Dayton Music Insider: The Dayton Blues Festival

Don’t let superstition keep ya at home this weekend! This Friday the 13th is full of fun events, including free music downtown on the river, an exciting album release party, and metal shows to melt faces.

>>The best places to enjoy live local music in Dayton

Saturday doesn’t disappoint either with unique events like the Fancy Fest Pre-Party, The Gem City Get Down and C Wright’s Parlour Tricks opening for Rocky Horror Picture show. Keep reading to get the details!

Friday July 13, 2018

Kick-n-Flava will take the stage at Riverscape Metro Park on Friday the 13th for the R&B Hot Summer Music Series.CONTRIBUTED (HANDOUT)

If you’re looking for an outdoor and family friendly live music event this weekend, consider the R&B Hot Summer Music Series at Riverscape Metro ParkKick-n-Flava will take the stage along the river, where you can watch the sunset. Always a lovely way to enjoy an early evening, or a jump start to a perfect date night! Weather Dependent. Free show. All ages. Performance from 7:30-9:30pm.

Is your night still going? You can keep that Riverscape spirit at the Trolley Stop. You’ll get that outdoor vibe on the patio, and inside, enjoy piano-driven tunes from Dayton band The Pullouts. Their music is steeped in the musical influences of the 60's & 70's, but delivered with a modern feel. Show 9:30pm. $5 cover. 21+

>>MORE: Killer patio, killer happy hour among the list of reasons to visit The Trolley Stop

For the music aficionados in the area, check out up-and-coming Cincinnati experimental rock band Us, Today on Friday night. They’re here to celebrate their new album release "Computant" with support from Dayton bands GoodnightGoodnight and Oh Condor. Jim Fusilli of The Washington Post hails "Us, Today's virtuosity and vigorous arrangements warrant a much larger audience, preferably as quickly as possible." Doors open at 8pm and tickets are $7 in advance or $10 at the doors.Doors at 8pm, Music at 9pm NOTE: Presale Tickets end on Thursday, July 12 at 11:30pm. 

Looking for harder rock? The Mound Builders from Lafayette, Indiana perform originals that are rooted in heavy metal, hardcore, stoner rock, and punk. Local bands  Stonecross and The Gringo kick off this high energy party at Blind Bob’s on Friday night. Doors 9pm. $5 cover. 21+ 

>>RELATED: Digging Dayton-area dive bars: Oscar's Bar & Grill

More of a metal fan? The Friday The 13th Metal Massacre With A Stench Of Punk is happening at Oscar's in Vandalia. The line up includes regional rockers OmeniDark Soul, and Stench King, plus two additional acts to be announced! 7pm - 2am. $5 cover. 

Jam band fans in Yellow Springs, I’d check out Rubix Wheel (Columbus) and Krunk Town Boogie at Peach’s Grill. Rubix is a new act on my radar, and KTB is definitely one to put ya in a good mood! 10pm. 

Saturday July 14, 2018

A truly unique event is happening on Saturday afternoon. So unique that tickets could be sold out, so definitely check before you go! Longtime Muddy Waters guitarist, Bob Margolin will be performing a small intimate show “IN THE ROUND” at McCutcheon Music on 38 Marco Lane in Centerville. He performed many memorable shows, including The Band’s The Last Waltz. Local hosts The Joe Tellmann Band, perform with Doug Hart, Johnny Fink, Jim McCutcheon, 10 year old Moses Mabarak and Chris Yakopcic. Tickets $10 (check with McCutcheon on availability). Show from 4-6pm. 

Classic rock fans, Australia’s Air Supply stops in town on tour with special guest and Dayton’s own Blues virtuoso Noah Wootherspoon at Rose Music Center. All patrons who purchase a ticket to Air Supply will be treated to a Pre-Show Wine Tasting included with the price of each ticket. Pre-Show Tastings begin 90 minutes prior to the show and end 15 minutes before the concert begins. Doors 6:30pm. Show 8pm. Tickets start at $23.50 and up (includes parking, applicable to day of show increase and fees).

 >>RELATED: 6 great places to eat near the Rose Music Center

Yellow Cab Tavern once again hosts a super fun show on Saturday night! They’re hosting the Fancy Fest Pre-Party to show off what this festival is all about. Enjoy performances from Sharon Lane, Willy Clark, Grateful Dead tribute act Arrows of Neon, and Captain Contagious & The Burning Sensations - a rag tag group of musicians jamming out some classic tunes. Vendors will also be on sight, including Spark Art, Blank Expressions, Cacky's Cakery and Flyby BBQ. Doors at 6pm, music at 8pm. $5 cover.. A very limited number of pre-sale tickets for Fancy Fest will be available at the show on Saturday. These will be offered at the 'blind faith' price of $35.00, cash only.

The Gem City Get Down hip hop event is back this weekend with Trunk Bound Regime, DJ Domestic Bliss, and MC Picket Fence. This Get Down switches things up, and moves the festivities to the newly opened Encore Studio in East Dayton’s Arts District. $3 at the door. All proceeds go to 18+ (for the first time in years!) 9pm - 1:30am. 

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Alternative rock fan? You’ll be interested in the Rogue SatellitesGrenades?!, and Forage show at Blind Bob’s on Saturday night. Rogue Satellites is in town from Detroit, here to delight you with tunes from their newest record, “Black Wings.” Will be a fun night! Get there early. Doors 9pm. $5 cover. 21+ 

If you’ve never experienced a live Rocky Horror Picture Show, you’re really missing out on one uniquely entertaining evening! What makes Reel Late at the Vic’s presentation of this cult classic even more fun is C. Wright’s Parlour Tricks performing before the show! YAS! Let's do the time warp again! Survival kits will be available for purchase in the lobby. Tickets are $6 (music & movie). Lobby doors open at 9:30pm. Music at 10pm. Show at 10:30pm. More information here

>>MORE: 14 cool and classic films you have to see at the Victoria this summer

R&B chart topper Bobby V, known for his smooth vocals and romantic lyrics, is in town performing at Oddbody’s on Saturday night. Bobby V, a.k.a. Bobby Wilson, grew up in Atlanta on a steady diet of Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, and the Isley Brothers. His debut debut album “Bobby Valentino” peaked at No. 1 on the R&B charts and scored him his first chart-topping single with "Slow Down". Two more chart-topping albums followed in the decade. Since then he's remained a regular chart presence with collaborations with Twista, Lil Wayne, and Playaz Circle. Show at 10pm. $25 tickets. 18+

Oscar's Bar serves up another hard hitting night of rock’n’roll with music starting early at 8:00pm - 454 Acoustic, 9:30pm - Sever the Ties, 10:45pm - TheGringo, and 12:00am - Seven Stone Sacrifice. Doors at 7:30pm. $5 cover. 18 & up.

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If you’re out in Yellow Springs on a sunny Saturday, stay late for the Nasty Bingo and The Boxcar Suite show at Peach’s Grill. These are two excellent bands that do the local area proud! Straight up rock’n’roll that is fun to dance to. Who could ask for more? Have fun boogin with this seriously cool crew! 10pm. No cover. 21+


Sunday July 15, 2018

The Sonny Moorman Group performs for the large audience of music fans during Michelob Dayton Blues Festival at Dave Hall Plaza in downtown Dayton. (Teesha McClam/Dayton Daily News)

Enjoy some of the best blues bands this side of the Mississippi at The Dayton Blues Festival at Riverscape Metro Park on Sunday. This free event is presented by the City of Dayton as part of their 2018 Downtown Summer Music Series. The day of music includes seven bands, food, beer, and merchandise vendors. Blankets and lawn chairs welcome. Sorry, no tents, coolers, pets, grills, outside food and/or beverages allowed on festival grounds. Free water is provided. Call 333-8400 for more details. Weather Dependent. All ages. Free.

Patti LaBelle “The Godmother of Soul” stops at Rose Music Center in Huber Heights, OH for a hit-filled evening ofclassic rhythm and blues renditions, pop standards and spiritual sonnets. Doors 6pm. Show 7pm. Tickets start at $23.50 and up (includes parking, applicable to day of show increase and fees).

 >>Patti LaBelle is coming to Dayton this summer -- here’s how to see her

Special Notes to Talent / Venues: If you’re wondering why your show may or may not have been listed in my blog, please note that you are more likely to get included if I am able to find information about your event. I check lots of links and venue calendars, but those are updated to varying degrees, and not always in time for my deadline. 


If you want to make it easy for me to find your show, please invite me to your FB event, or send an email to: 1-2 weeks before the event. I prefer not to get lots of FB private messages, as I don’t always receive those messages at helpful times or in places where I can make note of them. When listing events or sending emails, please include the start time of the show, the cost (even if free), and ages allowed. I really love it when you include hyperlinks and info about the bands. Doing these simple things definitely helps your odds of being listed here. Thanks in advance!

As always, thank you for supporting live music! 


Your Dayton Music Insider, 

Libby Ballengee

Blogger, podcaster, journalist and huge local music fan Libby Ballengee has started her own production company, Venus Child Productions, as a vehicle to attract local and national acts to the Dayton area and add performance art to concerts for a unique music experience. (Source: Libby Ballengee Facebook, Contributed)

Note to Readers: Click hyperlinks to find out more about the bands, venues, and events, including start times, directions, and ticket information. This is a listing of interesting original live music in the Miami Valley region, but is by no means definitive. Want your show to be considered in future blogs? Send an email to at least 2 weeks before your show to: You can keep up with my live music adventures on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Thanks for reading and enjoy the show! 

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