14 top outdoor concerts coming to Charlotte

Lana Del Rey performs at the PNC Music Pavilion on June 13.
Lana Del Rey performs at the PNC Music Pavilion on June 13. AP

Tired of being cooped up inside, huddled around your iPhone and listening to Spotify?

You’re in luck: Outdoor concert season is here. And we’ve done you the courtesy of picking out the most intriguing/exciting/appealing shows headed to Charlotte’s two big outdoor concert venues over the next several months.

Mark your calendars …

Must-see shows

1. Fall Out Boy and Wiz Khalifa

When: July 19.

Where: PNC Music Pavilion.

Why: One of the year’s hottest rock bands teams with one of the year’s hottest hip-hoppers for a headlining mash-up that will feature anthems that are designed to light ’em up (Fall Out Boy’s “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark”) and anthems that are designed to put a lump in your throat (“See You Again” – “Furious 7’s” love letter to its late star Paul Walker, with raps by Khalifa).

2. Florida Georgia Line

When: Aug. 14.

Where: PNC Music Pavilion.

Why: As they proved two years ago by collaborating with rapper Nelly on a smash-hit remix of its single, “Cruise,” the pop-friendly country duo doesn’t play by any of Nashville’s old rules. Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley also put on a deliriously raucous live show that goes really well with $10 beers.

3. Hozier

When: June 17.

Where: Uptown Amphitheatre.

Why: This show represents a second chance for fans who weren’t fast or alert enough to score tickets to the Irish musician’s sold-out concert at The Fillmore in March. And if you did catch that show, you know his powerful pipes are good for a lot more than just singing “Take Me to Church.”

4. Nicki Minaj

When: Aug. 4.

Where: PNC Music Pavilion.

Why: The “Anaconda” rapper famous for her candy-floss wigs and booty-shaking beats returns to the Charlotte area for the first time since getting into a dust-up with fellow “American Idol” judge Mariah Carey during auditions at Charlotte Motor Speedway in 2013. Pro tip: Don’t wear any type of outfit that might clash with pink.

5. Jason Aldean

When: Sept. 4.

Where: PNC Music Pavilion.

Why: The country singer has a hot album (“Old Boots, New Dirt”), a hot new video (for “Tonight Looks Good on You”) and a hot new wife: former Charlotte Bobcats cheerleader Brittany Kerr, who he married in Mexico this year.

6. Lana Del Rey

When: June 13.

Where: PNC Music Pavilion.

Why: She turns 30 a week after her first Charlotte show, so this is a chance to celebrate with the polarizing and complicated (but seriously talented) singer-songwriter – and to find out whether her live showmanship has improved since her curiously awful “Saturday Night Live” performance in 2012.

7. Zedd

When: Oct. 13

Where: Uptown Amphitheatre.

Why: EDM (that’d be electronic dance music, for the uninitiated) doesn’t get a whole lot of play in Charlotte, so the 25-year-old Russian-German DJ/producer’s show here is something of a coup. He has worked with pop stars including Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande. Or, to put it another way, they’ve worked with him.

Best of the rest

Brad Paisley, Sunday at PNC: Yeah, the country megastar comes here every year. But it’s the first big outdoor show of the year, so who can blame us for getting a little excited?

Train, June 9 at PNC: We love Pat Monahan’s band, even if we still have no idea what a drop of Jupiter is.

Kid Rock, July 14 at PNC: Versatile performer again only wants $20 for seats to his shows, and it’s only right to look out for a guy who looks out for his fans.

J. Cole and Big Sean, Aug. 12 at PNC: Two of rap’s heaviest hitters, one of whom hails from Fayetteville (J. Cole).

Rick Springfield, Sept. 5 at Uptown: Seeing/hearing the rocker perform “Jessie’s Girl” live has been on our bucket list for more than three decades.

5 Seconds of Summer, Sept. 9 at PNC: Australian boy band gets the stage all to itself after being warm-up act for One Direction last fall.

Van Halen, Sept. 11 at PNC: Third time in Charlotte since David Lee Roth rejoined the rock band in 2006, but first time playing outside under the stars.

Janes: 704-358-5897;

Twitter: @theodenjanes


PNC Music Pavilion: 707 Pavilion Blvd. (in northeast Charlotte just north of Interstate 485). 19,500-person capacity.

Uptown Amphitheatre: 820 Hamilton St. (at the N.C. Music Factory). 5,000-person capacity.

Tickets and info: 704-549-5555; www.livenation.com.