photograph: courtesy carolina chocolate drops

The Carolina Chocolate Drops play a free show in Millennium Park on June 24.

On Mondays starting May 25, the annual summer concert series Downtown Sound returns to the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park. The lineup for the free shows has been officially released. One act in particular has us excited: Carolina Chocolate drops, a folksy, Grammy Award-winning string band, is scheduled to perform on June 24.

The series prides itself on bringing “the freshest ‘news making’ artists” to Chicago. That is, you've probably never heard of most of them. But free is free. And live music on a Monday night in Millennium Park is a pretty good time to try something new.

Here's the full Downtown Sound lineup:

May 27: Lee Ranaldo Band, Marc Ribot's Ceramic Dog

June 3: Sharon Van Etten, Speck Mountain

June 10: Glen Hansard with Lisa Hannigan and members of the Frames

June 17: Daniel Lanois, Brokeback

June 24: Carolina Chocolate Drops, Angela James

July 1: Lee Fields & the Expressions, Theo Huff & the Platinum Band

July 8: Dawes, the Cairo Gang

July 15: Fatoumata Diawara, Alasdair Roberts and friends

July 22: The Handsome Family, Azita

July 29: Dessa, Psalm One

Schedule variations at Pritzker Pavilion:

June 13: Falty DL, Bill Kouligas

June 27: Matmos, Fonema Consort

July 4: ICE, Nosaj Thing

July 11: Dan Deacon

July 18: Olafur Arnalds, Sarah Neufeld

Aug. 28 (Wednesday): Eighth Blackbird with Glenn Kotche and Lesley Flanigan