Once this cold weather passes, there will be nothing standing in your way to enjoying all of the amazing concert offerings available to you this Spring in NYC. From extremely rare shows such as Eric Clapton and Aretha Franklin, to the comeback of Norah Jones, there will be plenty of concerts to attend this season. Just because it isn’t Summer, doesn’t mean there won’t be some heat on the live music front. Here are the Hottest Shows in NYC: A Spring 2017 Concert Guide.
Eric Clapton, Gary Clark Jr. @ MSG: 3/19-20
Eric Clapton, hailed as one of the best guitarists to ever live and the only three-time inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will be touring minimally this year, which includes a two-night stint at MSG this Spring. Clapton, in dealing with nerve related health issues, has been wary of touring extensively, so this may be your only chance to see him this year. Supporting him is Gary Clark Jr., an incredible guitarist and longtime admirer of Eric Clapton.
Tennis @ Bowery Ballroom: 3/21
Tennis, the indie pop duo of husband/wife team Patrick Riley and Alaina Moore, are just coming off a hiatus in order to tour this Spring. Though singer/songwriter Alaina Moore wouldn’t tour unless they had to, Tennis is known for putting on an energetic show, brimming with connectivity between the sound and the audience. Tennis is currently touring in support of their latest record, Yours Conditionally.
Norah Jones @ The Bell House: 3/22
Norah Jones, currently on tour in promotion of her sixth album Daybreaks, is still wowing audiences with her incredible musicianship, versatility, and diverse repertoire of songs. In concert, Jones’ presence is understated, her body mainly tethered to her main instrument: the piano. But her silky voice has yet to underwhelm us, especially as she continues to reinvent and reimagine herself and her music. We think Norah Jones will be performing for years to come. Or at least we hope so.
Wilco @ Beacon Theatre: 3/18-22
Wilco continues to tour in support of their most recent album release, Shmilco. Though some members of the iconic indie-rock band will be joining a folk supergroup and release an album this year, Jeff Tweedy and co. has managed to schedule a tour which brings them to Beacon Theatre for a four night stint. According to recent concert reviews, Wilco will be performing songs from Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, A Ghost is Born, Shmilco, and more.
Yo La Tengo @ Town Hall: 3/23
Yo La Tengo, often obscured as YLT, is a Hoboken-native band who has maintained their cult following for over a decade now. And since original guitarist Dave Schramm has returned to the band and appears on their latest record, Stuff Like That There, YLT has turned the volume up on their presence in the indie music scene.
Bastille @ Barclays: 3/30
It took three years for Bastille to follow their incredible debut album Bad Blood, which included several hit singles including “Pompeii” and the album’s title track. Last year, Bastille returned with Wild World, an album which solidified their formula of arena-friendly 80’s synth pop and rock. Bastille continues to tour in promotion of Wild World, in addition to landing incredible gigs like SNL and even a feature in Game of Thrones.
Vince Staples @ Terminal 5: 3/30
Vince Staples is one of the most talented voices to ever come out of Long Beach, California. And even though he often says threatens to quit rap after just dropping Summertime ’06, an incredible album, we keep hoping its an inflated threat. For now, Vince Staples is still writing, recording, and performing. Just yesterday he performed a sick set at SXSW. And we know he’s still holding out on an arsenal of music, as “BagBak” dropped just last month.
deadmau5 @ Hammerstein Ballroom: 3/29 – 4/1
As the hip-hop comeback has been dominating airwaves, streaming services, and the Billboard 100 chart, EDm has noticeably taken a back seat, its biggest players seemingly dormant and inactive in their art. It’s been awhile since deadmau5 performed in NYC, but he’s back to promote his latest, Stuff I Used to Do. Typical to deadmau5, we know close to nothing about the production plans going into his four night stint at Hammerstein Ballroom, but if it’s anything like his shows of the past, we doubt it will be anything short of epic.
John Mayer @ MSG: 4/5
It’s already been an incredibly eventful year for John Mayer, who was been doing a trickling release of his latest album, The Search for Everything. Now, he has embarked on a massive North American Tour that will bring him to MSG this Spring. And it looks like the guitar prodigy will be touching on all of his cornerstones of talent by performing three sets total: solo acoustic, full band, and the John Mayer Trio. The Search for Everything tour will definitely be one of the biggest of Mayer’s career.
Stevie Nicks @ The Coliseum: 4/6
There was a general sadness surrounding the topic of Stevie Nicks and other Fleetwood Mac members once she confirmed that there would never be another Fleetwood Mac album again. But never fear, the queen of rock and roll has also confirmed that she will never retire, and the tour she is currently on will definitely not be the last chance to see her onstage. Stevie Nicks will be joined by Chrissie Hynde’s band, The Pretenders.
Big Sean @ Radio City Music Hall: 4/11
In addition to landing an incredible deal with PUMA, Big Sean is also on a *yuge* tour in support of I Decided, a notably more matured effort than what we’ve seen from the Detroit rapper. The album features several artists, including Eminem, The Dream, and Migos. Big Sean is largely performing in theaters for this tour, including Radio City, which can support the type of high production value that he’s incorporated into his show. Big Sean’s concert will probably be one of the best rap shows this Spring.
Benjamin Clementine @ Carnegie Hall: 4/13
To say that singer/composer/poet Benjamin Clementine came from humble beginnings would be an understatement. From being a homeless teenager in France, to becoming a cult figure on the arts scene, to now being considered one of the 28 geniuses who definied culture in 2016 by the New York Times, Benjamin Clementine has more than earned what will be a remarkable show at Carnegie Hall, a venue that befits Clementine not only in its beauty but in its ethereal, complex architecture.
The Decemberists @ Brooklyn Steel: 4/17-19
The Decemberists, one of the most iconic indie rock bands to survive the supreme awkwardness of the early 2000’s music scene, hasn’t released any new music since the 10th Anniversary Edition of The Crane Wife, but they are still alive and well on the touring front. This year, you can catch The Decemberists, who will likely play largely from their most iconic album, at Brooklyn Steel.
Aimee Mann @ Town Hall: 4/22
Aimee Mann is definitely one of America’s most beloved singer-songwriters and we’re so happy that she continues adding to her already incredible discography, especially since it means many more opportunities to see the compelling rock star live. Aimee Mann will be touring in promotion of her forthcoming album Mental Illness, due out at the end of March.
Explosions in the Sky @ The Capitol Theatre: 4/22
The ambient indie rock band Explosions in the Sky has been spending a lot of their energy on movie and T.V show soundtracks for the past decade, but last year, Explosions in the Sky came back with another short record full of lengthy soundscapes. According to reviews, Wilderness meets the mark of their past releases and reflects an even tighter sound. Known for putting on incredible live shows, we definitely suggest trying to see Explosions in the Sky on their current tour, especially since they’ve been performing minimally these past few years.
Goldfrapp @ Brooklyn Steel: 4/26-27
Though it took “three months to write out all of the rubbish”, Alison Goldfrapp of the English electronic duo finally landed on songs that were diversified, surprising, and worthy of her pride. Those songs in accumulation make Silver Eye, their forthcoming album, set to drop at the end of March. Until then, you can listen to “Ocean” and “Anymore”, two new singles from Goldfrapp since 2014’s Tales of Us.
Travis Scott @ Terminal 5: 4/30
Travis Scott, remarkably only 24, will embark on a tour to promote his sophomore record Birds in the Trap Sing McKnight. Live Nation will be supporting the “Birds Eye View” Tour, which will take Scott most notably to Coachella and Bonnaroo. Scott is definitely riding a high wave of success, considering Birds in the Trap Sing McKnight reached the No. 1 spot on the Billboard 200. We’re excited for Travis Scott’s show at Terminal 5, a perfect place for a rap show, and to get turnt with one of Houston’s best.
Ryan Adams @ Beacon Theatre: 5/2-3
This past February, alt-rocker Ryan Adams released Prisoner, a stark collection of evocative songs that assure us above all else that he’s not shy when it comes to talking about heartbreak. Though his latest album is largely inspired by Ryan Adams’ personal life and the end of his marriage with actress Mandy Moore, Prisoner is also about liberation and starting from the bottom, the essence of oneself, and being unafraid to face what you’ll find.
Father John Misty @ Kings Theare: 5/10
Former Fleet Foxes member Father John Misty will arrive from Europe in April and tour North America this Spring in support of his new album Pure Comedy. A few weeks ago, Father John Misty performed “Total Entertainment Forever” on SNL. It is just one song which makes Pure Comedy considered to be “more provocative than ever”. We’re excited for what this emboldened version of Father John Misty means, and how he will show it on stage.
Aretha Franklin @ NYCB Theatre @ Westbury: 5/13
If you haven’t had a chance to see Aretha Franklin in your lifetime, then now is your last chance, as the legendary soul singer has confirmed that this will be the final tour of her career. Though you’ll probably be able to catch her on random, one-off performances, we think it’s worth it to catch her on this final tour, one that is momentous for several reasons, but primarily because it’s the end of her career as she once knew it. Aretha Franklin will definitely put on an incredibly emotional and compelling performance, because the queen still has it.
Metallica @ Metlife: 5/14
When Metallica announced that they would in fact be touring in promotion of their latest album Wired…To Self Destruct, rock and roll fans everywhere agreed that it would probably be the best tour of the year. When Metallica annnounced supporting acts Avenged Sevenfold, Volbeat and Gojira, we knew it was really going to be an epic tour. And now, among the opening acts is former Beastie Boys DJ Mix Master Mike as the tour DJ. We don’t know if the WorldWired Tour can get any better than this.
Sylvan Esso @ Brooklyn Steel: 5/18
Indie-pop duo Sylvan Esso is back with their highly anticipated follow-up to their self-titled debut. The new album is called What Now and includes the recently released singles “Die Young”, “Radio”, and “Kick Jump”. Known for their upbeat, dance-friendly beats, we think Sylvan Esso’s show at Brooklyn Steel will definitely be a good time.
Future @ PNC Bank: 5/19
2017 has already turned out to be a huge year for Future, who has released two new albums, making Future the first rapper to make No. 1 debuts in back-to-back weeks. Now, Future has announced a headlining tour, where he will be supported by Migos, A$AP Ferg, and Young Thug. We’re now sure how he’ll be splitting up his time between songs from Future or his latest, HNDRXX. If we’re lucky, we’ll get a good bit of both albums which have solidified Future as one of the best rappers on the scene.
The XX @ Forest Hills Stadium: 5/19-20
Considered one of Britain’s most modern, influential band, The XX is now continuing from their European tour into North America, which includes a stop at Forest Hills Stadium. The atmospheric, indie rock band is touring in promotion of their latest album, I See You, an eclectic and energized collection of songs that had critics raving upon its release. The XX will be joined by Sampha, one of the best voices to come out of the U.K as of late, whose last album Process dropped earlier this year.
Kings of Leon @ PNC Bank: 5/20
Known as one of the biggest rock bands currently touring in North America, Kings of Leon continues to fill arenas. Now, they are on tour for their last record WALLS, which stands for “we are like love songs”. According to reviews, WALLS, is some of their best work yet, and is being beautifully rendered on tour. From the album’s hit single “Waste a Moment”, to the contemplative “Conversation Piece”, Kings of Leon’s discography just keeps getting better and better.
Pixies @ Webster Hall: 5/25
The Pixies have been subverting pop music since the early 90’s. Just last year, they released another LP titled Head Carrier. Though the album didn’t get the reception they’ve had from albums past, the Pixies are still a classic, must-see band if you haven’t already. Mitski, who is still supporting the ever amazing album Puberty 2, will be supporting the Pixies on tour, along with Sunflower Bean.
Governor’s Ball @ Randall’s Island: 6/2-4
For the past few years, the Governor’s Ball lineup has only gotten better, this year being the best by far. As always, the Gov Ball promoters have created a perfect spread of genres for what may be the best Summer music festival to take place in NYC. The lineup includes Chance the Rapper, Childish Gambino, Lorde, Tool, Flume, and Mark Ronson vs. Kevin Parker of Tame Impala. Even if just for a day, we suggest heading to Randall’s Island this season.
Lupe Fiasco @ Highline Ballroom: 6/3
Another year comes and goes, another inflated promise of retirement from Lupe Fiasco is undermined by an album release. This past February, Lupe Fiasco released the guest-packed album DROGAS Light, featuring Rick Ross, Ty Dolla $ign, Big K.R.I.T, and more. And most recently, Lupe Fiasco dropped “ANKH:HER”, where the he raps over Michael Christmas’ “Everything Burrito”. Since the Chicago rapper doesn’t tour extensively, this may be your last chance to see Lupe Fiasco for awhile.
The Chainsmokers @ Forest Hills Stadium: 6/9-10
This year, the electronic pop duo behind hit singles such as “#Selfie”, “Closer”, and “Don’t Let Me Down” will finally release a full LP titled Memories…Do Not Open. We weren’t sure if Alex Pall and Drew Taggart were going to release a full LP, or if their hit single energy could be sustainable throughout an entire album, but with the help of guest appearances by Coldplay, Jhene Aiko, and Florida Georgia Line, we think it’s possible. At the very least, their performance at Forest Hills Stadium will probably feel like a really good party.
The Weeknd @ Barclays: 6/6-7
Considered by some news sources as the “king of sex pop”, The Weeknd continues to tour his pop-R&B album Starboy, which was largely produced by iconic hitmakers Daft Punk. The Weeknd, formally known as Abel Tesfaye, is known for his intense connectivity with the audience during his shows as he stands apart from his three piece band, center stage, with a certain dark mystique surrounding him. We were pretty surprised to see The Weeknd take such a direct turn towards pop music on Starboy, but we have to admit, the formula works.
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds @ Beacon theater: 6/13-14
Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds continue to tour in promotion of their 16th album Skeleton Tree, an album that was released with an accompanying documentary One More Time With Feeling. Now finished with touring the U.K and New Zealand, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds will be touring North America. Though Skeleton Tree was filled with Cave’s personal grief, the songs transcend past his own experiences and achieves universal emotionality.
The Shins @ Prospect Park Bandshell: 6/15
Though they experienced their surge of popularity in the late 90’s, early 2000’s, The Shins remains an ever relevant indie rock band. Their latest offering, Heartworms, is a genuine offering of musical anecdotes. Largely self-produced by lead singer James Mercer, Heartworms captures New Wave influences along with their traditional take on folk music. In other words, a perfect mix between the old and the new. We’re excited to see The Shins appear on the Celebrate! Brooklyn roster this year.
Hall & Oates @ Forest Hills Stadium: 6/16
Daryl Hall and John Oates are joining forces this season to enliven their hit-making moniker Hall & Oates. Even though it’s been over three decades since most of their hits came out, the music of Daryl Hall and John Oates continues to be timeless. The duo will be supported by Tears for Fears, another band whose music has yet to go out of style.
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers @ Prudential Center: 6/16
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers are now on their 40th Anniversary Tour, and it’s of epic proportions. In addition to selling out arenas, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers are set to perform at several music festivals this Summer. For the band’s show at Prudential Center, they will be supported by very special guest Joe Walsh, who has served as the guitarist for five majorly successful rock bands, including the Eagles.
Sigur Ros @ Forest Hills Stadium: 6/17
In addition to hosting screenings of their movie Inni with proceeds going to the ACLU to “fight the policies of Donald Trump”, the Icelandic pop group Sigur Ros is also busy touring North America. Though Sigur Ros isn’t touring in promotion of any album in particular, they are known for selling out stadiums both in North America and abroad due to their incredible stage production which is only amplified by their beautiful, complex soundscapes. If you haven’t already, they are definitely a band you want to see live.