Dr. John & the Nite Trippers will kick off Albany’s Alive at Five concert series tonight at Tricentennial Park.
The eight-week Thursday night concert series is the unofficial beginning of the free summer concert season. All over the Capital Region, all through the summer, there are free concerts almost every night of the week.
Malcom John Rebennack, better known as Dr. John, is a six-time Grammy Award-winning solo artist and a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, inducted in 2011. He began his career as a session musician in his hometown of New Orleans, Louisiana, in the 1950s before moving west.
During the 1960s, he played on the records of Sonny and Cher, Van Morrison, Aretha Franklin and The Rolling Stones. He also began a solo career, which took off with his 1968 album, “Gris-Gris.”
Alive at Five is returning this season to Tricentennial Park because of construction at Corning Riverfront Park, where the series has been held for more than a decade. The rain site has also been moved back to the Palace Theatre, certainly an acoustic improvement over the former rain site under the 787 overpass.
Broadway between Columbia and Steuben streets will be closed each Thursday starting at 8 a.m. to set up the stage for the 5 p.m. concert, and the area between Steuben Street and Pine Street will close later in the afternoon, according to a letter released by the office of Mayor Kathy Sheehan.
The area between Pine and Columbia will remain open to traffic. Sidewalks in the area will remain open but there will be no on-street parking on Broadway during the concerts.
People planning to attend Alive at Five concerts should be aware that no alcoholic beverages, coolers, backpacks, bags, containers, packages, thermoses, cups, bottles, cans, flasks, glass containers of any kind, animals or pets (excluding ADA-defined service animals) are allowed. Recording performances is also prohibited.
The summer of free music actually began on June 1 with a performance by The Defibulators at The Egg’s noontime series, Made in the Shade.
There are hundreds of free concerts across the region, including national, international and local bands and artists. Here's a sampling.
Alive at Five, Tricentennial Park Albany. Thursdays at 5 p.m.
June 9: Dr. John & the Nite Trippers, and Jocamo
June 16: The Joy Formidable, and Good Fiction
June 23: Tony! Toni! Tone! and Tameka Amar
June 30: The Chronicles (Earth Wind & Fire tribute), and Thump Gospel (Michael Jackson tribute)
July 14: Enter the Haggis, and Hair of the Dog
July 21: Bloc Party, and Titanics
July 28: Locash, and Skeeter Creek
Aug. 4: Molly Hatchet, and Tumbleweed Highway
At the Plaza, Empire State Plaza, Albany. Events are 5-9 p.m. unless otherwise noted
June 15: Jazz Night
June 29: Legendary Sons Night
July 4: July 4th celebration presented by Price Chopper and Market 32 (3-10 p.m.)
July 6: Reggae Night
July 9: Kids Day (noon-5 p.m.)
July 13: Classic Rock Night
July 20: Rhythm & Blues Night
Aug. 6: Black Arts & Cultural Festival (2-7 p.m.)
Aug. 10: New York State Food Festival (11 a.m.-9 p.m.)
Freedom Park, Scotia. All shows start at 7 unless noted
June 22: SIRSY
June 25: Stockade Kids
June 26: The Zucchini Brothers
June 29: Scotia-Glenville Pipe Band
July 1: Rattail Jimmy featuring Alan Payette, Fireworks (starts at 8 p.m.)
July 3: The Legendary Characters
July 6: The Lustre Kings
July 9: Diva & the Dirty Boys
July 10: Music Company Orchestra
July 13: Screaming Orphans
July 14: Scotia-Glenville Community Band & Jazz Band
July 16: Where’s Alex?
July 17: Brian Patneaude Quintet
July 20: The Joey Thomas Big Band
July 23: Triskele
July 24: Maria Z & Alegria
July 27: The Refrigerators
July 28: Scotia-Glenville Community Band & Jazz Band
July 30: Moriah Formica
July 31: Hot Club of Saratoga
Aug. 3: Grand Central Station
Aug. 6: Alex Torres & His Latin Orchestra
Aug. 7: The Wister Quartet
Aug. 10: Funk Evolution
Aug. 13: Betsy and the ByeGons
Aug. 14: The Route Fifty 5
Aug. 17: The AudioStars
Aug. 20: Up All Night
Aug. 21: Mia Scirocco Trio
Aug. 24: Skeeter Creek
Aug. 27: Black Mountain Symphony
Guilderland Performing Arts Center, Guilderland. www.townofguilderland.org
June 17: Nervosity Concert (battle of high school bands)
June 23, July 14, Aug. 4: Guilderland Town Band
June 30: Big Sky Country
July 7: Annie and the Hedonists
July 21: Hey Jude (Beatles tribute)
July 28: Bluz House Rockers
Aug. 2: National Night Out
Aug. 11: New York Players
Jazz on Jay. Noon, Jay Street, downtown Schenectady
June 16: Jazz 4 U
June 23: Annie and the Hedonists
June 30: Adam Siegel Quartet
July 7: Ten 27
July 14: Steve Lambert Quintet
July 21: Heard
July 28: Brian Patneaude Quintet
Aug. 4: Skip Parsons’ Riverboat Jazz Band
Aug. 11: Dave Fisk Quartet
Aug. 18 Alex Slomka Trio
Aug. 25: Scott Bassinson Quartet
Sept. 1: The Gals Who Play Jazz
Made in the Shade of the Egg, Albany. Noon, outside near The Egg entrance
June 15: Upstate Rubdown
June 22: Erin Harpe & the Delta Swingers
June 29: Teresa Broadwell Quintet
July 6: The Blind Spots
July 13: The Gather Rounders
July 20: The Dylan Perillo Orchestra
July 27: Ten Strings and a Goat Skin
Aug. 3: The Dustbowl Revival
Aug. 10: Ajkun Ballet Theatre and Ellen Sinopli Dance Comany
Aug. 17: Heard
Aug. 24: Jon Stickley Trio
Aug. 31: Bela’s Bartok
Music Haven Stage, Central Park, Schenectady, Sundays at 7 p.m.
July 10: Pape Diouf et La Génération Consciente, and Umoja African Dance & Drumming
July 17: Jerry Douglas presents The Earls of Leicester, and Jim Gaudet & the Railroad Boys
July 24: Gary Nuñez y Plena Libre
July 31: Monty Alexander’s Harlem-Kingston Trio
Aug. 7: DakhaBrakha, and Tavche Gravche
Aug. 14: Dervish, and Matt & Shannon Heaton (season gala/finale)
Riverlink Park, Amsterdam. Concerts at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted
June 11: MedRock, 7:30 p.m.
June 18: Skeeter Creek, 8 p.m.
June 30: True Grit Outlaws, 8 p.m.
July 2: The Revelers
July 8: Rattail Jimmy, 8 p.m.
July 9: Jocelyn & Chris Arndt
July 16: The Lustre Kings
July 22: Flame
July 23: Roomful of Blues
July 30: Caleb Klauder Country Band
Aug. 5: Redline, 8 p.m.
Aug. 6: Tumbleweed Highway, 8 p.m.
Aug. 13: Alex Torres & His Latin Orchestra
Aug. 19: True Grit Outlaws and Tunnel
Aug. 20: Mariachi Flor de Toloache
Aug. 27: Robin & Linda Williams
Rock the Block, Canal Square, Cohoes. 6-8:30 p.m.
June 9: B-Street Band
June 16: The Refrigerators
June 23: Bronte Roman
June 30: E.B. Jeb
July 8: Back 40 Band
July 15: Switch Band
July 22: White Ford Bronco
July 29: Back Beat & Marc Macri
Aug. 5: All Paul Band
Aug. 12: Harmony Rocks
Aug. 19: River Junction Band
Aug. 26: Rymanowski Brothers
Rockin’ On the River, Riverfront Park, Troy. Wednesdays at 5 p.m.
June 15: Start Making Sense (Talking Heads tribute), and the Troy Music Academy All-Stars
June 22: Skeeter Creek, and Maryleigh Roohan
June 29: The So So Glos, and Stellar Young
July 6: Almost Queen (Queen tribute)
July 13: Eastbound Jesus, and the North & South Dakotas
July 20: The Felice Brothers, and the Parlor
July 27: Blues for Breakfast
Aug. 3: Caroline Rose, and Rabbit in the Rye
Schenectady County Summer Night, 5-10 p.m. July 15, downtown Schenectady
On the GE Main Stage
On the Rising Star Stage
Upbeat on the Roof, Tang Museum, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs. Fridays at 7 p.m.
July 1: Olivia Quillio
July 8: Dust Bowl Faeries
July 15: Decoda
July 22: Terry Gordon Quintet
July 29: Swap Baby
Aug. 5: Red Haired Strangers
Aug. 12: Hot Club of Saratoga
Aug. 19: Heavenly Echoes
Aug. 26: Random 33
Wiswall Park, Ballston Spa. Thursdays, 6-8 p.m.
June 23: Big Fez & the Surfmatics
June 30 Ballston Spa Community Band
July 7: The North & South Dakotas
July 14: The Road Kings
July 21: Deena Chappell & the Crazy Sages
July 28: Emily Teller Music
Aug. 4: The Union Fire Co., and No. 2 Marching Band
Aug. 11: Aged in the Hills
Aug. 18: Lucky Jukebox Brigade
Aug. 25: Sirsy