Music festivals in and near Portland

From blues and jazz to folk and indie pop, the Rose City has plenty to offer any music lover.

FatherJohnMisty1_MFNW2017_CatalinaGaitan (1)Father John Misty performing at Waterfront Park in 2017.
Catalina Gaitan

Looking for a tuneful way to enjoy your time in Portland? Get your tickets now for these exciting annual celebrations, and browse our events calendar for additional concerts and performances all year round.

Winter & Spring

Chamber Music Northwest Winter Festival – January

Portland’s premier chamber music organization kicks off the year with a week of performances by some of the world’s best classical ensembles.

Portland Old-Time Music Gathering – January

A dedicated group of volunteers show their love for traditional Appalachian-style string music by hosting this grassroots festival at the Tiffany Center every Martin Luther King Jr. Day Weekend.

Reel Music Festival – January

One part concert series, one part film festival, the Northwest Film Center’s annual Reel Music Festival pairs archival concert footage and biopics of famous musicians with live performances by a wide variety of musical artists.

Portland Jazz Festival – February

Celebrate Black History Month with a series of concerts (including several free events) by internationally recognized jazz masters and talented local musicians alike.

Soul’d Out Music Festival – April

This soulful spring festival comprises dozens of genre-spanning performances at venues across the city. Past headliners have included blues singer Bonnie Raitt, jazz-funk musician Trombone Shorty and rapper Ghostface Killah.

Summer

Chamber Music Northwest Summer Festival – June

The big sister of CMNW’s winter festival, this five-week concert series fills venues across the city with Grammy-winning quartets, world-class pianists, open rehearsals and opportunities to meet composers over a cup of coffee.

Quiet Music Festival – June

You may have seen this quirky festival parodied on Portlandia, but we can assure you: This annual Disjecta event is very real. Best of all, napping is encouraged!

Waterfront Blues Festival – July

Every Fourth of July weekend since 1987, downtown Portland’s waterfront hosts the country’s second-largest blues festival, featuring midnight blues cruises and headliners like Mavis Staples, Robert Plant and Steve Miller Band.

Cathedral Park Jazz Fest – July

The largest and oldest free jazz festival west of the Mississippi River, this annual event fills Cathedral Park with three days of world-class jazz, soul, blues and R&B acts beneath the St. Johns Bridge — no admission required.

Harefest – July

Billed as the Northwest’s most nostalgic music festival, this adults-only gathering in nearby Canby features  performances by the region’s best tribute bands. Visitors can expect imitations of Metallica, Heart, Journey and Bon Jovi, to name a few.

PDX Pop Now – July

Discover some of the city’s best up-and-coming artists at this free showcase beneath the Hawthorne Bridge. In addition to food carts, a record fair and performances by dozens of local musicians, visitors can watch rounds of “Rigsketball,” a 3-on-3 basketball tournament played by 32 Portland bands.

Northwest String Summit – July

Located 25 miles (40 km) west of downtown Portland, Horning’s Hideout hosts this gathering of bluegrass bands and acoustic pickers. It’s best to buy your tickets early, as the intimate festival is capped at 5,000 attendees.

Pickathon Music Festival – August

Travel half an hour southeast of Portland to pastoral Pendarvis Farm for three days of independent music and zero-waste camping, led by folk and indie headliners like Andrew Bird, Beach House and Jeff Tweedy.

The William Byrd Festival – August

Founded in 1998, this annual event explores the life and work of beloved early English composer William Byrd with a series of concerts, lectures and liturgical services.

Montavilla Jazz Festival – August

Head to the Montavilla neighborhood in Southeast Portland to enjoy a weekend of original progressive jazz works composed and performed by skilled Portlanders.

Autumn

Jim Pepper Native Arts Festival – September

This free, family-friendly community concert celebrates the life of late saxophonist and composer Jim Pepper, a Portlander of Kaw/Creek heritage whose 1969 song “Witchi Tai To” is the only song based on a Native American chant to break into the Billboard pop charts.

Further Afield

Sasquatch Music Festival – May

Every Memorial Day weekend, thousands of Portlanders make the four-hour pilgrimage to Washington’s scenic Gorge Amphitheatre for four free-spirited days packed with the hottest names in music and comedy. (Think of it like the Coachella of the Pacific Northwest.)

What the Festival – June

Featuring thousands of revelers, hundreds of DJs, EDM artists and a skating rink-sized wading pool, this “summer camp for adults” takes place two hours east of Portland in Dufur, Oregon. The festival’s organizers decided to take 2018 off and WTF will return in 2019.

Oregon Country Fair – July

Travel two hours south of Portland to verdant Ventura to join Oregon’s preeminent counter-cultural celebration, packed with 45,000 attendees, nearly 1,000 booths and dozens of dance, music and circus performances.

Oregon Jamboree – August

Catch concerts by the likes of Carrie Underwood, Toby Keith and Tim McGraw at the Pacific Northwest’s premier country music festival, staged in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains 100 miles (161 km) south of Portland.


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