News Article

Ten Must-See Live Shows Coming to Albany in July

June 28, 2024

July is here, and there are so many incredible shows lined up for this month in Albany, New York! From the return of a rock and roll legend to performances from up-and-coming world-class performers, you won’t want to miss any of these concerts happening throughout the city this July! No matter where your show is this month, ParkAlbany is proud to provide convenient event parking at our downtown parking garages and lots, all located just a quick walk to your venue and numerous nearby shops and dining in Downtown Albany. And to stay up to date on these and other upcoming events in Albany, be sure to browse our events calendar to find other amazing shows or gatherings to look forward to!

7/1: Story Of The Year at Empire Live

Kick off July by rocking out with Story Of The Year at Empire Live! Formed in 1995, this group from St. Louis rose to prominence under their original name “Big Blue Monkey” and cultivated a nu-metal sound through their first 3 EPs. By 2002, the band released an album titled Story Of The Year and subsequently changed their band name to match the album. They initially claimed they discovered a blues group using the name “Big Blue Monkey” as the reason for the change, however they later clarified they just didn’t like the name anymore. By 2003, the newly rebranded Story Of The Year released Page Avenue featuring a new musical direction, which reached certified Platinum and cemented their role as heavyweights of the post-hardcore/screamo scene. Since then, Story Of The Year has released 6 more studio albums, one live album, and 18 music videos. Their distinct sound, dubbed “emo-inflected post-grunge”, has held strong for nearly 30 years now, and this Monday night show is the perfect opportunity to enjoy a truly iconic rock act here in Downtown Albany! Catch them as they celebrate 20 years of their iconic debut album with support from the Plain White T’s!

7/10: Maxi Priest at the Empire State Plaza

The Capital Concert Series returns with a bang this month as Grammy-nominated Maxi Priest takes the stage at the Empire State Plaza! Free music at the plaza is back, and fans are in for a treat when this reggae fusion legend comes to town! Raised in London as the second youngest of nine siblings, Priest’s family moved from Jamaica in search of more opportunity for the family. He grew up listening to reggae, gospel, R&B, and funk, which influenced his music career that kicked off in 1984. Maxi sang in South London’s Saxon Studio International, and his following independent releases garnered massive attention in the Dancehall and Roots Reggae Soundsystem genres. By 1988, he released his debut album Maxi, which introduced his patented blend of reggae and soul to the world. This album reached certified Gold in the United Kingdom, leading him to be recognized as one of Britain’s top reggae singers. To this day, Maxi remains one of two British reggae acts to ever have an American Billboard Number 1 hit, with “Close To You” in 1990. With this song’s massive success, his following album Bonafide also reached certified Gold, and he continued to progress his infectious reggae fusion sound through 8 more studio albums. Today, Maxi Priest remains a figurehead of the reggae fusion genre and has cemented himself as one of the world’s most prolific reggae acts! Summer at the Plaza is stacked with amazing live music and events this season, and this show is sure to be one for the books! If you’re driving to the show, remember that free on-street parking is available in the area of the plaza after 5:00pm!

7/11: KRS-One at Alive at 5

Enjoy another incredible Alive at 5 show along the Hudson River with KRS-One! East coast hip hop fans are in for a spectacular show when this New York City rapper brings his critically acclaimed music to Alive at 5’s hip hop night for an unforgettable free summer concert! Hailing from the Bronx, KRS-One (an acronym for “Knowledge Reigns Supreme Over Nearly Everyone”) has been on the scene since 1986 and rose to fame while he was a member of the group Boogie Down Productions, alongside D-Nice and DJ Scott La Rock. This group helped spearhead the blend of dancehall reggae music with hip hop and ultimately set the stage for the proliferation of gangsta rap in the South Bronx. By 1992, KRS-One left B.D.P. and begun his solo career, which produced iconic hits like “Sound of da Police”, “My Philosophy” and “Love’s Gonna Get’cha (Material Love)”. Throughout his career, he remained an active advocate for social justice and spearheaded both the Stop the Violence Movement and the Temple of Hip Hop. KRS-One has also published 3 books, appeared in 33 movies and TV shows, and released 17 studio albums. With so much influence on the East Coast hip hop scene and beyond, KRS-One remains a must-see act, and this free Thursday night show is your chance to sing and dance along here in Albany! For those driving to the show, event parking will be available at both the Quackenbush & Riverfront Garages which are just a short walk away across either the Hudson River Walkway or the Albany Skyway.

7/12: Fitz & The Tantrums at Empire Live

Catch an upbeat Friday night show in Downtown Albany with Fitz & The Tantrums at Empire Live! This Los Angeles indie pop/neo soul quintet formed in 2008 and have been a mainstay on the US Alternative and Rock charts ever since. After singer Michael Fitzpatrick purchased an organ in 2008, he sought to form a band and reached out to a college friend who recommended singer Noelle Scaggs, drummer John Wicks, keyboardist Jeremy Ruzumna, and bassist Joseph Karnes to fill the gaps. The band immediately clicked, and one week after their first rehearsal, they booked a gig at Hotel Café in Hollywood! They subsequently performed at several other LA clubs and following the recording of Songs for a Breakup, Vol. 1 in 2009, they caught the attention of Adam Levine, and soon after Fitz & The Tantrums opened for Maroon 5 during their “Back to School” Tour! The band proceeded to grow in popularity and released 5 studio albums and 2 more Eps, featuring massive hits like “Out of My League”, “HandClap”, “The Walker” and “I Just Wanna Shine”. Their soul-heavy indie pop is the perfect upbeat sound for a high-energy, dance-worthy evening, and their stop at Empire Live is your chance to kick off your weekend with a bang in Downtown Albany! Be sure to park early and enjoy some pre-show pints and bites from one of the many incredible bars and restaurants located around the venue!

7/13: Marcus King at the Palace Theatre

Experience blues rock powerhouse Marcus King at the Palace Theatre this July! Born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina, Marcus is the son of renowned blues guitarist Marvin King. He learned the guitar while he was very young, and after playing with his father at just 8 years old, he went on to form his own band as a teenager, juggling school in the morning and club gigs at night. Marcus and his bandmates sought to create “soul-influenced psychedelic Southern rock”, and he later dropped out of high school to study jazz theory and performance at the Fine Arts Center in Greenville. After a video of Marcus jamming at a local guitar store went viral on YouTube, his solo career skyrocketed soon after, jumpstarted by his first solo album El Dorado. Fusing his dynamic Southern rock with a classic blues feel, Marcus King’s enchanting sound landed him critical acclaim in the blues community and widespread success on the Billboard charts. His second album Young Blood debuted at Number 1 on the Billboard Blues charts, and it seems there are no signs of him slowing down! Fans of blues and Americana music won’t want to miss this rising Grammy-nominated artist’s highly anticipated show during the “Mood Swings” Tour, and event parking will be available at the nearby Quackenbush & Riverfront Garages, both located a quick walk from all the action at the Palace.

7/18: Taj Farrant at Empire Live

Prodigies are few and far between, and Taj Farrant is one of the latest shining examples of having remarkable talent at such a young age! At just 15 years old, Farrant has taken the world by storm and carved out a name for himself in the blues rock genre. Hailing from Australia, Farrant’s father brought him to an AC/DC concert and after seeing Angus Young perform, he told his father “I want to do that forever”, and the rest is history! With the support of his family, Taj has picked up several brand endorsements and has gone viral for his energetic and emotional performances. He was featured on the Ellen DeGeneres show, Australia’s Got Talent, and shared the stage with legends like Carlos Santana and Rob Thomas at just 14 years old! His original music has also rocked the charts, with both “Cruz” and “Crossroads” debuting at Number 1 on the Billboard Blues Singles charts in both the United States and Australia. With a lifetime worth of fame under his belt at just 15, you won’t want to miss this rising star bring his awe-inspiring act to Downtown Albany for a thrilling Thursday night show in New York’s Capital City!

7/19: Nas at the Palace Theatre

Known as one of the greatest rappers to ever do it, Nas is slated to bring his world-class music to the Palace Theatre on July 19th! Following the release of his first full-length album Illmatic in 1994, critics regarded this as one of the most quintessential hip hop albums of all time, lauded as a landmark album for east coast hip hop and hardcore hip hop. Thanks to its success and acclaim, it was inducted into the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry in 2020! Since Illmatic, this Queens superstar has released 16 albums, 8 of which became platinum and multi-platinum albums and defined a new standard for East Coast hip-hop. Nas’ lyricism and poetic compositions have created a “potent evocation of life on the street” and he has been continuously ranked #1 on lists of the greatest MCs of all time. From his Grammy-winning career to being co-founder of Mass Appeal Records, Nas remains a must-see act for rap fans from any generation. The historic Palace Theatre is set to come alive for this Friday night show, and convenient parking will be available at the Quackenbush & Riverfront Garages just a short walk away!

7/25: The Record Company at Alive at 5

Rock along the river with The Record Company on July 25th! Get ready to keep the fun going during the amazing Alive at 5 Summer Concert Series’ Rock Night, featuring a lively performance from this Los Angeles trio! Formed in 2011, this group draws strong influences from blues musicians and old-school rock acts, fusing inspirations from Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker with the upbeat emphasis of early rock and roll. Known for playing “small venues for small money” throughout Los Angeles in the early 2010s, The Record Company ultimately recorded and released Give It Back to You in 2016, with the lead single “Off the Ground” reaching Number 1 on the Billboard Adult Alternative charts in the United States! The album spent 42 weeks on Billboard’s Heatseekers chart and was nominated for Best Contemporary Blues Album during the 2017 Grammy Awards. This dynamic trio followed up the success of their debut record with 3 more critically acclaimed studio albums, each featuring their patented driving rock and roll sound rooted in classic blues that garnered them so much commercial success. This Alive at 5 show is sure to be memorable for any rock fans, so be sure to show up early for opener Sirsy and park at the Quackenbush & Riverfront Garages before enjoying this energetic act along the scenic Hudson River!

7/28: The Head & The Heart at the Palace Theatre

Folk lovers rejoice: The Head & The Heart are stopping by the Palace Theatre on July 28th! Fusing indie rock with folk music, you won’t want to miss this Seattle-based collective perform live in Downtown Albany! In 2009, members of the band met through an open mic series in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle, with each member separately pursuing careers in music and the arts. The members ultimately joined forces and recorded their first album The Head and the Heart in 2009 and handed out self-burned copies in handmade denim sleeves. The band sold these at shows and supplied them to local record shops just weeks after its recording. The record stores couldn’t keep them in stock fast enough to keep up with the demand! Following a frenzy of interest from labels and managers, they signed with Sub Pop Records in 2010 and remastered the album for mass release in 2011. The band went on to support Vampire Weekend, Iron & Wine, My Morning Jacket, and Death Cab For Cutie thanks to its success, and they made their TV debut on Conan in April 2011. Their album reached the Billboard Top 200 Albums Chart and remained for ten weeks, cementing their role as one of Seattle’s biggest names in the indie rock/folk scene at the time. Today, The Head & The Heart continues to be a must-see act for indie folk enthusiasts, and their show at the Palace with Phosphorescent is the perfect opportunity to experience their enchanting career-spanning music! Be sure to park early and enjoy some of the many amazing restaurants and bars throughout Downtown Albany before the show!

7/31: Alice Cooper at the Palace Theatre

Catch Alice at the Palace on July 31st! Known as “The Godfather of Shock Rock”, Cooper’s legendary live act has been thrilling fans for over 50 years! Born Vincent Furnier in 1948, he adopted the pseudonym “Alice Cooper” in 1967 for his band and later legally changed his own name to Alice Cooper in 1975. The original Alice Cooper Band released their first album Pretties for You in 1969 and subsequently began setting the prototype for today’s theatrical shock rock shows when Alice threw a live chicken into the audience during the 1969 Toronto Rock ‘n’ Roll Revival Festival. Following criticism from this act and eventual commercial success from the following albums Love It to Death and Killer, the Alice Cooper Band was able to afford more elaborate shows, now including elements of gothic horror and sophisticated stage props. Several calls from members of the British Parliament to have the band banned from UK performances only solidified their increasing popularity, and their next tour broke box office records for sales and attendance. The original band eventually broke up in 1974, but Alice continued to lead an illustrious solo career, winning numerous music awards, and growing his infamous shock rock persona and performances since 1975! Drawing influence from hard rock and glam rock, his live performances feature Cooper’s eerie makeup, stage illusions, pyrotechnics, fake blood, reptiles, and so much more! For a truly unforgettable display of rock and roll history, look no further than this must-see performance from Alice Cooper!

There’s nothing quite like a summertime concert in Albany, and wherever your show is, ParkAlbany’s garages and lots are always just a quick walk away from the fun! To stay up to date with these and other incredible upcoming events happening throughout this month, make sure to visit our events calendar!