Sundays on the Square July 2023 is a series that began in June and continues with weekly concerts into September. Plan to get together with your friends on the historic Woodstock Town Square for an evening (5-7 pm CDT) to celebrate music, summer, fun, and friends. Read more below about Sundays on the Square, one of the best things about summer — and it’s FREE!
We will enjoy these concerts in JULY:
An Americana quartet singing folksy Chicago blues, The Empty Pockets play a soulful, 70’s-inspired blend of exploratory grooves, shifting time signatures and distinctive vocals. This unassuming Chicago-based indie powerhouse is quietly conquering the Billboard charts, connecting with fans, filling venues across America, and doing it all on their own terms. The Empty Pockets isn’t just a band name, it’s an ethos.
Award-winning singersongwriter Wil Maring and virtuose guitarist/fiddler Robert Bowlin combine their talents, smoothly blending elements from all roots music genres to create an original acoustic music all their own– oldtime and bluegrass, jazz and blues, celtic and country. Wil’s clear, airy vocal style and heartfelt lyrics, with her proficiency on upright bass, rhythm and fingerstyle guitar, provide a perfect complement to Bowlin’s instrumental fireworks. Wil has toured Japan and Europe, was a Merlefest songwriting contest winner, a Kerrville NewFolk finalist, and together they have performed their original music on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry and NPR’s Whaddya Know program.
Robert Bowlin, a two-time National Fingerpicking and Flatpicking Guitar contest winner, is a well-respected Nashville studio musician on several instruments, and has been a band member with legendary artists like Bill Monroe, Tom T. Hall, Faron Young, Ray Price, Ricky Van Shelton, Kathy Mattea, Maura O’Connell, the Osborne Brothers, and many more.
As a duo, they have travelled coast to coast in the last decade, in Canada and the U.S, playing everywhere from the nation’s largest acoustic festivals to intimate house concerts.
The Last Word Quintet is a union of song, jazz, and poetry – an artistic collaboration of the first rank. It is a collaboration between four of Chicago’s best musicians and songwriters with Marc Kelly Smith, performance poet, founder of the Uptown Poetry Slam and a leader of the worldwide poetry slam movement. Marc’s performance of original and classic poetry meshes seamlessly with Al Day’s vocals and lyrics to illustrate multi-dimensional tales of urban life. With pianist Bob Long, bassist Doug Lofstrom and saxophonist Brian Gephart, the Last Word creates new worlds to be explored. As Robert Rodi wrote in New City, “it’s apparent we’re hearing an entirely new kind of poetic conversation, and it’s thrilling.”
Cassandra Vohs-Demann. As a performing artist, Cassandra has done hundreds of concerts for audiences of one to over thirty thousand. She performs as a soloist, opera singer, and theater performer. Cassandra fronted several bands, and she has worked with professional musicians from coast to coast.
A sought-after concert artist in the region for festivals, fundraising events, and concert series, she performs every year for over five thousand people at the annual Lighting of the Square in Woodstock.
Ken Johnson. Ken Johnson’s unique mix of soaring vocals and folk/rock guitar stylings have made him a
popular performer throughout the Midwest. He loves the music he grew up with: 60s and 70s
pop/folk/rock — but also mixes in material from a variety of contemporary artists. His ability
to deliver a song in an intimate and powerful way makes him a popular performer at concerts,
weddings, church services, and any event where music is a focal point.
Ken pioneered the use of computer technology in music education and participated in the consultation and implementation phases of music technology programs for thousands of
schools K-20 throughout North America. His work designing keyboard and guitar labs for VH1 Save the Music was groundbreaking. He now works as a performer and voice teacher, making his home in Woodstock, Illinois.
Sundays on the Square in 2023 run every Sunday, June 25 – Sept 3, except for July 16 (the Woodstock Folk Festival is always scheduled the third Sunday in July).
Enjoy some great bands from 5:00 – 7:00 pm CDT. We gather on the historic Woodstock Square, Cass & Van Buren Streets, Woodstock IL 60098. Shows vary, some with one and some with two acts, featuring local, regional, and national talent.
Restaurants on the Square are usually open on these evenings with carry-out items, but please confirm with specific places. Of course you can bring your own food items and picnic on the Square. Also, be sure to bring chairs!
Sunday evenings on the Square are always a memorable part of summer in the Woodstock area. Watch this website for updates and specifics on the bands. Better yet, subscribe to our email list if you aren’t already on it!
We appreciate your contributions in support of music in Woodstock. You may contribute to Off Square Music and also to specific performers using the buttons in the left column of most pages on this site.
These FREE summer concerts are brought to you by Off Square Music, the Woodstock Opera House, the City of Woodstock, and the Woodstock Hotel/Motel Tax Grants to the Arts — as well as your generous donations. It truly takes a village (and a state, and a few cities, a couple of guys with wagons and an ice cream vendor).
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