April , 2019

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Experience secret stories and places of music history
CHICAGO, IL – During Blues Festival weekend, Chicago Detours will host a limited group of 27 lovers of jazz, blues, and Chicago history on the “Jazz, Blues & Beyond” tour by bus. Beginning at 10:30am on Saturday, June 8, this two-and-a-half-hour special tour, which is offered to the public only during Blues Fest and Jazz Fest weekends, integrates multimedia, expert guide commentary, a live blues performance, and visits to sites tourists and even residents rarely see. (See sneak peaks in this video.)

Screens on the bus illuminate the past while the guide delves into the people, politics and culture that have made Chicago a hotbed for musical innovation. Guests get to make music of their own with a harmonica demo, and they get up close with relics of a former 1920’s and 1930’s jazz club where Louis Armstrong and Earl Hines once played. The tour ventures to Chicago neighborhoods from north to south.

Guests on the tour have described it in five-star Yelp reviews: “An amazing adventure,” “Loved the harmonica lesson,” and “This is a MUST do if you live in Chicago.” On the tour Chicago Detours Founder Amanda Scotese shares vivid stories and thought-provoking perspectives on the Great Migration, Maxwell Street Market, and Chess Records. A game (with prizes) caps off a lesson on differences and similarities between jazz and blues. The photos and brief documentary clips presented on screens in the bus include performances of musical artists, and historic pictures of recording studios, clubs and theaters.

Tours are curated with a journalistic approach, as Scotese and her team consulted with local experts, such as music photographer Paul Natkin and former Blues Festival director Barry Dolins, in the development of the tour. “We curate our tours to include a wide variety of perspectives,” Scotese says. “Both by connecting with people who have lived the history, and also by studying archival materials like personal letters, club flyers, and old magazines.”

Currently more than half of the seats are filled and the tour is expected to sell-out. Group is kept to a maximum of 27 guests to keep a personal dynamic and to permit exclusive access to a historic mural in a former jazz club, which is a highlight for many. Jazz Record Mart serves as the meeting and end point for the bus tour. Reservations for this tour, to be held June 8th, 10:30am-1:00pm, are required via www.chicagodetours.com. Adult tickets for this premium experience that is usually offered only to private groups are $65; students/seniors $60; kids under 12 $50, and include bus transport, tour guide commentary, multimedia presentation, live blues musician performance, harmonica lesson and gift, and other extras.

About Chicago Detours:

Chicago Detours offers guided tours of history, culture and architecture that bring people to places that locals don’t even know. Since launching two years ago, the company has garnered 5-stars on both Yelp and TripAdvisor, and was voted a top tour in the Chicago Reader Best of 2011 polls. Founder Amanda Scotese honed her guiding skills while employed as a guide and guidebook researcher with Rick Steves, one of the nation’s most well-known travel authors and television personalities.


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