Tag Archives | peoria

Jeff Austin Band


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“When I’m writing a song, it’s not about the hot licks, it’s about the voice and how it can be showcased from song to song,” says musician Jeff Austin. His focus is on transporting his audience by way of his vocal: “It’s the direct communication with the crowd — not just asking them how they’re feeling, but bringing something out of them.” For Austin, the act of speaking to people through his art really means using his voice.

The career of the Colorado-based artist has already seen him break through jam and bluegrass scenes, play stages from The Fillmore Auditorium to Red Rocks Amphitheater, and outdoor events like Telluride Bluegrass Festival and Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival, among many others. But with the launch of his solo career in 2014, Austin is now building on the foundations of previous ventures while honing his own sound and charting new courses.

“I’ve learned a lot from the people I’ve played with,” says Austin who has shared stages with such luminaries as Del McCoury, Jerry Douglas, Sam Bush, Earle Scruggs, Jon Fishman, and Phil Lesh. And it’s artists such as these who have helped crystalize Austin’s idea of what he wants to do as he moves forward with his eponymous project. “From both the rock side and the bluegrass side,” he explains, “I’ve learned a lot about song structure, solo ideas, playing with guts, and being who you are.”

Although he considers the Jeff Austin Band his primary focus, the mandolinist and singer is also known for embracing collaborations. In 2004, he released a full-length album with Chris Castino (The Big Wu) that featured guest appearances by Noam Pikelny, Darol Anger, and Sally Van Meter. Just two short years later in 2006, Austin teamed with Keller Williams and Keith Moseley to record a live album of bluegrass takes on Grateful Dead covers. The project, released under the name Grateful Grass, benefited the Rex Foundation. And most recently, Austin revived 30db – his project with Brendan Bayliss of Umphrey’s McGee.

In truth, Austin only began playing the mandolin a few years before co-founding progressive bluegrass outfit Yonder Mountain String Band, a group with whom he parted ways in 2014. And, picking prowess aside, Austin has always considered his voice to be his first instrument. He was drawn to singing from a young age, pursuing musical theater in high school and college. That passion is still evident in his approach to song craft.

Austin draws from those varied roots and readily admits to still loving musicals, being fascinated by Madrigal singers, and tuning-in to a wide range of vocal powerhouses. He channels all of these influences into his solo career, while also seeking personal innovation. For his newest project, Austin sought out musicians on the cutting-edge of the acoustic and jazz music circles. Artists proficient in theory and technique, but not afraid to lend themselves to some “far-out arrangements.” The result is some of Austin’s most structured, yet exciting, compositions to date with an approach that fits within his own evolving journey and personal motto, “The work continues.”

Although there is a strong undercurrent of momentum and innovation that course through Austin’s newest project, there is also a connection to the past with the bandleader revisiting selections from his back catalog. Offerings include “Dawn’s Early Light,” “Snow in the Pines,” and others dating back to the 1990s. What matters, Austin points out, is that those songs evoke strong emotional responses both from the audience and himself. Played by this new ensemble, those songs feel revitalized and fresh.

When it comes to dynamics and structure, Austin taps the variety of sounds and styles he’s absorbed from theater, jamming, nearly twenty years of performance, and his love of experiencing live music as a fan. It’s that inner concert enthusiast that binds him to his own audience and a powerful exchange between the stage and the crowd. “I hope they take with them exactly what I hope they leave with us,” he says. “And that’s inspiration.”


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Original bluejamgrass bootstompin’ breakdown. We pick and grin and crank out a mix of traditional and new grass…with a bit of moonshine.

Starting out as a 3 piece guitar, banjo, and bass trio in 2014, this ragtag group of pickers quickly sparked interest and has since added the bright sounds of fiddle and dobro to the mix. Blending bluegrass, roots, folk, and original songwriting, Woodland Remedy puts out a sound that’s fresh and original with a foot stomping feel. Soaring harmonies backed by wood-splintering picking, they have been busy blazing a trail through the Midwest music scene. With a debut album released and a second on the way in early 2017, Woodland Remedy is looking forward to an amazing future. The crew is from the woods and music is the remedy.

Horseshoes & Hand Grenades

Horseshoes & Hand Grenades

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After seven years, three albums, innumerable sold out shows, and countless beers, bluegrass mavericks Horseshoes & Hand Grenades appropriately consider themselves a “family” on a wild, wonderful, and often whacky roller coaster. The bond between the quintet—David C. Lynch [harmonica, accordion, spoons, vocals], Collin Mettelka [fiddle, mandolin, vocals], Russell Pedersen [banjo, fiddle, vocals], Adam Greuel [guitar, dobro, vocals], and Samual Odin [bass]—fuels their creativity and chemistry on stage and in the studio. “Sometimes, it feels like we’re modern day cowboys on some kind of strange journey,” Adam affirms with a laugh. “We’re five friends who set out to do something we enjoy doing, meet interesting people, see old friends, and make some new buddies along the way. Because of that, everything happens organically.” That’s been the case since these five musicians first met in Stevens Point, WI at college, joined forces, and hit the road post-graduation in 2013. They have ignited stages alongside everyone from Greensky Bluegrass, Yonder Mountain String Band, The Infamous Stringdusters, and Trampled By Turtles to Railroad Earth, Merle Haggard, and Marty Stuart in addition to appearances at festivals such as Delfest, High Sierra Music Festival, Blue Ox Music Festival, Northwest String Summit, John Hartford Memorial Festival, and many more. Their three albums—Another Round [2012], This Old Town [2013], and Middle Western [2015]—have spawned fan favorite hits, including “Get Down To It,” “Stuck On Your Mind,” and “Whiskey.”

In many ways, everything set the stage for the 2018 offering, The Ode.

“It marks a point of growth,” explains Adam. “We’ve got the bluegrass burner type tunes we’re known for on there, but we’re experimenting with other elements. Little pieces of everybody are encapsulated in this record. For the first time, we were really conscious of allowing our respective musical curiosities into the fold. Sam drops in a jazz and classical feel. Dave brings that Zydeco, Cajun, and old school blues vibe. Collin turns up with this kinda pop folk energy, and Russell gives us the old-timey banjo feel. For me, I’m trying to play out my singer-songwriter curiosities. There are five songwriters in the band, and we’ve gotten better at harnessing our individual creativity and bringing it to the collective.”

The boys found the perfect place to bottle those signature spirits. They retreated to Cannon Falls, MN in order to live and record at Pachyderm Studios — where Nirvana recorded In Utero — for just a week. Joined by Trampled By Turtles frontman Dave Simonett in the producer’s chair, they tracked the eleven numbers that would comprise The Ode over the course of a marathon session.

“Pachyderm is in the middle of nowhere,” he elaborates. “We’re all outdoorsy people, so the setting was super comfortable. It contributed to the laidback approach. We had this awesome chemistry with Dave. It was by far the easiest recording project we’ve done. The whole experience was super positive and uplifting.”

That feeling courses through the upbeat bluegrass gallop of the first single and title track, “The Ode.” The ebullient and enigmatic anthem serves as something of a mantra for the group, “Sing the ode my friend!” Elsewhere on the record, bluesy piano resounds through “Eat the Cake,” while rustic banjo reverberates during the anthemic “Foggy Halo.” A clever outlier, “Millennial Girl” veers towards self-aware pop with its sharp lyrics. Meanwhile, “Stay Awhile” redefines the breakup song. “I was thinking about how you can split up with somebody for various reasons, but still be in love,” he elaborates. “You split up for each other—not because of each other. It’s about the impermanence of relationships and the permanence of love.” Ultimately, the Horseshoes & Hand Grenades family grows stronger by the day. The Ode is proof. “The best part of this has been building a community,” Adam leaves off. “In this day and age, it’s wise to look for things that bring people together rather than separate them. We’re creating an extended family to get through these times together. That’s the ‘Horseshoe Crew.’ Everything happens because of that bond.”

Still Shine

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Progressive bluegrass and acoustic roots!
From the foothills that bank the Illinois river in the heart of Illinois, Still Shine has deep roots in traditional blues, bluegrass, folk, jug band, and alt-country while challenging the boundaries of these genres with a bit of rag time, progressive bluegrass, new grass and outlaw country.
Still Shine, formed in the summer of 2014, is a band of like minded top notch musicians who play original and obscure traditional down home tunes that move body and soul. These river town pluckers are sure to get your toes tapping, your boogie moving and your Shine on!

The Werks


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The Werks are a psychedelic jam band who bring together sounds from genres such as dance, funk, and rock. The Dayton-Columbus based group is signed with Aromatic Records. They have established themselves as a band who guarantees an electrifying performance for their fans. They can turn any room into a dance party by fusing wailing organ, psychedelic shredding, and bass with synths and dance beats. They come together to create their unique sound that is a blend of rock and electronic funk. The quartet created their own festival, Werk Out Music & Arts Festival, which attracts thousands of people every year. This group is not one to miss!


Listen to one of their live performances here:


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Brainchild is a local band based out of Peoria, IL. Their music combines sounds from jazz and soul, with added intensity and emotion. Their live performances are a combo of their original works, with diverse covers that blend all types of music. This year will be their twelfth straight year performing at Summer Camp Music Festival. If you have missed their performances at festivals or venues in the past, now is your chance to catch them!


Listen to some of their tracks here:

EGi & Mungion


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EGi is a progressive rock funk band composed of four members: Noe Perez, Allan Borukhovich, James Hernandez, and Dana Thompson who are currently located in Chicago. EGi composes genre-bending music that creates an incredible live performance that any audience can get down to. Their music is a combination of rock, funk, instrumental and progressive sounds. Come check them out when they stop by The Canopy Club!

Listen to one of their albums here:


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Mungion is a Chicago-based band composed of four members: Justin Reckamp, Joe Re, Sean Carolan, and Matt Kellen. Their music is a result of blending genres like rock, groove, and funk. They formed back in 2015, and have created quite a name for themselves ever since. The quartet is creative, and explores innovative components to develop their unique sound. This show is going to show live experimentation and passion. Make sure you check this one out!


Listen to them perform live here:

Old Shoe


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Old Shoe is a five person band based out of Chicago, IL. The members originate from all over the country, as far as Alaska. Their music is a blend of folk rock, psychedelic, and jam. They have performed at festivals around the country including Summer Camp, Wakarusa, and Harvest Fest. They have worked alongside artists like Keller Williams, Greensky Bluegrass, and Bruce Hornsby. They even created their own festival that has occurred six times, Shoe Fest. The band’s diverse backgrounds and influences come together to create a sound that is one in its own.



Listen to one of their songs here:



Butta is a jam band that hails from Peoria, IL. They specialize in funk and blues, and put on quite the live performance. If you haven’t seen them in the past, now is your chance! Grab your tickets now to catch them when they stop by Kenny’s Westside Pub!

Peoria Blues & Heritage Music Festival

The 29th Annual Peoria Blues and Heritage Music Festival

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September 1st & 2nd, 2017
Peoria Riverfront Festival Park
Tickets & info: PBHFest.com

The Peoria Blues and Heritage Music Festival has been a staple End-of-Summer event at Peoria’s beautiful riverfront festival park. Now in its 29th year, festival-goers will bask in the glow of the sun on the beautiful downtown peoria riverfront while they enjoy a world-class line-up of artists from blues, roots, funk, soul and everything in between. Help us bring downtown to life as the event stretches off the waterfront into bars, venue and businesses through after hours events, late night club shows and much more! Stay tuned in the coming weeks for more announcements!


Grand Nationals Friday Pre-Party

An Evening w/ BRUSHVILLE

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Brushville is a country band that is based out of Normal, IL. The band is composed of Dustin Reynolds, Kirk Ellis, Marc Broomby, and Darin Holthaus. The intense and explosive band puts on live performances that are energetic and riveting. They have been sought out by Chicago’s Country Music Festival, Country Thunder, and Country Fest. They have shared the stage with artists like Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum, The Band Perry, Brad Paisley, and many more! If you haven’t experienced their shows yet, now is your chance! Grab your tickets now!


Watch one of their music videos here:

Jagged Edge & Bobby V


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Jagged Edge is a group composed of Brandon and Brian Casey, Kyle Norman, and Richard Wingo. The Georgia-based group specializes in R&B music. You may have heard their songs Where The Party At, Promise, and Put a Little Umph In It, which were popular in the early 2000s. They have worked alongside artists like Ashanti, Gucci Mane, and Trina. If you haven’t seen them in the past now is your chance to catch them live! Make sure to grab your tickets soon.


Watch the video for their song Promise here:

Watch the video for their song Where The Party At here:


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Bobby V is a soul and R&B artist. Over the years he has toured with artists such as Lil Wayne, R Kelly, 50 Cent, and Ludacris. He has accumulated both platinum and gold records, along with No. 1 singles on 6 albums. You may have heard his song Slow Down, which was popular in the early 2000s. The Mississippi-based artist is not one to miss! Make sure to check him out when he rolls through town.


Watch the video for his song Slow Down here:

Bad Company former lead singer Brian Howe


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Brian Howe is one of rock’s legendary voices! He is the former lead singer form the band Bad Company. Once he joined, he launched the band back into the scene with sold out shows and venues all across the world. His latest CD titled, Circus Bar, was recently released, so expect to hear some new tunes! Make sure you check him out when he rolls through town!


Watch his promo video here:


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Maiden Cane were a little surprised when the video for their first original song received nearly 2000 YouTube views in under 24 hours; but this powerhouse group of veteran rockers have been creating a huge buzz in the Southwest Florida music scene since they first took the stage opening for Warrant in August of 2014.

Maiden Cane was formed in 2013 as a fusion of two of Southwest Florida’s most prestigious bands. Bass player Jim Kiefer joined forces with Shoestring Rocket guitarist Joey Gilbert to form the foundation. Keyboardist Billy Day was quickly added to increase the band’s versatility and vocalist Cliff Randi was locked in mid 2014. Local rock hero guitarist Pete Siracuse and Blues Hall of Fame drummer Michael Peck were added in 2016 to take the band to the next level. Fueled by an interest in high energy, arena rock like Boston, Journey, Styx and Bon Jovi, they set out to cover the big monster rock hits.

“Here we had the talent and range to cover some of rocks greatest music with great accuracy,” says Randi, “and a give a performance reminiscent of the original band in its heyday.”

The past experiences of these 6 powerhouse musicians includes playing alongside some of rock’s greatest heroes (REO Speedwagon, Eddie Money, Molly Hatchet, Joan Jett, Dream Theater, etc.) “While there are many cover bands out there paying tribute, the guys in Maiden Cane have lived it!” says Entertainment Coordinator and Agent Loren Berry. “They went forth on that principle, accepting only larger festival and event gigs with bigger audiences, where the setting is right for their high energy performance.”

Excited as the band was with their success playing covers, the creative urges soon kicked in and Maiden Cane began crafting original music. They recorded their first 2 original songs in mid-2015, expanding them into the realm of original artists. With a sound reminiscent of 80’s hair metal, distribution websites and local radio stations quickly took notice and put both songs in regular rotation locally and internationally over internet radio. Both songs have spent several weeks as the number 1 requested indie rock song on several internet radio charts. “I can’t get over these guys! Their original music takes me back to the music I love while putting a creative, new spin on it. They have made me a huge fan and I can’t wait to hear what they come up with next,” said concert promoter Jay Goldberg of Jay Goldberg Events and Entertainment.

“What it comes down to for us is that we are a band of brothers,” says Kiefer. “We love going out there in front of the big crowds and rocking out, and now we’ve seen that we can put together some amazing original music as well. We are excited to keep writing and go wherever that takes us!” With spots booked through 2016 opening for major acts, Maiden Cane is primed and ready to light up the stage with a decade’s tribute to arena style rock with some awesome originals peppered in. “Playing the classics is awesome,” says Gilbert, “But there is no better feeling than seeing a crowd rocking out to your own song. This way we can do both. That’s what Maiden Cane is all about!”


The Pretty Reckless


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The Pretty Reckless is a rock and alternative band from New York City. The band is composed of Taylor Momsen, Ben Phillips, Mark Damon, and Jamie Perkins. Their live performances have created a fan base both here and overseas, thanks to their riveting music and energetic stage presence. Make sure to check them out when they roll through Peoria!


Watch the video for one of their songs here:


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THEM EVILS is a rock and roll band based out of Las Vegas. They are inspired by artists like Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, and Queens of the Stone Age. The group is made up of Jordan Griffin, Jake Massanari, and David Delaney. The trio has an undeniable stage energy and their music can get anybody moving to the beat. Come check them out on May 16!


Watch one of their music videos here:

Ticketing information:


GA Tickets on sale Friday, March 3rd at 10AM CT
VIP Tickets on sale Tuesday, February 27th at 10AM CT

VIP Ultimate Package Includes ($99):
– One general admission ticket
– VIP early entry into the venue
– Exclusive VIP viewing area located close to the stage (limited to VIP package only)
– Limited edition tour poster autographed by The Pretty Reckless
– Specially designed TPR bandana
– TPR cinch bag
– Exclusive TPR tour merchandise item
– Commemorative VIP laminate
– Very limited availability

VIP Tour Package Includes ($65):
– One general admission ticket
– VIP early entry into the venue
– Limited edition tour poster autographed by The Pretty Reckless
– Specially designed TPR bandana
– TPR cinch bag
– Exclusive TPR tour merchandise item
– Commemorative VIP laminate
– Limited availability

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