Category Archives: Chicagoland festival entertainers

Best Chicago Bands Perfect for Your Event

The right band is the highlight of an event, tying event details together and leaving guests talking well after the end of the event. Fortunately for everyone (and anyone) in Chicagoland, the Chicago area is full of quality musicians and bands perfect for any atmosphere and event theme.

The best part of this list is that these bands are just the start—of an endless list of fantastic Chicago bands AND of an event planning process that results in a great event with outstanding tunes.

BBI

Energizing audiences around the globe with their universal crowd appeal, BBI is unparalleled by any other regional band.

BBI possess an ebullient live spirit that cuts across ages, races and backgrounds. It’s not just the accolades of great songs, an unforgettable stage show and being well dressed that have elevated BBI to superior status. BBI connects with their audience in the most fundamental way: inspiring people to have a good time!

Banjos Buddies

Our Banjo Band, based in the Chicagoland area & is one of the most unique and exciting musicial attractions around today! They are not just a band, but a very visual, personable, top entertaining group of musicians who play to please their audiences. The Banjo buddies will provide you with rip-roaring Dixieland, music and fun from the Roaring Twenties, the Swing era, your favorite Big Band tunes, sing-a-longs and much more.

Christopher’s Project

Since its inception, this group has put together quite an impressive resume. The group has opened for national and legendary acts as diverse as the Temptations, George Benson, David Sanborn, The Supremes and Jennifer Holiday. They have also performed at corporate functions for notable Corporations such as Northwestern Mutual, Johnson Wax, Quad Graphics and Time Warner. They have also performed at The Grand Opening Ceremony for The Midwest Express Convention Center and at the political galas for The Governors National Conference and The Mayoral Candidacy Party.

The group also performs for festivals, special events, weddings and private parties. They are repeat performers at some of Milwaukee’s annual festivals, Riversplash, Summerfest, Rainbow Summer and Bastille Days to name a few.

For a lighter side of music Christopher’s Quartet would be the perfect entertainment selection. The Quartet is a smooth, melodic infusion of Jazz delivered by four soulful musicians. The Quartet is comprised of keyboards, drums, bass and saxophone.

Big O Blues Band

Big O has been performing blues and soul from Florida to Nevada. He has played the Wisconsin State Fair, Summerfest, various benefits and clubs, and the band has been voted the 2006 & 2007 Wisconsin Area Music Industry Blues Group of the Year.

Big O is one of the greatest Blues and R&B singers. His expertise at the keyboard comes from playing since he was a teen. The band has been referred to as “the epitome of blues”.

Big O received national attention with his two-song CD titled “A Mother’s Salute”. It is currently being used as a fundraiser for better communication systems between our military in Iraq and their families.

Big O is guaranteed to please. He has fun at what he does and he’s proud of his fans. His love of performing shows in his music and appearance. He plays a wide variety of music to keep you singing and dancing and always wanting more.

Dennis Keith Band

The finest top-tier performers have over 20 years experience cranking out incredible high-energy shows, packing the dance floor, and making all elements of your party easy. The Dennis Keith Band has been described as versatile, elegant, and fun. This small but mighty party band can adapt their original sound to any occasion while still performing those favorites that keep the dance floor full.

Eddie Butts Band

The Eddie Butts Band delights audiences at festivals, concerts, night clubs, weddings, and many other corporate and private entertainment events throughout the Midwest, delivering an exciting blend of R&B, pop, jazz, and more.  Eddie is well known as a premier vocalist, and when you combine his smoky baritone with the highly-praised musicianship and vocal talents of this polished and professional band, it is easy to see why the Eddie Butts Band is considered a must-see — and must have — favorite.

Eddie Harrison Orchestra

“Hey Everybody, Let’s Have Some Fun” That quote from the song “Let the Good Times Roll” is the Eddie Harrison Jump Stars Orchestra motto for every performance whether it’s a wedding reception, corporate event, charity fund raiser or summer festival. From the boogie woogie piano and wailing sax of the past through the recent great dance favorites…”everybody has some fun”.

Whether you need the small band or the orchestra, it’s a ‘big time’ for everybody. Eddie and the musicians in his band have played throughout the U.S. and Europe for festivals, clubs, cruise ships and private events. Eddie and his musicians have accompanied some of the world’s finest musical artists including Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin and Ray Charles. Eddie is a member of the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau and the Association of Professional Orchestra Leaders.

Based in Chicago the band has performed live music for 17 years at wedding receptions, corporate events, charity fund raisers, conventions, festivals and night clubs. The band can provide music for dancing, dinner, cocktail parties, ceremony and concerts.

Endless Summer Band

With unmatched musical variety—smash hits from the 1940s through the 2000s—Endless Summer Band has a huge song list that ensures the dance floor stays full all night. They will take requests!

Endless Summer Band takes great pride in their reputation as one of the finest vocal groups in the business. Four lead vocalists provide much greater musical diversity! ESB’s instrumental ensemble knows how to reproduce the exact original arrangements and—more importantly—they perform with as much energy and feeling as the original artists. As an option, ESB will add as many horn players as you would like, and/or bring along The ESB Dancers!

ESB takes only minimal intermission time, (15 minute breaks) throughout the evening, so their DJ keeps the party jumpin’ with an entire evening of nonstop music!

Endless Summer Band specializes in event entertainment, performing at over 160 special events every year. Most of their engagements are word of mouth referrals from other delighted clients, and no other band is asked back for more return engagements. Now in their 12th year of business, ESB treats every event like the most important event ever, and they treat every client with the utmost courtesy and respect.

KOJO

Feel the pulsating beat of red-hot reggae music, and taste the tantalizing flavors of calypso, ska, soca, French cadass and much much more with Milwaukee’s Kojo!

Kojo has been bringing da real riddim of the Caribbean to Milwaukee for years, and has maintained a level of excellence that is unmatched by any other reggae band in Wisconsin. Kojo has won six WAMI awards and has been nominated well over ten times. With members fresh out of the warm clear blue waters of the Caribbean Sea, and hard-hitting reggae beats, you can feel warm sand under your feet, a gentle island breeze on your cheek, and rastaman vibrations. The sweat trickling down your spine won’t be from the warm Wisconsin winters, it’ll be from you dancing till the cows come home. So if you want to have a skankin’ good time, without a skankin’ big price, come and join Kojo because WE JAMMIN!

Late Night Band

Late Nite Band is truly a party looking for a place to play. That’s how a thank you letter from a recent client described this highly energetic ten-piece dance band.

The group features a rhythm section of keyboards, guitar, bass and drums; a three-piece horn section with trumpet, alto sax and tenor sax, and three dynamic singers (male and female). These outstanding musicians perform an uncompromising variety of dance hits from Motown, rhythm & blues, retro, disco, funk, rock & roll, contemporary pop ballads, Big Band and jump swing, all guaranteed to turn any ordinary party or club engagement into an unforgettable event.

Produced by David Farley and Grant Cramer of Orchestra Thirty Three Entertainment, Inc., the Late Nite Band features the extraordinary talents of musicians and singers that earned accolades from Chicago’s top critics performing for standing-room-only crowds in the critically acclaimed Rupert’s 33 Club in suburban Chicago during the late 1980s.

In 1989, the Late Nite Band followed the rest of it’s musical family, The Orchestra 33, into the private party and night club scene to enjoy further success electrifying black-tie events, corporate parties and celebrations around Chicagoland and tri-state areas.

Whenever there is need for highly trained professionals, fully qualified to rock, wail and incite frenzied activity among even the most timid of patrons, the Late Nite Band will keep your guests on the dance floor until the closing lights come up.

Mambo All-Stars

The Mambo All-Stars is an energetic dynamic band which plays salsa, merengue, cumbia, cha-cha, and boleros, a complete variety of all the Latin dance rhythyms.

The band performs at various public venues such as Summerdance at Grant Park, the Adler Planetarium, the Taste of Chicago, and many corporate events. They have also been featured at the Shark Ball Benefit at the Shedd Aquarium, and the Rita Hayworth Alzheimers Benefit at the Field Museum.

Their material is from both classic and modern Latino artists such as Tito Puente Olga Tanion’, Celia Cruz, Ray Barreto, Sonora Poncena, India, Cubanisimo, and Perez Prado.

Jose` Valdes, leader of the group, has worked with such greats as Jose Fajardo, Tito Puente, and Eddie Palmieri. The artistry is exciting with driving montuno rhythms and a fiery percussion section which always gets everyone dancing.

Pamela Rose and Windy City Country

Pamela Rose and Windy City Country brings a fresh and energetic flavor into the live music scene. This terrific group is consists of five “smokin” musicians and singers that bring a variety of local and national acclaim to the stage.

Their unique style re-creates many of the classics as well as the contemporary country and rock and roll hits that so many enjoy today. The members of Windy City Country are all full-time musicians with loads of energy and talent who love country music – and it really shows! When Pamela put the group together she asked some of the strongest and busiest musicians in Chicago to be on her team.

Their repertoire is versatile and covers a wide musical spectrum of country and rock covers, as well as original songs for entertainment at corporate events, clubs, special events and festivals. Pamela Rose’s strong reputation in corporate and family entertainment comes from understanding audiences and clients. She understands what clients are looking for when it comes to great live music and how to present it. Pamela Rose and Windy City Country was designed specifically to reach contemporary country music fans around the USA – from casual to corporate.

Petra and the Recession 7 Band

Petra van Nuis (pronounced Pay-tra van Nouse) is a Chicago-based jazz vocalist who has been described in Downbeat Magazine as having “a light, gorgeous, and fairly delicate voice…a gift for melody and plenty of rhythmic confidence.”

A Chicagoan since 2003, Petra sings at all the finest jazz venues in town including the Jazz Showcase, the Green Mill, Katerina’s, Andy’s Jazz Club, Fitzgerald’s, the City Winery, and the Old Town School of Folk Music. Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs has presented Petra’s groups at the Chicago Cultural Center and Chicago Summer Dance. The Jazz Institute of Chicago has featured Petra’s Recession Seven band at the Chicago Jazz Festival and Jazz City. Along with six other Chicago jazz artists, she was nominated for the “Best Jazz Entertainer 2013” for the 33rd Annual Chicago Music Awards.

Germany’s Jazzpodium Magazine hails Petra’s sixteen year musical collaboration with her husband, guitarist Andy Brown, as “a magical musical dialogue, which can only partially be described as blind understanding.”

Rick Lindy and the Wild Ones

Rick Lindy has a voice as big as Texas… Dave Eliot plays tasty, prolific guitar licks, Eric T Stoliker has the ‘magic touch’ on the upright bass and Joe Smith never misses a beat on the drums. This line up offers high energy that captivates audiences of all ages.

Performing Rock and Roll hits of the 1950’s, 60’s as well as Surf, Rock-a-billy, and original songs.

Roots Rock Society

Roots Rock Society, founded in December of 1986, strongly believes in keeping their heritage and culture alive with their energetic live show and innovative blend of reggae, calypso, soul, zouk and other rhythms of the African Diaspora.

RRS with the CBS News Crew Hailed as Chicago legends by Tribune’s Metromix TV and Chicago’s Premier Reggae Band by WGN Morning News with their one of a kind sound, sometimes being described as tropical soul or “root soul.”

In 2003 with the release of their award-winning CD Riddim to Riddim, RRS reached one million viewers and listeners with television and radio performances, matched with articles and ads in newspapers and magazines. Critics have labeled RRS Nation’s Best.

What makes RRS stand out are their live performances as well as their original recorded material. Timeless tracks, smooth vocals, vibrant instrumentals matched with exotic rhythms and delightful lyrics performed in English with Spanish and French accents. It is a fine mixture of quality and care with a healing effect leaving you wanting more. Their 1997 CD Again reached over 200 radio stations worldwide. Play lists and letters were coming in from the US and places as far away as France, Africa, New Guinea, Germany, Poland, Spain and Ireland.

Hoyle Brothers

The Hoyle Brothers’ brand of genuine country music draws from the genre’s deepest traditions–lyrics that speak universal truths, melody lines that melt your heart and two-step rhythms that scoot your boots.

Since the start of weekly residencies at Chicago’s The Hideout and The Empty Bottle in 2002, The Hoyle Brothers have earned respect and recognition from a growing number of fans and music critics in Chicago and beyond for the band’s purity of purpose and first-rate musicianship. With a classic, five-piece line-up, The Hoyle Brothers help create a dance- and fun-friendly, country-style atmosphere to any event.

The Mix

Every Party band says they are the best, but seriously… with talent, versatility, high-energy stage presence and the ability to cover 9 decades of music, The Mix really is. Ok, at least we think so!

THE MIX accurately recreates everything from old classics to the current chart hits. Seamless song transitions keep the dance floor filled all night long. Looking for a particular theme, style or era for your event or venue? The Mix has it covered. Every style, authentic.

The Moods

Award-winning recording and performing artists since 1995, entertaining across the country and abroad, The Moods are a singing group consisting of three guys dedicated to the fine art of harmony and choreography. They’re known for their vocal stylings, but are equally accomplished in theater and on the big screen. They have collectively written songs, performed and arranged background vocals for other artists and television and radio commercials.

They have performed with and opened for such major talents as The Temptations, The Spinners, Mary Wells, Bernie Mac, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, The Stylistics, The Impressions, The Chi-Lites, and the list goes on and on. We would love to work with you to personalize your special event and make it a Vocal Experience Never Forgotten.

The Wave Runners

Having a Rock & Roll beach party? The Wave Runners feature music from Jimmy Buffett, The Beach Boys, The Safaris, The Ventures, Harry Belafonte and More! They will entertain your audience with Acapella Vocals, a Flaming Drum Stick Show and Audience Participation.

Tropixplosion

In essence, the ultimate Island party. But much more than the standard Steel Drum band, they play an amazing variety of music as well ? not only your tropical favorites, but many reggae classics and pop/rock party songs re-arranged to feel like the Islands. New hits, classic rockers, and many other surprises, all performed with an exotic twist!

TROPIXPLOSION most frequently performs as a 6 or 7-pc band, but can provide groups of any size, from a solo performer with backing tracks, on up to their full 9-piece extravaganza with professional lighting and special effects! TROPIXPLOSION is the ideal music solution for ANY size venue, city concert, or event looking to create an exciting summer party any time of year!

Twist and Shout

Actor, singer, and recording artist, Tony Kishman doubles as featured performer & producer of TWIST AND SHOUT.

Tony starred for six years in both the national and international tours of Broadway’s smash hit, Beatlemania.

Kishman is regarded by “Beatlemaniacs” as the world’s best McCartney look-alike/sound-alike. He has been performing his award winning tribute to the most successful band of all time around the globe for more than a decade, bringing the music and the magic of the Beatles to a new generation.

25+ Summer Festival Entertainment Ideas

LED EntertainersA summer Chicago festival is a much-anticipated event especially after a cold winter—or it should be, if you have the right draws that attract a crowd. From the moment your attendees are invited to the moment they leave, that anticipation should be the forefront of their thoughts as they look forward to the next treat or the next act. It’s all about creating the right atmosphere; and it can be, if you have the right combination of food, main stage and atmospheric entertainment.

At the center of every decision is the attendees; the demographic of guests should dictate the choice of venue, food, and entertainers (a professional entertainment agent can assist with the latter decisions). The right combination is the key; the perfect mixture of main stage and atmospheric entertainment can create an atmosphere that makes your guests enjoy this year’s festival—and ready for next year’s music festival.

children's entertainer

Kids

  1. Face painters
  2. Magicians
  3. Jugglers
  4. Comedians
  5. Children’s singers

 

Bands

  1. Jazz
  2. Dance
  3. Steel Drum
  4. Mariachi
  5. Reggae
  6. Country
  7. Motown
  8. Tribute Acts (i.e. Beatles, Frank Sinatra, etc.)
  9. Blues
  10. Latin

event entertainers Mardi Gras entertainers

Atmosphere

  1. Glow-in-the-dark entertainers
  2. Barbershoppe Quartet
  3. Aerialists
  4. Carnivale characters
  5. Stiltwalkers
  6. Showgirls
  7. Gangsters
  8. Roaring 20’s entertainers
  9. Tarot and Psychic entertainer
  10. Mimes
  11. Caricature artists