Highlights of Ravinia Pop Concerts, 2017

By Mary Simon

Ravinia is the oldest outdoor music festival in the country. And, it's right here in our backyard, so take advantage of this great resource. Before you pack your picnic basket, be sure and check out this list to enhance your enjoyment of this summer's popular music lineup. With so many great artists performing in a relaxed, idyllic setting, you will find this the perfect summer retreat. Enjoy!

  • Savor Flamenco [sound recording]

    2013 by Gipsy Kings (Musical group)

    The album was one of two recipients of the 2014 Grammy Award for Best World Music Album. The Encyclopedia of Great Popular Song Recordings describes their music as a place where "Spanish flamenco and gypsy rhapsody meet salsa funk".

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  • Be Myself

    2017 by Sheryl Crow

    Sometimes going back to your roots is the best thing. Crow returns to her '90s style which won her so many adoring fans. This album definitely incorporates Nashville country and Memphis bluesy soul.

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  • Pecados Y Milagros

    2011 by Lila Downs

    2013 Grammy Award winner for Mexican Regional Music, Lila Downs combines indigenous Mexican folk music with rock and rap. Always a colorful and passionate performer, her performance at Ravinia aimed to please.

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  • When I Left Home : My Story

    2012 by Buddy Guy

    If you weren't able to catch Buddy at Legends in January, I hope you at least made it to Ravinia in July. Booker T. Jones joined Buddy for jammin' fun. Check out this biography for insights into a true Chicago Blues legend.

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  • Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga : Cheek to Cheek Live!


    These two make wonderful music! Tony is always a crowd pleaser but ever since his Duet CD, fans can't get enough of this duo. This DVD captures their Independence Day, 2014 concert—a blending of standards and pop medleys which delighted audiences.

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  • Santana IV

    2016 by Santana (Musical group), performer.

    If you've followed Santana from "Black Magic Woman" to “Anywhere You Want to Go", you know the power and passion of the artist. This CD reunites most of the original Santana band members and delivers an epic punch of energy.

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  • The Lord of the Rings.

    2003 by Peter Jackson

    One of those summer events you really don't want to miss. Over three nights in August, Ravinia will screen the complete Lord of the Rings trilogy with scores performed live by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Children's Choir, Chicago Chorale, and The Lakeside Singers. Grab one or all three DVDs in anticipation of the event or to revisit after the showing.

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  • El Mas Grande Homenaje a los Tigres del Norte (reissue)


    Mexican and Mexican-American folk music is preserved well by this group. While many of their most popular songs include tales of life, love, and the struggle to be accepted and recognized as a world citizen, they also touch on political themes such as narcotics and illegal immigration. In light of the current political climate, this concert should be very interesting.

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  • Native

    2013 by OneRepublic (Musical group)

    The pop rock group that initially achieved commercial success on MySpace, delivers their first top ten album on the Billboard 200. This group always delivers an outstanding concert experience which makes it perfect for the Ravinia venue.

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  • The Best of UB40, Volume One

    1995 by UB40 (Musical group)

    Chrissie Hynde serves as a guest vocalist on two cuts from this British-based, pop-reggae group's new Best of collection. This CD is characterized as smooth with little trace of their earlier political edge.

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  • The Beach Boys [videorecording] : Good Vibrations Tour

    2013 by Beach Boys.

    Yes, this DVD contains concert clips as you would expect but this one is a keeper because of the very funny segments about individual members of the band. (Think Dennis Wilson judging a beauty contest.) If you're a fan of the Blues Brothers, their cameo appearance is outstanding as well.

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  • The Temptations

    2011 by Allan Arkush

    Otis Williams, the last surviving member of the much-loved Temptations, recounts their band's story. Features plenty of clips from performances, studio conversations, and glimpses into their amazing rise to fame.

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