Downstate Sounds is a radio show, blog and YouTube channel that explores the musical past of Illinois outside of Chicagoland from the 1930s through the 1980s.

Rock, folk, psychedelic, soul, country, funk, blues, gospel and jazz records from the Land of Lincoln with a preference for the overlooked, forgotten and unknown musicians, concerts, record labels and recording studios of downstate Illinois.

The radio show is currently on hiatus.  In the past the show aired Thursdays at 8 pm on WESN 88.1 FM in Bloomington, Illinois.  An archived stream of past shows are available on this blog.

Want to know more about how this got started?  Read our Dialogues W/ Diggers interview.


  1. This stuff is cool,been collecting records and airchecks for over 50 years,great job,you should put out a book and a couple cds on this stuff

  2. can you research a band called the Bondsmen< from Decatur Il. late sixties - featuring Billy Rogers

  3. https://youtu.be/VCd_MGlwBao?si=K3wcnNZkk14W7zFt Po Boys label
    Champaign IL

  4. https://youtu.be/SZwuiQHgmDA?si=jP5Er1nTR86HTwOA
    Count Demon-Star Records- Champaign IL
    I'm a C U native but didn't know about Champaign IL's music history until long after our family left in 1963.

  5. https://secondhandsongs.com/artist/103935/all. Bray Brothers and Red Cravens -
    Champaign County bluegrass -
    Rounder Records