Music in Florida
From blues to jazz to country to metal, Florida music is as eclectic as it is full of heart and soul. There’s something inspiring about the sea breezes, the summer storms, the colorful sunsets and the carefree attitudes among Floridians and it shines through in both the music and artwork that comes out of the Sunshine State.
Indeed, music in Florida is much, much more than whimsical Jimmy Buffett tunes about life in Key West and swampy bluegrass bands – although those genres and musicians certainly earned their merit.
Over the years, artists, singers, rappers and musical maestros have either come from Florida, made Florida their home or toured extensively in Florida, attracted to the passionate fans, plentiful outdoor concert venues and stopovers at lovely cities near the state’s pretty beaches, campsites, college campuses and other hotspots.
Fans can enjoy Florida music in festivals throughout various parts of the state, often in areas that offer campgrounds and other amenities for overnight guests.
The multi-day Orange Blossom Jamboree, for example, is a held on a gorgeous piece of land in Brooksville, far from the hustle and bustle of city life so that patrons can relax and enjoy a long weekend of Florida funk and jam bands while making new friends and discovering new favorite musicians.
The state is host to several homegrown blues festivals every year along with the well as some hot-ticket fests filled with national acts.
The Vans Warped Tour, which makes various stops throughout the state, is popular among teens and young adults for its lineup of alternative and hardcore bands.
Fort Lauderdale’s Tortuga Music Festival raises awareness for marine conservation while often selling out by drawing some of country music’s biggest stars.
And Jacksonville’s Rockville Festival is a metal head’s dream offering a massive two-day lineup of heavy rock bands ranging from the popular to the obscure.
Miami is host to a number of hip hop, Latin dance and rap festivals that draw hundreds of thousands to south Florida each year.
Music aficionados craving a more intimate concert experience can hit some of the smaller live music venues known for drawing national touring acts that prefer the smaller stages. Gainesville, Tallahassee, downtown Orlando, Tampa’s Ybor City and other areas often draw some of the best alternative rock, blues and alt-country bands from around the country.
But for a true Florida music experience, check out local bands headlining at the smaller bars and cafes.