Two authors celebrate new book and album with “Punks in Peoria” festival

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Punks in Peoria.

“A friend of mine and I wrote this book punks in Peoria based on our experiences research of the Peoria underground punk rock scene,” said one of the authors.

In conjunction with the release of the new book and album, the two writers hosted the “Punks in Peoria” festival at Casa de Arte in Peoria on Sunday.

“What does punk rock music you know have in common with Casa de Arte? Well, it’s art. We want to be a place where art is accepted here all kinds of art it doesn’t matter if its music or food,” said Vargas.

Casa de Arte owner and artist Arturo Vargas said for their first big event since the pandemic, they wanted to bring in something new.

“We want to have different styles different cultures come and not just Latin American music so I’m really happy to start it with this one haha,” said Vargas.

Going back to the 1980s and ’90s, the writers, Jonathan Wright and Dawson Barrett said this book discovers what the punk rock scene was like in Peoria and its effect on the community.

“We didn’t know exactly how it was going to come together we had to do a lot of research, we did 80 in-depth interviews,” Wright.

Wright said after developing those friendships it was time for a reunion. 15 bands took to stage Sunday.

“Some of the bands have not played together in 10-20 some years some even 30 years and so its just a way for people to come together in different kind of generations of the underground music scene… to get to know one another and celebrate the release of the new book,” said Wright.

“Punks in Peoria” can be purchased at Lit on Fire Books.

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