Strike up the band – actually, the MANY bands that will soon be rolling through Western New York during the always vibrant summer music scene. We’re all about the story at Steven James, and stories told with song and rhythm are some of the best!
JAZZ FEST HEADLINERS
Of course the crown jewel of the Rochester music scene – and perhaps all of Western New York – is the Xerox International Jazz Festival that officially kicks off the summer (literally and figuratively – the festival runs from June 22nd to the 30th.) Producers John Nugent and Mark Iacona continue to bring high quality and impressive quantity to this premier festival (over 220 Club Pass shows – plus the free music and headliners!) The top acts being showcased this year have the diversity that has become a hallmark of the XIJF. Seal, Boz Scaggs, Bela Fleck & The Flecktones, Alison Krauss, Lake Street Dive, and Jill Scott are the marquee performers this year. Bask in the music and the atmosphere that truly make this event both eclectic and electric!
…aka the Constellation Brands Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center – has an intriguing line-up. June 16th brings Sturgill Simpson, a performer known for exploring different genres from bluegrass to country, R&B to rock roots. The legend John Fogerty of Credence Clearwater Revival and solo fame is touring with the bearded blues boys of Texas, ZZ Topp. They’ll play on June 23rd. The following week, June 30th, Roger Daltrey returns after the triumphant Who show of last summer. Daltrey will be performing The Who’s classic rock opera Tommy, backed by an orchestra – one of only ten such shows planned for the summer! Other CMAC concerts include Keith Urban, The Tedeschi-Trucks Band, and Jason Isbell in July; Talking Heads genius David Byrne, The Piano Guys, and the beloved Earth, Wind & Fire in August.
The western counterbalance to CMAC of the east – has its usual packed playbill of concerts. June starts out with the huge star Kendrick Lamar on the third. On the 19th, it’s Dead and Company with Grateful Dead charter members Bob Weir and dual drummers Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann. And lead guitarist for Dead and Company? None other than John Mayer! Coming five days later on June 24th is The Zac Brown Band. June closes out with two huge fan faves on back-to-back nights: The Dave Matthews Band makes its annual trek through these parts on June 27th, and Chris Stapleton on the 28th.
July at Darien will see the following big acts of various genres: superstar Logic, Lynyrd Skynyrd on its farewell tour (allegedly); Lady Antebellum; Kesha and Macklemore; Godsmack and Shinedown. On July 25th, the Vans Warped Tour makes its final full cross country tour (allegedly). August continues the hot shows with a mix of metal, classic rock, and country. Slayer, Dierks Bentley, Chicago & REO, Jason Aldean, Rob Zombie & Marilyn Manson, Miranda Lambert & Little Big Town, Kidz Bop Live, and G-Eazy are all on the slate to perform.
There are still some dates in June, July, and August that can be filled, so don’t be surprised if a few late-comers to the party sneak in! We’ll discuss some of the other annual summer festivals in an upcoming blog, so there will be another substantial list of bands to check out. All in all, sounds like we’re going to be blessed with a music-filled season in Greater Rochester with something for every taste under the summer sun! So go out and get your groove on…or your head bang…or your toe tap! Whatever works for you!