NYC Concert Calendar
by nycgo.com staff
- events in nyc/
- more in arts & entertainment/
If you love live music, there's no better place than NYC—home to countless venerated concert halls that host both superstars and rising stars every night of the week. Below, find a sampling of upcoming shows.
January 5, 12, 19 and 26
Steve Earle at City Winery
The hard-rockin', hard-livin' country singer has morphed into an actor, novelist, activist and all-around sage. Among the performances in his annual winter residency at City Winery will be a shared-stage concert with Shawn Colvin (January 12). For tickets, visit citywinery.com.
January 9, February 18, March 9, April 3, May 28, June 20 and more
Billy Joel at Madison Square Garden
Perhaps emboldened by near-instant sellouts of the area gigs he'd already announced, living legend and New York icon Billy Joel will play what used to be called a residency at Madison Square Garden (they're saying they've turned the man into a "franchise"), performing a show a month as long as people keep showing up. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
January 14, 17, 21, 24, 28 and 31
Savages at The Mercury Lounge and Saint Vitus
The post-punk British female troupe—who became critical darlings following the release of their debut, Silence Yourself—plays a string of intimate performances in Manhattan and Brooklyn. See them now before they're big(ger). The shows are sold out, so try your luck on stubhub.com.
Sufjan Stevens at Brooklyn Academy of Music
These performances will have Stevens and Yarn/Wire, a piano and percussion ensemble, providing a live electronic score for a rodeo documentary titled Round-Up. Sounds...interesting? For tickets, visit bam.org.
Rebecca Pidgeon at Rockwood Music Hall
The British singer-songwriter, also known as Ms. David Mamet (she has starred in a number of his plays and films), performs her wry, languorous acoustic rock in an intimate setting. For tickets, visit ticketfly.com.
Reverend Horton Heat at The Gramercy Theatre
If you're in the market for sped-up rockabilly, songs about zombies and all-around fun, you've come to the right show. For tickets, visit livenation.com.
Zola Jesus at Saint Vitus
The witch-pop songstress tours behind her latest release, Taiga, whose first single, "Dangerous Days," was one of our favorite songs released last year. The shows are sold out, so try your luck on stubhub.com.
January 25, February 22, March 29, April 26 and May 31
They Might Be Giants at Music Hall of Williamsburg
Brooklyn's own beloved nerd-rock outfit has plans for a big 2015, with new "Dial-A-Song" recordings every week and live shows in their home borough every month. Check musichallofwilliamsburg.com for details on the shows, some of which will feature full-album sets. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Motion City Soundtrack at Irving Plaza
These Rentals-meet-Fall Out Boy synth-pop punks are set to play sophomore album (and fan favorite) Commit This to Memory in its entirety, 10 years after the record's initial release. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake at Best Buy Theater
Reel Big Fish had a gold record during the ska-punk boom of the 1990s, and the band has held on to a loyal fan base through relentless touring and a highly caffeinated live show. Plus, lead singer-guitarist Aaron Barrett can shred with the best of 'em. Fellow hardened ska-punk vets Less Than Jake co-headline what has to be the show of 2015 (so far) for the genre's fans. For tickets, visit axs.com.
Machine Head at Irving Plaza
These Oakland-bred pioneers of the New Wave of American Heavy Metal tour in support of a new album, Bloodstone and Diamonds. For tickets, visit livenation.com.
Jack White at Madison Square Garden
The White Stripes, the Dead Weather, the Raconteurs, plain old Jack White—in any guise, this guy's distorted blues-rock guitar and high-pitched wail have become indelibly branded on the American consciousness. In other words, expect a fun night. Just don't bring up the Black Keys. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Diana Ross at Kings Theatre
A supreme legend headlines the reopening of a Flatbush landmark. The 3,000-seat Kings Theatre, which debuted in 1929 as a movie palace, had been out of commission for almost 40 years before its nearly $100 million restoration. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Spandau Ballet at Beacon Theatre
This much is true: these dapper New Romantics briefly ruled the MTV roost back in the early 1980s. If you're not ready to buy a ticket to the world, consider buying a ticket to their show; do so at ticketmaster.com.
Jay Farrar at City Winery
One half of the songwriting genius (along with future Wilco founder Jeff Tweedy) behind alt-country heroes Uncle Tupelo, Farrar has gone on to front Son Volt, release a few solo albums and set lyrics by Woody Guthrie and Jack Kerouac to music. Expect heartfelt, well-crafted Americana, if not too much of the early stuff you might yearn for. For tickets, visit citywinery.com.
Robert Earl Keen at Music Hall of Williamsburg
Along with kindred types Lyle Lovett and Nanci Griffith, Keen was part of a hyperliterate group of Texas singer-songwriters elbowing their way onto the 1980s country scene. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Meshell Ndegeocello at Jazz at Lincoln Center
The famed performer pays tribute to Nina Simone as part of Lincoln Center's American Songbook series. For more info and tickets, visit americansongbook.org.
New York Blues Hall of Fame Concert at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill
Did you know that New York had its own blues hall of fame? Inductees may not be the big names you'd recognize, but they’ve all paid their dues on the local scene. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Talib Kweli at Lincoln Center
This Brooklyn rapper—known for literate lyrics and social consciousness—dropped his latest album, Prisoner of Conscious, last May. For tickets, visit lincolncenter.org.
Aesop Rock at The Gramercy Theatre
This hip-hop wordsmith’s lyrics have been featured everywhere from a New York Times best-selling book to Yale University’s Anthology of Rap. He’s based in San Francisco these days, but this show is still a homecoming: he was born in Long Island and came up through the NYC scene. For tickets, visit livenation.com.
Living Colour at Brooklyn Bowl
They ain't no glamour boys—they're fierce! (Though look away from their outfits in this video if you want to maintain that impression.) They're also back, releasing a new album and playing some dates along the East Coast, including this Valentine’s soiree. For tickets, visit ticketfly.com.
George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill
If dialing into P-Funk's mothership connection doesn't make you want to get off your you-know-what and jam, well, there may be no hope. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Helmet at Bowery Ballroom and Saint Vitus
Somewhere between metal, math rock and post-punk, Helmet stood poised in the 1990s to be the, or at least a, next big thing. Despite commercial success, they never quite hit the top and disbanded at the end of the decade (to be revived about five years later). At these sold-out shows, they'll be performing songs from 1994's Betty; for tickets, visit stubhub.com.
Sleater-Kinney at Terminal 5
Portlandia couldn't keep Carrie Brownstein away from her guitar for too long (a brief foray with Wild Flag notwithstanding); her influential 1990s feminist punk outfit is back with a new record, No Cities to Love. Both shows are sold out; for tickets, visit stubhub.com.
Jukebox the Ghost and Secret Someones at Irving Plaza
Jukebox the Ghost started as a poppy rock band that sounded like a hyperactive cross between Ben Folds Five, Queen and They Might Be Giants. On their most recent album, they went full force on the pop production and sometimes sounded a little bit like Fun (the "We Are Young" folks). If there's one thing the old stuff and the new stuff have in common, though, it's that the songs are super-catchy. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Gang of Four at Irving Plaza
It’s more like a Gang of Three…or, if you’re just counting original members, a Gang of One. But hey, we won’t argue if it means we get to hear the likes of "Damaged Goods" and "I Love a Man in a Uniform." For tickets, visit livenation.com.
G. Love and Special Sauce at Irving Plaza
These funky Philadelphians made a splash on the 1990s alternative hip-hop scene. They reunited for a spring 2014 release, Sugar, which marked the 20th anniversary of their self-titled debut. For tickets, visit livenation.com.
The Church at Bowery Ballroom
This Australian alternative rock band released their 25th (not a typo!) album, Further/Deeper, last October. Also of interest to fans: this marks the US live debut of new guitarist Ian Haug. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
March 13 and 15
Meghan Trainor at Irving Plaza
She’s all about that bass, ’bout that bass, ’bout that bass. Meghan Trainor’s song is already playing in your head anyway. At this show, the 20-year-old artist is virtually certain to also play it in real, physical space. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Diana Krall at The Beacon Theatre
The bestselling Canadian jazz singer and pianist—with a truckload of multiplatinum records, Grammys and Juno Awards (those are from Canada) to her name—tours in support of her latest album, Wallflower. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Kindness at Bowery Ballroom and Rough Trade
British singer-songwriter Adam Bainbridge has been performing his blend of electronica and synth-pop since 2007. His sophomore album, Otherness—released this past October—brought touches of jazz, disco and R&B into the mix. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Perfume Genius at Stage 48
Seattle's Mike Hadreas, better known as Perfume Genius, makes absorbing indie-pop songs. His lyrics explore such themes as insecurity and society’s attitudes toward the LGBT community with raw honesty. “Queen” is a good place to start. His latest album, Too Bright, received nothing but glowing reviews. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Ariana Grande at Madison Square Garden
The pint-size, ponytailed Nickelodeon actress turned pop star belts out her hits at Madison Square Garden. Decide for yourself whether she deserves those comparisons to Mariah Carey, and try to figure out what the heck is going on in this video. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Neil Diamond at Barclays Center
He may be known and loved all around the world (even, to some New Yorkers' chagrin, at Fenway Park), but Neil Diamond was born and raised in Brooklyn—so the hometown crowd should sing along extra loud on hits like "Sweet Caroline" and "Cracklin' Rosie." For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Swervedriver at Music Hall of Williamsburg
This British band helped define the shoegaze genre of the 1990s before dissolving at the end of that decade. They've hardly looked up since. (But seriously, they've reunited, are releasing a new album and are out on tour.) For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
alt-J at Madison Square Garden
Fun fact: this English band chose its name because pressing the keyboard combination "alt+J" calls up the delta symbol, which represents change—an important theme in their work. Speaking of alt, the band's distinctive alternative-pop sound incorporates folk and hip-hop. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
The Decemberists at The Beacon Theatre
If you crave an infusion of whimsical grandiloquence about vengeful mariners, homeless waifs and loves lost to tragedy, these hyper-literate indie folk rockers from Portland, Oregon, may be the act for you. The show is sold out, but you can still find tickets on stubhub.com.
Nightwish at Hammerstein Ballroom, Manhattan Center
This Finnish symphonic power metal band sets classically trained soprano Floor Jansen's soaring vocals against the epic, theatrical and gothic atmosphere of its music. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
April 20–21 and 23–24
John Mellencamp at Carnegie Hall and Apollo Theater
His latest release, the largely acoustic Plain Spoken, has drawn raves, but we suspect that most folks will be happy enough just to hear him fight authority and sing a little ditty about two American kids from the heartland. For tickets, visit carnegiehall.org and ticketmaster.com.
The New York Pops Perform Sinatra at Carnegie Hall
The largest independent pops orchestra in the US pays homage to Ol' Blue Eyes. For tickets, visit carnegiehall.org.
Sixx:A.M. and Apocalyptica at Best Buy Theater
Mötley Crüe bassist Nikki Sixx's side project provided the soundtrack to his 2007 autobiography, The Heroin Diaries. Naturally, the book is in development to become a Broadway show. Opening act Apocalyptica is a Finnish string quartet known for classical covers of metal songs. For tickets, visit axs.com.
Ride at Terminal 5
This British indie band created one of the quintessential albums of the shoegaze genre (Nowhere). They then adopted a more melodic, Britpop-influenced style before a tense breakup in 1996. They got back together for one performance in the early aughts, but they've only just recently gone all the way and resumed touring. The show is sold out, but you can try your luck on StubHub.
Belle & Sebastian at Radio City Music Hall
The world's foremost practitioners of precious indie pop return with a new album, Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance, and a tour that sees them touching down before an appreciative area audience. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com.
Bette Midler at Madison Square Garden
The woman who set countless mothers weeping with her soundtrack to Beaches recently released her 25th album, It’s the Girls!, in which she covers classic songs from girl groups like the Supremes and the Andrews Sisters. For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com
Reverend Vince Anderson and the Love Choir at Union Pool
The band, which defines its style as “dirty gospel,” busts out trumpets, guitars and a keyboard every week for lively performances in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. An actual ordained reverend, Anderson studied to be a Methodist minister in the ’90s—but dropped out to pursue music full time. For more info, visit union-pool.com.
Fridays and Saturdays
Brooklyn Night Bazaar
This Greenpoint space hosts a parade of hip artists who play free shows. While you're there, you can buy food, clothes, accessories and records from local vendors, take a gander at art and play table tennis. All in all, it's a fun night out. For more info, visit bkbazaar.com.
Historic Richmond Town Tavern Concerts at Historic Richmond Town
Cozy up at Staten Island's Historic Richmond Town for this Saturday-evening series featuring folk and acoustic acts. For more info, visit historicrichmondtown.org.