Monday, June 25th, 2018

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Classic rockers highlight summer concert schedule

Billy Joel performs at the BB&T Center on January 11, 2014 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Jeff Daly/Invision/AP)


If you’re a fan of some of rock and roll’s most iconic performers, you will have plenty of chances to see them in Northeast Ohio this summer.

If this year’s concert schedule is any indication, classic rock is alive and well with shows at venues ranging from Progressive Field to Cain Park. And speaking of classic, the Cleveland Orchestra will once again return to its summer home for the Blossom Music Festival.

While the Indians are on the road seeking another American League pennant this summer, Progressive Field will welcome a couple of heavy hitters — Billy Joel (July 14) and country superstar Luke Bryan (July 15). Not to be outdone, the Browns’ FirstEnergy Stadium will host a huge show of its own when U2 kicks off the Fourth of July weekend with its Joshua Tree Tour (July 1).

Quicken Loans Arena will rock you with a stellar lineup that features Hall and Oates and Tears for Fears (May 20), Tom Petty and Joe Walsh (June 10), Queen and Adam Lambert (July 21), Earth, Wind and Fire and CHIC featuring Nile Rodgers (July 29), Neil Diamond and his 50th Anniversary Tour (May 30), Coldplay (Aug. 19) and the one and only Lady Gaga (Aug. 23).

There can be no surer sign of summer than James Taylor at Blossom Music Center and this year Taylor returns to the scenic Cuyahoga Falls amphitheater with Bonnie Raitt (Aug. 9). Blossom will also host the talents of John Mayer (Aug. 30), Rod Stewart and Cyndi Lauper (July 28), Lady Antebellum (July 21), Zac Brown Band (June 9), Deep Purple and Alice Cooper (Sept. 9) and Brad Paisley (Sept. 22).

Jacobs Pavilion, a cool spot on a hot summer night in the Flats, hosts Norah Jones (May 24), The Happy Together Tour with The Turtles, The Association and The Box Tops (Aug. 13), Yestival with YES, Todd Rundgren and Carl Palmer’s ELP Legacy (Aug. 20), Idina Menzel (July 12) and two wild and crazy guys – Steve Martin and Martin Short (Sept. 17).

Another great intimate summer venue, Cain Park, hosts legends Stephen Stills and Judy Collins (July 28), David Sanborn (June 17) and hometown favorites Anne Cochran and Abe Lamarca (June 22).

The Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield continues to draw some of the nation’s biggest acts and has a scintillating summer lineup with Gladys Knight (May 19), Gordon Lightfoot (May 20), Huey Lewis and the News (June 10), Diana Ross (July 18), Donald Fagen and The Nightflyers (Aug. 25), Smokey Robinson (Sept. 16) and Trace Adkins (Sept. 29).

The Cleveland Orchestra kicks off the Blossom Festival season with a Tchaikovsky Spectacular (July 1). The orchestra will also play the Best of Broadway (July 16), Hollywood Heroes and Superheroes (Aug. 13), Ella Fitzgerald (Aug. 27) and Movie Night: E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (Sept. 13).

And if jazz is your thing, check out The Tri-C JazzFest with such cool customers as Chris Botti and Diane Reeves (June 22), Boney James and Norman Brown (June 23) and Boz Scaggs (June 24) at the Connor Palace Theater in PlayhouseSquare.

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