click to enlarge June music blast
Brother Jefferson plays Whiskey Jack's this Thursday evening.

Maybe you folks are getting tired of me blabbing about how much live music is happening in the area right now, but then again, after two years of little or nothing, perhaps the excitement still lingers. Also, it's kinda what I do, you know. Either way, I'm on the side of the more the merrier and the best is the most, so let's get crackin'.

We've become accustomed to beginning our weekly music adventures with Thursday night escapades, and this week is just crazy good. Numero uno on the list is the return of the Levitt AMP Springfield Music Series sponsored by PNC Bank and organized by Downtown Springfield Inc. on the Y block north of the Governor's Mansion every Thursday from June 2 through Aug. 4 in 2022. The event debuts with Soul Message Band, a Chicago-based outfit featuring Chris Foreman, a nationally celebrated Hammond B3 jazz organist, and his longtime cohort on drums, Greg "the Rock" Rockingham, with Chicago veteran guitarist Lee Rothenberg joining in the fray. Bring your lawn chairs and enjoy the melodies all summer long.

More Thursday adventures include Tim Duggan at Casey's Pub (K of C Hall on Meadowbrook Road) beer patio kicking off a weekly summer music series, Brother Jefferson at Whiskey Jack's and Lemon and the Sweet Pickles at the Curve Inn. Also, if you hear "lotsa bells a-ringing" while tooling around, don't worry, the International Carillon Festival known as "one of the world's most important and prestigious carillon events" begins on Thursday in beautiful Washington Park and continues through Sunday.

Let's start off Friday with the return of our popular, long-running (30-some years and counting) Artist on the Plaza music series presented by the Springfield Area Arts Council, now on Fridays, noon to 1 p.m. on the southside lawn of the Old State Capitol. Yours truly starts things off this week, then Dennis Darling, Springfield Dance and Phil Steinberg complete the June schedule with the music continuing every Friday at noon until Sept. 2.

Now we get to the really, really big news this weekend as the Legacy of Giving (LoG) Festival inhabits streets around the Old State Capitol with more than 60 bands on five stages running from Friday night through all day and into the night on Saturday. Expect non-stop live music, a vendor's fair and a kid's area, food and drinks for purchase, plus 100% of the proceeds from what you spend gets donated to local charities. The LoG Facebook page is the best way to keep up with who's playing when and where, but really all you need to do is get downtown. After that, the scrumptiously diverse music lineup will take it from there to deliver you everything necessary for a wonderfully good time. Congrats and thanks to all who worked so hard to make this happen and keep the music flowing on our city streets.

Now we need to backtrack to Thursday and add in Saturday as the Sherman Village Park Amphitheater has cranked things up with summer-long live concerts on Thursdays and Saturdays, featuring two bands each evening, the first at 6 and the second at 8. This Thursday, Stereo Typical and Downstate inaugurate the series and on Saturday look out for 3's Company and Breakfast Club Band with the full slate of groups available for you to peruse on the amphitheater's Facebook page.

Well, I hate to say it, but that does it for me. But you, dear reader, have plenty to do, including checking out our listings for the plethora (gotta use that word once in a while) of other events going on all over the area. Happy June!

About The Author

Tom Irwin

Tom Irwin, a sixth-generation Sangamon County resident, has played his songs and music for nearly 40 years in the central Illinois area with occasional forays across the country. He's contributed to Illinois Times since 2000 by writing Now Playing, a weekly music column, as well as features stories and other articles...

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