The ABC’s of Summer Fun: Live Entertainment Guide

The ABC’s of Summer Fun: Live Entertainment Guide
Taylor Swift performs during The 1989 World Tour at Tokyo Dome on May 6, 2015 in Tokyo, Japan. Photo by: Jun Sato/LP5/Getty

Having the best summer ever is easy with our ABCs. From fantastic festivals and superstar tours to comedy, circus, and family events, our handy A-to-Z guide rounds up the best live entertainment this summer has to offer. Have fun!

A is for “Ayo”

Chris Brown’s red-hot single “Ayo” (feat. Tyga) is quickly becoming the song of the summer — see him perform it live at a venue near you on his One Hell of a Nite Tour.

B is for Ballpark

America’s pastime is a summer staple for sports fans across the country, so don’t miss out on the excitement this season — check out a Major League or Minor League game near you.

C is for Circus

The kids are out on summer break, meaning it’s time for a little family fun. Whether you opt for a traditional big top affair like Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey or an avant-garde circus experience like Cirque du Soleil: Varekai, you’re sure to have a blast.

D is for Designated Drivers

These two Ds make for one solid piece of advice – if you’re going to be drinking at the event, make sure you’ve got a designated driver to get you home safely. (This summer Live Nation and Uber have teamed up to make it easier to score a ride to and from an event or festival.)

E is for EDM

EDM is arguably the fastest-growing genre in music, and there is no shortage of epic dance festivals to check out this summer. From HARD Summer to the eclectic beats of the Mad Decent Block Party Tour, we’ve got you covered. Check out the festival guide for the full rundown of summer EDM fests.

F is for Festivals

Summer is festival season, and there’s no shortage of epic festivals to choose from this year. Whether you’re craving the urban grooves of ESSENCE Festival, the genre-spanning smorgasbord of Summerfest, or the adrenaline-fueled thrills of the Vans Warped Tour, we’ve got a festival to suit your fancy. Head over to our handy festival guide for the full listing of summer festivals to choose from.

G is for Gospel Brunch

Gospel Brunch remains a beloved Sunday tradition at House of Blues venues across the country, treating audiences to a non-religious show of uplifting gospel music accompanied by a delicious meal and libations.

H is for “Hakuna Matata”

Ever since The Lion King first popularized the term “hakuna matata”, (Swahili for “no problems”), it’s been a part of common vernacular around the world. Disney’s stage adaptation of The Lion King remains one of the most beloved musicals ever produced, and now fans can enjoy it at both its original home on Broadway in NYC as well as on tour at select theaters across the country.

I is for I Don’t Want to Grow Up

I Don’t Want to Grow Up is the five track EP released by Brooklyn-based singer and songwriter Bebe Rexha. Her biggest hits to date “I’m Going to Show You Crazy” and “I Can’t Stop Drinking About You” tackle dark subject matter yet come alive with Bebe’s powerful siren vocals and poignant lyrics. She’s currently rocking the stage on Vans Warped Tour across the country this summer and will head out with Nick Jonas on tour in September.

J is for Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson is back, and fans couldn’t be happier. With a new album due out this fall – her first in eight years – Janet has audiences around the country dying to catch her on the Unbreakable Tour this summer.

K is for Kid Rock

Talk about love for your fans – Kid Rock is treating ticket buyers to his budget-friendly “$20 Best Night Ever” tour deal for the second year in a row, meaning everything from the 2nd row to the lawn is just – you guessed it — $20. The tour, dubbed the First Kiss: Cheap Date tour in honor of his recent album First Kiss, features very special guest Foreigner.

L is for Las Vegas

Beat the heat in Vegas this summer by catching one of the many amazing residencies on hand – whether you go for a perennial strip favorite like David Copperfield or Blue Man Group, a Cirque du Soleil spectacular like Mystere or Zarkana , or Britney Spears’ epic Piece of Me show, you can’t lose.

M is for Musicals

Summer got you feeling like a little song and dance? Head on out to a musical – if you’re in NYC, check out new Broadway favorites like An American in Paris or Aladdin. Not in the Big Apple? Don’t worry – longtime favorites like The Lion King and The Phantom of the Opera are on nationwide tours.

N is for Newport

Every summer, Newport, RI plays host to two of the country’s best festivals – the Newport Jazz Festival and the Newport Folk Festival. Both take place at the breathtaking Fort Adams State Park, situated at the mouth of the Newport harbor and offering sweeping panoramic views of Narragansett Bay.

O is for Offsides

Don’t get caught offsides this summer – get your soccer fix with the International Champions Cup and the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

P is for Piano Man

Riding high off his record-breaking run at Madison Square Garden, Billy Joel is back on the road, treating fans across the country to career-spanning performances of time-honored classics like “My Life” and “Just the Way You Are”.

Q is for Queen Bey

Yes, Beyonce  is still the flyest, and she’ll continue her reign this summer as a headliner at the Budweiser Made in America Festival in Philadelphia.

R is for Rush

Canadian rock mainstays Rush are on the road this summer for the R40 tour, which celebrates the 40th anniversary of drummer Neil Peart’s membership in the band. It’s been four decades, but classics like “New World Man” and “Test for Echo” sound as fresh as ever.

S is for SummerSlam

The WWE SummerSlam Heatwave Tour is coming to a city near you this summer, bringing the ruckus with massive 20-man lumberjack matches. No, we don’t mean actual log-sawing lumberjacks – a lumberjack match is WWE-speak for when a group of additional fighters surrounds the match to prevent wrestlers from fleeing the ring – and also sometimes join the fight

T is for Taylor Swift

America’s pop sweetheart is going strong this summer on her 1989 World Tour, and there’s no “Bad Blood” – fans across the country can’t wait to see her perform hits like “Shake It Off” and “Blank Space” with her signature smile and effervescent stage presence.

U is for U2

The legendary Irish rockers released their 13th album Songs of Innocence in 2014, and now Bono and company are treating fans across the country to favorites both new and old on the iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE Tour.

V is for Vans Warped Tour

Adrenaline junkies seeking the best in extreme sports and high-octane music need look no further than the 2015 Vans Warped Tour. This year’s tour features headliners Handguns, Kosha Dillz, and so much more.

W is for the “What Now Tour” by Kevin Hart

Beloved funnyman Kevin Hart is headlining this year’s ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans and then hitting the road for the What Now Tour, which will have audiences across the country ROFLing.

X is for Jamie XX

The British DJ/producer wunderkind just released his latest album In Colour, a universally acclaimed collection that was six years in the making and well worth the wait. Don’t miss Jamie XX at HARD Summer or on tour this summer.

Y is for Y’all

Don’t miss epic country tours this summer from favorites like Shania Twain, Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean, Kenny Chesney, and more.

Z is for Zummer

Fall Out Boy and Wiz Khalifa have paired up for the Boys of Zummer Tour, one of the most unexpected and highly anticipated pairings of the summer.