turns 25 this year, and like any true twentysomething it’s going all
out to celebrate, as the Central Park summer staple expands to all five
boroughs. See free shows from The xx, St. Vincent, Public Enemy and Jay
Electronica, while others from Pavement, The Flaming Lips and Hot Chips
will cost you.
June 1 through Aug. 29, various locations, 212-360-2756;
Prospect Park proves it’s more than just a pretty space by
housing one of the best summer concert series in the city. Slather on
some sunscreen and go see Sonic Youth and Talk Normal July 31, The Roots
July 11 or Kid Koala June 25, as well as an opening night kick-off
concert by Norah Jones
June 9. June 9 through Aug. 8, Prospect Park
Bandshell, ener park at 9th St. & Prospect Park West, Brooklyn,
When you’re not in Madison Square Park filling up on
burgers, try catching one of its free concerts. Offer to bring a blanket
and let your friend stand in line for snacks before seeing soul singer
Ruthie Foster, who opens up the park’s Oval Lawn Series
June 16, or the
David Bromberg Quartet July 14. June 16 through Aug. 4, Madison Square Park, enter
park at Madison Ave. & E. 26th St., www.madisonsquarepark.org;
Head downtown for something other than a dive bar or brunch and
check out the more than 50 dance and music performances this fesitval
has to offer, like Jayne Cortez & the Firespitters June 25.
through 30, Abrons Arts Center, 466 Grand St. (near Pitt St).,
212-254-5420; $20 and up.
Make Music New York
Traditionally our summer starts with shaving a
mohawk, but seeing as Punk Island opens Make Music New York the day
before summer begins this year, we’ll be kicking our ritual off early.
We suggest you do the same. The music festival’s other less abrasive
offerings will still take place all over the city June 21.
various locations, www.makemusicny.org; 11 a.m. to 10, Free.
River To River Festival
From the must-see rock shows at Pier 17 to the early evening concert
series at Rockefeller Park, a July 4 concert in Battery Park and the
Bang On A Can Marathon, River to River is an exhaustive behemoth of
Downtown summer music. Check the website for a full schedule.
through Aug. 11, various locations, 212-732-7678, www.rivertorivernyc.com, Free.
See more than the swells break at Pier 54
during Hudson River Park’s annual music series featuring indie rockers
like series headliners Phosphorescent & Dawes July 8, The Antlers
July 22 and Real Estate Aug. 12.
July 8 through Aug. 12, Hudson River
Park, Perry & West Streets, 212-627-2020, www.riverrocksnyc.com;
Philharmonic in the Parks
Starting July 13, city parks will be great
places for something other than staring at sunbathers; something more
classy like a free orchestra concert, including pieces from Tchaikovsky,
Gershwin, Bernstein and Mozart, in Central, Cunningham and Prospect
July 13 through 16, various locations, 212- 875-5656, www.nyphil.org; Free.
Lincoln Center Out of Doors
It’s not officially summer until Lincoln Center Out of Doors opens,
because this annual festival of live music is the touchstone telling us
now it’s time to bust out the short shorts, sunglasses and zinc. Make
sure to see, on July 31, “The Detroit Breakdown,” featuring The Gories,
Dennis Coffey, Melvin Davis, Spyder Turner and more.
July 28 through
Aug. 15, various locations, www.lincolncenter.org;
The legendary all-female festival of the summer is back and bigger than
ever for its 10th anniversary. See sets from Sarah McLachlan, Cat Power,
Indigo Girls and Carly Simon, who just might tell you who’s so vain
after all these years. Actually probably not, but we’ll keep crossing
July 31, PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, N.J., 732-203-2500;
3, $37.75 and up.
Parker Jazz Festival
Head to Tompkin’s Square Park in the East Village
and Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem to hear some of jazz’s biggest
musicians perform for this two-day celebration of the music Parker held
so close to his heart. JD Allen and Jimmy Scott headline.
Aug. 28 & 29, Marcus Garvey Park, enter park at E. 120th
St. & Madison Ave. and Tompkins Square Park, enter park at E. 8th
St. & Ave. A; 3, Free.
Music on the Oval
thought that only shady rental deals went down in Stuy Town, you were
wrong! Every Wednesday between June 16 and July 21, the development will
host a concert featuring groups like Delorean, drumming legend Tony
Allen, Naomi Shelton & the Gospel Queens and others. Before each
band, a DJ does an hour-long set to pump up the crowd. We can’t think of
a better way to start a night out in the East Village, or to meet a
nice old lady about to give up her rent-controlled one bedroom.
through July 21, Stuyvesant Town Oval, enter park at 1st Ave. & E.
16th St.; 6, Free.
This three-day festival features plenty of
skating, biking and live music in Commodore Barry Park. Highlights are
sure to include live sets from Bad Brains, N*E*R*D, Cipher and P.O.S. as
well as the cash prizes contestants can receive for winning skate
June 25 through 27, Commodore Barry Park, enter park at
Flushing Avenue & Navy Street, Brooklyn; Free.
only thing better than the Museum of Modern Art’s Sculpture Garden?
Listening to music there this summer. The free series includes concerts
by musicians from the Juilliard School on July 11 and 25, and by groups
selected by Jazz at Lincoln Center on July 18 and August 1. But not so
fast: regular museum admission applies. Museum of Modern Art, 11 W. 53rd
St. (betw. 5th & 6th Aves.), 212-708-9400; 5:30 & 7, $20.
Washington Square Music
Haven’t seen that shiny new fountain yet? The 52nd season of
free chamber music and jazz takes place four Tuesdays in July at 8 p.m.,
in front of the Holley statue in Washington Square. Featured works are
by Karl Amadeus Hartmann.
July 27 features the Charles Mingus Orchestra.
Complete lineup at www.washingtonsquaremusicfestival.org.
2010 NYC Undead Jazz Fest
Considering all the
young talent that has embraced jazz in recent years, one could easily
tell critics who say it’s dead, that jazz is alive and well. The Undead
Jazz Festival, a showcase of over 30 distinct independent artists,
promises just that.
been producing the Winter Jazz Festival for six years, and it has been a
unique experience,” says co-organizer Brice Rosenbloom. “This past
year, over 4,000 people attended, and it was such an eyeopening
experience to have that mass of people come out on cold January nights
to hear jazz in New York, that it proved that a similar model could
occur other times of the year.”
For this two-day smorgasbord— which takes place at
Kenny’s Castaways, Le Poisson Rouge and Sullivan Hall— performers
include pianist Jean-Michel Pilc,
contemporary drummer Ari Hoenig, guitarist Mary Halvorson and Burnt
unusual choice of the venues was also deliberate. “Kenny’s Castaways has
had a history of launching artists like Bruce Springsteen, but more
recently it hasn’t had much attention,” explains Rosenbloom. “But in the
past two years, it has been included as part of the Winter Jazz
Festival, and it’s one of the most charming venues of the three that
we’re using.” —Ernest Barteldes
June 12-13, Kenny’s Castaways, 157 Bleecker St.,
212-979-9762; Sullivan Hall, 218 Sullivan St., 212-505-1703; Le Poisson
Rouge, 158 Bleecker St., 212-353-3474; One-day passes $25, full festival
pass $30, www.undeadjazzfest.com.