Photo: MCT Campus

Big Dance Concert Series hosts free show in Atlanta

Music festival to showcase Ludacris, Dave Matthews Band, NCAA Final Four games

As broke college kids, no word in the English language brings bigger smiles to our faces than “free.” This weekend, a free three-day music festival with big-name headliners like Ludacris and Dave Matthews Band will be held in Atlanta.

The Big Dance Concert Series, open to all ages and requiring no tickets, will be held in Centennial Olympic Park. In addition to the live performances, the NCAA Final Four semifinal game will be shown on a projector screen in the park Saturday. The 2013 NCAA Men’s Division 1 Final Four tournament will take place April 6 to 8 in Atlanta at the Georgia Dome.

Dave Matthews Band, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals and Sting are headlining and will all perform Sunday. Saturday’s festivities start at noon with performances by Yacht Rock Revue, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Ludacris and Muse.

Dave Matthews Band released their seventh studio album, “Away From the World,” in September 2012, and the first hit single, “Mercy,” topped the charts and set the earthy, rustic vibe that guides the entire album.

Ben Haggerty, better known by his stage name Macklemore, has been performing music since 2000; however, it wasn’t until his collaborative hit single “Thrift Shop” hit the charts that he and music partner Ryan Lewis became household names. His second album, “The Heist,” sold more than 78,000 copies during the first week alone.

MCT Campus Dave Matthews Band will headline the free Big Dance Concert Series in Atlanta Sunday night.
MCT Campus Muse will headline Saturday night's performances of the Big Dance Concert Series held in Atlanta this weekend.

Friday, the chart-topping Zac Brown Band will take the stage along with My Morning Jacket and Saints of Valory. The popular Atlanta country band will bring good vibes and summer music to the festival with hits like “Knee Deep” and “Toes.” The band recently received a Grammy for its album fifth studio album, “Uncaged.”

Also hailing from Atlanta is rapper Ludacris. Throughout his career, Ludacris has won numerous awards, including recognition from the Screen Actors Guild, MTV, Critics’ Choice Awards and three Grammys. As a Dirty South artist, he pioneered Southern rap, which derived inspiration from 1980s hip-hop. Ludacris has released eight studio albums and starred in huge Hollywood hits like 2011’s “No Strings Attached” and “New Year’s Eve.”

Music won’t be the only event drawing crowds to Atlanta this weekend. In addition to the Final Four games Saturday and Monday, there will also be a range of family- and fan-friendly events. Autograph sessions with coaches and players, scrimmages, shoot-offs, a performance by the Harlem Globetrotters and youth clinics are just a few of the activities on tap. These events require a ticket to “Bracket Town,” which is available online or at the door for $10.

For more information about The Big Dance Concert Series and the full lineup, visit

4:45 p.m. – Saints of Valory

7 p.m. – My Morning Jacket

9 p.m. – Zac Brown Band

12:15 p.m. – Yacht Rock Revue

1:45 p.m. – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

3:15 p.m. – Ludacris

4:30 p.m. – Flo Rida

8:30 p.m. – Muse

4:15 p.m. – Grace Potter and the Nocturnals

6 p.m. – Sting

8 p.m. – Dave Matthews Band

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