I love music, but I love to see music live and in person. However, the concert going experience has changed in the past couple years. High tickets and outrageous service fees have made some concerts out of reach for some. In addition, you got music venue (see Nissan Pavilion) that are far out to travel, and even more difficult to leave. However, there are concert series in DC metro region that won’t cost you a pretty penny to attend. Here are some good ones:
Fort Reno Concert Series: It’s been a DC summer tradition for over 3 decades. Unlike other concert series, this is mostly run by volunteers. Among those who grace their stage in the past includes Fugazi and Q Not U. This year’s series include live performances by DC based artists Gist, Metropolitan, City Goats, Mary Timony, Brandon Butler, Head-Roc, Wooly Mammoth and more. These concerts start at 7 p.m. Monday and Thursday. Fort Reno is located across the street from Woodrow Wilson High School (closest Metro: Tenleytown-AU).
4th Annual Rock at the Row Summer Concert Series: A few blocks from Pentagon City Mall, Pentagon Row is a mixture of shops, restaurants and over 500 apartment homes. For the 4th year in a row, it holds their annual summer concert series. It features a variety of music from Rock and Roll to Swing. Show starts at 7 p.m. on Thursday. (Closest Metro: Pentagon City)
Live On Woodrow Wilson Plaza: If you work in downtown DC, you can check out the free summer concert series at Woodrow Wilson Plaza on the grounds of the Reagan Building. From salsa to strings, and blues to swing, Live On Woodrow Wilson Plaza features hot entertainment in a cool café atmosphere throughout the summer. Show starts at 12 p.m. Monday-Friday Closest Metro: Federal Triangle
Farragut Sounds in the Square: If you in the Golden Triangle area in DC around noon, you need to check out the Sounds In The Square Concert Series. The free summer concert series features music ranging from blues to jazz, rock to reggae at Farragut Square located at Connecticut Avenue and K Street, NW in the Golden Triangle. Now in its eighth year, “Sounds in the Square” attracts office workers during the lunch hour, area residents and tourists in the Golden Triangle. Show starts at noon Thursday. Closest Metro: Farragut North or Farragut West
Friday Night Live: Herndon, VA rocks with its Friday Night Summer Concert series. It features live performances by local and national recording acts. The music ranges from Rock to Reggae to cover bands. It starts from June and ends the last Friday in August. The concert runs 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. The series take place at 77 Lynn Street in historic downtown Herndon.
Jazz In The Sculpture Garden: After a long day at work, wouldn’t you relax to some good jazz? The National Gallery of Art presents their Friday Night Jazz Series throughout the summer. from 5:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., rain or shine, you can listen to an eclectic mix of top Washington-area jazz artists. Concerts take place in front of the Pavilion Café next to the grand reflecting pool and fountain. Picnickers are welcome to bring blankets. Closest Metro: Archives-Navy Memorial
Downtown Silver Spring Music Scene: In past couple of years, Downtown Silver Spring has gone through a makeover. It has the AFI theatre, new shops and new concert series for the summer. Twice a week in the summer, the Plaza on Ellsworth Drive host great live ranging for music lovers. The genres range from R&B to Classic Rock and more. Show runs from 6-8 p.m. on Saturdays. Closest Metro: Silver Spring
Fairfax Corner Summer Concert Series: Whether your shopper or just making a visit, the plaza at Fairfax corner is place to be for free music Saturdays this summer. Between the retail and professional services space, Fairfax Corner has something for everyone. Their summer concert series features live performances by artist in genres like Rock, Cappella, Jazz, and more. Show runs from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Fairfax Corner is on Monument Drive & Government Center Parkway in Fairfax, VA.
Reston Town Center Concert Series: Every Summer, Reston Town Center has live music Saturday night called “Concerts on the Town.” Each week, a different band or artist performs under light. This event also takes place during Taste of the Town in June and Reston Festival in July. Show takes place at Reston Town Center Pavilion from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Summer of Music at Washingtonian Center: What you get when you mix a lakeside views from the deck of your favorite restaurant and great local music. You get the summer of music at Washingtonian Center in Gaithersburg, MD. The lakeside courtyard is your place to see live music throughout the summer. Not only that, you can get a chance to win Jet Ski. Who wouldn’t want one?
Rio Summer Concert Series: Here’s another concert series at Washingtonian Center in Gaithersburg, MD. Fridays and Saturdays this summer, the Rio Summer Concert Series gives you a wide range of music from rock to r&b to cover bands and more. Their concert series runs from June to September.
Lee District Free Summer Concert series: A FREE summer long concert series held at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday evenings at Lee District Park amphitheater in Franconia, and at 7:30 p.m. on Friday evenings at Kingstowne Towne Center located at 5955 Kingstowne Blvd., Alexandria, VA 23315. This series of twice-weekly public concerts features a wide variety of musical acts from jazz to big band, classic to bluegrass, and swing to folk and vintage rock ‘n’ roll. Closest Metro: (Franconia-Springfield then FFX Connector for the Wednesday night shows, Van Dorn then FFX Connector bus for the Friday night shows). It’s all part of Fairfax County’s free summer entertainment at the park happening each summer.