10 of This Year’s Best Summer Music Events You Need to Attend
Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival kicked off the festival season and set the tone for a music-filled summer that’s packed with many incredible, once in a lifetime opportunities. From rock festivals to bucket list concerts, to kid-friendly events, there’s something for everyone’s musical taste. Check out our list of some of the best summer music events happening throughout the U.S. this year.
Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival
When: June 13-16, 2019
The ultra-popular festival is set to return to The Farm in Manchester, Tennessee, with an impressive lineup of artists, activities, and a more fluid set schedule than before.
The 2019 lineup features performances by Cardi B, The Avett Brothers, Childish Gambino, Hozier, Post Malone, Gucci Mane, The Lumineers, Solange, and many more.
Phish, one of the headlining acts, will play multiple sets throughout the four-day event, while other performances will be spaced out to provide more opportunity for attendees to see their favorite artist.
According to Nashville Scene, “For fans of country, Kacey Musgraves, Ruston Kelly, and Maren Morris’ sets are spaced far enough apart on Saturday that you can definitely see all of them, and they could even guest on each others’ sets should they choose.”
Bonnaroo 2019 will also feature Plazas or public spaces with activities and access to amenities. Altogether, the event plans to provide more than 70 different activities and experiences for attendees, including a sex therapy booth by Durex, glitter, and hair dye stations, a pride parade, food and more.
Elton John: Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour
When: September 2018-December 2020
Elton John is, undoubtedly, one of the greatest musicians of our time. His final tour offers fans a chance to experience the multi-award winning artist, and his greatest hits, one last time before he retires from the road. This is not just one of the best summer music events of this year, it’s possibly one of the best summer music events of all time.
The tour is nominated for the Top Rock Tour at the 2019 Billboard Music Awards. But even if it doesn’t win, “Farewell Yellow Brick Road” will go down as one of the greatest tours in modern history. The concert series is set to include more than 300 performances in cities throughout the world. Each show features a 24 song setlist, reports Rolling Stone.
The first leg of the tour just ended in March, there’s still a chance to see it when it returns again to the U.S. in September, or before it concludes in London in December 2020.
Flo Rida, Nelly, TLC Amphitheatre Tour
When: July 23-August 31, 2019
The festival season brings music lovers plenty of opportunities to experience their favorite modern artists in one place, but not many gather the hitmakers we grew up listening too… until now. Flo Rida, Nelly and TLC will join forces for an epic North America summer tour that’s scheduled to hit amphitheaters in 21 cities nationwide.
The tour launches on July 23 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama before it wraps up in Irvine on August 31.
Hootie and the Blowfish “Group Therapy” Tour
When: May 30-Oct 16, 2019
The summer, Hootie & The Blowfish and the Barenaked Ladies will launch their much anticipated Group Therapy tour. As one of the most talked about concert series of the year, it’s sure to rise to the top of any music-lovers’ (and 90s kids) bucket lists.
The North American leg of the tour is set to hit 47 cities in the U.S. and Canada — including Cleveland, Nashville, Atlanta, and Los Angeles — before heading to the U.K and Ireland later this year.
The concert series is the first full tour in more than a decade for Hootie and the Blowfish, and is accompanied by new music, reports Music Mayhem Magazine.
The Governors Ball Music Festival
When: May 31-June 2, 2019
Dubbed a “festival with a New York Heart,” the ninth annual, multi-stage music event will take place on Randall’s Island Park in New York City.
The contemporary music festival will host performances on four stages from more than 60 different artists. Aside from the music, attendees can expect food, urban art, and activities including life-sized board games and interactive photo booths, according to the event’s website.
The 2019 Governors Ball lineup includes Tyler the Creator, Lil Wayne, Major Lazer, Florence + The Machine, Saba, and more.
When: August 1-4, 2019
With more than 170 scheduled acts spread throughout eight stages, it’s easy to see why Lollapalooza is one of the nation’s most popular festivals. The Chicago-based event will be held lakeside at Grant Park, and feature a massive mix of rock, pop, country, hip-hop, and EDM artists throughout four days.
Headlining acts include The Chainsmokers, Janelle Monae, 21 Pilots, Tenacious D, and Ariana Grande, who is set to perform on the final day.
Kids under the age of 10 get in free with adult ticket holders and have access to Kidzapalooza, an enclosed, family-friendly area of the park with music, activities like skateboarding demos, and a music video tent.
Seven Peaks Music Festival
When: August 31-September 1, 2019
The Seven Peaks Music Festival is heading back to the Colorado mountain ranges for the second annual event, created by country star Dierks Bentley and LiveNation. The music, camping, and adventure focused festival will take place on Labor Day weekend in Buena Vista, Colorado.
This year’s lineup is so far set to feature Travis Tritt, Luke Bryan, Aydamn, Tenille Townes, and more. Bentley, who is also set to perform, told the Taste of Country the region was an inspiration for his latest album, “The Mountain.”
Aside from musical entertainment, attendees can expect to fill their days with the natural sights, and activities like water rafting, zip lining, and ATV tours.
Sonic Temple Arts and Music Festival
When: May 17-19, 2019
Some of the biggest names in hard rock and heavy metal will come together for the first annual Sonic Temple Arts and Music Festival, located at Mapfre Stadium in Columbus, Ohio.
System of Down, Disturbed, and Foo Fighters are just of a few of the multi-platinum artists scheduled to hit the stage during the three day event. Other headlining acts include Ghost, Papa Roach, Lamb of God, Chevelle, Action Bronson, Killswitch Engage, Pussy Riot and more.
In addition to performances, there will be food and beverages that celebrate the local Columbus flavor, and an art section with live murals, screen printing, and more.
Wiz Khalifa: Decent Exposure Tour
When: July 9-Aug 15, 2019
Wiz Khalifa hyped his North American summer tour for fans while performing at Coachella this April. Tickets just went on sale for the Decent Exposure tour, which features special guest, French Montana. The rapper will also be joined by Palyboi Carti, Moneybagg Yo, Chevy Woods and DJ Drama.
The concert series will kick off July 9 at the Cellairis Amphitheatre in Atlanta. The tour is scheduled to hit 29 cities including Boston, Denver, Detroit, Chicago, Toronto, San Diego, and more before it wraps up at the Ford Idaho Center Amphitheatre in Boise on August 15.
The announcement comes fresh after the release of rapper’s latest album, a mixed tape with 14 new songs, titled “Fly Times Vol. 1: The Good Fly Young” released on 4/20.
When: August 16-18, 2019
The 50th-anniversary festival is going back to its roots, bringing back legacy artists, and some of the biggest names in music today. Woodstock 50’s lineup features a dynamic blend of more than 40 pop, rock, and hip-hop acts, who will perform on three stages throughout the weekend of August 16-18th.
The three-day festival is located at Watkins Glen in New York. John Fogerty, Miley Cyrus, The Killers, and Run the Jewels are just a few of the artists slated to perform on Woodstock 50’s opening day. Chance the Rapper, Dead and Company, The Black Keys, will perform on day two, while the third and final day will close with performances from Jay-Z, Halsey, Imagine Dragons, The Zombies and more.
The festival’s organizers are also planning a tribute to original Woodstock performers, Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin and Joe Crocker.
‘It Feels Good’: Snoop Dogg Buys Death Row Records
Snoop Dogg is now the owner of Death Row Records. The purchase brings his career full circle, as the legendary rapper now owns the label where his career in the music industry began.
“I am thrilled and appreciative of the opportunity to acquire the iconic and culturally significant Death Row Records brand, which has immense untapped future value,” Snoop Dogg said in a statement. “It feels good to have ownership of the label I was part of at the beginning of my career and as one of the founding members. This is an extremely meaningful moment for me.”
Snoop Dogg added that he was “looking forward to building the next chapter of Death Row Records.”
Blackstone, Inc. BX, -8.15 percent, a private-equity firm that held the remnants of the record label as part of MNRK Music Group, announced the sale on Wednesday. The terms of the agreement were not made public.
In a statement to People, Blackstone’s Senior Managing Director David Kestnbaum said of the deal, “We at Blackstone are strong supporters of the artist and creator community in our entertainment investments. We are excited to put the Death Row Records brand back in the hands of a legend like Snoop Dogg. We wish him success in the years ahead as the brand moves forward under his leadership and vision.”
Dr. Dre and Suge Knight co-founded Death Row Records with record executive Dick Griffey in 1991. Snoop’s debut Doggystyle was released in 1993.
Death Row Records fell on hard feet after a remarkable run in the 1990s. In 2006, the label declared bankruptcy before being purchased by WIDEawake Entertainment Group in 2009. Due to WIDEawake’s insolvency, the label was sold to eOne Music in 2013. Until eOne was purchased by Blackstone in 2021, Death Row Records was a branch of Hasbro.
The Doggfather is set to release his new album B.O.D.R., an acronym for “Bacc On Death Row,” on the 12 February ahead of his appearance alongside Dr. Dre, Eminem, Kendrick Lamar, and Mary J. Blige at this year’s Super Bowl Halftime Show on Sunday. He called “a dream come true” during a recent interview with the Associated Press.
“I’m still thinking I’m in a dream because I can’t believe that they will let a real hip-hop artist grace the stage in an NFL Super Bowl LVI,” the rapper-turned-mogul explained. “We’re just going to wait for that moment and put something together that’s spectacular, and do what we’re known for doing and add on to the legacy.”
Major Record Labels to Become Carbon Neutral by 2050
Three major record labels — Sony, Universal, and Warner — have made a pledge to cut carbon emissions in half by 2030 and achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, joining a slew of independent labels that have set similar or more aggressive goals. Following the Secretly label group’s pledge last week to be “climate positive” by 2026, the major labels joined indies like Beggars Group, Warp, and Ninja Tune to sign the Music Climate Pact, which addresses activities like touring, vinyl manufacturing, and music streaming that are currently unsustainable in terms of carbon emissions.
Aside from the emissions reductions, the signatories pledge to track and reduce subsidiary emissions related to music listening and fandom, encourage artists to discuss the climate crisis, and collaborate with streaming companies to track and reduce subsidiary emissions related to music listening and fandom.
Beggars Group and Ninja Tune made similar commitments earlier this year, with the latter aiming towards carbon neutrality by the end of 2021. Massive Attack completed a climate analysis in September, recommending “an immediate and major reassembly” of the industry.
Billie Eilish Makes History at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards
A cloud of sadness hung over the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards, as news developed of the tragic deaths of NBA legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven others in a helicopter crash near Los Angeles on January 26. Outside the Staples Center, home of Bryant’s team the Lakers, arrivals took place on the red carpet as mourners gathered outside the arena to pay their respects.
The night kicked off with a solemn Cappella tribute to Bryant of “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday” by host Alicia Keys and Boys II Men.
Billie Eilish dominated the night, winning Best New Artist, Song of the Year, Album of the Year, Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Album categories. Eilish, 18, is the youngest Album of the Year winner in Grammy history. She is also just the second artist in Grammy history — and the first woman — to take home the Big Four awards.
Lizzo took home the Best Pop Solo Performance, Best Traditional R&B Performance, and Best Urban Contemporary Album trophies.
Lil Nas X picked up two awards for Best Music Video and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.
Tyler, the Creator took home his first Grammy award for Best Rap Album.
The late rapper Nipsey Hussle was recognized posthumously with two awards for Best Rap Performance and Best Rap/Sung Performance.
Record of the Year
Billie Eilish, “Bad Guy”
Album of the Year
Billie Eilish, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?
Best New Artist
Song of the Year
Billie Eilish — “Bad Guy”
Best Rap/Sung Performance
DJ Khaled feat Nipsey Hussle & John Legend — “Higher”
Best Rap Album
Tyler, the Creator — Igor
Best Pop/Solo Performance
Lizzo — “Truth Hurts”
Best Pop Vocal Album
Billie Eilish — When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?
Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album
Elvis Costello & The Imposters — Look Now
Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
Lil Nas X feat Billy Ray Cyrus — “Old Town Road”
Best R&B Album
Anderson .Paak — Ventura
Best Urban Contemporary Album
Lizzo, Cuz I Love You (Deluxe)
Best R&B Song
PJ Morton feat JoJo — “Say So”
Best Traditional R&B Performance
Lizzo — “Jerome”
Best R&B Performance
Anderson .Paak feat Andre 3000 — “Come Home”
Best Rock Album
Cage The Elephant — Social Cues
Best Rock Song
Gary Clark Jr — “This Land”
Best Rock Performance
Gary Clark Jr — “This Land”
Best Rap Song
21 Savage feat J Cole — “A Lot”
Best Rap Performance
Nipsey Hussle feat Roddy Ricch & Hit-Boy — “Racks in the Middle”
Best Music Film
Beyonce — Homecoming
Best Music Video
Lil Nas X feat Billy Ray Cyrus — “Old Town Road”
Best Country Duo/Group Performance
Dan + Shay — “Speechless”
Best Comedy Album
Dave Chappelle — Sticks & Stones
Best Song Written for Visual Media
Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper— “I’ll Never Love Again”
Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media
Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper — A Star is Born
Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media
Chernobyl — Hildur Guðnadóttir
Best Song Written for Visual Media
“I’ll Never Love Again” (Film Version) — Natalie Hemby, Lady Gaga, Hillary Lindsey & Aaron Raitiere (Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born)
Best Spoken Word Album (Includes Poetry, Audio Books & Storytelling)
Becoming — Michelle Obama
Best Instrumental Composition
“Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Symphonic Suite” — John Williams, composer (John Williams
Best Remixed Recording
“I Rise (Tracy Young’s Pride Intro Radio Remix)— ” Tracy Young (Madonna)
Best Dance Recording
“Got to Keep On” — The Chemical Brothers
Best Dance/Electronic Album
No Geography — The Chemical Brothers
Best Country Solo Performance
“Ride Me Back Home” — Willie Nelson
Best Country Song
“Bring My Flowers Now” — Brandi Carlile, Phil Hanseroth, Tim Hanseroth and Tanya Tucker (Tanya Tucker)
Best Country Album
While I’m Livin’ — Tanya Tucker
Best Rap Performance
“Racks in the Middle” — Nipsey Hussle featuring Roddy Ricch & Hit-Boy
Best Rap Song
“A Lot” — Jermaine Cole, Dacoury Natche, 21 Savage & Anthony White, (21 Savage featuring J. Cole
Best Recording Package
Chris Cornell — Barry Ament, Jeff Ament, Jeff Fura & Joe Spix, art directors (Chris Cornell)
Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package
Woodstock: Back To The Garden – The Definitive 50th Anniversary Archive — Masaki Koike, art director (Various Artists)
Best Album Notes
Stax ’68: A Memphis Story — Steve Greenberg, album notes writer (Various Artists)
Best Historical Album
Pete Seeger: The Smithsonian Folkways Collection — Jeff Place & Robert Santelli, compilation producers; Pete Reiniger, mastering engineer (Pete Seeger)
Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical
When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? — Rob Kinelski & Finneas O’Connell, engineers; John Greenham, mastering engineer (Billie Eilish)
Best Immersive Audio Album
Lux — Morten Lindberg, immersive audio engineer; Morten Lindberg, immersive audio mastering engineer; Morten Lindberg, immersive audio producer (Anita Brevik, Trondheimsolistene & Nidarosdomens Jentekor)
Best New Age Album
Wings — Peter Kater
Best Bluegrass Album
Tall Fiddler — Michael Cleveland
Best Traditional Blues Album
Tall, Dark & Handsome — Delbert McClinton & Self-made Men
Best Contemporary Blues Album
This Land — Gary Clark Jr.
Best Folk Album
Patty Griffin — Patty Griffin
Best Regional Roots Music Album
Good Time — Ranky Tanky
Best Reggae Album
Rapture — Koffee
Best Children’s Music Album
Ageless Songs For The Child Archetype — Jon Samson
Best Contemporary Instrumental Album
Mettavolution — Rodrigo y Gabriela
Best Arrangement, Instrumental or A Cappella
“Moon River” — Jacob Collier, arranger (Jacob Collier)
Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals
“All Night Long” — Jacob Collier, arranger (Jacob Collier Featuring Jules Buckley, Take 6 & Metropole Orkest)
Best Improvised Jazz Solo
“Sozinho” — Randy Brecker, soloist
Best Jazz Vocal Album
12 Little Spells — Esperanza Spalding
Best Jazz Instrumental Album
Finding Gabriel — Brad Mehldau
Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album
The Omni-American Book Club – Brian Lynch Big Band
Best Latin Jazz Album
Antidote — Chick Corea & The Spanish Heart Band
Best Gospel Performance/Song
“Love Theory” – Kirk Franklin; Kirk Franklin, Songwriter
Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song
“God Only Knows” — for King & Country & Dolly Parton; Josh Kerr, Jordan Reynolds, Joel Smallbone, Luke Smallbone & Tedd Tjornhom, songwriters
Best Gospel Album
Long Live Love — Kirk Franklin
Best Contemporary Christian Music Album
Burn The Ships — for King & Country
Best Roots Gospel Album
Testimony — Gloria Gaynor
Best Latin Pop Album
#ELDISCO — Alejandro Sanz
Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album
El Mal Querer – Rosalía
Best Regional Mexican Music Album (Including Tejano)
De Ayer Para Siempre — Mariachi Los Camperos
Best Tropical Latin Album
Opus — Marc Anthony (TIE)
Best Engineered Album, Classical
Riley: Sun Rings — Leslie Ann Jones, engineer; Robert C. Ludwig, mastering engineer (Kronos Quartet)
Producer Of The Year, Classical
Best Orchestral Performance
“Norman: Sustain” — Gustavo Dudamel, conductor (Los Angeles Philharmonic)
Best Opera Recording
“Picker: Fantastic Mr. Fox” — Gil Rose, conductor; John Brancy, Andrew Craig Brown, Gabriel Preisser, Krista River & Edwin Vega; Gil Rose, producer (Boston Modern Orchestra Project; Boston Children’s Chorus)
Best Choral Performance
“Duruflé: Complete Choral Works” — Robert Simpson, conductor (Ken Cowan; Houston Chamber Choir)
Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance
“Shaw: Orange” — Attacca Quartet
Best Classical Instrumental Solo
“Marsalis: Violin Concerto; Fiddle Dance Suite” — Nicola Benedetti; Cristian Măcelaru, conductor (Philadelphia Orchestra)
Best Classical Solo Vocal Album
Songplay — Joyce Didonato; Chuck Israels, Jimmy Madison, Charlie Porter & Craig Terry, accompanists (Steve Barnett & Lautaro Greco)
Best Classical Compendium
The Poetry Of Places — Nadia Shpachenko; Marina A. Ledin & Victor Ledin, producer
Best Contemporary Classical Composition
Higdon: Harp Concerto — Jennifer Higdon, composer (Yolanda Kondonassis, Ward Stare & The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra)
Best Musical Theater Album
Hadestown — Reeve Carney, André De Shields, Amber Gray, Eva Noblezada & Patrick Page, principal soloists; Mara Isaacs, David Lai, Anaïs Mitchell & Todd Sickafoose, producers (Anaïs Mitchell, composer & lyricist) (Original Broadway Cast)
Best Metal Performance
“7empest” — Tool
Best Alternative Music Album
Father of the Bride — Vampire Weekend
Best World Music Album
Celia — Angelique Kidjo
Best American Roots Performance
“Saint Honesty” — Sara Bareille
Best American Roots Song
“Call My Name” — Sarah Jarosz, Aoife O’donovan & Sara Watkins, songwriters (I’m With Her)
Best Americana Album
Oklahoma — Keb’ Mo’