Monterey Music

Monterey is built on a rich history with the music scene. It is incredibly simple to find a musical event going on in Monterey at any time of the year. You are in luck! Some of the most well-known music festivals take place in Monterey each year.


Jazz Bash by the Bay takes place in March each year. The weekend consists of traditional jazz and swing-style music and dancing. The festival focuses on educating the audience on the many forms of jazz from early to traditional, swing to gypsy, ragtime, blues, and big bands. There are eight different performance stages that operate simultaneously. One of the stages even features the history of high school jazz bands. Admission is only twenty dollars per person.


The California Roots Music and Arts Festival takes place toward the end of May each year in Monterey. The event takes place over the course of three days and it offers live music (of course), delicious food, and beautiful artwork. Nearly fifty different musical groups perform on three different stages at the fairground. The whole festival has a reggae vibe to it–it is impossible not to feel happy and relaxed the whole weekend. Three day passes are sold for $160, whereas one day passes are only $65.


The First City Festival is a historic one. The festival takes place at the Monterey County Fair and Event Center, which was the original site of the very famous Monterey Pop Festival. First City showcases over 30 musical groups with a wide variety of musical taste. Acts like Beck, The National, and Phantogram have all performed at First City. Two-day admission passes are around $160, but it is well worth the price for the experience.