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Logan Square, Humboldt Park, Avondale

Palmer Square Neighbors Need Donations To Keep ‘Live On Logan’ Outdoor Jazz Shows Going

Neighbors launched a concert series early in the pandemic to help out-of-work musicians. Now, they need $4,300 to finish this season's shows.

"Live on Logan" is a free concert series that started during the pandemic.
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LOGAN SQUARE — An outdoor concert series launched by neighbors early in the pandemic to help out-of-work musicians and connect neighbors needs donations to stay afloat.

The Palmer Square Advisory Council is looking to raise at least $4,300 to put on the remaining six shows of the Live on Logan series, group members said. Donations can be made online.

For two summers, neighbors have put on free concerts — first on Logan Boulevard and then in Palmer Square Park — to help struggling musicians amid the pandemic. But donations have dried up, and the group needs an infusion of cash to keep the popular concert series going through Sept. 25, group members said.

Acts including Jeremiah Collier and the REUP and a jazz quartet made up of saxophonist Chris Greene, pianist Damian Espinosa, bassist Marc Piane and drummer Steve Corley are slated to perform at Palmer Square Park, 2200 N. Kedzie Ave., in the coming weeks should the group raise enough money.

“We’ve funded four shows [this summer], but we’re kinda at the point where every week we’re barely scraping by,” group member Cathie Bond said.

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Neighbors at one of the “Live on Logan” shows in 2020.

Live on Logan started in summer 2020 as front-porch jazz shows on Logan Boulevard. Longtime Logan Square resident Sergio Castro wanted to support local musicians during the pandemic, so he started organizing shows on his front lawn.

After noise complaints, Castro linked up with the Palmer Square Advisory Council and, last year, brought the concert series to Palmer Square Park, where it’s remained.

The concert series is a grassroots operation. Castro, a film location manager, assembles the stage with assistance from other residents and friends; he sources cables and mics through donations and eBay.

Castro said each show draws 100-200 people, a good turnout considering they’re competing with large-scale festivals and events every summer weekend.

“In the beginning of the summer, the Park Advisory Council had gotten some emails asking about the shows. … We know it’s a popular thing,” Bond said.

While they hope to eventually get a grant through the city’s Cultural Affairs and Special Events Department to make Live on Logan a more permanent fixture, Castro and Bond said they need funding in the short term to finish out this year’s season.

All of the money raised through the Palmer Square Park Advisory Council will go to musicians. Each musical act gets $750 for a Live on Logan concert, or $250 if a show is rained out.

“Any donation, big or small, is very appreciated,” Bond said.

To donate to Live on Logan, go here. Donations can also be made via Vemo: @Palmer-Square. Because the Palmer Square Park Advisory Council is a nonprofit, donations are tax-deductible.

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