Get To Know The Riverfest Concert Headliners
Now that the music lineup for the 2019 Riverfest has been announced, you might be unfamiliar with one or more of the names on the list. It’s another awesome lineup this year, let’s take a closer look at the headline acts who will be performing on the Kennedy Plaza Stage (north of Century II) and the Redguard Stage (south of Century II).
This Year's Headliners include: Sublime with Rome, The Toadies, Talib Kweli, Trombone Shorty, La Furia del Bravo, Los Lobos, Yolanda Adams, and More!
Friday, May 31st: Twilight Pops, The Toadies
Saturday, June 1: Los Lobos, La Furia del Bravo
Sunday, June 2: River Blues, TBD
Monday, June 3: Gospelfest - Yolanda Adams, Heavy Metal Karaoke
Tuesday, June 4: Festival of Broadway, Military Salute
Wednesday, June 5: Talib Kweli, TBD
Thursday, June 6: Trombone Shorty & New Orleans Avenue
Friday, June 7: Gogol Bordello, Chroma Paint Party
Saturday, June 8: El Morro Y Su Reunion, Sublime with Rome
For all Riverfest 2019 concerts, dates, showtimes and locations check out our Riverfest Event Calendar
Check out this YouTube Playlist we put together of this year's headliners!
Redguard Stage: Toadies - May 31st
Ft. Worth, Texas rock quartet Toadies returns to Wichita for this year’s festival not long after playing a successful inaugural show at Wave last summer. Best-known for their 1994 album Rubberneck containing the smash hit “Possum Kingdom,” the band had struggled to release a follow-up due to record label disputes and broke up seven years later. But after a reunion show in 2006 rejuvenated the band, they began making albums and touring again and haven’t looked back.
In a Sentence: If you grew up in the 90’s listening to T-95, you know more of this great Texas rock band’s songs than you think.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Twilight Pops with The Wichita Symphony Orchestra May 31st
An annual favorite, the Twilight Pops concert featuring The Wichita Symphony Orchestra will take place in Kennedy Plaza. Last year the event had to be moved indoors due to the heat, but with any luck this year we’ll get to hear Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture and the cannons from the 1st Battalion, 161st Field Artillery Regiment outdoors as intended.
In a Sentence: Bring your lawn chairs, cozy up to your neighbors and relax under the stars as Riverfest puts on one of Wichita’s biggest family-friendly shows of the year.
Redguard Stage: La Furia del Bravo - June 1st
The self-styled “Norteño Sax Moderno” Denver-based quintet has been gaining lots of momentum in both Mexico and the United States since 2010 with their label releases Renovando el Estilo in 2012, Con Mas Furia in 2014, X Qué para K in 2016 and Y A Poco No in 2018. “Furia,” or fury, refers to the passion that its members have to succeed, and “bravo” is a reference to the Rio Grande river, the region where Norteño music takes its name.
In a Sentence: If Norteño music is your thing, you’ll definitely want to catch these rising stars on the Festival stage for the price of a Riverfest button while you can.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Los Lobos - June 1st
Grammy-award winners, East LA-natives and legends of American music, Los Lobos have been performing together for over 40 years. Best-known for their 1987 cover of Ritchie Valens’ hit La Bamba, their music combines a wide range of styles, like: rock, cumbia, country, folk, boleros, blues, soul, zydeco, tex-mex and norteños.
In a Sentence: Legendary bands don’t come through Wichita every day, so even if you’re not familiar with all of their music a Los Lobos show is a guaranteed good time and they are a band you’ll be happy you saw.
Redguard Stage: River Blues Renewed curated by Wichita Blues Society - June 2nd
The Wichita Blues Society, a local non-profit dedicated to “preserving Blues history, celebrating Blues excellence and supporting Blues education,” will be hosting the Sunday concert on the Redguard stage featuring local and regional artists in a celebration of Blues music.
In a Sentence: Blues has been an integral piece of the Wichita music experience for decades, and this celebration will bring together many of the artists that made it so.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: TBD - June 2nd
No show has been confirmed for the Kennedy Plaza stage for Sunday, June 2.
Redguard Stage: Heavy Metal Karaoke - June 3rd
Ever wanted to belt out your favorite heavy metal song on a big stage in front of a festival crowd? This is your chance! Heavy Metal Marta hosts the first Riverfest Heavy Metal Karaoke on the Redguard Stage. Bring your wailin’ vocal cords and let’s find out which Wichitan has the best pipes.
In a Sentence: All the singing you do in your car on I-35 has finally paid off - now you can let your hair down and sing your favorite metal song on the big stage.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Gospelfest featuring Yolanda Adams - June 3rd
In 2003, Variety dubbed Yolanda Adams the “Reigning Queen of Urban Gospel,” and in 2009 Billboard named her Number 1 Gospel Artist of the Decade. A Houston native, multi-Grammy award winner and a true heavyweight of modern gospel, Adams has forged an amazing career which includes acting, producing and host of her own radio show.
In a Sentence: The year’s Gospelfest promises to be an inspiring set of amazing performances featuring Yolanda Adams, unquestionably the best female gospel artist anywhere.
Redguard Stage: A Salute to the Military with the Kansas Army National Guard Bands - June 4th
Riverfest salutes our men and women who serve with a special night of music from the Kansas Army National Guard Bands. Join with military families in this evening of music and pay tribute to our American soldiers and military personnel.
In a Sentence: Join in the Riverfest salute to the military with a fun evening of music provided by the Kansas Army National Guard Bands.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Festival of Broadway with Music Theatre Wichita - June 4th
Music Theatre Wichita hosts an evening of Broadway hits performed by the area’s best stage talent. Come catch your favorite show tunes and more performed on the Kennedy Plaza stage. The show is sure to feature selections from this season’s schedule as well as special performances.
In a Sentence: Sing along to your favorite Broadway hits live with Music Theatre Wichita.
Redguard Stage: TBD June 5
No show has been confirmed for the Redguard stage for Wednesday, June 5
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Talib Kweli - June 5th
Brooklyn-based rapper Talib Kweli is known for his politically-aware and socially-insightful lyrics and has been recording and touring for more than 20 years. Through his early collaboration with Mos Def in the group Black Star, Kweli went on to solo success forming successful collaborations with the likes of Kanye West and Pharrell Williams.
In a Sentence: Enjoy a night of socially-conscious Hip Hop from one of Brooklyn’s best and longest-standing rappers.
Redguard Stage: TBD June 6
No show has been confirmed for the Redguard stage for Thursday, June 6.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue - June 6th
Hailing from New Orleans, award-winning artist, actor and philanthropist Trombone Shorty (Troy Andrews) helps carry the torch for the next generation of jazz greats in the US. Having worked with some of the biggest names in modern music, he brings a high-energy show backed by his band Orleans Avenue. Their music infuses many styles, like: blues, funk, soul, jazz, rock and more.
In a Sentence: Feel some good vibes and listen to some authentic New Orleans grooves with this upbeat, style-blending band with a rich American music pedigree.
Redguard Stage: Chroma Dance Party - June 7th
Get ready to be painted! Chroma Dance Party is a large dance party for all ages where the audience is repeatedly sprayed with paint cannons from the stage, creating a color-filled and vibrant experience. DJs will supply the beats and all you have to do is supply the moves.
In a Sentence: Wear some clothes you don’t care about and get messy with the most colorful dance party in Wichita.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Gogol Bordello w/March Fourth Marching Band - June 7th
New York-based gypsy-punkers Gogol Bordello brings an eastern European feel to stages around the world, incorporating a rock band lineup with other instruments like the accordion, violin, and saxophone. Lead by Ukrainian singer Eugene Hütz, the band’s wild and raucous show seeks to “provoke [the] audience out of [the] postmodern aesthetic swamp onto a neo-optimistic communal movement toward new sources of authentic energy.”
In a Sentence: You’ll see a truly unique band blending traditional, authentic eastern European flavor with a modern rock sound.
Redguard Stage: Morro Y Su Reunion - June 8th
Former singer of the successful norteño group La Reunion Norteña Rogelio “El Morro” Martinez started a new group - Morro Y Su Reunion - and hopes to have similar success in Mexico and the US. They bring their norteño sound to the Redguard stage Saturday night to help close out the festival.
In a Sentence: Norteño fans will have another chance to dance at this year’s festival with a closing night party featuring one of the biggest names in the genre.
Kennedy Plaza Stage: Sublime with Rome - June 8th
Long Beach-based Sublime helped to reinvent and expand the 90’s SoCal music scene by combining punk, reggae, hip-hop and ska into a streetwise and aggressive new style that captivated audiences worldwide, even after their founding frontman Bradley Nowell died of a heroin overdose in 1996. Best known for hits like “What I Got,” “Santeria,” “Wrong Way” and “Doin’ Time,” today the band tours with new frontman Rome Ramirez, a former Sublime fan.
In a Sentence: Sublime’s music has crossed almost everyone’s ears in the 20+ years since their inception, and seeing the surviving members perform their hits will be a great end to this year’s Riverfest.