Sounds of Summer: A guide to the music festivals heating up the South this summer
by Sara Milledge
smilledge@annistonstar.com
May 12, 2013 | 8013 views |  0 comments | 289 289 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Illustration: AnnaMaria Jacob/The Anniston Star
Illustration: AnnaMaria Jacob/The Anniston Star
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Pack up the cooler, grab the folding chairs and don’t forget the sunscreen, because this summer’s music season is getting ready to rock.

Alabamians can jam from the banks of the Coosa River to the beaches of Gulf Shores, and pretty much everywhere in between. Kick back to the sounds of world-class jazz, get up and dance to ’80s cover bands or sing along with Top 40 hits. Whether it’s just for the day or all weekend long, a local jam fest or a road trip, music lovers have got a lot to look forward to.

Bonnaroo visitors can catch a comedy act on one of the many stages, and vinyl-lovers can browse record collections at the Model City Music Festival in Anniston. And don’t forget about the music.

The South is welcoming some big names this summer, like Grammy Award-winning Mumford & Sons, Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and indie superstars Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, just to name a few. With tunes from country to hip-hop to jazz at venues from farms to beaches to downtowns, this summer’s music season has something for everyone.


HANGOUT MUSIC FEST

What: Three-day festival featuring a wide mix of musical genres

When: May 17-19

Where: The Hangout, on the beach in Gulf Shores

Lineup: Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Stevie Wonder, Kings of Leon and more

Cost: Three-day pass $229, one-day pass $89

Info: www.hangoutmusicfest.com

RIVER JAM MUSIC FESTIVAL

What: A free music festival featuring local and regional artists

When: May 18

Where: Riverwalk Amphitheater, Montgomery

Lineup: Jess Meuse, The John Bull Band featuring Sheffield Walker, Roman Street, Roscoe Bandana, Nine Days and more

Cost: Free

Info: www.funontheriver.net/announcements/river-jam

ROME RIVER JAM

What: Outdoor concert and tailgate

When: May 18

Where: Ridge Ferry Park, Rome, Ga.

Lineup: Craig Morgan, Blackberry Smoke, Ashley Monroe, Angie Johnson and Canaan Smith

Cost: Advanced ticket $30, at the gate $35, tailgate pass $25

Info: www.romeriverjam.com

THE ACOUSTIC CAFE

What: Three-day acoustic festival featuring stringed musicians and singers

When: May 24-25

Where: Haleyville

Lineup: Caroline Webb, The Claire Lynch Band, Dread Clampitt and more

Cost: Advanced ticket $50, at the door $60

Info: www.theacousticcafe.com

HANK WILLIAMS FESTIVAL

What: 34th annual festival in honor of country singer and Alabama native Hank Williams

When: May 31- June 1

Where: Hank Williams Music Park, Georgiana

Lineup: Gene Watson, Brad Magness, Mary McDonald, Colon Leatherwood and more

Cost: Friday $15, Saturday $25, two-day pass $30

Info: www.hankwilliamsfestival.com

GADSDEN RIVERFEST

What: Two-day festival by the Coosa River

When: May 31-June 1

Where: Highway 411 in Gadsden

Lineup: Kenny Rogers, Corey Smith, Kate Falcon, STYX and more

Cost: Adult weekend pass $35, weekend pass for children 11 and under $10

Info: www.gadsdenriverfest.com

ALABASTER CITYFEST

What: Free all-day outdoor music festival

When: June 1

Where: The ground of Alabaster Municipal Park and Thompson Middle School, Alabaster

Lineup: Josh Turner, Ed Kowalczyk, Michael Warren, After Two Glasses and more

Cost: Free

Info: www.alabastercityfest.com

THE PRESERVE JAZZ FESTIVAL

What: World-class outdoor jazz festival

When: June 2

Where: The Preserve, Hoover

Lineup: Spyro Gyra, Alex Bugnon, Eric Essix, Good Times Brass Band and Kim Scott

Cost: General admission $40

Info: www.preservejazz.com

ALEXANDER CITY JAZZ FEST

What: Free two-day outdoor jazz festival

When: June 7-8

Where: Downtown Alexander City

Lineup: Marc Broussard, Chubby Carrier, New Orleans Suspects and Davin McCoy

Cost: Free

Info: www.alexcityjazzfest.com

RIVERBEND FESTIVAL

What: Nine-day multi-stage festival with mix of music genres

When: June 7-15

Where: The banks of the Tennessee River, Chattanooga

Lineup: Jake Owen, Brandy, Newsboys, Dierks Bentley, Lynyrd Skynyrd and more

Cost: General admission for all nine days $32, one-night wristband $26

Info: www.riverbendfestival.com

BONNAROO

What: Four-day multi-stage festival featuring a mix of music genres, comedy and more

When: June 13-16

Where: 700-acre farm in Manchester, Tenn.

Lineup: Paul McCartney, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Mumford & Sons, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Daniel Tosh and more

Cost: General admission $269.50

Info: www.bonnaroo.com

CAMP WIGOUT

What: Three-day camping independent music festival

When: Aug. 9-11

Where: Hollis Crossroads

Lineup: Snarky Puppy, Buchaco, Gull, Opposite Box, The Mad Violinist and Symphony Crack Orchestra and more

Cost: Three-day pass $65, one-day pass $30

Info: www.campwigout.com

MODEL CITY MUSIC FESTIVAL

What: Free outdoor music festival and record show

When: July 20

Where: Concert at Zinn Park, record show at Anniston City Meeting Center

Lineup: Good Times’ Jimmy Walker and 80’s funk band Midnight

Cost: Free

Info: facebook.com/modelcitymusicfestival
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