beloved covers that are sure to delight any rock music aficionado.

Wheaton Municipal Band

Krannert Center for the Performing Arts // free // 7:30 p.m.

Revel in the rich musical presentation of the Wheaton Municipal Band led by Dr. Bruce Moss at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts on Friday evening.

Two women and three men are in a band, performing on a sidewalk.
Friday Night Live on Facebook

Friday Night Live

Downtown Champaign // free // 6 p.m.

Enjoy downtown Champaign every Friday from June through August for 40 North’s Friday Night LIVE, a free public performance series. Experience a diverse mix of music genres like bluegrass, jazz, folk, soul, rock, country, and blues, along with unique street performances and weekly kids’ activities, all thanks to the generosity of Pour Bros. Craft Taproom, Busey Bank, the City of Champaign, and the support of Champaign Center Partnership. Check their Facebook page for lineups close to the day of the event.

4 members of Chain Station sitting on the back stairs of a building. Two men to a stair.
Chain Station on Facebook

Chain Station with Wildwood String Band

Rose Bowl Tavern // $15-$20 suggested donation in the bucket // 8:30 p.m.

Experience a relaxing evening with Chain Station, a Denver-based string band specializing in Americana music with intricate harmonies. Known for their eclectic mix of fast and mellow tunes, this accomplished quartet offers a laid-back performance that fans of old and new grass alike will appreciate.

Jay Ferguson Trio

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 5 p.m.

Lose yourself in the smooth sounds of the Jay Ferguson Trio on the Rose Bowl patio.

Saturday, July 1st

5 members of Caleb Cook band in a dark room with a string of lights in front of a red curtain in the background
Caleb Cook Band

Caleb Cook Band

Huber’s // free // 7 p.m.

Mosey into Huber’s West End Store Saturday night to witness the Caleb Cook Band play some Country and Western tunes to lighten your load.

Faced Out, Dumbed Down, and Romantica

The Recreation Club // $10 – $15 sliding scale cover // 8 p.m.

Come to The Recreation Club on Saturday, July 1st for a thrilling night of indie rock and punk music. Featuring St. Louis indie rockers Faced Out, local punks Dumbed Down, and Urbana’s melancholic alt-rock group, Romantica, it’s a night you won’t want to miss, filled with musical expression.

A young man playing a piano in an empty auditorium
ISYM Advanced Piano

ISYM Final Concert – Intermediate-Advanced Piano

Smith Memorial Hall // free // 1:30 p.m.

Experience a showcase of intermediate and advanced piano artistry at the Illinois Summer Youth Composition Program’s final concert, taking place at Smith Memorial Hall on Saturday, July 1st. From ensemble music to jazz improvisation, the performance promises a remarkable culmination of the students’ private lessons, masterclasses, and practice on grand pianos in state-of-the-art facilities.

ISYM Final Concert – Composition

Smith Memorial Hall // free // 12:30 p.m.

Discover fresh and innovative musical expressions at the Illinois Summer Youth Composition Program’s final concert on Saturday, July 1st at Smith Memorial Hall. Be the first to hear original compositions created by talented high school students who have been exploring and honing their compositional skills.

ISYM Final Concert – Senior Symphonic Band

Krannert Center for the Performing Arts // free // Noon

Experience the culmination of dedicated practice and honed artistry at the Illinois Summer Youth Senior Symphonic Band’s final concert, taking place at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday, July 1st. Come enjoy a diverse selection of challenging band music performed by talented senior high students, ranging from cornerstone repertoire works to the latest compositions.

ISYM Final Concert – Senior Chorus

Smith Memorial Hall // free // Noon

Witness the grand finale of the Illinois Summer Youth Senior Orchestra Program at Smith Memorial Hall on Saturday, July 1st. Experience an exceptional choral performance by talented high school vocalists who have dedicated their time to mastering individual artistry, conducting, musicianship, and ensemble harmonies.

A young man playing a trombone with another young man playing a French horn off in the distance.

ISYM Final Concert – Senior Orchestra

Krannert Center for the Performing Arts // free // 10 p.m.

Don’t miss the Illinois Summer Youth Senior Orchestra Program’s final concert at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday, July 1st. Witness the culmination of the program as talented high school musicians, having honed their individual artistry and orchestral ensemble skills, showcase their hard work and talent in this finale performance.

ISYM Final Concert – Introductory Music Technology

Smith Memorial Hall // free // 10:30 a.m.

The final concert of the Illinois Summer Youth Introductory Music Technology Program will take place at Recital Hall in Smith Memorial Hall on Saturday, July 1st at 10:30 a.m. This event showcases the work of young, aspiring musicians who, with no prior experience, have discovered the basics of audio recording, music production, and electronic composition during the program, culminating in the presentation of their original electronic compositions.

Two young black women signing into a microphone
Illinois Summer Youth Music Black Chorus

ISYM Black Chorus Final Concert

Smith Memorial Hall // free // 10 a.m.

Experience the Illinois Summer Youth Music Black Chorus’ final concert on Saturday, July 1st at 10 a.m. at the Recital Hall in Smith Memorial Hall, where talented senior high vocalists will showcase their honed musicianship and individual artistry through a diverse range of vocal music genres, from spirituals and gospel to pop, hip-hop, and R&B, all encapsulating the unique elements of Black American vocal music in a choral setting. This vibrant event is the culmination of their dedicated training, including ensemble and sectional rehearsals, masterclasses, and voice lessons.

A shot of a crowded street at a festival in downtown Champaign, IL.
Toast of Taylor St website

Toast to Taylor Street

Downtown Champaign // free // 4 p.m.

Start your 4th of July week off with some great music at Toast to Taylor Street. Here is the lineup for Saturday, July 1st:

4 p.m: Alyssa Allen 4:40 p.m.: Dan Hubbard and Matthew Pittman 5:50 p.m.: Emma Taylor Group 7:10 p.m.: James Jones Trio 8:30 p.m.: Tito Carrillo & Luminance 10 p.m.: Kilborn Alley Blues Band

A shot from behind a DJ booth. You can see the DJ, two performers and a full house crowd in the background.
DJ Zay on Facebook

Summer Latin Night with DJ ZAY

The Canopy Club // $15 advance, $20 door // 10 p.m.

Head to The Canopy Club for a powerful night with DJ Zay, a Chicago-born artist known for his resilient spirit and passion for music, deeply influenced by his Mexican heritage and his family’s pursuit of the American Dream. Experience the raw energy and determination that’s seen him overcome life’s challenges, from the loss of his father to combating gang violence, to rise as a standout talent in the DJ scene.

New Twang City

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 8 p.m.

Get your Twang in the old city of Urbana. New Twang City plays country, rock, western all with a lil Twang.

4 members of the Hood Family Band performing on the porch of a house.
Hood Family Band on Facebook

The Hood Family Band

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 3 p.m.

The Rose Bowl Aftermarket series continues in the afternoon with the Americana-inspired Hood Family Band.

Guitarist, singer and upright bass player posing outdoors in front of some trees.
The Jaybirds on Facebook

Aftermarket Series with The Jaybirds

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // Noon

Experience the jazziness of The Jaybirds – featuring Josh Houchin on bass, Young Kim on guitar, Steve Meadows on drums, and Amy Hassinger on vocals – as they deliver a diverse mix of jazz, blues, and pop standards, all infused with their unique blend of heart and soul.

Hessel Park Summer Concert Series featuring Samba Soul

Hessel Park // free // 6 p.m.

Invite your friends, family, and neighbors to join us for our Summer Concerts featuring the captivating rhythms of Samba Soul this Saturday, July 1st. Attendees are encouraged to come equipped with lawn chairs and their favorite snacks and drinks.

A young woman playing guitar and singing into a microphone.
Sarah Jane Layne

Kids Music with Sarah Jane Layne at the Library

Champaign Public Library // free // 3 p.m.

Join us for an exuberant performance by Sarah Jane Layne, offering live music for kids, Saturday at 3 p.m. Get ready to enjoy a lively mix of popular kids’ songs and her original Kindie tracks, guaranteeing a party filled with nonstop music, dancing, fun, and excitement!

Audiofeed Music Festival

Champaign County Fairgrounds // $50 – $100 // 12 p.m. Gates Open

Celebrate Independence Day weekend at Urbana’s Audiofeed Music Festival, starting at noon on Saturday, July 1st and going through July 4th. This four-day event promises an eclectic mix of rock, indie, folk, and electronic music from over 50 acts including Andy Sqyres and Becoming the Archetype, alongside engaging speakers, workshops, and local art exhibits, all within a community-oriented, inclusive setting where camping is welcomed.

Sunday, July 2nd

3 members of The Goldenrods posing for the camera on a side walk. Two members are wearing over-sized cowboy hats
The Goldenrods on Facebook

The Goldenrods

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 7 p.m.

Join The Goldenrods, a St. Louis-based band, known for their unique blend of country and midwestern music. Featuring Ryan Koenig playing a variety of instruments and lending his vocals, Jess Adkins on accordion and guitar, and Kellie Everett on upright bass, their performance includes emotionally stirring waltzes and cheerful two-step tunes.

Ian Shepherd and Friends

Rose Bowl Tavern // tips in bucket // 4 p.m.

Drummer Ian Shepherd teams up with other talented local musicians to bring you a great evening of jazz, blues, funk, and rock.

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