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Down Home Blues

May 11, 2015
Kingston Mines
When even crossroad-deliberating Southern legend Robert Johnson refers to Chicago as the ‘sweet home’ of the blues, you’d have to be crazier than a box of frogs to miss out on a night of toe-tapping at the city’s oldest, largest and most famous late-night blues joint, Kingston Mines.

A fixture of Chi-town’s renowned music scene for over 47 years, the Lincoln Park stalwart has hosted such luminaries as Buddy Guy, Eddy Clearwater and Magic Slim, and continues to showcase some of the best acts this side of Louisiana.

Arrive early, as seven nights a week avid musos pack around the narrow stool-lined tables that stand before two stages – each decked-out quaintly to resemble a porch complete with pastel shutters and painted pot plants. Then, from around 8pm the musicians take the boards, plucking out gritty guitar riffs and lamenting bad luck and lost loves, with alternating sets running right through to the wee hours.

Of course, it would be poor form not to ‘hop’ while you bop, so order in a five-bottle bucket of local craft brews, or if you really want drown your sorrows, plump for an aged whiskey. And to accompany? What else but Southern comfort classics like catfish with red beans and rice, fried chicken wings, crab cake po’ boys and charcoal-grilled pork ribs. At this jivin’ barrelhouse you're sure to have a wang dang doodle of a time.

2548 N Halsted St / Lincoln Park / +1 773 477 4646 / 8pm-4am Mon-Thu, 7pm-4am Fri, 7pm-5am Sat, 6pm-4am Sun /