It’s almost summertime and that means the countdown to 50 free concerts at Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles is underway! Located just west of downtown in MacArthur Park, Levitt LA celebrates its 11th year with an exciting and eclectic lineup of rising stars and award-winning talent featuring a wide range of music genres, produced in partnership with L.A.-based promoter Spaceland Presents. Levitt LA’s welcoming vibe and open lawn attracts Angelenos of all ages and backgrounds, celebrating the diversity of our city and beyond. All shows are family-friendly, so bring your picnic blankets and lawn chairs to enjoy the best in free entertainment under the stars.
Since 2007, over 500,000 families, friends and neighbors have gathered in MacArthur Park to enjoy the free concerts, cultural celebrations and family-friendly atmosphere offered at the Levitt Pavilion. As part of the national network of outdoor Levitt music venues, Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles exemplifies the power of arts programming to transform challenged public spaces into vibrant destinations and spur additional investment. The success of the free concert series has brought momentum to park improvements over the past decade, including new soccer fields, playgrounds, lighted walkways and other park amenities.
“As the Levitt network expands across the country, Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles is an inspiration for communities seeking to put the arts at the center of revitalization efforts,” says Sharon Yazowski, executive director of the national Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation. “This once chain-linked, graffiti-covered band shell is where Angelenos now come together to celebrate community and enjoy amazing live music.” Opening weekend kicks off on Saturday, June 17 with a “Ladies of Latin Music” evening featuring the rhythmic fusions of Fernanda Ulibarri & The Mexican Standoff, award-winning jazz vocalist Nancy Sanchez, and rising indie pop darlings Sin Color. Sunday, June 18 will launch cumbia into a new musical orbit with Cumbia Cosmica, a sonic journey across Latin American grooves and cultures featuring an all-star group of musicians blending diverse styles like salsa, Latin jazz, blues and soul.
See the full summer series lineup and concert times at http://concerts.levittlosangeles.org/.
Throughout the summer, a broad range of music genres will be featured on the Levitt LA
stage, from Latin rock, country, soul, blues, electronic and funk to cumbia, ska, folk, reggae,
jazz and New Orleans brass. Series highlights include:
June 23: Tank and the Bangas (Funk/Soul) – Winners of the 2017 NPR Tiny Desk Contest, Tank and the Bangas showcase a highly interactive and dynamic chemistry in playing groovy, jazz-inflected soul
June 24: Kinky (Electronic/Latin) – From Monterrey Mexico, one of the most significant bands in the rock-electronica scene the past decade, performing their textures of rock, Latin, and techno at major festivals throughout the world
June 30: Vieux Farka Touré (Malian Folk/Blues/Soul) – Son of legendary Malian guitarist Ali Farka Touré, Vieux has carved his own virtuosic identity at the intersection of West African desert folk, American blues and contemporary jazz
July 8: The Suffers (Gulf Coast Soul) – Levitt National Tour presents this 8-piece powerhouse of ‘Gulf Coast Soul,’ melding classic American soul with genres as wideranging as rock, Latin ska, Cajun, hip-hop, country and R&B
July 15: David Hidalgo & Cesar Rosas (Blues/Roots/Latin) – Legendary Los Lobos band members unite as Dos Lobos for an evening of Latin, blues and roots music
July 27: Thee Commons (Cumbia/Garage) – From house shows in East LA to taking the stage at Coachella in 2017, experience their action-packed cumbia with a psychedelic rock/punk aesthetic
July 28: JC Brooks (Soul/Funk) – This Chicago-based band makes soul-infused, genre-bending music that is energetic and kinetically charged
August 3: Leslie Stevens and the Badgers / Moonsville Collective (Country/Americana) – A double header of acclaimed Americana artists celebrating the traditions of folk, country and R&B
August 5: New Breed Brass Band (Funk/Rock/Jazz) – Praised by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews as “the future of the New Orleans brass band tradition” mixing contemporary R&B, funk and jazz
August 10: Buyepongo (Latin Tropical/Funk) – Vibrant polyrhythmic sound that seamlessly fuses cumbia, merengue, punta, jazz and funk into irresistible Afro-Latin tropical jams, drawing from the band’s collective Central and South American roots
August 11: Vaud & the Villains (New Orleans Cabaret) – Raucous and exuberant 1930s-era New Orleans-themed orchestra and cabaret show fusing jazz, R&B and gospel
August 12: La Misa Negra (Afro-Colombian/Cumbia) – Infectious dance grooves and punk rock energy infuse this 8-piece band’s blend of 1950’s and 60’s style cumbia and high-energy, Afro-Colombian beats
August 26: Quitapenas (Tropical/Afro-Latin) – This collective of musicologists, DJ’s and musicians plays a polyrhythmic, sun-kissed style of Afro-Latin music that, as their name implies, quells worries and simply makes you dance
Sept. 1 & 2: Peanut Butter Wolf (History of Hip-Hop) – Founder of the iconic West Coast hip-hop and psych-rock experimental label Stones Throw Records, Peanut Butter Wolf will transport audiences through the history of hip-hop during this two night engagement (1979-88; 1989-99)
Free concerts run Thursday – Sunday evenings, with Levitt LA’s popular Children’s Series running 10 Sundays June 25–August 27, featuring returning favorites like the zany monsters of Kiddle Karoo (June 25); LA’s most beloved puppet show Bob Baker Marionettes (July 9); bilingual kids pop group Twinkle Time (July 30); and GRAMMY-winning kindie-rock act Lucky Diaz & the Family Jam Band (August 6).