13 Ways To See Live Music Outdoors This Summer In Memphis
Here are 13 ways to enjoy live music in the outdoors this spring and summer in Memphis (and the ‘burbs).
1. Peabody Rooftop Parties, Peabody Hotel, Thursdays at 6 p.m. April 14 – August 18, 21 and up, $10-$15The Peabody’s rooftop parties have been a staple of Memphis’ spring and summer social life since 1939 – they’re a great way to enjoy some lively music, see the sunset, and mingle with a few hundred Memphians. See the lineup here.
2. Huey’s Patio Parties, Huey’s Germantown, Wednesdays at 5 p.m. April 27 – May 25, all ages, free
Catch some live tunes on the huge patio at Huey’s in Germantown for five weeks this spring, starting April 27. It’s free to attend, and you can take advantage of the Huey’s happy hour specials while you’re there. All the acts are listed here.
3. Acoustic Courtyard, Overton Square Tower Courtyard, last Thursday of each month April – October, 6:30 p.m., all ages, free
Head to Overton Square’s Tower Courtyard on the final Thursday of each month this summer and fall for some chill acoustic tunes for free. The series kicks off Thursday, April 28 with three acts. Click here for more info.
4. Beale Street Music Fest, Tom Lee Park, April 29 – May 1, $135 for 3-day pass / $45 for a single-day pass
Memphis In May’s annual three-day music festival has four stages and more than 60 acts – including Neil Young, Beck, Weezer, Meghan Trainor, Yo Gotti, Jason Derulo, Modest Mouse, and Paul Simon. Click here for Beale Street Music Fest list of bands and click here for the stages and show times.
5. Stax Academy Spring Concert, Overton Square Tower Courtyard, May 1, 4 p.m., all ages, $5
If you haven’t heard the absolutely mind-blowing talent of the high schoolers from the Stax Academy, you are missing out. Their spring show is Sunday, May 1 in Overton Square. Bring your chairs and $5 entry fee and enjoy some Southern Soul.
6. River Series At Harbor Town, Harbor Town Amphitheatre, May 14 / May 28, doors at 6 p.m., all ages/kid-friendly, $5 donation at the door
I like the River Series because it’s a way to see locals bands that normally play late-night and indoors (sometimes in smoky venues) before your bedtime out in the fresh air. Two shows remain: Reigning Sound / Robby Grant / DJ Hot Tub Eric on May 14 and Motel Mirrors / Marcella & Her Lovers on May 28. Read more here.
7. Bluesday Tuesday, Overton Square Tower Courtyard, Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. from May 24 to September 20, all ages, free
Celebrate the home of the blues (that’s Memphis!) in midtown with a series of free blues music shows all summer and early fall. Bring your chairs and enjoy two acts each Tuesday evening. Lineup TBA.
8. 901Fest, Tom Lee Park, May 28, 3 p.m., all ages, $9
901Fest is one of Memphis in May’s new events for 2016, featuring 16 favorite Memphis performers, plus local vendors and food. Click here for the lineup.
9. Summer Symphony, Memphis Botanic Garden, May 28, gates at 5:30 p.m./show at 7:30 p.m., all ages, $10 – $25
Missing the Sunset Symphony already? You can still catch the Memphis Symphony in a gorgeous outdoor setting at sunset at the end of May, it will just be new event at the Botanic Gardens this year. Picnics, chairs, and kids welcome. Kids tickets are $10, adult tickets are $20 in advance or $25 at the gate.
10. Levitt Shell Summer Concert Series, Levitt Shell, June 2 – July 31 , most begin at 7:30 p.m., all ages/kid-friendly, most are free
Memphis’ best-loved concert series includes 50 free shows per season and a few paid special events. Bring your blankets and chairs to the first-come, first-serve lawn seating, bring your coolers and picnics or buy food and beer on site. There is a dog-friendly seating area on the side. Click here to see the Levitt Shell’s 2016 summer concert lineup.
11. Collierville Sunset on the Square, Collierville Town Square, Thursdays June 2 – July 21, all ages/kid-friendly, free
Collierville will host eight free shows this summer in the historic Town Square. Pets are allowed on leashes at the park perimeter. Click here for the lineup.
12. Live At The Garden, Memphis Botanic Garden, June 10 – September 23, gates open at 6 p.m. or 6:30 p.m., $170 for all five shows
The Botanic Garden’s popular annual concert series features five crowd-pleasing/old-school favorites. Coolers, blankets, chairs are welcome for lawn seating and the crowd is decidedly adult. Click here for more info and the Live at the Garden lineup.
13. FOMO Fest, Levitt Shell, August 6, 2 p.m. – 10 p.m., all ages, ticket info TBA
You’re going to be sweating anyways, so why not sweat to the tune of a bunch of excellent up-and-coming Memphis bands? Lineup will be announced later in the season.
In this post, I’m focusing primarily on outdoor concerts series or one-day festivals with many bands at venues that don’t normally have music year-round. Did I miss something? Add it to the calendar – I’ll see it come through and add it to this list.