Live Music Is Back: The Best Bands Touring This Year

Jonas Brothers Perform Live

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Jonas Brothers Perform Live
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Music to Our Ears

People missed live music, no doubt about it. Performers, sidelined by the pandemic for more than a year, have also missed their live audiences (and their lucrative source of income). Now, musical acts of all genres, including rock, pop, country, hip hop, and more, are starting to hit the road again. Read on for a sampling of tours scheduled for coming months. (Get your tickets now, but remember to check with each venue, as many will require proof of vaccination against COVID-19 to attend and schedules may change.)

Related: 36 Bucket-List Destinations for Music Lovers

Springsteen On Broadway Reopens
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Bruce Springsteen

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This veteran Jersey rocker made New York proud, with his "Springsteen on Broadway" residency bowing in late June and set to continue to Sept. 4. The reprise of his fabled one-man show, originally offered on The Great White Way in 2017-18, signaled the re-opening of Broadway as the pandemic wanes. It's a unique way to catch The Boss, decidedly more intimate than his gig co-headlining the Central Park Homecoming Concert, along with Paul Simon and Jennifer Hudson, set for an August date TBA. Fans outside New York will want to know that Springsteen also confirmed a 2022 tour with the E Street Band during a chat on Sirius XM radio last month, as reported by Billboard

Related: Iconic Musicians That Are Back on the Road This Year

CBF Productions Presents Beach Boys In Concert
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The Beach Boys

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What's summer without The Beach Boys? Sadly, many had to find out in 2020. This year those eternal boys of summer (without, of course, Dennis Wilson and Al Jardine) are back out there, touring coast to coast all summer and well into November. With a lineup led by founding member Mike Love, the band's clearly ready for some more "Fun, Fun, Fun."

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Dave Matthews Band Live in Mexico City
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Dave Matthews Band

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The American band that got its start some 30 years ago in Charlottesville, Virginia, has a somewhat fanatical following — true fans hit the road to catch multiple performances, making it a Grateful Dead for the next generation. DMB performs July 23 in Raleigh, North Carolina, moving on to venues across the country before wrapping it up in Connecticut with a two-night run in early November.

Related: 15 Iconic Music Venues Across America

The Foo Fighters Reopen Madison Square Garden
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Foo Fighters

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Rock star or star of Ram Truck commercials? Dave Grohl can be both. Versatility is no surprise for the Foo Fighters frontman (and former Nirvana drummer), known to don a costume for videos over the years. The band is on tour this summer, with the next show set for July 28 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Festival appearances are in the mix, including Lollapalooza (Aug. 1 in Chicago), Bonnaroo (Sept. 3 in Tennessee) and the final stop, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival Oct. 10. (The band was forced to reschedule its July 17 show at The Forum in Los Angeles due to a confirmed case of COVID-19 within its organization).

Justin Bieber
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Justin Bieber

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Those who have followed Justin Bieber since his earliest days — or his newer fans — will want to mark Aug. 6 on their calendars. That's when tickets go on sale for his rescheduled 2021 World Tour, a reconfigured route that will now kick off Feb. 18, 2022 in San Diego and continue in the U.S. and Canada through June 24. Original tickets (when this summer's shows were simply rescheduled) will be honored.

Luke Bryan on Stage
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Luke Bryan

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CMT recently devoted its weekly countdown show to a single artist, spotlighting 25 "hottest hits" from Luke Bryan. Who knew the country star had so many No. 1 songs? Perhaps now's the time to see him live, as his Farm Tour 2021 kicks off Sept. 9 in Wisconsin and features six shows that month on, yes, farms (and one park).

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Tribeca Festival Screening Of "Biography: KISStory"
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You wanted the best… The band with so much history (50 years!) it merited a two-night, four-hour documentary that aired last month on A&E is picking up its "End of the Road World Tour." What began in 2019 will resume Aug. 18 in Mansfield, Massachusetts, hitting various U.S. venues through early October before heading to South America, Australia and Europe. Expect more than one "Crazy, Crazy Night."

Related: 22 Locations From Famous Songs That You Can Actually Visit

Megan Thee Stallion Performance
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Megan Thee Stallion

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Some acts are not for the faint of heart. If you like it provocative, then Megan Thee Stallion might get you out of the house and back to the festival scene. The Grammy Award-winning artist, originally from Houston and noted for her freestyle rap, is out on the road soon. She'll hit the festival circuit, starting with Rolling Loud in Miami (July 25) and continuing through October.

Anderson .Paak and Bruno Mars of Silk Sonic perform onstage
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Bruno Mars

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Bruno Mars is known as a singer but also a songwriter, record producer, musician and dancer. He'll be showcasing most of that through his ongoing run in Las Vegas. Select dates continue this month and are followed by a jaunt to Maryland before returning for more shows at Park MGM in Sin City next month. 

Related: The Biggest Summer Anthems of the Last 50 Years

Miley Cyrus 2021
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Miley Cyrus

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Do you miss the days when Miley Cyrus was scandalizing everyone? Well, maybe now the focus can return to her sheer talent. It's going to be showcased live once again as she plays Lollapalooza July 29 in Chicago, followed by a handful of dates that wrap up in early October at the Austin City Limits Festival.

Eagles Perform At Wembley Stadium
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The Eagles

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The Eagles had to check out of the "Hotel California" tour for the pandemic, but the band returns to the road in coming weeks, showcasing the classic 1976 release in its entirety. The tour gets underway with shows Aug. 22 and 24 at New York City's Madison Square Garden, followed by arena gigs well into October.

Judy Collins In Concert - New York, NY
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Judy Collins

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With a career that spans more than 60 years, Judy Collins surely has fans across the generations. From her "Both Sides Now" and "Send in the Clowns" days through today, this is a woman who just won't quit. Need proof? See the success of "Winter Stories" in 2019, released at age 80. Catch her next July 24 in Amagansett, New York, followed by U.S. shows scheduled into December.

Related: 18 Ways Woodstock Changed the World

Hall & Oates In Concert
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Hall & Oates

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Daryl Hall and John Oates are marking 50 years of their musical partnership, but are not billing the trek that kicks off Aug. 5 in Massachusetts as any kind of nostalgia tour. Hall & Oates will be on the road into December, along with announced special guests Squeeze and KT Tunstall. After that? As Rolling Stone reported, once the concert tour ends, it's surely not time for retirement (they can't go for that) but a new album. As Hall said, "It's all about the work to me."

Marc Anthony In Concert
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Marc Anthony

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Marc Anthony, billed as the best selling tropical salsa artist of all time, will spice things up this summer as he returns to the concert stage starting with an Aug. 27 show in San Antonio, Texas. The tour continues into December, with "VIP Experience" options (front-row seats, entry to the Vivir mi Vida Salsa Lounge) for a number of stops along the way.

Bonnie Raitt, Jackson Browne and James Taylor perform onstage
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James Taylor (and Jackson Browne)

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Talk about a double-bill of classic singer-songwriters. James Taylor & His All-Star Band take to the road this summer, with a treasure trove of classics ("Carolina in My Mind," "Fire & Rain," "Sweet Baby James" and more). And… he's got a friend — quintessential California singer-songwriter Jackson Browne will be his "very special guest." It all gets underway July 29 in Chicago, wrapping up Nov. 1 in San Diego. (And Browne fans will want to note, he's slipping in a few "An Evening With…" performances on "off nights" along the way).

Neil Giraldo and Pat Benatar perform onstage
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Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo

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Talk about girl power — decades before it became "trendy." Pat Benatar has always come across as a no-nonsense personality, with a powerful talent to back her up. Long touring with her musical partner/husband Neil Giraldo, the duo is again on the road, starting with an Aug. 29 show in Marysville, Washington, and continuing into late October.

Jimmy Buffett performs onstage
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Jimmy Buffett

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Jimmy Buffett released his first album in 1970 and seemingly hasn't looked back. He's been taking people to "Margaritaville" ever since 1977, a signature song in a career that has produced 27 albums to date. His avid fans, aka "Parrotheads," will get to spend a night of fun with their favorite singer, who can transform a cavernous arena into a beach-bar vibe. The tour, already underway, includes dates postponed from 2020 plus new shows, continuing the party into December.

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Pink Martini performs on stag
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Pink Martini

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Can't decide on your favorite genre? Pink Martini might be the band for you. A collective of sorts, the "little orchestra" combines classical, pop, Latin and jazz for one unforgettable concert that has everyone dancing by the end. A handful of shows in Michigan through Aug. 1 are followed by stops across the country the rest of the year — and well into 2022.

Pitbull performs onstage
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Armando Christian Pérez is the birth name of Pitbull, the Miami-based rapper, singer, activist and philanthropist also known as Mr. Worldwide. He's bringing his "I Feel Good" Tour — with special guest Iggy Azalea — across the nation, starting Aug. 5 in Texas and running into November. You know you want him. 

Eric Clapton onstage
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Eric Clapton

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The legendary singer, songwriter and, oh yeah, guitarist (tapped the No. 2 of all time by Rolling Stone) announced in June that, since ongoing COVID-19 restrictions pushed his European tour back to 2022, he'd instead offer up a handful of American concerts in September. Those lucky enough to be in Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Georgia, and Florida can spend the night with Slowhand.

John Legend Performing
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John Legend

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John Legend's witty presence on "The Voice," which not only showcases his artistry but also his sincerity, has likely introduced this singer-songwriter to a much wider audience. The Bigger Love Tour finds him playing 16 shows in September, starting Sept. 1 in Atlanta.

Metallica In Concert
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Those missing their Metallica can rejoice. Wait, do metalheads rejoice? Anyway, the seminal band is once again performing live, starting with festival appearances in September in Louisville, Kentucky, and in Sacramento, California, in October. There are nine shows through Dec. 19, before James Hetfield and company head to Europe next summer.

Andrea Bocelli performs on stage
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Andrea Bocelli

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So what if Andrea Bocelli is a PBS staple? He is, it's been said, "the world's most beloved tenor." The legendary Italian opera singer and musician indeed has a worldwide following, so his tours, no surprise, take him around the world. He'll be in America for shows in October and November, including Oct. 24 at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles.

Billy Idol In Concert
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Billy Idol

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That '80s British bad boy best known for "White Wedding" and "Rebel Yell" brings his trademark sneer – we are just loving his stint as a radio host on Sirius XM – back to the concert stage, touring in support of "Kings & Queens of the Underground," his latest studio album. Catch him everywhere from North Dakota (July 30) to Las Vegas (a four-night October stint at The Cosmopolitan).

Jonas Brothers Perform Live
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Jonas Brothers

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Those who thought the Jonas Brothers were popular when they first garnered fame back in 2005 were right. But the "second wave" of popularity since Kevin, Joe, and Nick reunited in 2019 is far from shabby. Team Jonas will want to catch the family act on the road this year, a slew of shows with special guest Kelsea Ballerini that start Aug. 20 in Las Vegas. Nearly 50 concerts are scheduled across the country before it all wraps up Oct. 27 at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles.

Green Day US Hella Mega Tour 2019
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Green Day, Weezer, and Fallout Boy

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Some tour names give you a pretty good idea of what to expect. So, when you hear about The 2021 US Hella Mega Tour, you know you're in for something wild. And a lineup featuring Green Day, Weezer, and Fallout Boy sounds exactly like that. A much-anticipated (and much postponed) trek, the mega-tour is finally kicking off July 24 in Dallas with the U.S. leg wrapping up Sept. 18 in Las Vegas.

Blake Shelton performs onstage
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Blake Shelton

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Country star, coach on "The Voice," newlywed, and big-time goofball Blake Shelton hits the road next month. The Friends and Heroes Tour kicks off Aug. 18 in Omaha, Nebraska. Also on the bill are Martina McBride, Tracy Byrd, and Trace Adkins with "very special guest" Lindsay Ell. With 17 dates wrapping up by Oct. 2, he'll be free to catch new wife Gwen Stefani's Las Vegas run, which opens Oct. 22 at Planet Hollywood.

Harry Styles Performing Onstage
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Harry Styles

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You are forgiven if your first thoughts of Harry Styles are of him romancing Olivia Wilde in Italy. But the former One Direction singer returns to his musical roots with Love On Tour 2021. The first show is Sept. 4 in Las Vegas, featuring guest Jenny Lewis. (Bet you're humming "Watermelon Sugar" now).

Lionel Richie performs live
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Lionel Richie

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Funny what a TV show can do for popularity. Lionel Richie's certainly having a moment thanks to "American Idol," but this entertainment vet never lacked for an audience. From his days with The Commodores through every step of his solo career, the man's just got it. Join him "All Night Long" as he starts a Las Vegas residency Sept. 10.

Adam Levine of Maroon 5 performs onstage
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Maroon 5

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Love or hate Adam Levine, the guy's got some catchy tunes. Since "The Voice" he has been a bit out of the spotlight, but this summer he and his band Maroon 5 are back on the concert stage, kicking off their MMXXI tour Aug. 10 in Auburn, Washington.

Michael Buble performs onstage
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Michael Bublé

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There's a touch of class implied when you see a show billed as "An Evening With…" and that's exactly how contemporary crooner Michael Bublé is promoting his return to the concert stage. This modern-day Sinatra will kick off his North American tour Aug. 13 in Jacksonville, Florida, and be on the road in America through Oct. 1.

Carrie Underwood Onstage
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Carrie Underwood

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If you think country superstar Carrie Underwood's concert itinerary looks a bit light, you're right. Kind of. She indeed has only six shows set through September, starting with the July 23 performance at the Twin Cities Summer Jam in Minnesota. Perhaps she is conserving her energy for "Reflection: The Las Vegas Residency," which kicks off Dec. 1.

Backstreet Boys In Concert
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Backstreet Boys

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Which one's the cutest? Boy band fans will never tire of that debate. For the Backstreet Boys, those days when young girls fought over them are long gone. But, it seems, their fan base and appeal endures. The original lineup is reuniting with a holiday gift of sorts. "A Very Backstreet Christmas Party," billed as a "limited Las Vegas residency," will feature a dozen shows starting Nov. 11 and continuing through Dec. 23. The format, the group's site notes, will feature "classic holiday favorites, new originals and their biggest hits." Backstreet's back, alright!