New York City Summer Festival Roundup

With the weather warming up, people are leaving their comfy couches for the green grass and heading out in droves to Prospect Park and Central Park. Now, there’s a better reason than a cold 40oz. to head there, because the NYC summer music schedules have all been released! Here’s the round up of all the great (mostly free!) shows that are gonna be around the city this summer

Celebrate Brooklyn

Possibly one of my fondest memories from last summer was when David Byrne played at Prospect Park at the Celebrate Brooklyn Concert Series. While he won’t be returning this year, there is a stellar schedule for 2010, and they’re all free (if you don’t mind sitting in the park to listen)
The first show of the season is the sultry Norah Jones on June 9th, to be followed by other standouts like Eugene Mirman (June17th) Ozamatli (July 9th), The Roots with Talib Kweli on July 11th, The Brooklyn Philharmonic (July 22nd), The Swell Season + The Low Anthem (July 30t), Sonic Youth (July 31), Metric (August 5th) and Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings on August 7th. Pretty stellar lineup. Not to mention Passion Pit, The Dead Weather, The National and Rufus Wainright as “Benefit Shows”, which you gotta pay for to get into the seated section. But the park seating is still free! Check out the full schedule here.

Siren Music Festival

I have mixed feelings about the Village Voice’s annual Siren Festival. On the plus, there are usually great bands, there’s a huge turnout and it’s free. On the downside, there’s a huge turnout because it’s free and it’s usually the hottest day of the summer, which this year will be Saturday, July 17th. This year, headliners are: MATT AND KIM, TED LEO AND THE PHARMACISTS, THE PAINS OF BEING PURE AT HEART, SURFER BLOOD, and HARLEM. Pretty sweet. There’s also the infamous After-Parties to go to after you’re sunburned to a crisp.

Central Park Summer Stage

The Mother-of-All Concert Series’, Central Park Summer Stage isn’t exclusive to Central Park, featuring shows all around the five Burroughs. Set to open with a performance by Jay Electronica in Red Hook Park, Brooklyn, a triumphant return by Living Colour in Central Park on June 5th, and a huge list of performers that can be found here.

River To River Festival

Apples in Stereo(June 26th) and Bear In Heaven (July 9th), Free Energy and Best Coast with Loose Limbs (July 23rd), Avi Buffalo (July 30th), Yacht (August 6th) are some of the names that might attract you to the River To River Festival, which begins in June. Based throughout the city, this series is free for everyone, and the Seaport events are always great on a nice warm day.

Free Film Festivals on the next page.