Mar. 4—After a sold-out show last summer, ZZ Top will return to Jacksonville for another rock show under the stars, and kick off the Britt Music and Arts Festival's first full season since 2019.
"That Little Ol' Band From Texas" will kick off Britt's 60th anniversary season June 5. The show is among 10 performances unveiled by the festival, including returning festival act Michael Franti & Spearhead,
Others coming to Britt this summer include electric blues band Blues Traveler, jazzy pop singer-songwriter Norah Jones, Los Angeles-based modern folk alt rockers Mt. Joy, Americana string band Old Crow Medicine Show, Queen tribute band One Night of Queen, and a night of reggae with Rebelution's Good Vibes Summer Tour.
It's only the beginning of what's in store for local concertgoers, according to Britt Marketing Director Mike Gantenbein. The full season — which typically involves roughly 30 shows in addition to Britt's Orchestra performances — will be released April 7 during the nonprofit's annual season announcement party.
Last year was a partial season for Britt with 15 shows.
"We think there's a lot of pent-up demand to get out and see concerts, and we have the perfect venue for it," Gantenbein said.
Ticket sales can be hard to predict, Gantenbein said, but he's expecting sold-out crowds for many of the shows. Gantenbein said ZZ Top was a strong seller last year with patrons and members, and reserved seating tickets nearly sold out before they went on sale to the public.
Other Britt performances expected to draw sold-out crowds include the Rebelution show, Norah Jones and Michael Franti.
Britt currently has a vaccination and testing policy in place similar to the one implemented last year, along with recommendations for masking, but Gantenbein said those polices could change before the season starts.
The pandemic has been difficult to predict, but Gantenbein said the board will review the policy between now and the concert season.
More shows are still being scheduled, but Gantenbein is anticipating an "outstanding lineup." He described Britt's booking process as a "complicated puzzle."
"We get recommendations all the time — and we do listen to them," Gantenbein said.
Among other considerations, Britt checks what artists will be on tour, and if that tour has openings on the West Coast during the festival season.
"Of course, price comes into play," Gantenbein said.
With a maximum capacity of 2,200 people, Britt doesn't typically attract acts looking to fill arenas, but Gantenbein said many larger artists enjoy Britt's intimate environment.
"Sometimes they'll make a point of returning, like Michael Franti," Gantenbein said.
Tickets go on sale for the general public at 10 a.m. March 25, and the nonprofit offers presale tickets to its donor and patron members.
For more information, see brittfest.org.
The preliminary lineup announced Friday includes:
June 5: ZZ Top
June 22: Norah Jones
July 12: Happy Together Tour 2022
July 16: Old Crow Medicine Show
July 22: One Night of Queen starring Gary Mullen and the Works
July 24: Michael Franti & Spearhead
Aug. 8: Mt. Joy
Aug. 17: Collective Soul + Switchfoot
Aug. 28: Rebelution's Good Vibes Summer Tour 2022
Sept. 8: Blues Traveler
Reach web editor Nick Morgan at 541-776-4471 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @MTwebeditor.