Battle of the Bands Winner JJ Smith Returns to Crystal Lake  with Special Guest Jake Racina

Battle of the Bands Winner JJ Smith Returns to Crystal Lake with Special Guest Jake Racina

<Crystal Lake>, IL – January 23, 2024 – JJ Smith, the winner of Raue Center’s inaugural 2023 Battle of the Bands, is returning to Crystal Lake on Saturday, March 30, 2024, at 7 pm. The event will feature Smith’s dynamic and unapologetic sound, ranging from soft, finger-style melodies to powerful rock songs reminiscent of Led Zeppelin and Jeff Buckley. 


Smith’s songs offer a modern spin on the Rock and Folk movements of the 60s/70s. His vocal stylings bring the likes of Robert Plant and Jeff Buckley to mind, while his intricate guitar work evokes that of Nick Drake and Jimmy Page. 


Joining him is fellow Chicago artist, Jake Racina, whose jazz-infused, story-driven songs evoke a unique and forlorn sense of timelessness. 


The performance will take place at Raue Center for the Arts, located at 26 N Williams St, Crystal Lake, IL. General admission tickets are available for $20, with a discounted rate of $14 for Raue Center members. 


JJ Smith and Jake Racina promise to deliver an unforgettable night of music that will leave the audience wanting more. Don’t miss this opportunity to witness the magic of these two talented artists!


For more information and to purchase tickets, visit or contact Raue Center’s box office at (815) 356-9212. Raue Center is located at 26 N. Williams Street in downtown Crystal Lake. Become a RaueNOW Member and get 30% Off Tickets and early access to upcoming shows. 


About Raue Center For The Arts

Raue Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of all through the arts. For 20 years, they have provided quality programming – striving to make it pertinent, available, and affordable to all. As a painstakingly restored, 1920s regional showcase theatre named for its benefactor—Lucile Raue—Raue Center has attracted the finest stars, Broadway shows, musicians and artists. Named on the League of Historic American Theatres, Raue Center is one of the finest examples of restored art and decor in the nation. The 750-seat theatre, located in historic downtown Crystal Lake, Illinois, is a gathering place for our region’s citizens and has become a true destination. 


For additional information, visit,, and