As the birthplace of ground-breaking music from legendary acts such as Massive Attack, Portishead, Roni Size, Tricky and IDLES, Bristol is well known for its rich music scene.

With many music events already confirmed and our array of iconic gig venues and clubs, 2020 is shaping up to be yet another exciting year for music fans looking to come to the city. Here’s our round-up of some of the best gigs and concerts to come – save these dates in your diary now!

March

Bristol International Jazz and Blues Festival (27-29 March)

Held in the prestigious and impressive St George’s, Bristol Jazz and Blues Festival sees Pee Wee Ellis headline on 27 March, Gilad Atzmon play on 28 March and China Moses close the event on 29 March. Catch other performances, workshops and jam sessions at O2 Academy, Bambalan, Bristol Folk House and Fiddlers as well.

Pee Wee Ellis

Image - Pee Wee Ellis

Ritual Union (28 March)

A multi-venue music festival, Ritual Union is coming to Bristol for the first time on 28 March attracting new talent and established alternative acts including headliner Marika Hackman, Boy Azooga and postpunk revivalists Squid.

April

Bristol New Music Festival (23-26 April)

Experience four days of concerts, exhibitions and workshops across Bristol. Oscar-nominated composer Mica Levi will lead a graphic scores workshop and sound artist Kelly Jane Jones will perform in the ‘secret vaults’ underneath Bristol’s iconic Clifton Suspension Bridge.

May

Bristol Folk Festival (1-3 May)

Celebrating the UK’s best-loved folk artists, Bristol Folk Festival will see Kate Rusby and O’Hooley & Tidow perform at Bristol Cathedral, Jon Boden and Kitty MacFarlane play at St George’s, among many others over the three days. Ceilidhs and extra concerts will also be held at Glass Studio and Bristol Folk House.

Exterior of St George's Bristol - photo credit Evan Dawson

Image - St George's Bristol, credit Evan Dawson

YARD: Open Air Club at Motion (8-9 May)

Bristol’s infamous club Motion – voted by DJ Mag as one of the best clubs in the UK – has extended its Yard festival into a two-day event this year, across three open air stages. Acts include Alan Fitzpatrick, Bristol favourites Dense & Pika, DJ sets from new talents BEC and Franky Wah, KiNK, Dennis Cruz, DJ Tennis and DJ Sulta among many more.

Love Saves The Day (23-24 May)

Dance the bank holiday weekend away at electronic music festival Love Saves The Day – it's the last year it will be held in Eastville Park before it moves to a new Bristol home (location TBC) in 2021. Acts confirmed so far include some Bristol heavyweights with the likes of Goldie and Roni Size performing, as well as headliners Orbital, Kano, Fisher, Skream, Shy FX, Peggy Gou, My Nu Leng, Helena Hauff and Andy C.

Love Saves The Day 2019 Credit Mike Massardo

Image - Love Saves The Day, credit Mike Massardo

Dot to Dot Festival (22-24 May)

Famed for discovering the stars of tomorrow, multi-venue festival Dot to Dot takes place across the city’s intimate music spaces. This year’s acts are yet to be announced but previous line-ups have included bands like The xx, Mumford and Sons and Florence and The Machine.

June

The Killers at Ashton Gate Stadium (9 June)

Following in the footsteps of headliners like Muse, Spice Girls, Take That and Rod Stewart in previous years, The Killers and Manic Street Preachers have been confirmed to play Bristol's biggest stadium on 9 June 2020. 

Forest Live at Westonbirt Arboretum (11-14 June)

Four nights of music have been announced so far for the 2020 Forest Live series, with Westonbirt Arboretum as the backdrop for enchanting evenings of music. Rag ‘n’ Bone Man headlines on 11 June, while James Morrison and Will Young are to co-headline on 12 June. Then it’s Madness with special guests The Farm and guest support from Emily Cappell on 13 June, and the final night on 14 June sees Keane plus guests take to the stage among the trees.

Hacienda at Westonbirt Forest Live

Image - Westonbirt Forest Live, credit Anthony Mooney

Clifton International Festival of Music (12-20 June)

Bristol’s festival of world-class classical music returns with Shostakovich & Mendelssohn: Orchestra of the City and Figo Baroque Ensemble performing a violin concerto, both at Clifton Cathedral, among many other performances.

Bristol Sounds (24-28 June)

With Bristol Harbourside as the backdrop, Bristol Sounds has become one of the most exciting music events in the city. In 2020, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds play on 24 June, Supergrass on 25 June, Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott on 26 June, the Levellers and Reef on 27 June and Jack Savoretti closes the series of shows on 28 June.

For the first time, there will be an all-day Saturday show curated by the Levellers, which will run from midday until 11pm. The all-day bill will also feature local Pilton legends Reef, perennial festival favourites Goldie Lookin Chain, Scottish three-piece Peat & Diesel and a rare performance from Gaz Brookfield & The Company of Thieves, with many more acts still to be announced.

Bristol sounds - live music bristol

Image - Bristol Sounds, credit Paul Box

July

St Pauls Carnival (4 July)

The city’s legendary African-Caribbean festival St Pauls Carnival returns for the 52nd year in 2020, with live reggae, calypso, gospel, drum and bass music and an exuberant carnival procession.

Woman dressed in carnival costume at St Pauls Carnival - credit Martins Kikulis

Image - St Pauls Carnival, credit Martins Kikulis

NASS Festival (9-12 July)

NASS – the adrenaline-fuelled music, street art, skate and BMX festival held at Shepton Mallett (around an hour’s drive from Bristol) – has announced that Chase & Status RTRN II Jungle DJ Set and The Streets are two of the three headliners for 2020. Other artists announced include Steflon Donn, Annie Mac, Solardo, Andy C & Tonn Piper, SHY FX, Ocean Wisdom, Mahalia, Jeremy Loops, Miraa May, Greentea Peng and Ms Banks.

Bristol Harbour Festival (17-19 July)

The Harbourside’s annual extravaganza provides a weekend of free activities, live music, food, markets and maritime fun. Scottish Indie legends Belle and Sebastian open this year's festival with a show at the Lloyds Amphitheatre, as part of the Colston Hall Presents programme. 

Bristol harbour festival - live music bristol

Image - Bristol Harbour Festival

Valley Fest (31 July-2 August)

A family-friendly festival combining music and local food in an idyllic location, Valley Fest is in its eighth year at Chew Valley Lake, just south of Bristol. Headliners so far include Deacon Blue and The Cuban Brothers, with more to be confirmed.

Valley fest -live music bristol

Image - Valley Fest

August

The Downs Festival (Date TBC)

Bristol’s biggest outdoor one-day music festival will return in summer 2020 with premier headline artists on the Avon Stage, inspiring keynote speakers on the Information Stage and entertainment and activities for families and younger festival goers too, in the Children’s Area. 

Idles guitarist crowd surfing at The Downs Festival

Image - Idles at The Downs Festival 2019, credit Plaster

September

Tokyo World (19-20 September)

Urban and dance music festival Tokyo World is set to take over Eastville Park in Bristol once again this September. Acts have yet to be confirmed, but expect another weekend of house, grime and drum and bass with legendary after parties for the all-night ravers.

Bookmark this page as we will keep updating it throughout the year with exciting live music in Bristol in 2020 and check our What's On pages to find even more gigs, festivals and other events. 

Read next: Top 10 music venues in Bristol

Related

St George's Bristol
Music Hall
St George's Bristol

One of the country's finest music venues, offering the best in classical, chamber, world, folk, blues and jazz

O2 Academy Bristol
Music Hall
O2 Academy Bristol

O2 Academy Bristol hosts quality live shows from the brightest new acts and classic performers, and nights from the biggest club brands.

Bambalan
Restaurant
Bambalan Bristol brunch

The latest venture from the Hyde & Co group, Bambalan burst onto the Bristol food scene in May 2016 and has fast become a firm favourite for laid back drinking and dining ever since!

Bristol Cathedral
Cathedral/Minster
Bristol Cathedral

Much more than a fascinating building, being a fine example of a hall church, it is a centre of Bristol's history, civic life and culture.

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum
Garden
Autumn at Westonbirt Arbouretum

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, managed by the Forestry Commission, is one of the finest collections of temperate trees and shrubs in the world.

Colston Hall Bristol
Event Venue
Colston Hall Foyer - CREDIT AARDMAN

Colston Hall is Bristol’s largest concert hall, presenting concerts and entertainment by major names in rock, pop, jazz, folk, world and classical music, stand up comedy and light entertainment.