Of course a city that is home to one of the greatest Rock N' Roll bands of all time would be a great place to catch live music throughout the year. From weekly concerts at local venues, bars and restaurants to seasonal festivals and community events, you can always find some in Rockford.


Coronado Performing Arts Center

  • Occasional big name bands and entertainment groups.
  • Visit Website
  • A variety of popular bands, Broadway shows, classical musicians, comedians and more are shown at this historic theatre in downtown Rockford each year.

District Bar and Grill

  • Live music Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • Local bands perform at this popular bar and grill located downtown. Music includes everything from rock to reggae.

Dusty Boots Saloon & Eatery

  • Live music Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • This Country Saloon serves up tasty food, diverse whiskeys, and live country music that would make Nashville jealous.


  • Shows on weekends throughout the year
  • Visit Website
  • A wide variety of featured musical and other performance acts are hosted throughout the year.

Hope & Anchor English Pub

  • Local bands perform Friday and Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • A variety of music from blues to ‘80s rock n’ roll are performed on Friday and Saturday nights by various local and regional bands and musicians.

JustGoods Listening Room

  • Live music every Friday night
  • Visit Website
  • The Friday Night Concert Series performances are free and open to the public and showcase artists performing acoustic music or music intended for a small audience setting.


  • Live music Friday and Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • Kryptonite has an industrial meets garage sale atmosphere considered to be the melting pot of all stereotypes. Local and regional bands perform on stage playing punk, rock, ska and more.

Las Palmas Night Club

  • Live music Friday and Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • Las Palmas Night Club is the place to go to listen to popular Latin music including Salsa, Merengue, Bachata and more.

Mary’s Place

  • Live music Friday and Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • Mary’s Place is the oldest bar in Rockford and everyone is welcome with words, beats, rhythm, and a love for music is invited (all styles welcome!).

Mulligan’s Pub & Grill

  • Live music on Tuesday nights and on weekends
  • Visit Website
  • Mulligan’s one of a kind Irish Pub offers Tuesday Unplugged Nights where local artists perform folk, Americana or country music. Bands also play on the weekends and special events throughout the year.

Rascals Bar & Grill

  • Live music on Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • This casual bar & grill “where frenz meat” features a relaxing environment where local bands of different genres perform on Saturday nights.

Rural on Tap

  • Live music on Thursday and Saturday nights
  • Visit Website
  • This neighborhood bar with an extensive craft beer selection holds weekly Acoustic Nights on Thursdays featuring everything from folk Americana music to classic rock.

Shooter’s North

  • DJ every Friday and live music every Saturday
  • Visit Website
  • This bar inside Forest Hills Lanes bowling alley welcomes a DJ every Friday night and live bands every Saturday night and charges no cover.

Whiskey’s Roadhouse

  • Live music every Friday and Saturday night
  • Visit Website
  • Rock, blues and country are the main genres performed at Whiskey’s Roadhouse every Friday and Saturday night.

Recurring Events

Concerts by the Creek

  • Saturday nights (May – September)
  • Spring Creek United Church of Christ
  • Visit Website
  • These free family-friendly concerts feature performances of jazz, bluegrass, Dixieland, folk, gospel, country, R&B, Celtic and more.

Dinner on the Dock

  • Thursday nights (May – August)
  • Prairie Street Brewhouse
  • Visit Website
  • Come out to the docks for live music, great food and refreshing drinks on the banks of the Rock River. Bands include rock, folk and a variety of other genres each week.

First Fridays

  • The first Friday evening of each month (year round)
  • Downtown Rockford
  • Visit Website
  • Each month downtown art galleries, shops, music and theater venues work together to stay open late providing great new art, music and goods.

Jazz at Emerson

  • Second Sunday of each month (year round)
  • Emerson House (Mendelssohn Performing Arts Center)
  • Visit Website
  • Listen to the swinging sounds of live jazz, relax with light refreshments, have fun with your friends, and meet the artists after the concert!

Music at the Dells

  • Dates and times vary
  • Severson Dells Nature Center at Severson Dells Forest Preserve
  • Visit Website
  • Concerts are held in what many say is the “best listing room in Northern Illinois”. A variety of genres are highlighted throughout the year. A special Concert in the Country will be held in June.

Music in the Park

  • June – August
  • Sinnissippi Music Shell
  • Visit Website
  • Enjoy beautiful summer evenings at the Sinnissippi Park Music Shell featuring free performances by regional musical talents including the Phantom Regiment, Rockford Wind Ensemble, and various local bands.

Music on the Mall

  • Friday nights (May – September)
  • Edgebrook
  • Visit Website
  • Local musicians perform their latest tunes of a variety of genres outside Mary’s Market at Edgebrook each Friday evening.

Rockford City Market

  • Fridays (May – September)
  • Downtown Rockford
  • Visit Website
  • Rockford City Market features local growers and vendors who sell natural products and unique retail items, live music demonstrations and kids’ activities.

Rockford Symphony Orchestra

  • Various performances throughout the year
  • Coronado Preforming Arts Center
  • Visit Website
  • The Rockford Symphony Orchestra performs approximately 17 concerts per year. The season consists of Classics Concerts, Pops Concerts, Summer Concerts, and Youth Concerts.

Rockton River Market

  • Wednesday nights (June – August)
  • Settler’s Park (Rockton)
  • Visit Website
  • The Rockton River Market provides a comfortable atmosphere to shop for handmade items, fruits and vegetables. Live music is performed each week by a local performer or band.

Tuesday Evening in the Gardens

  • Tuesday evenings (May – August)
  • Anderson Japanese Gardens
  • Visit Website
  • Join friends and family, socialize, stroll the gardens and enjoy a live concert in the picturesque setting of Anderson Japanese Gardens. Local and regional musicians perform a variety of musical genres throughout the concert series season.

Tunes on the Terrace

  • Wednesday nights (June – September)
  • Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens
  • Visit Website
  • Enjoy live music on the terrace outside Nicholas Conservatory every Wednesday evening in the summer. Local musicians are showcased in this concert series.

Woodsong Concerts

  • Sunday nights (three concerts in the season: June, July, August)
  • Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden
  • Visit Website
  • Woodsong Concerts are held outdoors on the lawn in Klehm’s magnificent Fountain Garden. Each concert showcases a different genre of music.

Annual Events

Black Family Reunion

  • August
  • Ellis Elementary School
  • Visit Website
  • Celebrate the enduring strengths and traditional values of African American Family and Education at this free event featuring live music, food vendors and community service information booths.


  • July
  • Booker Washington Community Center
  • Bookerfest is a weekend festival extravaganza filled with live entertainment, music and fun for all ages.

Cherry Valley Festival Days

  • August
  • Baumann Park (Cherry Valley)
  • Visit Website
  • Great food, the carnival, and of course the bands are what make a summer music festival an event to remember at this annual weekend celebration in Cherry Valley.

Festa Italiana

  • July
  • Boylan High School
  • Visit Website
  • Bring your family and friends for great Italian food, continuous live entertainment, Bocce tournaments, carnival rides, children’s crafts and much more.


  • June
  • Sinnissippi Music Shell
  • Juneteenth is a cultural and entertainment event with art vendors, food vendors and games for kids. A variety of performers are showcased on the stage throughout the afternoon and evening.

Old Settlers Days

  • June
  • Settlers Park (Rockton)
  • Visit Website
  • Old Settlers Days is a fun filled family festival showcasing local and big name country bands, a parade, food and a 5K run.

Winnebago County Fair

  • August
  • Winnebago County Fairgrounds (Pecatonica)
  • Visit Website
  • Bring the whole family and enjoy the mouth-watering food, exhilarating rides, petting zoo and livestock shows, live entertainment, tractor displays and much more.

Young at Heart Festival

  • Memorial Day Weekend
  • Loves Park City Hall
  • Visit Website
  • Events during this annual Memorial Day Weekend festival include live music, a beer garden, carnival rides, kids’ activities and food concessions.