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15 free summer concert series across Southern California

LA Daily News logo LA Daily News 6/30/2022 Richard Guzman, Los Angeles Daily News

With most COVID-19 restrictions lifted, in-person concerts have resumed along with major music festivals and other entertainment events taking place throughout Southern California.

While some concerts can come with steep ticket prices, not all shows have to be pricey. There are free summer concert series happening all throughout Southern California this year, often allowing attendees to bring picnic blankets and food as they listen to free concerts.

Here are 15 free outdoor concert series music fans can attend this summer:

Los Angeles County

Grand Performances

Grand Performances turns California Plaza in downtown L.A. into a central concert venue with more than a dozen shows this summer that focus on music from around the world. Upcoming shows include a July 9 show by Scary Pockets, who perform funk versions of modern songs, and a celebration of the late jazz great Alice Coltrane with a string and harp ensemble performing music from throughout her career on Aug. 27.

When: 6-10 p.m. every Saturday through Sept. 24.

Where: 350 S Grand Ave. Los Angeles

Information: grandperformances.org

KCRW Summer Nights

KCRW DJs and some of the station’s most popular bands will perform at various venues across the city during this summer concert series. More than a dozen shows will take place through September at places like the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, One Colorado in Pasadena, Descanso Gardens in La Cañada Flintridge, Chinatown Central Plaza and other locales. It all starts July 7 at the Hammer with dream-pop artist Ambar Lucid and KCRW DJs Nassir Nassirzadeh and Wydleflower,

When: Shows happen at various times from July 7-Sept. 29

Where: Various locations

Information: kcrw.com

Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles

This annual series turns MacArthur Park into a busy music venue with more than two dozen free concerts set to take place at the Westlake spot. The music will span all sorts of genres like cumbia, rock, soul, ska, salsa, EDM, hip-hop and other styles.

When: Friday, Saturday and Sundays through Sept. 4

Where: MacArthur Park, 2230 W. 6th St., Los Angeles

Information: For the complete lineup, go to levittlosangeles.org

The Long Beach Municipal Band

When it comes to longevity, other free concert series can’t compare to the Long Beach Municipal Band, which is marking 113 years of playing everything from patriotic songs to jazz and Broadway standards. The concerts take place four days a week at various city parks.

When: 6:30 p.m. through Aug. 5

Where: Whaley Park, 5620 E. Atherton St., July 5, Bluff Park, 2500 E. Ocean Blvd., July 12, 19 and 26, Veterans Park, 101 E. 28th St., Aug. 2, Los Cerritos Park, 3750 Del Mar Ave., Wednesdays through Aug. 3, Larry Curtis Concert Park at Marine Stadium Park, 5255 Paoli Way, Thursdays through Aug. 4, and El Dorado Park West, 2800 Studebaker Road,  Fridays July 1-Aug. 5.

Information: longbeach.gov

Sunset Concerts

The Skirball Cultural Center is marking the 25-year anniversary of its free concert series with six performances happening Thursday nights through August. The series focuses on world music with international and local artists performing with the aim of connecting cultures. It opens on July 21 with Iranian American singer Mamak Khadem and closes Aug. 25 with Son Rompe Pera, a Mexican band that uses the marimba like a lead guitar to add a punk edge to cumbia music.

When: 8 p.m. Thursdays July 21-Aug. 25

Where: Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda, Los Angeles

Information: Concerts are free but parking is $20 or $15 in advance and reservations are required at skirball.org

Orange County

Buena Park Summer Concert Series in the Park

People can listen to hits from the past as tribute and cover bands perform songs from the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s at Boisseranc Park in Buena Park during the city’s Summer Concert Series. The shows will take place on Wednesday evenings through Aug. 3. Bands on the schedule include Journey Captured, a Journey tribute band on July 6 and Pop Gun Rerun, which will play 80s hits on Aug. 3.

When: 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Aug. 3

Where: Boisseranc Park, 7520 Dale St. Buena Park

Information: buenapark.com

City of Orange Concerts in the Park

Grab a picnic basket and head over to Hart Park to hear live bands play 80s hits, classic rock, Latin and R&B tunes and other music during the city’s Wednesday night concert series, which runs through Aug. 17. Check out the 80z All-Stars playing, well, ’80s hits on July 20, or groove to classic rock with Super Lock on Aug. 17.

When: 7 p.m. Wednesdays through Aug. 17

Where: Hart Park, 701 S. Glassel. St.

Information: cityoforange.org

OC Parks Summer Concert Series

OC Parks is bringing back its family-friendly Summer Concert Series to several parks in the county. The shows take place on Thursday nights through Aug. 25. On the lineup are bands like yacht-rockers Yachty By Nature performing at Mason Regional Park in Irvine, on July 7, and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy who play on Aug. 4 at Mile Square Regional Park in Fountain Valley.

When: 5 p.m. through Aug. 25

Where: Various Orange County Parks

Information: ocparks.com

Seal Beach Summer Concerts

Wednesdays are all about paying tribute to great bands with six shows by the pier happening from July 6-Aug. 10. Check out tribute bands like Surf’s Up, who will be playing Beach Boys songs on July 6, or L.A.vation, a U2 tribute band that’s performing July 10.

When: 6 p.m. July 6-Aug. 10

Where: Eisenhauer Park, Ocean Ave and, Main St, Seal Beach

Information: sealbeachchamber.org

Riverside County

Murrieta Concerts in the Park

The city’s Townsquare Park will include the sounds of rock, country and even the Beatles during this Saturday night summer concert series. A handful of shows are on the roster from July 2-30 starting with the band Lifetime Rocker performing rock tunes, while on July 23 it’ll be all about the Fab Four with Beatles tribute band Four Lads. Plus, ’90s cover bad And Your Mom will close it all out with a show on July 30.

When: 6 p.m. Saturdays July 2-30

Where: Townsquare Park, 11 Town Square, Murrieta

Information: murrietaca.gov

Norco Concerts in the Park

The week will end with a musical party in Norco’s Pikes Peak Park with free shows by country cover band Redneck Rodeo July 15 and classic rock cover band Roughhouse performing Aug. 5.

When: 6:30 p.m. July 15 and Aug. 5

Where: Pikes Peak Park, 97 Sixth Street in Norco

Information: norco.ca.us

Summer Fun Concerts in the Park

The city of Riverside will rock on Wednesdays with five free shows happening through Aug. 3 at Fairmount Park. The music starts July 6 with Stone Soul, who will bring a little bit of Motown to the park. It continues with other acts like Top 40 cover band Steel Rod rocking it July 13, and it closes with a Latin party brought by the band C4 performing an Aug. 3 show.

When: 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 6-Aug. 3

Where: Fairmount Park, 2601 Fairmount Blvd, Riverside

Information: riversideca.gov

San Bernardino County

Chino Concerts on the Lawn

Tribute and party bands are heading to Chino this summer for the city’s Concerts on the Lawn series. The music is set to take place through Aug. 5 and includes bands like Ladies of 80s, a tribute to the Go-Gos performing July 15 and Jumping Jack Flash, a tribute to the Rolling Stones Aug. 5.

When: 7 p.m. Thursdays through Aug. 5

Where: Chino Civic Center Lawn, 13220 Central Ave., for shows through July 28 and Founders Park, 8151 W. Preserve Loop, for Aug. 5 finale

Information: cityofchino.org

Ontario Summer Concert Series

The city’s concert series brings free music to two locations this year starting at Ontario Town Square through Aug. 3, then moving the music over to Celebration Park North from Aug. 11-25. On the lineup are bands like Revolución de Amor, a Mana tribute band performing July 20 and 24K Magic, a Bruno Mars tribute group closing things out Aug. 25.

When: 5:30 p.m. through Aug. 3  at Ontario Town Square,  224 N. Euclid Ave., and  Celebration Park North, 4980 S. Celebration Ave., through Aug. 25

Information: ontarioca.gov

Summer Music Festival

After going virtual for the past two years due to the pandemic, the Redlands Bowl’s Summer Music Festival is back in full swing with performances through Aug. 19. Shows include a July 8 concert by  Mariachi Garibaldi de Jaime Cuéllar with a guest appearance by Ballet Folklórico de Los Ángeles, Frisson at the Pops, a classical music ensemble July 22 and the season finale, an Aug. 19 show by The Redlands Symphony Orchestra.

When: 8 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays through Aug. 19

Where: Redlands Bowl, 25 Grant St., Redlands

Information: redlandsbowl.org

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