The best events in Kansas City: August 2023

Photo courtesy of T-Mobile Center
The Chicks Are KC bound

Enduringly popular three-piece women-fronted band The Chicks are embarking on their world tour this year, with singer-songwriter and instrumentalist Ben Harper opening. The Chicks have kept up with the times in their nearly thirty-year-long career. They changed their name in 2020 from The Dixie Chicks to keep up with modern sensibilities, and they continuously play with the themes of passionate female rage and aching heartbreak. On their upcoming stop in KC, The Chicks will be performing both new and old favorites like “Gaslighter” and “Goodbye Earl.” Harper was at the height of his career in the late nineties and early aughts, playing an exciting mix of blues, folk, reggae and rock, and he’s still best known for his guitar skills and sultry voice. He’s opening on tour in support of his newly released album, Wide Open Light.

GO: August 29. 7:30 pm. T-Mobile Center.

Jagged Little Pill

August 1–6. 8 pm.

The new-ish musical Jagged Little Pill borrows its title from singer-songwriter Alanis Morissette’s 1995 album of the same name. Many of the themes from the album—joy, pain, healing and humanity—appear in this show that centers on a “perfectly imperfect” family living in a suburban neighborhood in Connecticut. August 1–6. 8 pm. Starlight Theatre.

The Front Bottoms

August 2. 7:30 pm.

New Jersey-based emo-rock band The Front Bottoms made a name for themselves in the underground indie scene with their self-titled 2011 album. Now, with Kevin Devine opening, they are on an extensive U.S. tour in anticipation of their new album, You Are Who You Hang Out With. August 2. 7:30 pm. Grinders.

PBR KC Outlaw Days

August 3–5.

The second season of the groundbreaking PBR—Professional Bull Riders—Team Series from The Outlaws will return to T-Mobile Center. The Outlaws are KC’s first professional bull riding team, and they will be competing in the PBR Team Series, which takes bull riding from an individual sport to a team competition. In this season, each of the eight teams will compete in nearly thirty riding games held across ten events, and the team with the highest score will win. August 3 & 4, 7:30 pm; August 5, 6:45 pm. T-Mobile Center.

Sam Hunt
Photography by Shutterstock.

August 4. 6:30 pm.

Sam Hunt has gained widespread popularity in recent years for his smooth vocals and croony lyrics that are reminiscent of country greats—who he was a songwriter for—like Keith Urban and Kenny Chesney. In his Summer On The Outskirts Tour, he will be playing country-radio hits like “Body Like a Back Road” and “House Party.” August 4. 6:30 pm. Azura Amphitheater.

Matilda the Musical

August 4 & 5.

Originally based on the beloved book Matilda by Roald Dahl, this adaptation for the theater is directed by Lana Gage. In this fresh musical, Matilda is a girl with curiosity and a fantastical imagination, but unfortunately has terrible parents and a cruel principal. Emboldened with passion to overcome the obstacles, Matilda leads revolting classmates to challenge the status quo and become free. August 4 & 5. 2 & 7 pm. Kauffman Theatre. 

Ed Sheeran

August 5. 6 pm.

Radio-hit superstar Ed Sheeran is making a stop at Arrowhead on his North American stadium Mathematics Tour. Sheeran will play his newest album, Subtract, in its entirety, with a full band, in reference to all of his full-length studio albums, including Equals. Sheeran’s tour stop in KC will include pop-R&B American Teen chart-topper Khalid and newcomer Cat Burns. August 5. 6 pm. GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.

Culture Club

August 8. 7 pm.

Eighties pop-music icons Boy George and Culture Club are making a stop in KC for their The Letting It Go Show, which features guests Howard Jones and Berlin. They will be performing all of their catchy hits like “Do You Really Want To Hurt Me” and “Karma Chameleon.” August 8. 7 pm. Starlight Theatre.

RuPaul’s Drag Race

August 9. 8 pm. 

RuPaul’s insanely successful Drag Race franchise returns with its annual Werq the World Tour, in which favorites from current and past seasons go on tour to remind audiences why they are fan favorites, with elaborate costuming, death-drops and dirty puns. August 9. 8 pm. The Midland Theatre.

Blues Traveler

August 10. 7 pm

Ultimate “Dad” jam band Blues Traveler is coming to KC with Big Head Todd. New Jersey-based blues-rock band Blues Traveler has been around for over thirty-five years, with hits from the nineties like “Run-Around” and “Hook.” They are also known for their long segues during live performances and are often considered a major figure in the re-emergence and subsequent popularity of jam bands during the nineties. August 10. 7 pm. Grinders.

Ben Folds

August 10. 8 pm.

The frontman and pianist of alt-rock trio Ben Folds Five is returning solo on his What Matters Most Tour, following his 2023 album of the same name—his first studio album in eight years. On the tour, Folds will be playing old and new favorites like “The Luckiest” and “Exhausting Lover.” August 10. 8 pm. Uptown Theater.

Hip-Hop 50 KC

August 12. 6 pm.

Produced by 18th and Vine Lives with journalist Shawn Edwards, Hip-Hop 50 KC is a celebration in honor of the fiftieth anniversary of hip-hop. Celebrate the genre that changed the world with local rappers, DJs, graffiti artists and dancers who have helped put KC’s hip hop scene on the map. August 12. 6 pm. Gem Theater.

The Wallflowers

August 17. 8 pm.

Rock band The Wallflowers is best known as being fronted by singer-songwriter, instrumentalist and legend Bob Dylan’s son, Jakob Dylan. After a few sporadic albums over the last thirty-plus years and an ever-changing rotation of non-Dylan band members, the timelessness of hit “One Headlight” endures. August 17. 8 pm. Uptown Theater.

Billy Joel and Stevie Nicks
Photography by Shutterstock

August 19. 7 pm.

The Piano Man himself Billy Joel is joining fellow music legend and Fleetwood Mac member Stevie Nicks for a stadium tour. The seemingly at-odds duo will meld Joel’s New York pop on hits like “Uptown Girl” with Nicks’ croony, West Coast hippy songs like “Landslide” for an unforgettable night with two of the most influential musicians of all time. August 19. 7 pm. GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.

Lil Durk

August 19. 7 pm.

Chicago-native rapper, singer and songwriter Lil Durk has quickly made a name for himself in recent years after being featured on songs by big names like Drake and DJ Khaled. He’s making a stop in KC with uber-popular rappers Kodak Black, NLE Choppa and DD Osama in support of his star-studded newest album, Almost Healed. August 19. 7 pm. T-Mobile Center.


August 19. 7:30 pm. 

California-based Incubus has everything we needed from a rock band in the late nineties: a skinny, long-haired frontman in Brandon Boyd, care-free, beach-dude vibes and a radio hit in “Drive.” Now, without a new album or radio hit in recent years, the band is back touring, seemingly with the motto of their 2011 album titled If Not Now, When? August 19. 7:30 pm. Azura Amphitheater.

Soulja Boy

August 20. 9 pm. 

Ask any millennial: Soulja Boy’s music takes us back to a simpler time where choreographed dances accompanied most songs and one-hit wonders could play on the airwaves or at a middle school dance with equal success. Although Soulja Boy hasn’t had hits like he did in the mid-aughts, he knows we need him now more than ever. He’s coming to KC with support from S.O.D. Money Gang. August 20. 9 pm. The Truman.

The Black Keys

August 25. 8 pm.

2010’s The Black Keys have an instantly recognizable sound that has kept them semi-relevant while many other rock bands of their time have faded into one-hit-wonder obscurity. At the show, the band will play hits that are still often heard on 96.5 Not-the-Buzz like “Howlin’ For You,” as well as songs from their latest album, Dropout Boogie, which has a more basic, blues-rock style from their early days. August 25. 8 pm. Starlight Theatre.

Goo Goo Dolls

August 27. 7 pm.

After nearly forty years, Buffalo-based Goo Goo Dolls are still going strong. Now on their The Big Night Out Tour, the band will be playing classic hits like “Iris” and “Slide,” as well as some of the lesser-known songs from their catalog, with lesser-known rock-reggae opener O.A.R. August 27. 7 pm. Starlight Theatre.

Come From Away

August 28–September 3. 8 pm.

This 2013 musical from Irene Sankoff and David Hein is based on the events in the town of Gander, Newfoundland, during the days following the 9/11 attacks. In the events that Come From Away is based on, nearly forty planes carrying seven thousand passengers are ordered to land unexpectedly at Gander International Airport. The characters are based on real-life Gander residents and the stranded travelers they helped, and the show is a reminder of humans’ ability for kindness and resilience in the hardest of times. August 28–September 3. 8 pm. Starlight Theatre.

Zach Bryan

August 30. 8 pm.

Oklahoma-based country singer-songwriter Zach Bryan has gained widespread popularity in the last few years, drawing on his past as a Navy veteran by using his croony voice and heartfelt lyrics to skyrocket to fame. Bryan will be joined by Trampled by Turtles and J.R. Carroll for his stop in KC on the Burn, Burn, Burn tour.  August 30. 8 pm. T-Mobile Center.

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