May 16, 2018

New Summer Concert Series Brings 50+ Live Music Events To The Historic District

DJ, Jazz, Latin, Acoustic Music & More Enliven Summer Nights June Through September

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The Philly Pops will perform outside Independence Hall, as part of VISIT PHILADELPHIA's Summer Sounds in the Historic District program. Photo by J. Fusco for VISIT PHILADELPHIA®
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Smooth Jazz Summer Nights on the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing highlights renowned jazz and blues musicians from across the globe. Photo by Matt Stanley, courtesy of Delaware River Waterfront Corporation
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The Philly Pops will perform outside Independence Hall, as part of VISIT PHILADELPHIA's Summer Sounds in the Historic District program. Photo by J. Fusco for VISIT PHILADELPHIA®
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DJ Royale will perform in We Got the Beats, as part of VISIT PHILADELPHIA’s Summer Sounds in the Historic District. Photo courtesy of DJ Royal
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Smooth Jazz Summer Nights on the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing highlights renowned jazz and blues musicians from across the globe. Photo by Matt Stanley, courtesy of Delaware River Waterfront Corporation
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Philadelphia DJ Rich Medina will perform in We Got the Beats, a series part of VISIT PHILADELPHIA’s Summer Sounds in the Historic District. Photo courtesy of Rich Medina
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This summer, visitors to Philadelphia’s Historic District can enjoy 50+ live musical performances as part of Summer Sounds in the Historic District, a series of long-popular concerts and new programming curated by VISIT PHILADELPHIA®. From June 1 through September 7, jazz, DJ tunes, Latin grooves, even the sweet sounds of symphony will fill the parks, patios and plazas at more than a dozen locations from FringeArts located along the Delaware River Waterfront to the Philadelphia History Museum at the Atwater Kent on 7th Street.

“In the summer, the Historic District is packed with people all day long,” said Meryl Levitz, president & CEO, VISIT PHILADELPHIA®. “We want to give all of them more reasons to spend their nights in the district too, and that’s what this Summer Sounds series does. Nearly every evening of the week, residents and visitors can make a night of it by grabbing a bite to eat and then enjoying music under the stars in this beautiful neighborhood.”

The Series, The Schedule, The Locations:

For more information about locations and performances listed below, go to visitphilly.com/summersounds, which will be updated throughout the summer. And follow @visitphilly on Twitter for weather-related changes to the schedule.

  • We Got the Beats: New to the district for 2108, this VISIT PHILADELPHIA-sponsored event gives two DJs per night a chance to spin tunes, each playing a different genre of music. Yusuf Muhammed, founder of Veteran Freshman, is curating the traveling series, which features Rich Medina, DJ Sylo, DJ Royale and others.
    • When: First Friday of every month, June 1-September 7, 6-10 p.m.
    • Where: Spruce Street Harbor Park, Sustained by Univest, Franklin Square, FringeArts, Philadelphia History Museum at the Atwater Kent
  • Who Got the Jazz: This once-popular happening is making a comeback for the Summer Sounds series thanks to VISIT PHILADELPHIA. During the Yusuf Muhammed-curated event, master jazz musicians and soul vocalists perform jazz, soul and hip-hop fusion in jam-session style at various locations throughout the Historic District. Suzann Christine pays tribute to Nina Simone on June 27, Chill Moody honors Duke Ellington and Marvin Gay on July 25 and Brianna Cash takes on Grover Washington and Stevie Wonder on August 22.
    • When: Wednesdays, June 6-September 5, 5:30-8 p.m.
    • Where: African American Museum in Philadelphia, Betsy Ross House, FringeArts, Spruce Street Harbor Park, Philadelphia History Museum, Physick House, Franklin Square, Independence Visitor Center
  • Waterfront Sessions: Each week acclaimed local talent takes the stage at Spruce Street Harbor Park. Killiam Shakespeare and Ivy Sole headline concerts in June, and additional artists will be announced as the season progresses.
    • When: Thursdays, June 7-August 30, 6:30-9:30 p.m.
    • Where: Spruce Street Harbor Park, Columbus Boulevard & Spruce Street
  • Latin Nights at the Lodge: Live bands and DJs with a Latin flair entertain the crowds at the Lodge, a cool-off, chow-down, drink-up spot at the Blue Cross RiverRink Summerfest. This event is presented in partnership with Dance Republic, Telemundo62 and La Mega.
    • When: Every first Thursday, June 7, July 5 and August 2, 9 p.m.-1 a.m.
    • Where: Blue Cross RiverRink Summerfest, 101 S. Columbus Boulevard
  • Jazz in the Park: Sundays were made for chilling, and that’s exactly what visitors can do at Spruce Street Harbor Park during the waterfront park’s popular Jazz in the Park series. Jazz lovers can grab a hammock and/or a beer to listen to the sounds of Tara + DM Hotep Middleton, Tim Brey, Julian Hartwell, Chris Stevens, Korey Riker and Ernest Stuart.
    • When: Every third Sunday, June 17, July 15 and August 19, 3-7 p.m.
    • Where: Spruce Street Harbor Park, Columbus Boulevard & Spruce Street
  • Concerts on Independence, sponsored by Aetna: For the first time ever, Wawa Welcome America! will put on three concerts in front of Independence Hall as part of its week-long Fourth of July celebration. Participants are encouraged to pack a picnic for these performances set against a truly patriotic backdrop.
    • When: July 1 (gospel/jazz), July 2 (Broadway) and July 3 (The Philly POPS), 7 p.m.
    • Where: Independence Hall, 520 Chestnut Street
  • Summer Sounds on the Square: The sounds of blues, rock, zydeco and folk music will fill the Great Lawn Stage at Franklin Square for seven summer Saturdays. New to the Historic District’s offerings, this series—sponsored by VISIT PHILADELPHIA—kicks off with a performance by The Philly POPS. Bonus: The Dragon Beer Garden will be serving up adult beverages during all concerts.
    • When: Saturdays, July 21-September 1, 6-8 p.m.
    • Where: Franklin Square, 6th & Race Streets
  • Smooth Jazz Summer Nights: This long-running concert series, sponsored by WJJZ and WDAS, highlights renowned jazz and blues musicians from across the globe every Friday night in August. On August 24, R&B and soul singer-songwriter Leela James wows the crowd.
    • When: Saturdays, August 3-31, 7-9 p.m.
    • Where: Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing, Columbus Boulevard & Chestnut Street
  • Street Corner Symphonies: This travelling band plans to pop up at various spots throughout the Historic District to entertain daytime visitors. These musicians are part of the Philadelphia Jazz Project sponsored by the Culture Trust.
    • When: Weekdays
    • Where: Independence Visitor Center, Betsy Ross House, National Constitution Center, Museum of the American Revolution, African American Museum in Philadelphia and others

Those enjoying the Summer Sounds series are encouraged to make it a night or two with the Visit Philly Overnight Hotel Package, which includes free hotel parking and other fun perks. It’s available at 47 hotels and bookable at visitphilly.com/overnight.

Philadelphia’s Historic District campaign, from VISIT PHILADELPHIA®, showcases the city’s incomparable place in early American history and the still vibrant neighborhoods of Old City, Society Hill and the Delaware River Waterfront. The campaign celebrates America’s most historic square mile in the country’s first World Heritage City, as designated by the Organization of World Heritage Cities. Funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development and H.F. (Gerry) Lenfest, the initiative runs through September 2018.

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends, visitors can engage with costumed history makers, hear stories of the real people of independence and take part in colonial reenactments. And every day of the year, they can tour, shop, dine and drink in the area just like the founding fathers and mothers once did. For more information about all there is to see and do in Philadelphia’s Historic District, go to visitphilly.com and uwishunu.com.

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