Smile Politely

The Overture: June 5-11

WHAT: Steel City Jug Slammers

WHERE: The Red Herring (free)

WHEN: Monday, June 5 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

The Steel City Jug Slammers will provide some old-fashioned bluegrass and roots music as an excellent background for your delicious vegetarian lunch at The Red Herring.


WHAT: The Bashful Youngens music video filming

WHERE: Kalyx Center for Sustainability near Monticello (free)

WHEN: Tuesday, June 6 at 6 p.m.

Didn’t get enough hoedown time at Hogchute over the weekend? Come back to the barn on Tuesday for another dose of folk and friends. Support The Bashful Youngens as they film a video for their song “Hand In Mine” off of their latest release, Inflorescent. You could also bring a beer and a lawnchair to make for a full Hogchute reprise.


WHAT: Neighborhood Nights Concert

WHERE: Anita Purves Nature Center in Urbana (free)

WHEN: Wednesday, June 7 at 6 p.m.

This session of Neighborhood Nights will feature the breezy pop of Kittens Incorporated at the lovely Anita Purves Nature Center, which is the perfect setting. Spread out a blanket and enjoy some tunes among the trees.


WHAT: Champaign Cypher’s Bring The Paign, Week 2

WHERE: Cowboy Monkey

WHEN: Thursday, June 8 at 9 p.m.

The Champaign Cypher Club brings you the second week of their summer series Bring The Paign, which are DJ and emcee battles between local artists. This session features two battles from each category and live sets from three additional artists.


WHAT: 48-Hour Jam Session

WHERE: Community Center for the Arts (free)

WHEN: Friday, June 9 starting at 6 p.m.

C4A’s annual 48-Hour Jam is a unique event unlike any other in the area. For two straight days, they’ll be hosting a non-stop jam session of old-time music. Anyone who plays an instrument associated with old-time music – guitar, banjo, mandolin, et cetera – is welcome to participate. You don’t have to stay the entire time, and musicians will come and go. Non-musicians are also welcome, whether to spectate or to help out. Check out the site for more info.


WHAT: Friday Night Live

WHERE: Downtown Champaign at various street corners (free)

WHEN: Friday, June 9 at 6 p.m.

Another session of FNL promises to liven up the corners of downtown Champaign and bring an excellent streetside soundtrack to your night out. Check out the event page for more details as they unfold.


WHAT: Pet Symmetry

WHERE: Cowboy Monkey ($10)

WHEN: Friday, June 9 at 10 p.m.

Chicago’s emo/power pop band Pet Symmetry consist of members of fellow emo groups Into It. Over It. and Dowsing, and have been touring for their new album Vision, which was released in May. Adding local rock groups Jarring and Puzzle Quest make this quite the stacked show indeed.


WHAT: Hippie Priest / Snayl

WHERE: Sipyard (no cover)

WHEN: Friday, June 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Add some heady ambient grooves to your outdoor beer consumption with the dreampop of Snayl and the spaced-out techno of Hippie Priest this Friday at Sipyard.


WHAT: Sam Williams w/ Joe Asselin & John Daily

WHERE: Leadbelly’s Links Drinks Arcade (no cover)

WHEN: Friday, June 9 at 8:30 p.m.

Sam Williams, grandson of legendary country star Hank Williams Sr., is a rising country singer-songwriter in his own right. He’ll be accompanied at this show by Joe Asselin and John Daily.


WHAT: StreetFest

WHERE: Downtown Champaign (free)

WHEN: Saturday, June 10 at 7 p.m.

This first session of StreetFest – Friday Night Live’s less frequent cousin – will take place at Neil & Main and feature Mank N’ Sass, Church Booty, and Davina and the Vagabonds. Add StreetFest to FNL and you’ve got a full weekend of great music in the DT Champaign streets.


WHAT: Parking lot party with Bobby Bare Jr.

WHERE: Loose Cobra ($12 in advance)

WHEN: Saturday, June 10 at 2 p.m. (music starts at 4 p.m.)

Take a trip out to Tolono for Loose Cobra’s summer kickoff mini-festival. Bobby Bare Jr. is a current member of indie punk outfit Guided By Voices and is coming off of a tour with them. He’ll return to the C-U area to highlight this party, which will also feature the musical stylings of Doug Strahan and the Good Neighbors, Chachi and the Bandidos, and more. Loose Cobra shows never disappoint, and this is sure to be a good one.


WHAT: Blues in the Street

WHERE: The Iron Post (no cover)

WHEN: Saturday, June 10 at 7 p.m.

Yet another outside concert this week is taking place at The Post and will feature Kilborn Alley Blues Band, JJ Thames Band, and William Marsala. This Urbana show will be going on inside and outside the bar, and will bring some blues to your steamy summer evening.

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