When you live in Chicago, it’s easy to take for granted how much access we have to incredible music, talent and events. 2018 was filled with house music parties and events that are unlike any other. We are fortunate to be able to party any night of the week with a plethora of amazing DJs to keep us grooving on dance floors across the city.
Here’s a list of some of my favorite parties and events from 2018!
I love Wednesday’s at Renaissance Bronzeville
Each Wednesday, Soulful House Music fills the air at Renaissance Bronzveille. RFK Promotions brings some of the best soulful DJs for a night of great music and good vibes.
Silver Room Block Party
One of the highlights of the summer, the Silver Room Block Party never disappoints. A day long party in Hyde Park with great food, great vendors and even better music. What I love about this event is how much it feels like community, no matter how large the crowds are.
Hyde Park Brew Fest
This year’s Hyde Park Brew Fest was one for the record books! So many beautiful people filled the streets of Hyde Park for a family friendly day of music, games, culture, cocktails and brews! My personal highlight was an off the meter set by DJ Jazzy Jeff!! To see an entire sea of people grooving to his classic hit, "Summertime", made my heart melt. These are the images they don’t show you on the news. This is the Chicago I know and love!
Soulfrica Sunday’s featuring special guest Jamie 3:26
Chicago Native, Jamie 3:26 played Renaissance Bronzeville and shook it to its foundation! It’s great when your hometown faves come home to play and Jamie didn’t disappoint. His all night set was full of bangers that had the crowd literally screaming all night long! The energy was absolutely electric!
Chosen Few Picnic and Music Festival 2018
The 28th Annual Chosen Few Picnic and Music Festival is another must attend event in the summer. This year’s lineup featured hometown faves Mz. Nicky D’Vine, Ralphi Rosario, Sheree Hicks and Teresa Griffith. In addition this year also featured the Basement Boys (DJ Spen, Karizma and Teddy Douglas). With a Wakanda Forever theme this year, the CFP was a beautiful expression of culture, community and great music. The subsequent Pre and post parties kept me dancing all weekend long!
Day 2 Night
The brainchild of Vick Lavender and Terry James, Day 2 Night was a day filled with great vibes and music. It was my 1st year attending but will not be my last. As exhausted as I was after the Chosen Few Picnic, Day 2 Night, offered a completely different experience as guests lined the harbor with picnic tables, chairs, food and cocktails all while enjoying soulful and eclectic house music with the lakefront in the background.
Sunday’s at The Wise Owl
Hosted by Yvette Magllon, the Wise Owl is a bar/restaurant with an outstanding patio that hosts Sunday house events during the afternoon. The food is fantastic and Yvette does an amazing job of bringing in DJs and Sound Conductors for an afternoon of the best in soulful, Latin, Afro-Cuban house music each and every week.
Love N Lust Party Series
The brainchild of Dee Jay Alicia, the Love and Lust party series was a compilation of her favorite soulful house DJs, some spoken word and an evening filled with love. Held at the beautiful “Ohh Wee Sweet Tea”, guests were treated to delectable desserts, specialty cocktails and cigars each and every month. Featuring DJs Steve Maxwell, Nicky D’Vine and Kris “Jus” Denson, Love & Lust created a different vibe and atmosphere for those looking for a more relaxed and sexy environment.
Black Coffee at the Mid
Black Coffee was worth the wait at the Mid. We waited a couple of hours to finally hear Black coffee but when he took to the tables, he unleashed an energy that made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. The music coupled with an incredible light show by the Mid, made for a night that I didn’t want to end.
I love Weds International Series with Monique Bingham, Osunlade, DJ Spinna, Ian Friday
Another RFK Promotions event, the I love Wed’s International series brought some incredible acts to Chicago this year. Monique Bingham, Osunlade, DJ Spinna, and Ian Friday and more gave audiences something new to enjoy each and every month.
Robert Williams BirthdayBash w/Louie Vega
The House community gathered to celebrate a legend in this genre, Robert Williams and they did it in style bringing Louie Vega in town. Anyone who was anyone in this scene was in attendance. Artists, DJs, Producers, etc., all came to celebrate.
The 2018 Debauchery Ball
The Brainchild of artist, Khari B, the Debauchery Ball is a night filled with mystery and intrigue. House Music, eroticism, and sensuality beautifully blend together for a night unlike no other in the Chicago House Scene.
Summer Oasis Music Festival
Although it wasn’t held in Chicago, the Summer Oasis Music Festival featured some of Chicago’s best DJs and sound conductors for a weekend glamping experience. This year featured Chicago DJs, Celeste the DJ Alexander, Bigg Easy, Kris “Jus” Denson and Vick Lavender. Chicago represented very well as patrons and performers this year!
March Madness at Renaissance Bronzeville with Sheree Hicks, Aries Adora, Jon Pierce and Black Widow
This year, RFK Promotions dedicated the entire month of March to showcasing Chicago Based artists. Each week a different Chicago artist performed to packed houses. It was a great moment to celebrate our hometown faves who make the music we dance to every week. I was honored to be one of the performers as well!
A relatively new party in the City, the Ascension team is quickly becoming known for throwing some amazing parties with great vibes and even better music. The Ascension team consists of DJ Boxx, Redd Diva Promotions, DJ Whip and Toni Marie. Each month, Ascension brings a different vibe to the Chicago House Music Scene with a variety of DJs each and every month.
House Club Tour
Now in its 4th year, the House Club Tour replicates the bar crawls you typically see on the north side. As they say, “Half the fun is getting there”, the house club tour allow patrons to “get on the bus” and travel to 10 venues to hear over 30 DJs in one night. The tour is flexible as patrons can stay at a venue as long as they like since buses run continuously every 15 minutes all night. It’s a favorite event, especially during the week of the Chosen Few Picnic where the city is on a house music high! It’s a great way to hear your favorite DJs in one night!
Hot Lunch Mix @Daley Plaza
What city has an entire dance party in the middle of the workday! The Chosen Few DJs hosts this monthly event in the heart of Downtown Chicago. I playfully call it my “recess” time because it’s a non-stop dance party for your lunchbreak. It’s the perfect way to take a break from a hectic workday and dance some energy off! The sight of so many house music fans in work attire dancing under the Picasso before returning to work is amazing!
Thursdays @Pier 31
#Summertimechi…There’s nothing like it! Enjoying house music with the beach in the background is the brainchild of RFK Promotions. Each Thursday, they host a dance party at the pier which has become a must attend event each and every week during the summer. With different guest DJs each and every week, they are able to keep the vibe fresh because there’s always something new.
2018 WAS A YEAR OF INCREDIBLE GROWTH!
This was also an incredible year for me personally. Musically, I released my 1st Solo Single, House Is and reached the top of the charts. House Is was also included in this year’s “Best of 2018” in the Soulful House and House Tracks Categories. To watch people connect and dance to my music is such a gratifying feeling. I’m so happy so many of you connected with this song which serves as a ode to the music I love.
As a writer and music blogger, I was chosen to be the official blogger for both the Chosen Few Picnic and the Summer Oasis Music Festival. Black Widow’s Web grew tremendously this year with increased viewership, social media followers and subscribers. I’m so incredibly grateful for your continued support as I continue to tell the stories of the Chicago House Music Scene now. I also launched my collection of apparel and merchandise for the house music lover! Thank you to everyone who has shopped in the store and rocked the apparel!
Top Articles of 2018
Chosen Few Festival Series
Summer Oasis Festival Series
The Weekend Wrap-up (Ascension & Robert Williams B-Day Celebration)
Top Interviews of 2018
Terry Hunter & Mike Dunn interview Black Widow
Thank you to every DJ, Artist, Producer, and label owner who took time to speak with me this year. Thank you to everyone for continuing to read and share my blogs and articles. Black Widow’s Web has grown because of your support! 2019 is shaping up to be another incredible year full of new music, growth and expansion and of course more incredible content. Thank you for making 2018 absolutely outstanding!
See You on a Dance Floor!