On the Beat

2017 Outdoor Music Guide for summer fun in the Triangle

It’s time once again for you to get out your calendar and flag dates for the concerts you deem to be can’t-miss. And this year, you might even be able to write ’em down in permanent ink.

A year ago, the 2016 outdoor music preview ran shortly after the North Carolina General Assembly passed the infamous House Bill 2, the “Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act.” The law forbade local anti-discrimination protection for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people – and it caused massive protests, boycotts and cancellations from high-profile entertainers.

HB2 is gone now, replaced by a compromise repeal that has come under fire from human-rights groups as being similarly discriminatory. And while it did lure sporting events back, it didn’t do enough to convince the state of California to lift its ban on official state-funded travel to North Carolina; Chicago and Washington State also have similar bans still in place.

It’s not clear what this means for concerts and conventions. At the very least, however, we probably won’t see the wave of HB2-inspired cancellations we had last year, when acts from Pearl Jam to Itzhak Perlman called off concerts. By now, the acts who care are staying away, and we may not even know who they are.

Meanwhile, Walnut Creek – excuse me, Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek – looks as countrified as ever. Red Hat has some very cool bookings, including The xx and Maxwell, while the N.C. Symphony’s Summerfest is back at Booth Amphitheatre, and the N.C. Museum of Art has an impressive array of homegrown headliners: Mipso, Mandolin Orange, Rhiannon Giddens, Tift Merritt and even Superchunk.

Save this link because we’ll update it all summer as new shows are announced.

Happy listening, and remember: Always wear sunscreen.

David Menconi: 919-829-4759, @NCDavidMenconi

Outdoor Music Guide Schedule 2017

Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek, Raleigh

Info: nando.com/walnutcreek

April 28 – Poison, Extreme, Jackyl

May 12 – Chris Stapleton, Brothers Osborne, Lucie Silvas

May 13 – Future, Migos, Tory Lanez, Kodak Black, Zoey Dollaz

May 17 – Kings of Leon, Deerhunter, Nathaniel Rateliff

May 20 – Brad Paisley, Dustin Lynch, Chase Bryant, Lindsay Ell

June 4 – Train, O.A.R., Natasha Bedingfield

June 15 – Lady Antebellum, Kelsea Ballerini, Brett Young

June 25 – Chicago, Doobie Brothers

July 14 – Dierks Bentley, Cole Swindle, Jon Pardi

July 21 – Florida Georgia Line, Nelly, Chris Lane

July 25 – Journey, Asia

July 28 – Sam Hunt, Maren Morris, Chris Janson, Ryan Follese

Aug. 6 – Foreigner, Cheap Trick, Jason Bonham

Aug. 12 – Lynyrd Skynyrd, Hank Williams Jr., Aaron Lewis

Aug. 16 – John Mayer

Aug. 19 – Luke Bryan, Brett Eldridge, Craig Campbell

Aug. 22 – Counting Crows, Matchbox Twenty, Rivers and Rust

Sept. 1 – Green Day, Catfish and the Battlement

Sept. 8 – Jason Aldean, Chris Young, Kane Brown

Sept. 23 – Brantley Gilbert, Tyler Farr, Luke Combs

Sept. 29 – Jack Johnson

Oct. 6 – Zac Brown Band

Red Hat Amphitheater, Raleigh

Info: redhatamphitheater.com

May 5 – Kidz Bop

May 6 – Ben Folds

May 12 – Bastille, Mondo Cozmo

May 14 – The xx

May 26 – Maxwell, Ledisi, Leela James

June 6 – Glass Animals

June 14 – Dirty Heads, Soja, The Green, RDGLDGRN

June 17 – Third Eye Blind, Silversun Pickups, Ocean Park Standoff

June 18 – Rise Against, Deftones, Thrice

June 24 – Lindsey Buckingham, Christine McVie

June 29 – Slightly Stoopid, Iration, J Boog

July 4 – Fireworks Festival with The Connells (free)

July 9 – My Morning Jacket, Gary Clark Jr.

July 14 – Tedeschi Trucks, Wood Brothers, Hot Tuna

July 15 – MercyMe

July 18 – Primus, Clutch

July 19 – Idina Menzel

July 20 – Slayer, Lamb of God, Behemoth

July 22 – Rebelution

July 28 – Straight No Chaser, Postmodern Jukebox

Aug. 2 – Stars of ABC’s “Nashville” on tour: Clare Bowen, Chris Carmack, Charles Esten and Jonathan Jackson

Aug. 3 – Gov’t Mule, Galactic

Aug. 5 – Blondie, Garbage, Deep Valley

Aug. 11 – Umphrey’s McGee, Aqueous

Aug. 23 – Goo Goo Dolls, Phillip Phillips

Sept. 29-30 – IBMA’s Wide Open Bluegrass

Oct. 11 – Kid Cudi

Booth Amphitheatre, Cary

Info: boothamphitheatre.com

June 7 – Paul Simon

June 28 – John Mellencamp, Emmylou Harris, Carlene Carter, Lily & Madeleine

July 8 – Sturgill Simpson, Adia Victoria

Aug. 12 – Eddie Money

Sept. 7-10 – Theater Raleigh presents “Rock of Ages”

Sept. 15 – Garrison Keillor's A Prairie Home "Love And Comedy Tour"

Sept. 16 – Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy

Sept. 19 – 2Cellos

Sept. 24 – Alison Krauss and David Gray

Oct. 21 – Carolina Uprising with Charlie Daniels Band, The Marshall Tucker Band, The Outlaws, Pure Prairie League, Poco, Scooter Brown Band, Super Grit Cowboy Band

N.C. Symphony Summerfest at Booth

Info: ncsymphony.org/summerfest

May 27 – New World Symphony

June 3 – Romantic Broadway

June 9 – Classics Under the Stars

June 10 – A Space Spectacular

June 17 – An Evening in France

June 24 – A Night of Beethoven

June 30 – Steep Canyon Rangers

July 1 – Appalachian Spring

July 4 – Independence Day

July 7 – The Music of U2

July 15 – Jackie Gore and North Tower Band

Hob Nob Jazz Series at Booth

May 3 – Tea Cup Gin

May 10 – Yolanda Rubin

May 17 – Mint Julip Jazz Band

May 24 – Peter Lamb & the Wolves

May 31 – Marcus Anderson

N.C. Museum of Art, Raleigh

Info: ncartmuseum.org

May 6 – Mipso, River Whyless

June 5 – Four Voices: Joan Baez, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Indigo Girls Amy Ray & Emily Saliers

June 9 – Tegan and Sara

June 13 – Kaleo

June 18 – Jason Isbell, Amanda Shires

June 24 – Sheryl Crow, Aaron Lee Tasjan

July 22 – Mandolin Orange, Joe Pug

July 31 – Belle & Sebastian, Andrew Bird

Aug. 1 – Punch Brothers, I’m With Her (Aoife O’Donovan, Sara Watkins, Sarah Jarosz)

Aug. 9 – Rhiannon Giddens

Aug. 12 – Superchunk

Aug. 19 – Tift Merritt and Friends, with Hiss Golden Messenger

Sept. 16 – Jimmie Dale Gilmore, “The Big Lebowski”

Duke University Music in the Gardens, Durham

Info: dukeperformances.duke.edu

June 7 – Flock of Dimes

June 14 – Robert Finley

June 21 – Robbie Fulks

June 28 – Loamlands

July 5 – Birds of Chicago

July 12 – Kelsey Waldon

July 19 – River Whyless

July 26 – Caleb Caudle

Shakori Hills, Pittsboro

Info: shakorihillsgrassroots.org

May 4-7 – Grassroots Spring Festival: Jim Lauderdale, Donna the Buffalo, Todd Snider, Amy Helm, others

Sept. 30 – Sylvan Esso, tUnE-yArDs, Wye Oak, Helado Negro

Festival for the ENO, Durham

Info: enoriver.org/festival

July 1-4 – Antibalas, Ruby Amanfu + Steelism

Durham Blues & Brews Festival, Durham

Info: durhambluesandbrewsfestival.com

May 20 – Willie Painter Band, Nikki Hill, Roy Roberts

Moogfest, Durham

Info: moogfest.com

Protest Stage at Motorco Park

May 18 – Talib Kweli, Omar Souleyman, Mykki Blanco, Bearcat, Pieface Girls, others

May 19 – Animal Collective, Jessy Lanza, Zola Jesus, London O’Connor, RBTS Win

May 20 – Flying Lotus, King, Professor Tune, DJ Chela, ZenSoFly

Free Outdoor Programming

Bull McCabe’s

May 19 – Riddim Macka Sound System, Selector B Steady, DJ Algoriddim

American Tobacco Amphitheater

May 20 – Joyful Noise of Electronic Music for Kids and Experimental Adults, Peanut Butter Wolf, Noize Activity

Outdoor installations including “No Permission Needed: CREATE,” “The Dream Wanderer: Lily Dale Virtual Reality,” “Jeremy Dance, Michael Stipe,” “Democracy’s Exquisite Corpse” and “SuperCollider, Scott Lindroth”

Raleigh Little Theatre Rose Garden, Raleigh

Info: raleighlittletheatre.org

Aug. 19 – Groove in the Garden, lineup TBA

Sept. 23 – Live & Local Roots Fest, lineup TBA

Oct. 21 – Groove in the Garden, lineup TBA

Hopscotch Music Festival, Raleigh

Info: hopscotchmusicfest.com – Sept. 7-10, acts TBA

FREE SERIES

North Hills, Raleigh

Info: visitnorthhills.com

Midtown Beach Music Series

April 20 – Embers featuring Craig Woolard

April 27 – Liquid Pleasure

May 4 – Sleeping Booty

May 11 – Legacy Motown Revue

May 18 – Band of Oz

May 25 – Tams

June 1 – Catalinas

June 8 – Steve Owens & Summertime

June 15 – Chairman of The Board

June 22 – Jim Quick & Coastline Band

June 29 – Black Water Rhythm & Blues

July 6 – Spare Change

July 13 – Fantastic Shakers

July 20 – Too Much Sylvia

July 27 – North Tower

Aug. 3 – Band of Oz

Aug. 10 – Liquid Pleasure

Aug. 17 – Embers featuring Craig Woolard

Midtown Music Fest

April 29 – Chris Weaver Band, Wild Fur, Shannon LaBrie, members of Jack the Radio, Brooke Hawala, others

Midtown Bluegrass Series

May 7 – acts TBA

Sept. 17 – acts TBA

Kicking’ It Country

June 3 – Blake Kearney Band, Casi Joy

Sunday Funday

June 11 – David Higgins Band, Colin and Carolina

Sept. 17 – The Railsplitters with special guests Fireside Collective

Friday Night Tributes

Fridays, Aug. 25-Oct. 13 - acts TBA

Back Porch Music on the Lawn, Durham

Info: americantobaccocampus.com

May 11 – Front Country, Demolition String Band

May 25 – Tellico, Skylar Gudasz

June 15 – Jim Lauderdale, Fireside Collective

June 29 – Alice Gerrard, Onyx Club Boys

Aug. 3 – Rob Ickes and Trey Hensley, Acoustic Manner

Aug. 17 – Acoustic Syndicate

Aug. 31 – Seldom Scene, Cicada Rhythm

Sept. 14 – Billy Strings, Whiskey Shivers

Durham Central Park, Durham

Info: durhamcentralpark.org

June 23 – Orquesta GarDel

June 30 – Too Many Zooz

July 7 – Skylar Gudasz, Kamara Thomas

July 14 – Cris Jacobs

July 21 – Caique Vidal & Batuque

July 28 – Jonathan Byrd & the Pickup Cowboy

Aug. 4 – Rebirth Brass Band

Aug. 11 – Allen Boys

Mill Music Sessions, Rocky Mount

Info: facebook.com/RockyMountMills

April 29 – Hiss Golden Messenger

May 18 – Southern Culture on the Skids

June 16 – Chatham County Line

July 14 – Drivin’ N’ Cryin’

Aug. 11 – Dom Flemons

Sept. 8 – TBA

Sertoma Series, Cary

Info: townofcary.org

May 13 – Lose Strings Band

June 10 – Tyler Hughes and Sam Gleaves

July 8 – Al Strong

Aug. 12 – Jonathan Byrd & the Pickup Cowboy

Live at Lunch, Cary

Info: townofcary.org

April 27 – Ariel Pocock

May 4 – Rory John Zak Duo

May 11 – Garrett Newton Duo

May 18 – Jimmy Weaver

May 25 – E.G. Peters

Six Sundays, Wake Forest

Info: wakeforestarts.org/events/six-sundays

April 30 – Marcus Anderson

May 7 – Faol Liath

May 14 – EG Peters Band

May 21 – Hank, Pattie & The Current

May 28 – Walking for Pennies

June 4 – TBA

Aug. 6 – Diali Cissokho & Austin McCall

Sept. 3 – The Piney Woods Boys

Art of Cool (daytime free programming, April 29)

Info: aocfestival.org

CCB Plaza – La La Specific, P.A.T. Jr., Raleigh Rockers, DJ Gonzo, others

American Tobacco Amphitheater – Jus Once Gogo Band, Al Strong and the Start of Cool All Stars

Artsplosure, Raleigh

Info: artsplosure.org

May 19-21 – Phil Cook, Lacy Jags, Rise Raschid, William Bell Band, Harris Brothers, Seratones, others

Music on The Plaza, Durham

Info: northgatemall.com

May 5 – Cinco de Mayo with Los Plebes de Olancho

May 12 – Handsome Al and the Lookers, Emma Davis

May 26 – Mel Melton’s Wicked Mojos, John Dee Holeman

June 2 – Beauty Operators

June 16 – Entertainers

June 30 – The Magnificents

Y’all at Dix Park, Raleigh

Info: yallatdixpark.com

June 24 – acts TBA

July 22 – Hammer No More the Fingers

Aug. 26 – acts TBA

Friday Nights on the Tar, Louisburg

Info: townoflouisburg.org

May 19 – The Castaways

June 16 – Big Fat Gap

July 21 – Ted Jones and the Tarheel Boys

August 18 – The Johnny Folsom 4

September 15 – The East Coast Rhythm and Blues Band

IBMA Wide Open Bluegrass

There are ticketed shows, of course, but also a ton of free performances. Here are some free shows you won’t want to miss.

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