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LA’s Best Outdoor Concerts This Summer

April 11, 2013 6:00 AM

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(credit: Hollywood Bowl)

(credit: Hollywood Bowl)

(credit: Hollywood Bowl)

(credit: Hollywood Bowl)


If Keith Urban, Diana Ross, Steve Martin, Natalie Cole, Tony Bennett, Queen Latifah, Willie Nelson and Blue Man Group are on your list of famous entertainers to see and enjoy during Los Angeles’ 2013 outdoor concert series, you’re in luck. The entertainment capital of the world, known for its wide variety of open-air venues, is pulling out all the stops by placing many legendary superstars on its under-the-stars stages. While performance schedules continue to be locked down at a host of places for what promises to be an enchanting summer season, here is a select list of some phenomenal musical acts you won’t want to miss.

(credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

(credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)


Fleetwood Mac
Hollywood Bowl
2301 N. Highland Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90068
(323) 850-2000
Date: May 25
www.hollywoodbowl.com

In its first touring engagement since 2009, the Grammy-winning British-American rock band will join Angelenos in observing the “month of big grass” by bringing its nostalgic resonance to the nation’s largest natural amphitheater. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees’ show under the stars follows the production of a remastered “Rumours,” the group’s most successful 1977 compilation of vocal, acoustic and electric instrumentation. Expect the band to introduce “Sad Angela” and “Miss Fantasy,” two new singles renowned guitarist Lindsey Buckingham has described as some of the most “Fleetwood Mac-y” sounding songs since 1982’s hit “Mirage.” In addition to Buckingham, joining the “Rumours”-era reunion will be celebrated singer-songwriter Stevie Nicks, distinguished bass guitarist John McVie and acclaimed percussionist Mick Fleetwood in a performance not to overlook.

(credit: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)

(credit: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)


Barry Manilow
Greek Theatre
2700 N. Vermont Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(323) 665-5857
Dates: June 14 to 16
www.greektheatrela.com

Anyone familiar with the hits “Copacabana” and “Could It Be Magic” already know about the lovable contemporary artist that helped define pop culture. The former Las Vegas showman is set to headline a three-night engagement at LA’s long-standing amphitheater in Griffith Park. In 1978 alone, five of Manilow’s albums were scorching the best-seller charts simultaneously, a music industry enterprise accomplished only by Frank Sinatra, Johnny Mathis, Bruce Springsteen and Michael Jackson. The man who makes the whole world sing recently wrapped up a run on Broadway and is reportedly working on producing two new albums and a musical. With youthful vitality and an evergreen spirit, Manilow plans to splash fresh twists on his classic standards in an energetic manner the iconic singer-songwriter has polished over the past four decades to a resplendent varnish.

Related: Best Places To Discover New Music In Los Angeles

(credit: Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

(credit: Theo Wargo/Getty Images)


Josh Groban
Hollywood Bowl
2301 N. Highland Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90068
(323) 850-2000
Dates: July 2 to 4
www.hollywoodbowl.com

The Hollywood Bowl’s most popular annual party has been described by many as stupendous. Poised to headline a three-night patriotic extravaganza is multi-platinum singer-songwriter Josh Groban. According to Nielsen SounScan, the musician is the nation’s top-selling classical artist of the 2000s. The 32-year-old LA native, who has been classified by music critics as both an academically trained tenor and baritone, will be backed by the world-famous Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and the U.S. Air Force Band of the Golden West. The actor, recording artist and instrumentalist said he was influenced by “anyone who told a story with their songs,” including Luciano Pavarotti, the late Italian operatic singer who crossed over to popular music. The Josh Groban 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular will be an explosive affair designed for the entire family and the singing sensation’s ever-expanding fan base of “Grobanites.”

(credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

(credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)


John Williams: Maestro of the Movies
Hollywood Bowl
2301 N. Highland Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90068
(323) 850-2000
Date: Aug. 30
www.hollywoodbowl.com

Returning to the open-air arena by popular demand, prolific composer John Williams will conduct the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra in a tribute to film director Blake Edwards and composer Henry Mancini, whose combined classics include “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” “The Pink Panther” and “Peter Gunn.” Throughout a commercially productive career exceeding six decades, Williams has composed some of the more recognizable film scores in cinematic history. They include music for the “Star Wars” franchise, “Jaws,” “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” and the first three “Harry Potter” films. The Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame inductee will be joined in concert by Dame Julie Andrews, a multi-award-winning English film and stage actress, who is on the evening’s bill as a special narrator. The 81-year-old, who remains the second most nominated creator of film and television music, after Walt Disney, guarantees a magical performance to enchant and astound all ages.

(credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)


Earth, Wind & Fire
Hollywood Bowl
2301 N. Highland Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90068
(323) 850-2000
Dates: Sept. 13 and 14
www.hollywoodbowl.com

A band that redefined traditional black music styles by spanning the genres of rhythm and blues, soul, disco, fusion jazz and rock is ready to turn the Hollywood Bowl upside down when it takes the stage. Known for its forceful horn section and elaborate performances, Earth, Wind & Fire will join the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra in a concert that will bring its audience to its feet. Since 1969, the multi-Grammy-winning innovators have sold more than 90 million albums worldwide to date. The group’s many hits include “Reasons,” “That’s the Way of the World,” and “Shining Star,” the latter two becoming inductees into the Grammy Hall of Fame. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame honorees feature falsetto Philip Bailey, whose interaction with contrasting vocals has been a show unto itself. The group, founded by glorified singer and bandleader Maurice White, also includes vivacious bassist Verdine White. The event will leave a lasting impression on attendees when the dramatic production ends with an extravagant fireworks display.

Related: Best Smaller Music Venues In Los Angeles

Sharon Raiford Bush is an award-winning freelance journalist who covers the glittering nightlife and bustling music scene in Los Angeles, among other topics of social interest. Some of her contributions to the entertainment industry have been archived by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Samples of her unique writing style can be found on Examiner.com.

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