Summer Chicago music preview: Kelly Clarkson and more set to perform

Summer is finally here, so why spend it inside and watching TV? That’s what winter in Chicago is for. If you’d rather meet up with friends and hear a great concert or two, then here’s just the list for you. While you may already have tickets to Taylor Swift’s shows at Soldier Field, there are plenty of other must-see performances. This summer, these are the musical performances you’ll want to check out in the Chicago area.

107.5 WGCI Summer Jam

If you’ve been waiting to see Lil Wayne, Trey Songz, Dej Loaf and more in concert, then here’s some good news. The 107.5 WGCI Summer Jam will be held June 20 at United Center, so you can celebrate the official start of summer on the right foot.

Chicago Blues Festival

Considered the largest free blues festival in the world, the Chicago Blues Festival will be held June 12-14 in Grant Park. The festival’s performance lineup includes headliner Buddy Guy, as well as Zora Young, Clarence Carter, and more. The three-day festival also has tributes to music legends Willie Dixon and Muddy Waters on the schedule.

Kelly Clarkson

You’ve danced and sang along to “Mr. Know It All” and “Miss Independent,” and now you get to dance with thousands of your new friends when Kelly Clarkson comes to town. The acclaimed singer performs August 1 at Allstate Arena in Rosemont. The group Pentatonix is also taking the stage.


With a performance lineup that includes Paul McCartney, Metallica and Florence + the Machine, omitting Lollapalooza from our list just won’t work. The three-day festival, held July 31 through August in Chicago’s Grant Park, features wall-to-wall performances with an eclectic musical lineup.

West Fest

While larger, big-name festivals tend to grab the headlines, there are plenty of neighborhood festivals in Chicago that keep the music front-and-center. At West Fest, held July 11 and 12 on Chicago Avenue between Damen Avenue and Wood Street, this neighborhood festival includes live performances, food, and other activities. The lineup for 2015 includes Dead Moon, Murder City Devils, Mark Farina and more, with additional performers to be announced at a later date.

If it’s possible, consider taking public transportation or even riding your bike to concert performances or festivals. For an additional list of concerts to hear in Chicago this summer, check out our article on AXS.

Find out what else is happening in Chicago by keeping it right here on AXS.