Local Current Blog

Minnesota State Fair 2012: A music lover’s guide

Whatever your reasons for attending the State Fair this year — the carnival rides, the seed art, the hall of giant vegetables — we’re guessing that if you’re a reader of this here blog, you’re going to seek out some live music. And we’re here to help!

Between the Grandstand and all of the free stages, there’s a lot going on each day, so we broke it down into a managable schedule for you to print out or bookmark on your phone. Speaking of which: smart phone users, grab the latest Minnesota State Fair app to help with your planning. 

Most shows listed below are free with fair admission ($12 at the gate), with the exception of the shows in the Grandstand. You can purchase advance tickets for those Grandstand shows here. And I’ve highlighted shows that will especially be of interest to Current listeners, including the sessions at the MPR booth on the corner of Judson and Nelson.

Thursday, August 23

10:30 a.m. & 11:45 a.m. Morgan Frazier at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Todd Menton at International Bazaar
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Tonic Sol-Fa at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m. & 4 p.m. The Harris Brothers at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. The Galactic Cowboy Orchestra at International Bazaar 
3:30, 4:45 p.m. JT Hodges at Leinie Lodge Bandshell 
4:00 p.m. Dawes with Mary Lucia at the MPR Booth
5:00 p.m. Junk on a Stick at MN Farmer’s Union Coffee Shop
6:30 p.m. & 7:45 p.m. The Sweet Colleens at Heritage Square
7:30 p.m. Bonnie Raitt with Mavis Staples at the Grandstand, $34.50-$44.50
7:30, 9:00 p.m. Soul Tight Committee at International Bazaar  
8:30 p.m. Dawes at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
 

Friday, August 24

10:30 & 11:45 a.m. Morgan Frazier at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Todd Menton at International Bazaar 
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Tonic Sol-Fa at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m. & 4 p.m. The Harris Brothers at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. The Galactic Cowboy Orchestra at International Bazaar  
3:30, 4:45 p.m. JT Hodges at Leinie Lodge Bandshell 
4:00 p.m. Chastity Brown with Mary Lucia at MPR Booth
6:30 p.m. & 7:45 p.m. The Sweet Colleens at Heritage Square 
7:30 p.m. Alan Jackson with Jamey Johnson at the Grandstand, $40
7:30, 9:00 p.m. Soul Tight Committee at International Bazaar   
8:30 p.m. Dawes at Leinie Lodge Bandshell  
 

 

Saturday, August 25

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. The Cactus Blossoms at Heritage Square
10:30, 11:45 a.m. Robby Vee and His Rock’n’Roll Caravan at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Dominic Gaudious at International Bazaar
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Elizabeth Cook at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Yawo at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Jeffery Broussard & The Creole Cowboys at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
4:00 p.m. Caroline Smith with Steve Seel and Jill Riley at MPR Booth
6:30, 7:45 p.m. Caroline Smith and the Good Night Sleeps at Heritage Square
7:30 p.m. Blake Shelton with Sunny Sweeney at the Grandstand, $31-$41
7:30, 9:00 p.m. The International Reggae All Stars at International Bazaar  
8:30 p.m. The Fabulous Thunderbirds at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 

Sunday, August 26

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. The Cactus Blossoms at Heritage Square
10:30, 11:45 a.m. Robby Vee and His Rock’n’Roll Caravan at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Dominic Gaudious at International Bazaar
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Elizabeth Cook at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Yawo at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Jeffery Broussard & The Creole Cowboys at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
6:30, 7:45 p.m. Caroline Smith and the Good Night Sleeps at Heritage Square
7:30, 9:00 p.m. The International Reggae All Stars at International Bazaar  
8 p.m. Anita Baker at the Grandstand, $38
8:30 p.m. The Fabulous Thunderbirds at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

Monday, August 27

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. Leroy’s River Minstrels at Heritage Square
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Dirty Shorts Brass Band at International Bazaar
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Squeezebox at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. Sherwin Linton Show at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Tom Mason and the Blue Buccaneers at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. The Johnny Hiland Band at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
4:00 p.m. P.O.S. with Mary Lucia at MPR Booth
6:30, 7:45 p.m. JD McPherson at Heritage Square
7:30, 9:00 p.m. Davina & The Vagabonds at International Bazaar 
8:00 p.m. The Happy Together Tour 2012 (The Turtles with Flo & Eddie, The Monkees Lead Singer Micky Dolenz, Gary Puckett & the Union Gap, The Grass Roots and The Buckinghams) at the Grandstand, $18
8:30 p.m. Hairball at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 
 

Tuesday, August 28

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. Leroy’s River Minstrels at Heritage Square
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Dirty Shorts Brass Band at International Bazaar
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Squeezebox at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. Sherwin Linton Show at Heritage Square 
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Tom Mason and the Blue Buccaneers at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. The Johnny Hiland Band at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
4:00 p.m. JD McPherson with Mary Lucia at MPR Booth
6:30, 7:45 p.m. JD McPherson at Heritage Square
7:30 p.m. Demi Lovato with special guest Hot Chelle Rae at the Grandstand, $35  
7:30, 9:00 p.m. Davina & The Vagabonds at International Bazaar 
8:30 p.m. Hairball at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 
 

Wednesday, August 29

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. Craig Ebel and Dyversaco at Heritage Square
10:30, 11:45 a.m. The Twin Cities Community Gospel Choir at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Malamanya at International Bazaar
1:00, 2:30 p.m. New Odyssey at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. Sourdough Slim with Robert Armstrong at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Native Pride Dancers at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Mandy Barnett at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
4:00 p.m. Brother Ali with Mary Lucia at MPR Booth
5:00 p.m. Junk on a Stick at MN Farmer’s Union Coffee Shop 
6:30, 7:45 p.m. Monroe Crossing at Heritage Square
7:00 p.m. KISS and Mötley Crüe at the Grandstand, $51-$81
7:30, 9:00 p.m. K-Libre 24 at International Bazaar
8:30 p.m. The Mavericks at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 
  

Thursday, August 30 

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. Craig Ebel and Dyversaco at Heritage Square
10:45 a.m., 12:00, 1:15 p.m. Malamanya at International Bazaar
1:00, 2:30 p.m. New Odyssey at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. Sourdough Slim with Robert Armstrong at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Native Pride Dancers at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Mandy Barnett at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
4:00 p.m. Cactus Blossoms with Mary Lucia at MPR Booth
 5:00 p.m. Junk on a Stick at MN Farmer’s Union Coffee Shop 
6:30, 7:45 p.m. Monroe Crossing at Heritage Square
7:00 p.m. Rascal Flatts with special guests Little Big Town, Eli Young Band and Edens Edge at the Grandstand, $43-63
7:30, 9:00 p.m. K-Libre 24 at International Bazaar 
8:30 p.m. The Mavericks at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 

Friday, August 31

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. The Mouldy Figs at Heritage Square
10:30, 11:45 a.m. Home Free at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Wanda Jackson at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. The Minnesota Flatpicking Guitar and Duet Championships at Heritage Square
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Will Hoge at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Cafe Accordion Orchestra at International Bazaar
5:00 p.m. MN Music On-A-Stick featuring Semisonic, The Jayhawks, Dessa, Jeremy Messersmith and Lucy Michelle and the Velvet Lapelles at the Grandstand, $35
6:30, 7:45 p.m. The New Standards at Heritage Square

7:30, 9:00 p.m. Hookers & Blow at International Bazaar
8:30 p.m. Wilson Phillips at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 
 

Saturday, September 1

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. The Mouldy Figs at Heritage Square
10:30, 11:45 a.m. Home Free at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
1:00, 2:30 p.m. Wanda Jackson at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. The Minnesota Flatpicking Guitar and Duet Championships at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Cafe Accordion Orchestra at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Will Hoge at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
4:00 p.m. Koo Koo Kanga Roo with Steve Seel and Jill Riley at MPR Booth
6:30, 7:45 p.m. The New Standards at Heritage Square
7:00 p.m. Journey with Pat Benatar featuring Neil Giraldo and Loverboy at the Grandstand, $38-58
7:30, 9:00 p.m. Hookers & Blow at International Bazaar
8:30 p.m. Wilson Phillips at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 
 

Sunday, September 2 

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. The Dale Pexa Band at Heritage Square
10:30, 11:30 a.m., 3 p.m. Bunny Clogs at Baldwin Park
10:30, 11:45 a.m. Mockingbird Sun at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
1:00, 2:30 p.m. The Cleverlys at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. Six Mile Grove at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Malek’s Fisherman Band at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Big Sam’s Funky Nation at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
6:00 p.m. The Bad Larrys at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
6:30, 7:45 p.m. Molly Maher & Erik Koskinen at Heritage Square
7:30, 9:00 p.m. Tropical Zone Orchestra at International Bazaar
8:00 p.m. State Fair Amateur Talent Contest Finals at the Grandstand 
8:30 p.m. Bettye LaVette at Leinie Lodge Bandshell

 

Monday, September 3 (Labor Day)

10:30, 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. The Dale Pexa Band at Heritage Square
10:30, 11:30 a.m., 3 p.m. Bunny Clogs at Baldwin Park  
10:30, 11:45 a.m. Mockingbird Sun at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
1:00, 2:30 p.m. The Cleverlys at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
2:00, 3:00, 4:00 p.m. Six Mile Grove at Heritage Square
3:15, 4:30, 5:45 p.m. Malek’s Fisherman Band at International Bazaar
3:30, 4:45 p.m. Big Sam’s Funky Nation at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
4:00 p.m. Lucy Michelle and the Velvet Lapelles with Mark Wheat at MPR Booth
6:00 p.m. The Bad Larrys at Leinie Lodge Bandshell
6:30, 7:45 p.m. Molly Maher & Erik Koskinen at Heritage Square
6:30 p.m. Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller with Big K.R.I.T. at the Grandstand, $29-$39 
7:30, 9:00 p.m. Tropical Zone Orchestra at International Bazaar
8:30 p.m. Bettye LaVette at Leinie Lodge Bandshell