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Seven Concerts to See on Thanksgiving Weekend in Chicago

It’s normally such a dead time for shows. Not this year!

Ha Ha Tonka play this Saturday at Lincoln Hall   Photo: Frank Hill

It’s no secret that over Thanksgiving, much of the city flies the coop for the suburbs—or for the arid Southwest locale where their elders now hibernate. That leaves those who stay in Chicago with few choices—especially when it comes to live music.

But this year, like the lucky bird pardoned by the president, music fans have been given a pass from the annual concert void. Here are seven shows worth checking out after the tryptophan wears off.

11/27: Juicy J

It’s been eight years since Juicy J (Jordan Houston) and his Three 6 Mafia cohorts stole miss Dolly Pardon’s thunder when they nabbed the Best Original Song Oscar for “It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp,” the outsider anthem to sleeper hit Hustle & Flow. Today, we have him to thank for earworm “Bandz a Make Her Dance,” from 2013 joint Stay Trippy, which he’ll no doubt perform tonight.
$18¬–$49. UIC Pavilion, 525 S. Racine Ave. ticketmaster.com.

11/27: Chance the Rapper

Homegrown success story Chance the Rapper is busier than your Aunt Linda on Black Friday. Over the last year he not only delivered a killer performance at Lollapalooza, his mixtape Acid Rap also landed on the Billboard charts and he scooped up a BET Hip-Hop Awards nomination for Best Mixtape. That’s not to mention a massive world tour and with  guest appearances from Lil Wayne and James Blake. Unfortunately the two hometown shows are sold out (there’s another on November 29), but tickets are still available on resale site StubHub and on Craigslist.
Sold Out. Riviera Theater, 4746 N. Racine Ave. jamusa.com.

11/27: Jagwar Ma

Mom + Pop-signed Aussies Jagwar Ma bring psych-laced synth-pop jams to shake a leg to. It’s the perfect pre-dinner workout.
$14. Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln Ave. lincolnhallchicago.com.

11/29: Fall Out Boy

After they’ve partied with their fams in Wilmette, the North Shore dudes hit Wrigleyville to kick out the jams—which today sound more pop than pop-punk. Sir Elton John even sings on the title track of their new album, Save Rock and Roll. Given that the Rocket Man performs tomorrow at the Allstate Arena, a surprise appearance at this show isn’t totally out of the question.
$45. Metro, 3730 N. Clark St. etix.com.

11/29: Parliament Funkadelic

P-Funk founder and Afrofuturism figurehead George Clinton is 72 and still sporting the wildest wigs this side of a low rent drag show. That he can still rock a party like it’s 1979 is just the icing on the cake.
$26. Concord Music Hall, 2047 N. Milwaukee Ave. clubtix.com.

11/30: Ha Ha Tonka

Named for a state park in Missouri, this folk-steeped act (signed to local alt-country label Bloodshot Records) knows how to stir up a righteous hootenanny. With its pastoral imagery, three-part harmonies and infectious acoustic virtuosity, fans of Mumford & Sons will approve.
$15. Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln Ave. lincolnhallchicago.com.

11/30: Shannon and the Clams

Drawing from all the best sonic touchstones—from doo wop to surf and 60s garage—Oakland singer/bassist Shannon Shaw and her clams don’t disappoint onstage, especially when it comes to fabulous outfits and killer dance moves.
$10. Subterranean, 2011 W. North Ave. ticketfly.com.

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