July Concert Calendar: The 15 top shows to see
Kendrick Lamar, Bruno Mars, and Shawn Mendes are among the acts hitting the road
As summer’s dog days set in, brave the heat to enjoy some of the year’s biggest concerts. Kendrick Lamar, Bruno Mars, Shawn Mendes, and more all kick off tours this July — and EW has collected the month’s must-see shows. See them below, and revisit June’s roundup for more hot, in-progress tours.
- I Love the ’90s: The Party Continues Tour
Dates: July 1 – Sept. 16
- Details: Last year’s I Love The ’90s Tour was so successful that promoters decided to revive it for another round. The 2017 edition’s rotating lineup features some returning acts — All-4-One, Color Me Badd, and Tone Lōc will all appear again — and some fresh (in a sense) faces, including TLC, Sugar Ray’s Mark McGrath, and Naughty By Nature. “We have a blast when we’re out there — it’s just like we’re in high school again,” Color Me Badd’s Bryan Abrams told EW prior to the tour’s 2016 installment. “What we’re most excited about, is to show people that we still got it. If anything, I think we’re a little better now than when we were younger because we’re not caught up in all the fun and games that we used to have on the road.”
- Tickets: Visit the tour’s site for more information and buy here.
Blondie / Garbage
Dates: July 5 – Aug. 12
Details: “We’re so f—ing excited about the upcoming tour, you have no idea,” Garbage singer Shirley Manson told EW — and Blondie singer and upcoming tourmate Debbie Harry — on a recent conference call. Garbage and Blondie’s joint Rage and Rapture Tour promises to be one of summer’s most entertaining shows, even if its performers claim they’re still nervous. “Come on, guys!” Manson says she told the rest of Garbage in a rehearsal. “We’re going to be sharing the stage with f—ing Blondie, and they’ve been playing all year. We need to get our s— together!”
Tickets: Visit Blondie or Garbage‘s sites for more information and buy here.
- Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals
Dates: July 6 – Sept. 9
- Details: “For myself and this band, playing live is what an instrument is for, it’s what a song is for,” Harper said in a release detailing his latest string of dates. “A song is not completed until it reaches someone somewhere. Playing live gives us a change to complete the songs each night.” And the Grammy-winning artist’s unique blend of rock, blues, and soul is optimal for the many outdoor venues he’ll be hitting through summer’s end, including a headlining slot at the Windy City’s beloved Taste of Chicago fest.
- Tickets: Visit Harper’s site for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 6 – Aug. 23
Details: The 18-year-old pop wunderkind will bust out hits from 2016’s Illuminate, including “Mercy” and “Treat You Better,” when he hits the arena circuit with Charlie Puth in July. “I wanted [the stage production] to enhance the music without overshadowing it,” Mendes recently told EW of the upcoming tour. “For songs like ‘Run,’ we have these beautiful doves flying around” — videos of them on screens, he clarifies — “and it literally feels like you’re inside of a movie.”
Tickets: Visit Mendes’ site for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 7 – Aug. 26
Details: MC Logic, 27, is nothing if not a man of the people. His third studio album, Everybody, hit No. 1 on Billboard’s albums chart in May and he’s named his subsequent string of concerts Everybody‘s Tour. Arrive early to catch rising New York rhymesmith Joey Bada$$, who released the excellent All-Amerikkkan Bada$$ in April.
Tickets: Visit Logic’s Facebook page for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 8 – July 17
Details: Ernest Greene, the Peach State electronic artist who records as Washed Out, will debut music from his bonkers new audio-visual album Mister Mellow — his first full-length in four years — during a limited string of dates across the South in July. In another part of the country? Don’t worry: Greene has a more extensive trek slated for August.
Tickets: Visit Washed Out’s site for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 8 – Oct. 15
- Details: After spending the better part of a decade on the back-burner, Damon Albarn resurrected his boundary-pushing project in April — and their new album, Humanz, displays them in top form, and features guests including Pusha T, Vince Staples, and Danny Brown. The latter two MCs will join Gorillaz for select dates on the tour, which stretches well into fall and includes appearances at festivals including Outside Lands and the Meadows.
- Tickets: Visit Gorillaz’s site for more information and buy here.
- Kendrick Lamar
Dates: July 12 – Sept. 2
- Details: The brilliant rapper topped EW’s list of 2017’s best albums so far with his fourth full-length DAMN., and he’ll bring those songs to nearly every corner of the States on his upcoming tour. We’d say to expect something along the lines of his breathtaking Coachella headlining performance, but Lamar’s known for reinventing himself on a dime artistically. The undercard is stacked, too, with Travi$ Scott and D.R.A.M. handling opening duties.
- Tickets: Visit Lamar’s site for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 12 – Sept. 23
Details: The 19-year-old singer-songwriter has enjoyed a meteoric rise since releasing his debut — one of EW’s favorite albums of the year yet — in March; after opening for Travi$ Scott in the spring, Khalid has already graduated to headlining decently sized venues. “[American Dream] is a compilation of my youth,” he told EW upon the album’s release. “The mistakes I’ve made, the heartbreaks I went through, the love that I got, and all the love that I lost.”
Tickets: Visit Khalid‘s site for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 14 – Aug. 21
Details: There’s a reason artists including Sleater-Kinney, Tegan and Sara, and the New Pornographers have tapped Waxahatchee, the project of singer-songwriter Katie Crutchfield, to open for them: The band is one of indie-rock’s most promising young acts, with an irresistible blend of riffed-out alt, shambling folk, and acerbic lyricism. The string of dates coincides with the July 14 release of Waxahatchee’s fourth album, Out in the Storm.
Tickets: Visit Waxahatchee’s Facebook page for more information and buy here.
- Bruno Mars
Dates: July 15 – Nov. 11
- Details: Months after its November release, Mars continues to ride his successful third album, 24K Magic. In May, “That’s What I Like” topped the Hot 100, and it still sits at No. 3 weeks later. Expect him to bring that cut, his numerous other chart-toppers, and his boundless charisma on his tour, which will also feature must-see opening sets from former Fifth Harmony member Camila Cabello.
- Tickets: Visit Mars‘ site for more information and buy here.
Sufjan Stevens, Bryce Dessner, Nico Muhly, James McAlister
Dates: July 18 – July 21
Details: For their recent Planetarium album, the four indie luminaries blended rock, electronic, and classical styles for a sweeping ode to the cosmos. They’ll reproduce its songs for three concerts in Brooklyn, Los Angeles, and Oakland.
Tickets: Visit the Planetarium site for more information.
- Guns N’ Roses
Dates: July 20 – Nov. 25
- Details: When GNR launched their Not In This Lifetime Tour in 2016, the title alluded to a reunion that for many years had seemed beyond the pale. Now, as they prepare to embark on another string of dates, the name could also refer to the improbable duration of the tour and the band’s reformed lineup. They’ll kick off this stint with a concert at New York’s Apollo Theater — in conjunction with a limited-run SiriusXM Guns N’ Roses channel airing from July 13 to 22 — before hitting another slew of arenas and stadiums. Openers for the dates include ZZ Top, Deftones, Sturgill Simpson, and Royal Blood.
- Tickets: Visit Guns N’ Roses’ site for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 27 – Aug. 11
Details: In support of their new third album, Relaxer, the idiosyncratic British rockers will perform at festivals like Lollapalooza and Panorama and headline iconic venues including Maryland’s Merriweather Post Pavilion and Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre. “The visual experience is going to be really good,” Alt-J’s Gus Unger-Hamilton recently told EW, adding that while they’ll trot out new material they also “want to give people songs they know and want to hear.” (They already have another string of U.S. dates lined up for October and November.)
Tickets: Visit Alt-J’s site for more information and buy here.
Dates: July 27 – Oct. 22
Details: The rap-rock crew has been around for nearly two decades, but their latest album, this spring’s One More Light, still brims with their youthful energy. For their latest tour, they’re sharing bills with artists including Snoop Dogg, Wu-Tang Clan, Machine Gun Kelly, and Blink-182 — the latter of which will appear alongside Linkin Park for two Welcome to Blinkin Park co-headlining gigs.
Tickets: Visit Linkin Park’s site for more information and buy here.