By Lara Mondae

The TOMORROW NEVER KNOWS (TNKfest.com) music festival returns to Chicago to bring us light, or more precisely, to enlighten us with live performances by some brilliant musicians. It’s hosted at a few of Chicago’s most comfortable venues: Metro, Hideout, Schubas and Lincoln Hall, Wednesday, January 17 – Sunday, January 21.

Two performances I’m especially excited about are:

Ryley Walker and Bill MacKay @ Lincoln Hall, Saturday, Jan 20th. Warm your ears with what seems like a higher form of musical language between these two artists. The venue is an exceptionally sound-equipped room that will showcase perfectly the style and poignant sounds from these ridiculously talented musicians.

The duo’s second collaborative record, SpiderBeetleBee, is a beautiful ride through some wild and gorgeous notes. Clearly doing a residency on my turntable these days.

I have such great admiration for Ryley and Bill, independently as well as on the above collaborative project. “The Roundabout” is a song we play here at 93XRT from Ryley’s recently released Golden Sings That Have Been Sung. He heads out on tour with Calexico, making a stop at Chicago’s Thalia Hall April, 25, 2018. Fun fact: Lin Brehmer uses a slice of a Ryley Walker song to open up the WXRT Morning Show.

Bill MacKay is a highly-regarded guitarist, composer, muti instrumentalist based in Chicago. He recently released his solo record, Esker. He and Tim Kinsella are hosting a January residency called Sun Storm at The Hideout.

Concert headliner Rayland Baxter, along with Liz Cooper and The Stampede, will make January 20th a festive night for sure!

Diane Coffee @ Lincoln Hall, Friday January 19 is the other star on my list. My Friend Fish is one of my favorite records. “Poor Man Dan” from Diane Coffee’s new record Peel, is out now.

Ron Gallo, Yoko & The Oh No’s, also worthy artists, kick off this night to remember.

You won’t be sorry you braved the cold. See you there- Lara


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