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Word on the Street – Aug. 23

Wait for it…Wait for it…

The official Chicago Country Music Festival headliner announcement is expected very soon. How soon is “very soon” is the question. Taunting fans, yet again, festival organizers posted on the event’s official Facebook fan page wall, “Headliners will be announced very soon! Stay tuned!”, early this morning.

While we don’t know when, or where, the final announcement will be made, we do know is country music celebrity Kix Brooks has been tapped for the CMA Songwriter Series.  The traveling Country Music Association series will again join the Americana Stage festivities during the two-day, lakefront festival. Joining Brooks on the bill is the ’90 hit maker, David Lee Murphy, newcomers The Band Perry and songwriter Bob DiPiero.

Old Town School breaks new ground

The Old Town School of Folk Music, a stomping ground for many Chicago-based established and aspiring artists and musicians, has broke ground on what will become their newest, state-of-the-art facility. Directly across the street from their existing Lincoln Square location, the new complex will feature acoustically-engineered classrooms, dance space,  a performance venue and is slated to open in fall 2011.

Way to go Joes!

As the summer season starts to fade and the concerts head back inside, Joe’s Bar was busy planning a full, fall-lineup to help bust those back to school blues.

Country music stars James Otto (9/24), Chris Young (10/15), Justin Moore (10/22), Steel Magnolia (11/19), Easton Corbin (11/19) Jake Owen (12/3) and Josh Thompson (12/9) will carry the north side venue’s lineup through the end of the year. In addition to these “known” artists, a handful of aspiring country artists and songwriters are set thought-out the season including “on the brink of mainstream” artist Troy Olsen, who will test his Joe’s Bar wings on Sept. 16.

Just announced, country music sensation Laura Bell Bundy will headline the next “Live Country” concert hosted by US99 and Joe’s Bar. Tickets will be available through the radio station.

Unconventional Concerts

While the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre and Joe’s Bar are given for country music concerts in Chicago, it can be a refreshing change-of-pace when nontraditional venues become temporary honky-tonks or well, something close to it. Equipped with bag chairs and picnic baskets, concert-goers enjoyed an evening with country music mainstays Lee Ann Womack and Mark Chesnutt at the west suburban Morton Arboretum on Aug.7. In addition to the amazing talent of Womack and Chesnutt, the combined beauty of the park, natural fragrance and picturesque sunset make for quite the show.  Who says country isn’t classy!

Pack your chairs again!

On Sunday, country fans can join artists Cowboy Troy, Cross County Junction, The Lost Trailers, Jimmy Wayne and fellow “party animals” at the near-west suburban Brookfield Zoo for the return of the much anticipated Zoo Tunes country series. This concert series is a great way to get the family out to enjoy a great venue and an excellent country concert. Concert admission is free with paid admission to the Zoo.

Congrats to Lisa & Ray:

By now, it’s well known that US99 morning hosts, Lisa Dent and Ramblin’ Ray were asked to perform “Take Me Out To the Ball Game” during the seventh inning stretch at Wrigley Field last Thursday. Unfortunately, I wasn’t in the park to sing-along with them but all-in-all it appears the north-side stint went without a hitch. (at least there wasn’t any resignations announced at the radio station.) Congrats you two, you deserve it.

Watch it on YouTube:

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-nnhcnMZZjA

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