One of the most popular events at Universal Orlando is the annual Mardi Gras celebration, and a big part of that are the concerts by headlining acts of all genres.
Universal Orlando has just released the headliner concert line-up for this year’s Mardi Gras, which will run from February 7 to April 18, on Saturdays, as well as select Fridays and Sundays. There are still a few dates to be filled, but this year’s acts span the gamut from current hit chart-toppers to classic music acts.
Get ready to plan your visits to Universal’s Mardi Gras, because here is the list of headliners:
Yes, the annual Florida Strawberry Festival is known for its food – especially, as you would imagine, its strawberry dishes – but it’s also known for its nightly headlining entertainment.
This year, the festival runs February 28 through March 10, 2013. Most nights there are two separate concerts, but on a few nights, there are three. The headliners are mostly country, but there are some classic rock and gospel thrown into the mix.
Here is a rundown of who is playing this year:
February 28 – Foreigner ($25); Chubby Checker ($15/$20); Jimmy Sturr (Free)
March 01 – Casting Crowns ($20/$25); Gene Watson ($15/$20)
March 02 – Justin Moore ($15/$20); Gloriana ($15/$20); Caroline Kole (Free)
March 03 – Alan Jackson ($45); Randy Houser ($15/$20)
March 04 – Dwight Yoakam ($20/$25); Lorrie Morgan with Pam Tillis ($15/$20)
March 05 – Martina McBride ($30); Bobby Vinton ($15/$20)
March 06 – Trace Adkins ($30); Neil McCoy ($15/$20)
March 07 – Brantley Gilbert ($35); Mel Tillis ($15/$20); Steve Hall & The Shotgun Red Show (Free)
March 08 – Scotty McCreery ($25/$30); T.G. Sheppard with Janie Fricke ($15/$20)
March 09 – Bret Michaels ($25/$30); Gaither Vocal Band ($20/$25)
March 10 – Blake Shelton with Michaela Paige ($55); Hunter Hayes ($15/$20)
A lot of great music coming to Orlando in December. Here are our picks for the ones you should check out:
December 01 – Everclear with Eve 6 – The Social
Both Everclear and Eve 6 hit the charts in the late 90s and early 2000s. The former with songs like “Santa Monica” and “I Will Buy You a New Life.” The latter with songs like “Inside Out” and “Here’s to the Night.”
Tickets: $20 – $35
December 01 – Fuel with Filter and Lit – House of Blues
Fans of late 90s alt-rock will enjoy these three bands, all which had hits on the charts during that decade. Fuel hit the charts several times, most notably with “Hemorrhage (In My Hands).” Filter rocked the charts with “Hey Man, Nice Shot,” and Lit also had several hits including “My Own Worst Enemy.”
December 02 – Richard Marx – Plaza Live
In the late 80s and early 90s, Richard Marx was king of the pop power ballad. He has had 13 of his songs hit #1 on the charts and he’s sure to play all of them and more during this show.
December 04 – Metalocalypse: Dethklok – House of Blues
Another of the WJRR “Blizzard of Rock Series,” this show features the fictional band from the Cartoon Network animated series. Think of this as Spinal Tap for the death metal crowd.
A lot of great music coming to Orlando in August. Here are our picks for the ones you should check out:
August 03 –Rod Stewart and Stevie Nicks – Amway Center
Stewart’s career has spanned five decades and Nicks’ career has spanned four. Stewart has sung many classics from “Maggie May” to the standards he’s covered in recent years. Nicks has had an amazing career both as a member of Fleetwood Mac and as a solo artist. Between the two, there are so many hits, you won’t go away disappointed.
August 05 – GIGANT3S feat. Chayanne, Marco Antonio Solis & Marc Anthony – Amway Center
Marc Anthony, Marco Antonio Solis, and Chayanne are three of the biggest names in Latin music, and they’re bringing their hits to Orlando in the middle of a 14-city tour. If you like Latin pop, this is a must-see tour.
August 05 – Ted Nugent – House of Blues
As a solo artist and a member of 80s supergroup Damn Yankees, Nugent has recorded numerous hits in the last four decades. He’s one of the most popular rock guitarists alive and if you go, bring earplugs, because he likes to play extremely loud.
August 07 –Lindsey Buckingham – Plaza Live
Though best known as a member of Fleetwood Mac, Lindsey Buckingham has had several solo hits, as well. This show is nearly sold out, so don’t wait to get your tickets.
August 08 – Aaron Neville – Plaza Live
Aaron Nevile has been performing since the early 60’s, and his latest CD finds him returning to his gospel roots. Neville has one of the most distinctive voices to come out of New Orleans. Opening will be Beth McKee.
August 11 – Less Than Jake – The Beacham
Gainesville natives Less Than Jake are bringing their 20th Anniversary tour to The Beacham downtown. Opening this all ages rock show are Whole Wheat Bread, The Attack, and You Blew It!
August 17 – Brian Culbertson & David Sanborn – Plaza Live
Brian Culbertson is a multi-instrumentalist who likes the funky side of jazz. David Sanborn is one of the best saxophonists and has won six Grammy Awards over his almost 40 year career. A great night of jazz is to be had at this show.
August 17 – Steve Vai – House of Blues
A master of the guitar, Vai has pushed the boundaries of the instrument for almost 30 years. He plays the fine line between technical ability and emotional playing with ease. If you love guitar, this is a show not to miss.
August 28 – Big Time Rush – Amway Center
If you have a teen girl who watches Nickelodeon, chances are she’s a fan of BTR. The quartet is huge with teens and kids, and tickets are very pocket friendly priced. Australian pop star Cody Simpson will open the show.
August 28 – Kenny Wayne Shepherd – House of Blues
He met Stevie Ray Vaughan when he was seven, and ever since, Kenny Wayne Shepherd has been one of the best blues rock guitarists of his generation. He can go from traditional blues to more melodic rock without missing a beat.
Every year, one of the biggest events in Orlando is the Mardi Gras celebration at Universal Orlando, and part of that is due to the concerts that take place.
This week, the theme park revealed the concert line-up for its 2012 festivities. They take place every Saturday, with the occcasional Friday and Sunday, and start out with a huge Mardi Gras parade followed by a concert from a big name headliner.
Here is the just released list of shows:
Feb. 11 – The B-52’s
Feb. 18 – Kelly Clarkson
Feb. 19 – Boyz II Men
Feb. 25 – Diana Ross
March 3 – Goo Goo Dolls
March 10 – Big Time Rush
March 16 – J Cole
March 17 – Sugar Ray
March 23 – Hot Chelle Rae
March 24 – B.o.B.
March 30 – Plain White T’s
March 31 – Prince Royce
April 7 – Cyndi Lauper
April 14 – KC & The Sunshine Band
I am disappointed that there aren’t any classic rock or country acts this year. There are plenty of contemporary acts this year, so I expect to see a younger crowd at most of the shows.
Admission is included in regular park admission for the day, and there is also an “After 5” discounted pass for those who just want to do Mardi Gras (though if you want to do any of the rides, you really do get a better deal paying for the whole day and doing the rides during the day and the Mardi Gras celebrations at night).
Following each night’s Mardi Gras festivities, you can use your park admission as a complimentary CityWalk Party Pass to access the clubs.
So you do you see any headliners that you’re excited about on this list? Let us know in comments.
The first time I heard of Ryan Star, he was a contestant on the reality music competition TV show, Rock Star: Supernova. He didn’t make the cut, but the exposure was enough to get him a record contract anyways.
The four-song Last Train Home EP was released on Atlantic Records in June 2009. A little over a year later, the label released the full-length 11:59.
The first single, “Breathe,” featured a video full of real out-of-work people. A companion website, breathe4jobs.com, was established by Star to help employers contact those people and one of the video’s unemployed actually did find a job.
Currently on tour with the Goo Goo Dolls, Star is using a day off to come play in Orlando. He’ll be appearing at the Plaza Live this Friday, November 4. with opening act Leaving Haven.
Tickets are $15 at the door.
If you’d like a taste of Ryan Star before the show, here is his video for “Breathe.”
A few weeks ago, I found out via Kelly Fitzpatrick that the Tabu was being reverted back to The Beacham Theater, in a new partnership involving the folks from next door’s The Social.
Well, this partnership seems to be paying off, with a new show booked for The Beacham in March.
In the early-90s, an Irish-styled American hip hop trio by the name of House of Pain had a huge hit with “Jump Around.” After a few albums, lead rapper Everlast split from DJ Lethal and Danny Boy to do his own solo thing.
This year, the trio has decided to reunite, and their 20th Anniversary tour will be making a stop at The Beacham on March 31, 2011. Tickets are $20/$25 and go on sale this Friday, January 28 at 10am.