Summer is traditionally a season of sensory overload: the electric jolt of blue sky, the smell of suntan lotion and charcoal briquettes, the tang of lemonade, the sound of that one inescapable radio hit. In Seattle, the land of oppressive cloud cover, it’s no surprise that summer, that short few weeks when the sun finally drops its coy pose, means spending as much time as possible outside. Local music fans, thrilled to have finally packed away their sweaters, tend to be up for pretty much anything. This forgiving attitude helps explain the less-than-adventurous musical programming of most Northwest outdoor venues. It’s the summer reading/blockbuster mentality applied to music. While some of the season’s concerts have yet to be announced, the schedule so far is lackluster —lots of repeat performers and old, old, old standbys. Frankly, aside from the return of WOMAD, there aren’t many enticements to leave your lounge chair. But if you do decide to make the effort, here’s what you can expect.

Pier 62/63

With its picturesque waterfront location, picnic facilities, and plenty of bathrooms, this venue is ideal for families. It also has great sound —but you already know this if you’ve ever walked around downtown while a concert’s going on there.

Seattle Center

A place of extremes: On the one hand, there’s the criminally crowded Bumbershoot, which can turn even the most kind-hearted individual into a seething misanthrope; on the other, there’s artsEdge, a grassroots experimental-performance spree.

Vancouver, BC

Not only is Vancouver soooo European, according to every single person who’s ever visited, it’s also home to the du Maurier Jazz Festival, which makes a nice treat for the Seattle magazine subscriber in your life.

Chateau Ste. Michelle, Woodinville

This being a winery and quite a nice one at that, it’s a good idea to designate a driver. Better yet, skip the concert altogether and come for a tasting. That way the easy-listening sounds won’t distract from your enjoyment of the grape.

Marymoor Park, Redmond

Seattle’s Festival of the World, Music, Arts, and Dance (WOMAD), now in its second year, is held here. The park is beautiful, with plenty of room for big crowds, and the stages are imaginatively decorated. Most importantly, the diverse musical offerings are truly world-class.

The Gorge, George, Wa

Use this handy formula to decide if the trip’s really worth it: Number of acts on the bill x their irony value or legendary status (on a scale of 1 to 10) number of times you’ve seen them previously + number of drivers in your car �> amount of money you’d be willing to spend on a hotel room or campsite since there’s no way in hell you’re going to want to drive all the way back to Seattle in the dark after spending an hour getting out of the parking lot.



Seattle Center, Fri-Sun 6/25-27, 684-7200

A celebration of Seattle’s experimental art scene, presenting all kinds (and qualities) of music, dance, and theater. Schedule TBA.


Seattle Center, Fri-Mon 9/3-6, 281-8111

Indigo Girls, Violent Femmes, Steve Winwood, Africa Fete featuring Baaba Maal, Lo’Jo, Son Volt, Sonic Youth, Cry Cry, Tab Benoit, Alejandro Escovedo, Janis Ian, Rocket from the Crypt, Junio Brown, Beau Soleil, Loudon Wainwright III, Kate and Anna McGarrigle. Complete lineup announced 7/15, when tickets become available exclusively on the Web at www.bumbershoot.org. Tickets at Starbucks and Ticketmaster beginning 8/2. $10 adv/$14 door. Two-day pass $18; four-day pass $32. Kids 12 and under free.

Capitol Hill Block Party

Pike Street between Broadway and 11th, Sat 7/17 from noon to 10

Now in its third year, the party will benefit Hero Sisters, a fledgling local mentor organization. Expect all the usual carnival fun and food, plus a beer garden and 10 bands, including Madigan, Maktub, and Matchless.

Centrum’s Jazz Port Townsend

Fort Warden State Park Conference Center, Port Townsend, Thu-Sun 7/22-25, 360-385-3102

This annual jazz festival takes over a converted military base for a weekend. This year’s lineup includes the Heath Brothers, Jessica Williams, Ingrid Jensen, Bud Shank Quartet, Bill Holman and the Festival All-Star Big Band, Central Avenue Reunion Quintet, and the George Cables Trio. The concurrent Jazz in the Clubs festival features Joanne Brackeen Trio, Nick Brignola Quartet, Kelley Johnson and the Marriott Jazz Quintet, Mother of Pearl, and the Dave Peck Trio.

Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery

Woodinville, 425-488-3300

The series that puts the ‘milque’ in milquetoast kicks off with the ex-Mrs. Andrew Lloyd Weber Sarah Brightman (Sat 6/12 at 7); then its laid-back guitarist Ottmar Liebert (Sun 6/20 at 7); comedian Bill Cosby (Thu 6/24 at 8); country juggernaut Wynonna (Sun 6/27 at 7); the Bellevue Philharmonic Orchestra and fireworks! (Sun 7/4 at 7:30); swingin’ Manhattan Transfer (Fri 7/16 at 7); jazzy song stylists Diana Krall and Kevin Mahogany (Sat 7/17 at 7); famous daughter Natalie Cole (Sat 7/24 at 7); early sixties (and ’60s) folkies Peter, Paul, and Mary (Sat 7/31 at 7); ivory tinkler Bruce Hornsby (Fri 8/6 at 7); the 98.9 Smooth Jazz Festival (Sat-Sun 8/7-8 at 3); guitar hero B.B. King returns with his Blues Festival, also featuring Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Tower of Power, and Indigenous (Sun 8/15 at 5); oldies circuit regulars Chicago (Fri-Sat 9/3-4 at 7); and kitschy Welsh pop star Tom Jones (Sun 9/5 at 7).

du Maurier Jazz Festival

36 venues around Vancouver, BC, Thu-Sun 6/24-7/4, 888-438-5200

This annual event encompasses a wide array of music, from mainstreamers like Pat Metheny to edgy types like Matthew Shipp. It even includes acts outside the jazz realm like the trip-hoppy Esthero and noise punks the Boredoms. Among the big headliners are the Smithsonian Jazz Master.works Orchestra presenting Duke Ellington’s Cotton Club Review (7/2); Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter 1+1 (6/26); Caetano Veloso (6/29); and the Blue Note 60th Anniversary Tour (7/2). For a complete schedule, call 888-438-5200 or check the Web: www.jazzfest.mybc.com.


Kitsap County Fairgrounds, Sat 8/7, www.kndd.com

KNDD’s annual three-ring musical circus. The official lineup gets announced in July, but Moby is rumored to be one of the candidates.

The Gorge Amphitheater

George, WA, 628-0888

So far, the highlights of the Gorge schedule are eminences grises Bob Dylan and Paul Simon (Sun 6/13) and perpetual rebels Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers with twangy realist Lucinda Williams (Sat 9/4). There are also a couple of acts worth catching on this year’s Lilith Fair (Fri-Sat 7/9-10): smooth R&B teen Mya, NYC genre-jumpers Luscious Jackson, and cool folkie Beth Orton; also appearing are Sarah McLachlan, Sheryl Crow, Sixpence None the Richer, and Bijou Phillips.

The metal crowd gets not only long-toothed Krauts the Scorpions with the Tommy Lee-less M�y Cre (Sat 7/31), but also Ozzfest ’99 (Sun 7/18), featuring the still-potent Black Sabbath and cartoon-rocker Rob Zombie, plus the Deftones, Slayer, Primus, Godsmack, System of a Down, Fear Factory, Slipknot, Puya, hed(pe), Drain STH, Static-X, Flashpoint, Apartment 26, and Push.monkey.

On the slick country-pop tip, there’s Shania Twain (with Irish family act Leahy, Sat 6/26) and Tim McGraw and Dixie Chicks (Sun 7/11).

Other dates: Jammers Dave Matthews Band with reggae pro Jimmy Cliff (Fri-Sat 7/16-17); ’80s revival acts Journey and Foreigner (Sat 8/7); Nickelodeon’s pop-R&B extravaganza All That Music and More Festival, featuring Monica, 98 Degrees, B*Witched, 3rd Storee, Tatyana Ali, No Authority, and Aaron Carter (Sun 8/8); annoying Canadian pop act Barenaked Ladies and alt-rockers Semisonic (Sat 8/21). Also look for the rescheduling of the postponed 5/15 Aerosmith/Afghan Whigs concert.

Independent Rock & Roll Hootenanny Series

Various locations in Western Washington and Oregon, 360-786-1133

Organized by members of local unsigned bands Soylint Green and Frequency db, this series of small-town, all-ages shows brings a grassroots approach to booking and promotion. Many of the dates feature Kill Rock Stars founder Slim Moon and guitar-slinger Marc Olsen.

Black Lake Grange, Olympia, WA

Soylint Green, Turntable Bay, Peter Parker, Frequency db, Marc Olsen, Rollerball, Brother Egg, Bacchus, Slim Moon, Ray Sucre, Dwight Grosso, Paul Nelson, Melody Rose Robins, Space Frog Multi Media, and more. $6. Sat 6/5 at 3.

Eagles Hall, Astoria, OR

The Function, Soylint Green, Frequency db, Marc Olsen, Rollerball, New Rock Nellie, Danteճ Closet, Stereo Crush, Slim Moon, Ray Sucre, and more. $6. Sat 6/12 at 3.

The Matrix, Chehalis, WA

Space Pedestrians, Frequency db, Soylint Green, Dirty Birds, Luciferous, Old Djinn Swagg, Veer, New Rock Nellie, Ray Sucre, Backyard, Drunky Dean, Luster, and more. $7. Sun 6/13 at 3.

Westport VFW Hall, Westport, WA

Soylint Green, Haffa Cat, Frequency db, Veer, Nevada Bachelors, Soup of the Day, Ray Sucre, and more. $6. Sat 6/19 at 3.

Shelton Fairgrounds, Shelton, WA

Scratch Chance, Soylint Green, Frequency db, Eureka Farm, Old Time Relijun, Pale, Q, Ray Sucre, and more. $6. Sat 7/3 at 3.

Hillcrest Park Lodge, Mt. Vernon, WA

Fluid Flow Alarm, Slim Moon, Turntable Bay, Frequency db, Eureka Farm, Captain Fathom, Old Time Relijun, Soylint Green, Soup of the Day, Ray Sucre, Stereo Crush, and more. $6. Sun 7/4 at 3.

Pain in the Grass

Seattle Center, Fridays, mid-June until the last weekend in August

Three or four Northwest bands a night appear in this annual indie series. Exactly who these lucky souls are hasn’t been announced yet, but some of last year’s lineup -which included the Fastbacks, Gas Huffer, Pilot, Second Coming, and Gerald Collier -could return.

Seattle Summer Reggae Festival

Various Pioneer Square clubs, Fri-Sat 6/18-19, .447-9868

A host of local and international names are promised, including Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Eek-A-Mouse, Pato Banton and the Reggae Revolution, Pablo Moses and the Revolutionary Dream Band, Jah Levi and Higher Reasoning, The Itals, Jumbalassy, Yoka Enzenze, Alpha Yaya Diallo, Sister I Live, and Ken Bob.

Summer Nights at the Pier

Pier 62/63, 281-8111

Highlights of this series include a night of modern blues with Keb’ Mo’, Susan Tedeschi, and Kelly Joe Phelps (Sat 6/26); the twang-noir of the Cowboy Junkies with acoustic guitar maestro Leo Kottke (Sat 7/10); retro crooner Chris Isaak (Fri-Sat 7/23-24); veteran R&B sensations Earth, Wind and Fire (Wed-Thu 8/18-19); and Texas showman Lyle Lovett and His Large Band (Fri-Sat 8/20-21).

Also on tap: Sweet-voiced country singer Nanci Griffith pairs up with the Seattle Symphony (Fri 7/2); the Go-Gos and Berlin cash in on rampant ’80s nostalgia (Sat 7/3); Indigo Swing and DJ Leslie $ entertain the hep cats (Sun 7/4); blues-rock with the Robert Cray Band featuring the Memphis Horns (Fri 7/16); famed roaster/gambler Kenny Rogers (Sat 7/17); old-timers Boz Scaggs (Thu 7/29), The Allman Brothers Band (Fri 8/6), the Neville Brothers and Little Feat (Sat 8/7), and Peter Frampton (Thu 8/12); Ally McBeal alter-ego Vonda Shepard with Colin James and the Little Big Band (Fri 8/13); and reggae child Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers (Sun 8/22).

Warped Tour

Kingdome parking lot, Thu 7/8, www.warpedtour.com

Punk rock’s roving summer camp returns with something for every skate-rat. The tour’s lineup includes veterans like Ice-T, Suicidal Tendencies, Cypress Hill, Lunachicks, and Agnostic Front, as well as newbies Royal Crown Revue, Lit, Jimmy Eat World, Sevendust, Blink 182, Less than Jake, Bouncing Souls, the Living End, Black-Eyed Peas, Dropkick Murphys, and Spring Heeled Jack.


Marymoor Park, Redmond, Fri-Sun 7/30-8/1, .281-8111

The musical highlight of last summer, Peter Gabriel’s festival of world music and art is family-friendly without being a snooze. This year’s lineup includes fusion faves Afro Celt Sound System; American roots rocker Dave Alvin; reggae- and soul-influenced folkie Joan Armatrading; singer-songwriter Joseph Arthur; singer and didgeridoo player Mark Atkins; electro-mystical singer Natacha Atlas; angel-voiced Joan Baez; Cajun party band Beau Jocque and the Zydeco Hi-Rollers; genre-jumping Irish vocalist Mary Black; Haitian politicos Boukman Exsperyans; South Africa’s first interracial/intercultural band Johnny Clegg and Juluka; all-star Afro-Cuban jazz orchestra Cuba.nismo!; Drummers of Burundi; Aussie jam band Fruit; Armenian duduk (oboe) master Djivan Gasparyan with guitar virtuoso Michael Brook; Chinese traditionalists Guo Brothers; classically trained Armenian pop guitarist Slava Grigoryan; Japanese composer and percussionist Joji Hirota; percussionist Arthur Hull; veteran Chilean septet Inti-Illimani; China’s first rock star Cui Jian; Ugandan guitarist Bernard Kabanda; expressive Malian singer-songwriter Habib Koit and his band Bamada; Hungarian/Celtic hybrid Donal Lunny’s Coolfin; blues preservationists Taj Mahal and the Phantom Blues Band; the African Segovia Koo Nimo and tabla master Vishal Nagar; step-dancing fiddle player Natalie MacMaster; Zimbabwean star Oliver Mtukudzi and the Black Spirits; Ugandan alt-rocker Geoffrey Oryema; the latest generation of Khan devotional vocalists Rizwan-Muazam Qawwali Group; Australian musician and storyteller Robert Crompton; experimentalists Seattle Creative Orchestra (who will perform with Guo Brothers, Joji Hirota, and Slava Grigoryan); Galwayճ accordion rocker Sharon Shannon; trance-influenced Pearl Jam/Fastbacks side project Three Fish; Irish political pop singer Andy White. $25, three-day pass $65 till 6/13; then $35, three-day pass $75. Kids under 12 free.

Other shows

Big beat popularizer Fatboy Slim returns to the Paramount, Tue 6/15 . . . Astralwerks’ new drum and bass duo Source Direc, Wed 6/23, and Scottish folk-rock-beats outfit Beta Band, Mon 6/28, at ARO.space . . . the curly locks and pop-metal of Sammy Hagar and the WaboRitas at the Mercer Arena, Sun 7/11 . . . ’90s icons Pavement with the emergent US Maple at the Showbox, Wed 7/14 . . . impish folkie Ani DiFranco with funk legend Maceo Parker at the Snoqualmie Winery ($29.50 adv/$31.50 day of show, includes parking), Sun 7/18 . . . Gap man Dwight Yoakam at the Paramount, Sun 7/18 . . . brilliant DC downtempo duo Thievery Corporation at ARO.space, Fri 7/23 . . . teen-pop sensation Britney Spears at the Mercer Arena, Mon 7/26 . . . for those who believe girls just wanna have fun: Cher, Cyndi Lauper, and Wild Orchid at KeyArena, Sat 8/14 . . . the man who launched a thousand covers, Neil Diamond, at KeyArena ($29.50-$39.50), Sun 8/22 . . . the band that connects Seattle to Athens, R.E.M. at Seattle Center ($28), Thu 9/2.

Call Ticketmaster (628-0888) or individual venues (see Club Guide) for more information. And if a road trip to Chicago sounds appealing, plan it for the weekend of the Tibetan Freedom Concert, which is going global for the first time with simultaneous shows in Chicago, Amsterdam, Tokyo, and Sydney on Sun 6/13. The Alpine Valley Music Theater in East Troy, Wisconsin (outside of Chicago), will have Beastie Boys, Blondie, the Cult, Live, Biz Markie, Outkast, the Roots, Run DMC, Otis Rush, and Eddie Vedder.