Rebirth Brass Band, Asleep at the Wheel, Pokey LaFarge, Kathy Mattea, Ricky Skaggs and Jeff Tweedy are among the more than 70 acts playing this annual cross-genre festival of world-class music held at various venues throughout the oldest city in Georgia. Venues include Johnny Mercer Theater, Lucas Theatre of the Arts, the Savannah Cultural Arts Center and the Trustees' Garden. The nonprofit organization produces a music education curriculum, an annual high school jazz band competition, a mentorship program for acoustic musicians and a weekly radio series. March 28-April 13. Ticket prices and venues vary. Savannah. savannahmusicfestival.org.
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Adam Beyer, Afrojack, Alesso, the Chainsmokers, David Guetta, Maceo Plex and Zeds Dead are among the performers announced so far for this outdoor electronic music festival, but look for more lineup announcements soon. This year, the festival moves to a new location and introduces wristband tickets. March 29-31. $299-$1,499. Historic Virginia Key Beach Park & Miami Marine Stadium, Miami. ultramusicfestival.com.
Shovels & Rope are the organizers behind the new High Water Fest in Charleston, S.C. CONTRIBUTED BY LESLIE RYAN MCKELLAR
The Shovels & Rope duo, Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent, are behind this new music festival featuring 20 bands on two stages for two days. The lineup includes J. Roddy Walston & the Business, Preservation Jazz Hall Band, Leon Bridges, Jenny Lewis, Butch Walker and Shovels & Rope, naturally. VIP passes include free reserved parking; access to exclusive bars, viewing areas and dining options; plus complimentary oysters and hors d'oeuvres both days. The Low Tide Social is a special ticketed experience featuring a Lowcountry boil, oysters, cocktails and music by Shrimp Records Family Band. You can also learn about oyster farming and how to shuck oysters and participate in an oyster tasting class. April 13-14. $159-$424 weekend pass. Special events $50-$55. Riverfront Park, Charleston, South Carolina. highwaterfest.com.
Four-time Grammy winner Keb’ Mo’ will play at MerleFest in Wilkesboro, N.C. CONTRIBUTED BY AKILI-CASUNDRIA RAMSESS
Founded in 1988 to honor the memory of bluegrass guitarist Eddy Merle Watson, son of legendary musician Doc Watson, MerleFest has become one of the most prestigious Americana festivals in the country. The lineup includes Brandi Carlile, the Avett Brothers, Keb' Mo', Elizabeth Cook, Radney Foster and Webb Wilder. Check out the winning entry in the Chris Austin Songwriting Contest on the Cabin Stage Friday night. Other highlights include the Late Night Jam 10:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. Saturday in the Walker Center, special kids activities and entertainment, and The Shoppes at MerleFest, where vendors sell crafts and memorabilia. RV camping is permitted; no tents allowed. April 25-28. $50-$70. $160-$255 for three- and four-day passes. Wilkes Community College, Wilkesboro, North Carolina. merlefest.org.
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For three days, some of the country's top country, rock and roots acts will perform on multiple stages for the Tortuga Music Festival. Presented by the Rock the Ocean Foundation, a nonprofit organization devoted to raising awareness and funds for ocean conservation, the festival has already donated more than $1.2 million to the cause. This year's lineup includes Jason Aldean, Kenny Chesney, Thomas Rhett, Flo Rida, Sheryl Crow, Elle King and Joan Jett and the Blackhearts. Currently, single-day tickets are not available, and there's no parking on-site. April 12-14. $239-$1,100 for three-day passes. Seabreeze Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. tortugamusicfestival.com.
Pictured here at the 2018 New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Big Sam of Big Sam’s Funky Nation will perform at the festival again this year on May 2. AP PHOTO / GERALD HERBERT
New Orleans hosts the Big Kahuna of spring music festivals, presenting hundreds of acts at 12 stages and tents over the course of eight days spanning two weekends. One of the most musically diverse festivals in the country, it features acts playing jazz, blues, R&B, gospel, Cajun, zydeco, Afro-Caribbean, folk, Latin, rock, rap, country and bluegrass. The Congo Square African Marketplace is home to the artisan market where vendors sell various crafts and goods. And a slew of food vendors sell local delicacies such as po'boy and muffuletta sandwiches, beignets, jambalaya, oysters and more. Headliners this year include the Rolling Stones, Katy Perry, Van Morrison, Dave Matthews Band, Diana Ross, Jimmy Buffett, Pitbull, Santana and Chris Stapleton. April 25-May 5. $75-$85 a day. Fairground Race Course, New Orleans. nojazzfest.com.
What better way to kick off the season than a four-day music festival on the beach? There's no end to the fun at Hangout Fest, where music is only part of the attraction. Festivalgoers can also party at the Malibu Beach House, where DJs spin all day, hit the Roller Disco, get a massage at the Tropical Spa, ride a Ferris wheel and more. The lineup includes Travis Scott, the Lumineers, Cardi B, Diplo, Khalid, Vampire Weekend and the 1975. Children 17 and younger must be accompanied by an adult 21 or older. May 16-19. $279-$1,699 for three-day passes. $55 for the Thursday kickoff party. Gulf Shores, Alabama. hangoutmusicfest.com.