Atlanta Music Festivals: A Noteworthy List of The Metro’s Best

Atlanta has always been a music city. And while there are plenty of clubs around town to find live music, the best way to get your groove on is by oscillating between stages on a sunny afternoon at one of the many Atlanta music festivals. The headliners may sell the tickets at these events, but for me, the true thrill comes from finding up-and-comers to add to my Spotify playlist.

From classic rock to dance music, hip-hop to jazz, there are music fests for every taste, and as you’ll see, one for every season too. Each event has it’s own personality. We’ve pulled out Metro Atlanta’s best and given you the scoop on what to expect.

Atlanta Music Festivals: Shaky Knees

Atlanta Music Festivals: Shaky Knees (Courtesy of aLIVE Coverage)

In addition to Atlanta Music Festivals, we’ve added a round up of summer concert series in the Metro Area. These (mostly) free events are like mini-music festivals and are located in all corners of the state, so you are sure to answer the question where is a music festival near me.

The Best Atlanta Music Festivals | Local Music Fests on our Bucket List | Summer Concert Series

Atlanta Music Festivals

War and Treaty at Shaky Knees Music Festival (Courtesy of aLIVE Coverage)

Where The Southeast Region Comes To Jam 

Sweetwater 420 Festival (Apr)

This three-day Atlanta music festival is held each April to commemorate Earth Day. The music festival features well-known names and up-and-comers. Get the day started with a 5K followed by a beer tasting. After all, Sweetwater is Atlanta’s most successful microbrew.

Shaky Knees (May)

Shaky Knees is the perfect weekend event for hipsters and fans of alternative music. Lesli even took her kids to this Atlanta music festival! Skip the VIP pass and go all the way to platinum. You’ll be doing it up right with private open bar, shaded lounge seating, air conditioned rest rooms and of course private entrance and all access.

Shaky Beats Music Festival (May)

From the folks that bring you Shaky Knees comes Shaky Beats, a techno, electronic dance music festival that’s also a bit of a party.

Atlanta Jazz Festival (May)

Considered one of the largest free jazz fests in the country, the Atlanta Jazz Festival always brings an impressive line up of legends, as well as up-and-comers. The festival utilizes venues throughout the city for a three-day event over Memorial Day weekend.

Atlanta Fest (Jun)

Atlanta Fest is the oldest and largest Christian music festival in the South and attracts some big names. In addition to musical acts, Atlanta Fest also features motivational speakers.

Tunes From The Tombs (Jun)

Tunes from the Tombs is held at the most unique music venue in Atlanta, Oakland Cemetery. If you haven’t been to Oakland, it truly is a treat for the living. Get the RIP pass for special access to three stages of great talent, and be sure to take in at least one of the mini-tours where you can learn about Oakland’s ‘residents’.

Music Midtown (Sep)

Music Midtown is where you can see all the stars. If the act is popular, either in the past or present, no matter what genre, they are at Music Midtown. This is an Atlanta music festival that is truly for everyone.

Imagine Music Festival (Sep)

Imagine Music Festival (IMF) is an electronic dance music and immersive art festival held at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. In addition to top electronic musicians, DJ’s and bands, wander through a fantastic atmosphere filled with mind-bending circus performers, mermaids, sea creatures, and art installations. Plus there is camping.

AC3 Fest (Oct)

Part hip-hop music festival, part music business conference, the AC3 Fest is the place to be to enjoy the music, but also learn about the music industry. Business tracks cover topics for the budding artist to the seasoned pros.

Wire and Wood Songwriter’s Festival (Oct)

Downtown Alpharetta comes alive with the stories behind the music at this outdoor songwriter’s festival. Wire and Wood was selected as one of the Top 20 Events in October 2015 by the Southeast Tourism Society.

Atlanta Music Festivals: Porchfest PorchFest in Hampton, Ga.

Local Music Festivals On Our Bucket List 

The Southeastern Cowboy Gathering (Mar)

The Southeastern Cowboy Gathering features cowboy, western, country, bluegrass, and folk music and is held at the world class Booth Western Museum in Cartersville.

Grid Life at Road Atlanta (Jun)

What happens when you mix motorsports and music? Grid Life at Road Atlanta- that’s what. This electronic music festival also includes opportunities for on-track driving experiences, as well as drift driving. Purchase a camp site for a totally immersive experience.

Bluesberry Beer and Music Festival (Jun)

Norcross has got the blues—in a good way! The Bluesberry and Beer Festival is held each June in Betty Mauldin Park.

Alpharetta Brew Moon Fest (Jun)

An annual beer festival in Downtown Alpharetta that also includes local entertainment.

Summer World Music Festival (Jun)

Take a three-day family friendly, musical journey around the world at Spivey Hall in Morrow during the Summer World Music Festival.

The Thomas A. Dorsey Birthplace Festival (Jun)

A celebration to commemorate hometown boy Thomas A Dorsey, this Atlanta music festival is a free, two-day gospel, blues and jazz event at the MILL Amphitheater in Downtown Villa Rica.

Doc Holliday BBQ & Music Festival (Sep)

Celebrating native son and noted western gunslinger Doc Holliday, this BBQ festival with music takes place in September in Historical Downtown Griffin.

August Concert and Wing Festival (Aug)

This free festival takes place in August at the Suwanee Town Center.

Hampton PorchFest (Oct)

Come sit a spell and listen to a variety of musicians and genres while rambling through Hampton’s neighborhoods for PorchFest. This unique event is held the second Saturday in October.

The Southeastern Cowboy Festival & Symposium (Oct)

Similar to the Cowboy Gathering in March, the Southeastern Cowboy Festival is two days of live cowboy, western, country, bluegrass, and folk music at one of our favorite museums – The Booth Western Museum in Cartersville.

The Lake Show (Jun)

John Jarrard Foundation celebrates the life and music of Gainesville, Georgia native and Georgia Music Hall of Fame member John Jarrard with an outdoor concert on the shores of Lake Lanier. Come by car or by boat.

Foundation Concert (Sep) 

In addition to the Lake Show in June, the John Jarrard Foundation celebrates the life of their namesake in September with a singer/songwriter event that brings in the best and brightest from Nashville under the stars on the lawn at Brenau University.

Atlanta Music Festivals: Summer Concert Series at Dunwoody Nature Center

Summer concerts at Dunwoody Nature Center

20+ Summer Concert Series’ Atlantan’s Loves

Night Market Peachtree City (Mar – Nov)

Mark your calendar for this monthly market held at night. Each month there is a new musical act, plus food, artists and entertainment.

Glover Park Concert Series (Apr – Sep)

The Glover Park Concert Series features local and national acts on the last Friday of the month, April through September. The concerts are free but there are a limited number of front row seats for purchase. Those seats sell out quickly, so if you are interested, mark your calendar to call for reservations at 8 am the first working day of each month

Alive in Roswell (Apr – Oct)

Alive in Roswell is a free, family-friendly festival with live music, held in three locations the third Thursday of every month April – October.

Avalon Nights Live (Apr – Oct)

Unwind after the workweek with live music in The Plaza at Avalon every Friday. Dancing encouraged.

City of Jonesboro Summer Concert Series (May – Aug)

The Lee Street Park Amphitheater in Jonesboro comes alive May through August for the free City of Jonesboro Summer Concert Series.

The Dunwoody Nature Center’s Annual Summer Concert Series (May – Jul)

Every other Saturday night during the summer, music lovers can enjoy a night of rockin’ tunes provided by the Dunwoody Nature Center and the City of Dunwoody. Come early for the best seats. Read more about daily fun at the Dunwoody Nature Center here.

Buford Community Center Town Park (May – Aug)

The city of Buford hosts a free summer concert series on the sprawling lawn of their Town Park each summer from May – August.

Norcross Summer Concert Series (May – Aug)

Enjoy the “sweet sounds of summer” in downtown Norcross, at the free summer concert series, which runs May through September in Thrasher Park.

Chamblee Summer Concert Series (May – Aug)

Summer nights are made for music in Downtown Chamblee. Bring a blanket or reserve a VIP table.

Loganville’s Groovin’ on the Green Concert Series (May – Sep)

Get your groove on at Loganville’s summer concert series.

Lawrenceville Summer Concert Series (May – Sep)

This free summer concert series happens on the Lawrenceville Lawn.

Peachtree City’s Summer Concert Series (May – Sep)

The Fred is a fun outdoor venue in Peachtree City that features old time favorites in a relaxed atmosphere.

Sundays on the River Concerts, (May – Sep)

The Chattahoochee Nature Center is the place to be on Sunday evenings for Sunday’s on the River. Wrap up the weekend under the stars listening to live music with friends May – September.

Margaritaville at Lanier Islands

Can’t make it to the ocean this summer? Lake Lanier Islands in partnership with Margaritaville has live music along the beach each weekend.

Roswell Riverside Sounds Concert Series (May – Oct)

The first Saturday of the month, May – October come out to Riverside Park for free concerts.

City of Flowery Branch Block Parties (May – Oct)

Each one of these family friendly block parties has a different theme and something for everyone. Look at the music schedule to find when your favorite genre of music is playing. Oh and did we mention they have a beer garden too. Nice touch.

City of Stone Mountain Tunes By The Tracks (May – Oct)

Friday nights May – October join artists that range from Indie-folk to Rhythm & Blues in Downtown Stone Mountain.

Villa Rica Summer Concert Series (May – Aug)

Free concerts at the MILL Amphitheater all summer long.

Wednesday WindDown (June – Aug)

Bring your lawn chair and enjoy smooth jazz, R&B and blues music each Wednesday for Wednesday Winddown during June, July & August at Hunter Memorial Park in Douglasville.

Duluth Summer Stage Concert Series (Jun – Sep)

Grab your blankets, chairs and picnic baskets for this summer concert series on the Duluth Town Green.

Brooke Street Park Summer Concert Series (Jun-Sep)

Check out the website for summer concerts at these themed events.

Sunset Sips (Jun – Sept)

Sunset Sips is just another reason to love the Chattahoochee Nature Center. This laid back, family friendly event occurs the 2nd and 4th Thursday during June, August and September.

Stockbridge Sounds of Summer Concert Series  (Jun – Jul)

The Sounds of Summer concert series takes place on the Stockbridge City Hall Lawn.

Concerts by the Springs (Jul – Sep)

Concert by the Springs, presented by Heritage Sandy Springs, is a free outdoor summer concert series held one Sunday each month, May through September.

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What's the best Atlanta Music Festivals? Depends on your interests. We have the scoop on favorite music fests in the city + (mostly) free summer concerts around town. This is a noteworthy list you'll want to bookmark for continued reference.

Summer is the perfect time to kick back on a beautiful evening and taken in a summer concert. This list has more than 22 different summer concerts in Atlanta and the surrounding metro area, plus some of the best annual music festivals

We are excited to partner with the Atlanta Metro Travel Association on this sponsored post.

Sue Rodman | Co-Founder

Sue came to Atlanta after finishing the Walt Disney World College Program where she was a tour guide then guest relations hostess (and no she did not moonlight as Snow White). Sue spent 25 years in PR before adding freelance travel writing to her resume. Prior to 365 Atlanta Traveler, Sue published an award winning family travel blog called Field Trips with Sue for eight years, and produced a TV segment with the same name on CBS Better Mornings Atlanta. Her favorite place to visit is anywhere with her husband and three sons. Sue believes anytime is a good time for dessert and there are no bad field trips, just better stories. @SueRodman

3 Comments on "Atlanta Music Festivals: A Noteworthy List of The Metro’s Best"

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