Pip the Pansy at AthFest in Athens, Georgia

Pip the Pansy at AthFest in Athens, Georgia

5 Can't-Miss Summer Music Festivals

It's hotter here. But so is the music! Georgia is where the festival season lasts year-round. From the heat of the night to the dog days of summer, music never sleeps in this state. So use these summer days to fill your odometer with miles of music festival experiences found throughout our regions.

Musicians at Historic Oakland Cemetery in Atlanta

Tunes from the Tombs, June

Historic Oakland Cemetery is home to some of Atlanta's most beloved native sons and daughters. Atlanta Mayor Maynard Jackson, author Margaret Mitchell and golfer Bobby Jones are just a few of the icons of our history that rest among the cobbled pathways of one of Georgia's most historic and well-kept cemeteries.

Each summer, Tunes from the Tombs gives attendees the chance to listen to some of Georgia's premiere acts, grab a beer and walk around this treasure that sits right in the heart of ever-changing and growing downtown Atlanta. Unlike many of Atlanta's daylong music events, this venue lends itself to a laid-back and respectful day. Take a blanket, children and some friends for this soulful afternoon and evening music event.

Music fans at AthFest in Athens, Georgia

AthFest, June

The three days of AthFest is a perfect homage of Athens progressive rock-and-roll past using music of the present and the future. The underlying cause AthFest supports – to bolster music and arts education in Athens area – is really the heart of the festival, and it shows throughout the weekend. There's a KidsFest, an arts festival and an artist showcase throughout the weekend while an eclectic collection of regional acts play it loud and proud for festival-goers.

Raccoon Creek Bluegrass Festival in Dallas, Georgia

Raccoon Creek Bluegrass Festival, July

Tucked away in Dallas, Georgia, is a music venue nearly half a century old and home to one of Georgia's best annual bluegrass festivals: the Raccoon Creek Bluegrass Festival. Over the course of two days, festival-goers will hear some of the region's most practiced, touring bluegrass and gospel acts on one stage. And what would a bluegrass festival be without barbecue? This long-standing bluegrass festival will leave you full of both locally grown and cooked 'que, plus plenty of live bluegrass and gospel harmonies keeping it close to nature at Raccoon Creek Music Park.

Georgia Mountain Fair in Hiawassee

Georgia Mountain Fair, July

The late governor and senator Zell Miller famously said that everything he ever did, he did on his way back to his beloved home, the quaint Choestoe Valley. This venue and signature summer music festival event is a testament to why North Georgia's most famous son felt that way about his home.

The Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds sit in the shadows of the beautiful foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Hiawassee. This midsummer, weeklong Georgia Mountain Fair is a perfect family getaway for those looking to escape the heat and those who are ready to discover Georgia's rich mountain music heritage.

Bragg Jam in Macon, Georgia

Bragg Jam, July

There is not a better way to experience the past, present and future of of Georgia's eclectic music heritage than Macon's citywide concert crawl and music festival, Bragg Jam. Named for a late pair of brothers who left their friends too soon, Bragg Jam is not only an homage to musicians but doubles as one of the city's largest and charitable events. Over the course of two days, 40+ major regional acts are scattered around Macon’s premiere venues, giving festival-goers the chance to not just see music, but to experience one of the South's most important music town's progressive past and present scenes.

Published: June 2019