It’s hard to believe that summer 2016 is winding down—but don’t put your cutoff shorts and sunscreen-encrusted tank top away yet. Outdoor summer concerts in NYC are still going strong, with SummerStage, BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival and other summer music festivals hosting great shows through September. Here are our highlights for which SummerStage shows to see at Central Park and other NYC parks.
RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Central Park SummerStage
Best remaining SummerStage shows
Texas expat Alan Palomo broke out as a chillwave artist in 2011, but has since demonstrated staying power that transcends the defunct microgenre’s limitations. At this free show, he’ll play from last year’s VEGA INTL Night School, which presented newly fluorescent, loose-limbed electrofunk.
Nublu Orchestra pays tribute to Lawrence D. "Butch" Morris using his trademark method of conducted improvisation that avant-jazz, free-funk and more beside. Trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith and ensemble DarkMatterHalo open.
In 2011 the Go-Go's, those spunky Californians of the early MTV era, announced that they were packing it in after a final victory lap. Five years and a couple tours later, the claims turned out false—no complaints here—so it's up in the air if Belinda, Jane, Charlotte, Kathy and Gina will stick to their goodbyes on this "Farewell Tour" (we hope not). Tonight the band plays SummerStage in the company of Bethany Cosentino’s sun-soaked, ’90s-era-alt-rock-harkening outfit, Best Coast.
Heavily tipped by the press after the release of its 2015 debut album, From Kinshasa, Mbongwana Star is a seven-piece band from the Democratic Republic of the Congo featuring former members of folk heros Staff Benda Bilili. Its sound mixes up traditional Congolese rumba with electronic elements for a sensational live show.
Once again, the city becomes a movable ode to Bird for a weekend in August. While this fest may be named for the legendary Charlie Parker, SummerStage’s jazz program isn’t stuck in the past. This year’s boundary-pushing talent, presented over three days, includes composer Randy Weston’s African Rhythms Sextet, keyboardist Jason Lindner’s Breeding Ground and piano powerhouse Jason Moran.
Last year, young Virginia-bred MC GoldLink received the all-important imprimatur of producer-guru Rick Rubin who proceeded to assist on the rapper's debut album, And After That, We Didn't Talk. Like his mixtape, The God Complex, the record demonstrates a promising knack for innovative hip-hop—he calls his style "future bounce"—which still manages to sound timeless.