Milwaukee is chock full of things to do, but only a handful of Milwaukee events are worthy of the lofty honor of “Record Recommended” (patent pending). Here are our recommendations—brought to you by Lilliput Records—for June 3-9, 2024.


Half Moon HideAway + Yaya Biggs, Faded Places @ Cactus Club
“Half Moon HideAway is an indie rock group with roots in Milwaukee, WI. Formed by singer-songwriter Matt Froelich, the band is inspired by the sounds of rock, jazz, and punk music. Combined with comedic ad-libbing, impromptu jams, and powerful guitar solos, Half Moon HideAway is known for delivering performances that are unique and full of heart.”


Chill On The Hill: Urban Empress & The Urbanites + Match Stick Mitchell Shiner @ Humboldt Park
For nearly two decades, Bay View Neighborhood Association’s Chill On The Hill has brought music to Humboldt Park’s band chalet every Tuesday between the beginning of June and the end of August. And hey! It’s the beginning of June! Which means Chill On The Hill is back! Drop by as headliner Urban Empress & The Urbanites—along with Match Stick Mitchell Shiner—kick off Chill’s 19th year in style (and in tribute to the late, great Cecilio Negrón Jr.) And, as always, “IF IT MAKES A CLOUD IT’S NOT ALLOWED.”


Milwaukee Noise Fest @ Cactus Club
More than 20 (!) regional experimental, avant-garde, and noise acts will glitch up the Cactus Club Wednesday night for the annual Milwaukee Noise Fest. Expect great Milwaukee artists like Apollo Vermouth and Nicholas Elert, Chicago projects like Butt Mommy, and the delightfully named Orc With Spear Mounted On Giant Wolf And Lizard Man.

Jeff Arcuri @ The Pabst Theater (also June 6, both sold out)
“The Chicago Tribune calls Jeff Arcuri ‘a joke machine,’ but he’s not! He’s a person! And a funny comedian. Jeff’s incisive humor is carried by a huge smile and subtle naivety. Experience it live at Pabst Theater this June!”

The Crane Wives + Hannah Laine @ Turner Hall Ballroom
“For Fans of Mitski & The Decemberists: Born of the 2010’s folk boom and now comfortably stationed in their rock and roll era, The Crane Wives epitomize the evolving sound of the indie genre. Counterbalancing their lively stage presence, their lyrics extol the shadow side of the human condition, delving into mythology and themes of darkness and inner conflict.”

Tunic + Shoobie, The Nile Club @ X-Ray Arcade


PrideFest Milwaukee @ Henry Maier Festival Park (through June 8)
Wisconsin’s largest LGBTQIA+ event returns to Henry Mair Festival Park (a.k.a. the Summerfest grounds)! Between opening night on June 6 and the festival’s crescendo on June 8, PrideFest Milwaukee will feature musical performances by Mya, Icona Pop, Archuleta, CupcakKe, and Dixon Dallas. Beyond the music, PrideFest will also feature appearances by worldwide drag sensations like Alaska, Violet Chachki, Envy Peru, and Ada Vox on opening night. There will also be a Las Vegas variety show featuring Murray’s Misfits on the final night. In addition to the eclectic and impressive entertainment options, this year’s PrideFest will offer “Throwback Thursday” and “Flashback Friday” specials in which Molson Coors products will be sold at 1996 prices. There’ll also be a food drive on Thursday and discounted $15 admission offered to seniors every day of the festival.

Pert Near Sandstone + Milbillies @ Vivarium
“Pert Near Sandstone delivers another album of all original songs, recorded over the harshest months of a midwestern winter. Waiting Days, their eighth studio album, has all the strengths of its four songwriters offering responses to each other’s compositions. After almost twenty years together, their music has grown to reflect that of a band of brothers. As longtime stewards of the modern stringband revival, their studio recordings have continuously pulled the genre toward a more contemporary perspective, meditating on the present and rich with reference. This isn’t music reaching for the banality of pop hits, instead they provide fresh air for blades of new grass to grow in. The intimacy of collaboration is at the heart of this album, adding textures of guest artists that reflect Pert Near’s genuine intentions to further the acoustic community that has been their cornerstone. ‘…I want to take you with me when I go.’ Let’s get ready. Now is our time. The waiting days are over.”

Jazz In The Park: Bonifas Electric Band ft. Brian Lynch @ Cathedral Square Park
And yep, Jazz In The Park is back, too! Like years past, the popular series will set up shop in downtown’s Cathedral Square Park every Thursday from June 6 through August 29—minus three weekends in July, due to the Fourth, Bastille Days, and the Republican National Convention. Happy hour runs from 5-6 p.m., and the music runs from 6-9 p.m. The series is free, though a “Side Stage Experience”—complete with “a table that seats up to six, access to a private portable restroom, a charcuterie board from Lupi & Iris, treats from Sweetly Baked, and one bottle of wine from Door Peninsula Winery”—is also available.

Sleepy Gaucho + Cullah, Tlalok Rodriguez @ Zócalo Food Park

J.P. (record release) + 414BigFrank, Superstar Sel, DJay Mando @ Miramar Theatre

Moonglow @ Third Space Brewing

QWERTYFEST MKE fundraiser: California Typewriter @ Oriental Theatre

Big Beat MKE @ The Wicked Hop

Videovomit’s VHS Night: The Lost Boys @ X-Ray Arcade


Laurie Kilmartin @ The Laughing Tap (also June 8)
Back in 2022, accomplished comedian, longtime Conan staff writer, and best-selling author Laurie Kilmartin headlined Milwaukee Comedy Festival’s finale, which took place at Shank Hall. The veteran comic set up shop at The Laughing Tap last May; this weekend, she returns to the Walker’s Point comedy club for a total of four shows spread over two nights.

Le Freak Reunion @ Boone & Crockett
From its 2012 origin through 2016, the recurring Le Freak dance party series brought great music, top-notch visuals and photography, community, and pizza to Hotel Foster (R.I.P.) and Company Brewing (R.I.P.). Tonight, the gang is getting back together for a long-awaited Le Freak Reunion out on the Boone & Crockett patio from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. It could be another eight years before this happens again, so don’t miss your chance to experience Le Freak one more time.

Lunar Ticks + Zoofunkyou, Bodhicitta @ The Cooperage

Friday Night Retro Dance Party: DJ Paul H @ Mad Planet


T-Pain’s Wiscansin Fest @ The Rave / Eagles Club
For the third straight June, world-renowned singer, rapper, and producer T-Pain is coming to The Rave/Eagles Club to headline his Wiscansin Fest. This year’s installment features accompaniment by Akon, Dillon Francis, Pink Sweat$, Soulja Boy, LaRussell, Ying Yang Twins, Yelawolf, Waka Flocka Flame, Flyana Boss, Myaap, Young Ca$h, Chayo Nash, NandoSTL, DJay Mando, and more.

Collections Of Colonies Of Bees + Immortal Girlfriend, Exit Statements @ Vivarium
Since opening in late February, Vivarium has wasted little time filling the new East Side venue with impressive bookings on both the national AND local scale. This downright wonderful trio of homegrown projects—Collections Of Colonies Of Bees, Immortal Girlfriend, and Exit Statements—taking the Vivarium stage on Saturday is a perfect example of the latter.

Maggie Rogers + The Japanese House @ BMO Pavilion
While PrideFest is raging on the other side of Henry Maier Festival Park, Grammy-nominated indie-pop prodigy Maggie Rogers will be performing at the outdoor BMO Pavilion as part of her “Don’t Forget Me Tour.” A busy night at the Summerfest grounds!

Lavish Waste (record release) + AJ, Chi Chi’s Restaurant, Pay Dirt @ Cactus Club

Water Lantern Festival @ Veterans Park

Nineties By Nature @ Mad Planet


Locust Street Festival of Art and Music @ Locust Street
Locust Street Festival of Music and Art made its triumphant return to Riverwest in 2023 after being absent from Milwaukee’s summer festival calendar since 2019. Happily, that streak continues this Sunday when Locust Street Festival comes back for its 45th glorious installment. As always, live music, oodles of food and retail vendors, and, yes, the 1.6-mile Beer Run will all be featured in the festival, which will run from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. (The Beer Run kicks off at 11:30 a.m.) Want to know who’s playing? Of course you. Find the full lineup HERE. (And yes, it includes a rare set from the fantastic Sugar Stems!)

2024 Milwaukee Pride Parade @ Walker’s Point

Riot Fest Presents: Bodybox + Bashed In, Cult Fiend @ Cactus Club

Café Sopra Mare: Jorge Vallentine @ Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum

I Should Know This… with special guest Dori Zori @ The Cooperage

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