With concert season on our minds, the State Fair of Texas has released its 2016 concert lineup with Nelly and Kacey Musgraves leading a pack of musical acts delivering 24 days of free concerts.
Well, free if you're at the fair. A variety of musical acts across all genres will perform on the fair's Chevrolet Main Stage, which is included with admission to the State Fair.
Country music star Kacey Musgraves will kick off the concert series on opening night, September 30, at 8:30 pm. The East Texas native caught her big break after competing on the hit TV show Nashville Star in 2007, before moving on to co-write songs with major country artists like Miranda Lambert and Martina McBride.
Opening weekend will conclude on October 2 with back-to-back headlining performances. Taking the stage at 3 pm, the Chris Perez Project blends American rock with Hispanic heritage. The former husband and lead guitarist for Tejano legend Selena, Chris Perez has performed with many different musical groups throughout the years, including the Chris Perez Band, which won a 1999 Grammy Award for Best Latin Rock/Alternative Album.
The Tejano sounds continue at 5:30 pm with AB Quintanilla y los Kumbia King All Starz. The older brother of Selena, AB Quintanilla has co-written songs and performed with his sister in their band Los Dinos, as well as founding several bands of his own. He's won a Latin Grammy Award and a Billboard Latin Music Award, and has been nominated for American Music Awards and Grammy Awards.
Kicking off Red River Showdown weekend, Prophets and Outlaws take the stage on October 7 with shows at 5:30 and 8:30 pm. Formed in Dallas, this country-Southern rock band released its latest album, V, in 2016 and is currently touring Texas and Oklahoma.
Country singer Cody Johnson performs on October 8 at 8:30 pm. In 2011, he won the Texas Regional Music Award for New Male Vocalist of the Year. His Cowboy Like Me album debuted in the top 10 on the Billboard Country Albums chart, and his sixth album, Gotta Be Me, will come out in summer 2016.
Bobby Bones and the Raging Idiots Concert Spectacular performs on October 9 at 3 pm. This musical comedy group uses its combination of humor and music to help communities in need, raising more than $2 million for various charities through its performances. Bobby Bones has a nationally syndicated weekday radio show, and a new book, Bare Bones.
Nashville-based singer/songwriter Ben Rector headlines the Columbus Day concert on October 10 at 5:30 pm. A 2006 winner of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, Rector has released seven albums, including his most recent album, Brand New, in 2015.
Austin blues band The Peterson Brothers perform on October 14 at 5:30 and 8:30 pm. Despite their young ages of 17 and 19, Alex and Glenn Peterson have already had the opportunity to share the stage with true music legends such as Pinetop Perkins, Willie Nelson, Los Lonely Boys, Buddy Guy, and the late B.B. King.
Two-time Grammy Award winner Nelly will perform on October 15 at 8:30 pm. The rapper's hit singles include "Ride Wit Me," "Dilemma," "Hot in Herre," and "Work It." He currently stars in his own reality TV show on BET called Nellyville, which follows him through everyday life, from managing his career to spending time with his family.
Disco band Le Freak will perform on October 16 at 3 and 5:30 pm. Fully outfitted in retro gear to go along with their disco-era performance, Le Freak adds new energy to songs of the past.
Americana trio The Quebe Sisters perform on October 21 at 5:30 and 8:30 pm. Burleson sisters Hulda, Sophia, and Grace Quebe have developed their own blend of Western swing, classic country, and Texas-style fiddling. The Quebe Sisters have released three albums to date and are currently touring across the country.
Christian rock singer Colton Dixon performs on October 22 at 6 pm. The Tennessee native was a contestant on Season 11 of American Idoland debuted his albumbA Messenger in 2013, which became the No. 1 selling album that year by a new Christian artist.
Grammy nominee Skillet performs on October 22 at 8:30 pm. Described as Christian hard rock with alternative and metal elements, the Memphis band will release its ninth album this summer.
The concert series concludes on October 23 with a 3 pm headlining performance by Dallas band La Energía Norteña. Their third album, Cruzando Territorio, was nominated for a Latin Grammy for Best Norteño Album. Known for playing Mexican regional music that incorporates the accordion and saxophone, the all-male group stays true to its roots while maintaining a fresh musical style.
In addition to the Chevrolet Main Stage, the State Fair will offer daily live music performances on multiple stages throughout the grounds. That includes the Budweiser Sound Stage centrally located in Cotton Bowl Plaza, with local and regional acts such as Coffey Anderson, the Tejas Brothers, and Chubby Carrier & the Bayou Swamp Band.
Nestled in the heart of the Midway, the Coca-Cola Stage is perfect for staking out a spot at the picnic benches and relaxing in the shade while enjoying a family-friendly musical performance. With an all-new musical act for 2016, the Coca-Cola Stage will host the Honey Bears, who will perform daily throughout the run of the Fair.
On Nimitz Circle, next to the Creative Arts building, is the Dr Pepper Stage, offering an eclectic mix of musical talent and a quaint grassy area to relax with friends and family. The 2016 lineup will feature The Killdares, Six Appeal, and the Light Crust Doughboys.
The 2016 State Fair of Texas is themed "Celebrating Texas Agriculture" and runs from September 30 through October 23.