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KAINA And Ben LaMar Gay Bring Sounds of Chicago To Navy Pier June 1

Written by on May 25, 2022

A night of literal and musical fireworks is coming next week to Navy Pier!

As a part of the ongoing Chicago Humanities Festival, Navy Pier’s Lake Stage will welcome KAINA and Ben LaMar Gay for a night of local music on June 1. Tickets are available online; read up on the artists now below!

Chicago born-and-raised artist KAINA released her second album It Was a Home in March and has been included on 2022 festival lineups for SXSW in March and Pitchfork Music Festival in July. The album, co-produced by KAINA and fellow Chicagoan Sen Morimoto of Sooper Records, explores memories of her childhood home, growing up, grief and self-reflection.

KAINA, photo courtesy of the artist

“When you make art, you’re like, ‘I’m scared of sharing this feeling, what if no one understands?’. And the joke is that when you are yourself, it’s the most relatable thing. Or it transcends your mind.”

KAINA in coversation with Vocalo, 2019.

Boasting collaborations with Helado Negro and Sleater Kinney, It Was A Home is sparkling and polished as it is authentic and introspective. This performance marks KAINA’s second in support of the album, her first being the tour’s opening date on March 5 at the Metro. She was also just featured for NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Meets SXSW performance series on March 22.

Ben LaMar Gay is a South Side native whose music defies classification. After an extended stay in Brazil, Gay retuned to the city and began a string of monumental releases, including 2018’s Downtown Castles Can Never Block The Sun and 2021’s Open Arms to Open Us, that have left both audiences and critics stunned. His fusions of American genres like jazz, blues and hip-hop with different strains of electronic and latin music have cemented him as one of Chicago’s great musical minds.

Ben LaMar Gay by Alejandro Ayala, courtesy of the artist

“There’s something about just the energy of this area, that sometimes attracts people. [There’s] all this documentation that people create from being here… let’s just say just albums, you know, from these generations of people. I think maybe, if you just like vibrate inside the center of where you’re from… If you get right down to the nucleus and vibrate with it, things will project.”

Ben LaMar Gay in conversation with Vocalo, 2018

Gay’s music represents the whole of American music culture, without being afraid to break boundaries and let the outside world in.

This will be one night of entertaiment at the Pier that you won’t want to miss. You can get tickets now at

Written by Morgan Ciocca and George Chiligiris

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