As the last snowflakes melt throughout the city, the live music scene is gaining momentum in Chicago, paving the way for what will certainly be an epic festival season in the summer. And while we can’t wait for festivals like Lollapalooza, the Windy City Smoke Out and more, there are some amazing shows coming to Chicago this month and at some historic venues.
From a couple big nights at the United Center with John Mayer, to Olivia Rodrigo’s highly anticipated 2-night residency at the Aragon Ballroom which sold-out in seconds, there are some huge shows coming to a venue near you in April.
Check out our list of the 5 can’t miss concerts in Chicago in April!
Fans packed Boston’s legendary TD Garden for a cheerful night of live music with performances from the Jonas Brothers, Black Eyed Peas, Sean Paul, Saweetie, Bazzi and more.
BY TER STAFF
Boston was burnin’ up on Sunday night with the Jonas Brothers and the return of the KISS 108 Jingle Ball, and although the night was without one of its co-headliners, the Jingle Ball managed to still deliver an incredible night of live music!
Days leading up to the Boston date of iHeartRadio’s annual Jingle Bell tour, a wrench was thrown into the plans when one of the lineup’s biggest acts, Doja Cat, had to cancel her appearance due to a COVID outbreak amongst her team. Organizers later replaced Doja’s performance with a late addition, as Jamaican recording artist Sean Paul stepped up to the plate to fill her shoes.
Even without Doja Cat, the show went on because of the Boston lineup’s immensely talented cast of musicians. Fans on Sunday night witnessed memorable performances from some of biggest names in Top 40 like Saweetie, the Black Eyed Peas, Tate McRae, Bazzi, Sean Paul, Tai Verdes, Dixie D’Amelio and of course the three stars of the night, Nick, Joe and Kevin, the Jonas Brothers.
Up first for the night was TikTok superstar turned emerging pop-star, Dixie D’Amelio. With only a few singles under her belt at this point, D’Amelio performed a mini-set to get the evening started, including her debut single “Be Happy” and of course her catchy holiday record, “Naughty List”, for the Jingle Ball crowd.
Following Dixie’s kick-off, a number of other emerging stars blessed the stage for the packed New England crowd, including Tai Verdes, Tate McRae and Bazzi. Tai Verdes performed tracks like “Drugs”, “Stuck in the Middle” and his viral hit “A-O-K”, showing off his endurance with his high energy performance. Next up, fans were losing their mind with Bazzi, the most established artist among the most emerging names who kicked off the Jingle Ball on Sunday night. From opening his 15-minute set with “Paradise” to tracks like “Mine” and his Camila Cabello-assisted single “Beautiful”, Bazzi had Boston singing along throughout the performance.
Although Bazzi was a tough act to follow, Tate McRae delivered, performing songs like “Bad Ones”, “stupid” and her breakout 2020 hit, “you broke me first”. Dancing throughout her performance in a shiny gray outfit, McRae sparkled on the big stage.
Despite being half-time, the night took no breaks. Moments after McRae waved goodbye to her fans, the Black Eyed Peas turned the energy up to a completely new level. If you forgot how big the Black Eyed Peas are, they quickly reminded you with their years of hits. With records like “Boom Boom Pow”, “Push It” and “I Gotta Feeling”, to name a few, BEP brought the party to the TD Garden last night.
With anticipation building to the Jingle Ball’s headlining performance, fans enjoyed 20-minute sets from Saweetie and Sean Paul. Saweetie twerked through the set while performing some of her recent singles like “Tap In” and “Best Friend”. Although her best friend, Doja Cat, was quarantining in a hotel room due to COVID protocols, Saweetie only needed a microphone to put on a great set. Following Saweetie, Doja Cat’s last-minute replacement, Sean Paul, stepped in as a bonus for the Boston crowd. Paul brought Jamaica to New England with his biggest tracks like “Get Busy” and “Temperature”.
Last and certainly not least, the Jonas Brothers, put an exclamation mark on an already memorable night. Performing hits, new and old, the JoBros had fans singing along to hits like “Sucker”, “Leave Before You Love Me” and “Burnin’ Up”. If Jonas Brothers’ decades of hits weren’t enough, the guys also treated Boston to a cover of Nick’s solo hit, “Jealous”, as well as their Christmas record “Like It’s Christmas”.
The headlining set alone was worth the price of admission and Nick, Joe and Kevin had Sunday night feelings like Christmas on the East Coast. Fans already can’t wait for both the Jonas Brothers and the Jingle Ball to return to Massachusetts.
The Allstate Arena and 103.5 KISS FM also hosted performances from Saweetie, Black Eyed Peas, AJR, Bazzi and more on Tuesday night.
BY TER STAFF
As shown by the energetic sold-out crowd, Chicago music fans couldn’t wait for the return of iHeartRadio and 103.5 KISS FM‘s annual Jingle Ball. Returning to Rosemont’s Allstate Arena, but with new COVID-19 protocol, the Jingle Ball brought an all-star cast of performers across several genres to make up for an unfortunate year off.
One immediate highlight from Tuesday night’s performances was the cast of musicians that blessed the Allstate Arena and Chicago’s Jingle Ball for the first time. Not only did the lineup’s two biggest performers (Doja Cat, Lil Nas X) perform at Chicago’s Jingle Ball for their first time, but the undercard also welcomed new additions like Dixie D’Amelio and Tate McRae. Of course fans were excited for Bazzi and AJR’s return, but the new blood was definitely a reason fans sold out this year’s show well in advance.
From the moment doors opened until the night’s headlining sets, energy was high throughout the packed arena. The night’s opening performers like Dixie D’Amelio, Tate McRae and Bazzi rewarded fans for arriving on time with short-but-sweet performances. Dixie D’Amelio understood the assignment by staying on theme with a performance of her Liam Payne assisted holiday single, “Naughty List”. D’Amelio, who turned her Tik-Tok empire into a music career, also performed her biggest song to date, “Be Happy” before saying goodbye to her Chicago fans.
Bazzi, who is no stranger to the Jingle Ball Tour, also got the mood going with his biggest singles to date, including “Paradise”, “Beautiful” and “Mine”, which fans sang along to from start to finish.
Perhaps the best performance of the night’s undercard was Tate McRae who showed off her impressive vocals and equally talented dancing skills throughout her 5-track set. Tuesday night marked McRae’s return to the Windy City after blowing fans away at Lollapalooza this past summer.
Throughout the second act of the Jingle Ball’s return, fans were treated to energetic group performances from AJR and Saweetie. Although Saweetie had fans twerking and dancing throughout the venue with songs like “Best Friend” and “Tap In”, it was AJR that burned the house down. The indie pop trio of Adam, Jack and Ryan Met are no strangers to the Jingle Ball, and they go all out, even in an abbreviated performance. One has to wonder how they can have stamina to survive a full set and tour of their own (which will kick off next year with a Chicago date on the schedule).
Next up, Doja Cat did her best to fit in as many as her hits from the past three years as physically possible. With major records like “Say So”, “Juicy”, “Like That”, “Get Into It”, “Kiss Me More” and “You Right”, there was no shortage of hits for her Chicago fans. Doja has yet to announced a 2022 tour, but when she does be sure to get your tickets fast because she puts on a must-see performance, even when sharing the stage with so many other artists.
Although Doja Cat is a hard act to follow, the Black Eyed Peas brought the party to Chi-town with their enormous catalog of hits. From “Boom Boom Pow” to “I Got A Feeling”, the will.i.am led group only brought bangers to their co-headlining set.
Years of hits from the Black Eyed Peas could only be matched by one other artist on the lineup, that being Lil Nax X. The “Old Town Road” overnight star quickly proved he wasn’t a one-hit-wonder with hits like “Industry Baby”, “Holiday” and “MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)”, all of which were performed for the sold-out crowd on Tuesday night. Lil Nas X alone was worth the price of admission and combined with Doja Cat and the Black Eyed Pease, the three were perfect acts to close out an especially memorable night of live music.
The Jingle Ball Tour will resume this upcoming weekend with stops on the East Coast. Check out the tour’s official website for more info.
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