All the concerts to see in NYC this summer

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You’ve recovered from Memorial Day weekend and survived the long return trip home. Now it’s time to rock out to some awesome summer shows this year. Quite honestly, it just wouldn’t be summer here in the Big Apple without some live music, and there’s plenty of it this season for both the sophisticated and casual music fan. The noticeable difference this time around is the absence of Brooklyn’s Northside Festival, which had been a steady presence for about a decade. Fortunately, one can always count on Celebrate Brooklyn!, which this year marks its 40th anniversary of offering the best in (mostly free) live music: The National, Courtney Barnett, Jason Isbell, Patti LaBelle, and Liz Phair are just some of the marquee acts who will be appearing on stage at Prospect Park.

But Celebrate Brooklyn! is not the only game in town for summer music. Another long-running institution is BAM R&B Festival at MetroTech, which highlights both old school R&B and emerging artists—among them Nona Hendryx, Roy Ayers, Van Hunt and Ruthie Foster. The Summer Series at Industry City, curated by the team behind the Bell House, CityFarm Presents, has a particularly incredible lineup this year, with Lion Babe, Blonde Redhead, Lee Scratch Perry, Antibalas and more on the calendar. And the Afropunk Festival has established itself as the preeminent showcase for cutting-edge and empowering R&B/hip-hop—this year’s killer lineup features jazz great Kamasi Washington, blues star Gary Clark, and R&B powerhouse Jill Scott. Meanwhile Coney Island is not just about the beach, the Cyclone and Nathan’s—the Ford Amphitheater on the boardwalk features a diverse program of shows that appeals to generations of music listeners, from Lost ‘80s Live to hip-hop royalty Wu-Tang Clan. And for a few dollars more, both Forest Hills Stadium and Governors Ball boast superstar names, including the reunited Strokes, Kacey Musgraves and Morrissey.

Here’s a partial list of notable performers who should be on your summer live music radar.

Photo: Governors Ball

The Governors Ball Music Festival, Randall’s Island, May 31-June 2

Performers include Tyler the Creator, Lil Wayne, The Strokes, Nas, Soccer Mommy, Lily Allen, Charli XCX, Florence + the Machine, Kacey Musgraves, Mitski and more.

The National (Graham Macindoe)

Celebrate Brooklyn, Prospect Park Bandshell, Brooklyn

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

June 12-13
The National/Courtney Barnett

June 19
Father John Misty/Jason Isbell

June 20
Tank and the Bangas

June 29
Liz Phair

July 12
Gaby Moreno & Friends / Enjambre / El David Aguilar

July 13
Salif Keita

Blonde Redhead.

CityFarm Presents Summer Series, Industry City, 238 36th St., Brooklyn

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

June 1
Everyday People

June 5
Lion Babe

June 7
Lady Wray

June 8
Frankie Cosmos

June 13
Bombino

June 14
Blonde Redhead

June 15
Fleetmac Wood Gold Dust Disco

June 21
Slothrust

July 14
Kid Koala

July 19
Nick Hakim

Sept 21
Lee Scratch Perry

Sept 27
Guided by Voices

Sept 28
Antibalas

Morrissey. Photo: Monika Stolarska

Forest Hills Stadium, 1 Tennis Place, Queens

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

June 15
Death Cab for Cutie/Jenny Lewis

July 24
Elvis Costello/Blondie

August 1
Chemical Brothers

August 2

Sarah McLachlan

August 17
Beck/Cage the Elephant

Sept 7
Morrissey

The Specials. Photo: Granstand Media

Brooklyn Steel, 319 Frost Street, Brooklyn

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

June 14
The Specials

July 31
Snail Mail

August 3
Bad Religion

Music Hall of Williamsburg, 66 North 6th Street, Brooklyn

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

July 17
Aimee Mann/Jonathan Coulton

July 19
Mekons

The Regrettes. Photo: Claire Marie Vogel

Rough Trade, 64 North 9th Street, Brooklyn

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

June 21
Titus Andronicus

July 11
Pronoun

August 9
The Regrettes

Fantastic Negrito. Photo: DeAndre Forks

BAM R&B Festival at MetroTech, 304 Bridge Street, Brooklyn

June 6
Nona Hendryx with Vernon Reid

June 20
Roy Ayers

July 18
Fantastic Negrito

August 1
Ruthie Foster

August 15
Van Hunt

Wu-Tang Clan. Photo: Napalm filled tires via Wikimedia Commons

Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk,Coney Island, Brooklyn

June 16
Wu-Tang Clan

July 19
Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons

July 20
Saturday Night Fever
Featuring Thelma Houston, the Delfonics, Tavares, the Trammps, and others.

August 2
Lost ‘80s Live
Featuring A Flock of Seagulls, the Motels, the Vapors, Dramarama and others.

August 10
One Africa Music Festival

August 22
Boyz II Men

Patty Griffin. Photo: Michael Wilson

Lincoln Center Out of Doors, Damrosch Park, Lincoln Center, Manhattan

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

July 26
Jeff Tweedy

July 27
Look at My Soul: The Latin Shade of Texas Soul

July 28
Caribbean Cultural Center

August 8
OkayAfrica: Gold and Soul

August 10
Patty Griffin

August 11
Roots of American Music Weekend: Americanafest NYC

Bikini Kill. Photo: Jonathan Charles / CC BY-SA 2.0

Kings Theatre, 1027 Flatbush Avenue

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

June 4 and June 5
Bikini Kill

June 8
RBRM-4 the Love of It Tour
(featuring members of New Edition and Bell Biv Devoe)

Sept. 17
Andrew Bird

Kurt Vile. Photo: Matador Records

SummerStage, Central Park, Rumsey Playfield, Manhattan

Below are select shows, visit the site for the full lineup.

June 4
One Nation Under a Groove Farewell Tour with George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic

June 15
DeJohnette-Coltrane-Garrison Trio

June 24
Japanese Breakfast

June 26
Alvvays

July 25
Kurt Vile

July 31
Fela! The Concert

August 3
Taiwanese Waves (showcasing women of contemporary Taiwanese music)

August 4
Corinne Bailey Rae/Jose James

Brasil Summerfest, July 21-August 3, various venues throughout NYC

The contemporary Brazilian music and culture festival is marking its ninth year this summer.

Afropunk Brooklyn 2018 Photo: Edna Holifield

Afropunk Fest, Commodore Barry Park, August 24-25

Acts include Jill Scott, FKA Twigs, Kamasi Washington, Leon Bridges, Gary Clark Jr., Santigold, Toro Y Moi, and more.

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