Happy concert season fam! Alright – every season is technically concert season. But early summer is when the festivals and tours really start ramping up, and it’s arguably the peak of concert experiences. You know the deal. A warm breeze, a cold beer in your hand, and your favorite artist/newest discovery leaving it all on the stage. And while a lot of outlets have already brought us “The Best Stadium Shows of 2019,” full of the popstars you already knew were on tour, we prefer some variety. Namely, some venue options. We love the roar of a full stadium singing along to Gaga, but we also crave the kind of intimate music experience you get at a small, standing-room-only concert hall. We want it all…plus the option of multiple price points doesn’t hurt. We’ve gathered a list of the tours we’re amped for this summer – at different venue sizes – so you don’t have to spend all month Googling “concerts near me.” So grab your friends, make sure to download the Inspired app before you buy your tickets, and dig out your best concert outfit. We might just see you there!
Okay, this tour is particularly exciting because SZA is finally back from a hiatus. In 2018, the R&B singer revealed that she was taking a break from performing due to some (thankfully non-permanent) damage to her vocal cords. She’s ready for a triumphant comeback, and with any indication from her recent collab with The Weeknd and Travis Scott, her voice is as powerful as ever.
With his new album Ventura fresh from the studio, this is only Anderson .Paak’s second national tour, and his first stadium-sized headline. You should expect the contemporary hip hop artist to pull out all the stops for this summer’s The Best Teef In the Game Tour, and with Ventura’s high-caliber collaborators, including Andre 3000 and Smokey Robinson, who knows – there might be some very special guest appearances.
This is likely the “best summer concert” you already knew about. But it bears repeating because of the incredible reviews across the board. Yes, she’s the biggest name in pop right now, but she’s also coming off what may have been her toughest year yet, and this show, as Rolling Stone puts it, “is proof of life” for the artist. “If Grande wanted to sit this touring cycle out,” the review explains, “her fans probably would’ve understood. But she chose not to, and that speaks volumes to the strength she’s built this show around.” Expect an epic, two-album performance with at least as much vitality and star power as you’ve ever seen in pop.
I just took a DNA test, turns out I’m 100%… going to this show. Lizzo has proven, once again, that she’s bringing the most infectious kind of positivity to the charts, and this summer she’s bringing it across the country. For fans of fun – and also high-energy R&B-pop – this is the show to see. Taking a step up from the much smaller venues she toured last year, this series of shows is likely to feature some classic bangers, some of her newer, hard-hitting ballads, and of course, some flute twerking.
Young the Giant/Fitz and the Tantrums
The geniuses behind the feel-good summer anthems “My Body” and “Cough Syrup” are back, and this time they’re bringing along the vintagey-electro-pop group Fitz and The Tantrums. The perfect compliment to YTG’s folksy-leaning beach tunes, Fitz and The Tantrums are known best for their hits “Out of My League” and “HandClap.” Y’all, this is going to be the perfect summer show for indie pop fans of all kinds. Grab your thrifted Levi’s and put on your highest socks – this is going to be 2013 Hipster Paradise.
Another indie pick from the 2010s! You might remember Local Natives by their woody and percussive “I want you back/back/back” chorus that played on loop in your favorite coffee shop in summer 2012. But man do we love that kind of nostalgia. A little more rock-leaning, their sound is bright, but not too sweet – the ideal soundtrack to a laid-back summer evening.
Snag these tickets while you can because Yungblud is right at the cusp of major fame. The British punk-rocker’s recent release, “11 Minutes,” with pop superstar (and new girlfriend) Halsey, already has 26 million views on YouTube. Along with the high-profile relationship, he’s becoming somewhat of a public figure himself. But more about his music: his sound is best described as 2010s emo vocals with some really cool British-classic-rock depth to it. We dig. His aesthetic is also the epitome of rock ‘n roll, so we bet he’s going to put on a crazy show to match.
Alright, Pink Sweat$ may not have the extra boost of mega-star significant other at the moment, but his sound so closely aligns with what’s hot in R&B right now that he’s bound to blow up soon. His sound was hard to nail down at first, but then it clicked: his vocals lead with a Khalid depth, and finish with a Weeknd airiness. Truly, a dead-ringer. If Khalid and The Weeknd had a baby this instant, he would come out as an adult pop-soul artist in pink sweatpants. The general vibe is incredibly laid back, as demonstrated in his 2018 video for “Honesty.” Think about it – a small, cozy venue, a warm summer night, and the butter-smooth falsetto of Pink Sweat$ wrapping the whole room in good energy. Yep, we’re in.
Barns Courtney’s name has been cropping up everywhere lately – and for good reason.Among other accolades, his hard-hitting bluesy rock has been licensed as theme songs for multiple sports events and football clubs in the U.K. if that gives you an idea of the sheer power of his sound. Over here in The States, we might imagine it as the kind of hype music you’d find on a Sons of Anarchy soundtrack. Raw, thumping blues that makes you want to jump on the motorcycle you never actually owned. In fact, much of his music has been featured on TV and movie soundtracks, and “Fire,” from Bradley Cooper’s 2015 project “Burnt” is one of the best examples of that. No lie, this may be one of the coolest shows to see at a smaller venue, hands-down. Barns Courtney is working with stadium-level sound, and this is your chance to hear him in a standing-room-level venue. Don’t waste it.
Buy your tickets now with the Inspired App, and give an opportunity to the next gen of artists: