Hot Summer Nights 2023 Preview

Music lovers, clear your calendars from Thursday, July 20 through Sunday, July 23 for Austin’s hottest free music event. The Red River Cultural District (RRCD)’s annual summer music festival, Hot Summer Nights, is returning for its sixth anniversary. The multi-genre, multi-venue festival will once again take over downtown Austin, sprawling across iconic live music venues housed within the city’s only walkable music district.

The festival offers a rare opportunity for fans to explore the District’s most iconic and popular music spaces free of charge while supporting local musicians, as well as service, hospitality, and production sector workers in Austin.

Whether you’re a local looking for an incredible weekend out, or visiting for the festival we are here to give you all the details on venues, music, and exclusive food and drinks for Hot Summer Nights 2023.

What is Hot Summer Nights?

From its culmination in 2017 as the Red River Cultural District’s first original district-wide event, its mission has been to boost revenue for Austin musicians, venues, and staff during the slower summer season. The festival is a staple of Austin culture and continues to contribute to the city’s namesake of the Live Music Capital of the World as it regularly draws in tens of thousands of locals and travelers alike, promoting a positive economic and cultural impact within the Austin community.

Free concerts will take place across 14 iconic venues in the Red River Cultural District, spanning from 4th street to 15th street, starting at 7pm. All you have to do is find a venue, performer, or party you like and walk on over to enjoy the best of Austin’s live music experience. RSVPs are encouraged and can be completed here.

Music Venues

Austin classics such as Stubb’s, Mohawk, Cheer Up Charlies, and Empire are all slated to return as participating venues throughout the festival week while District venues like The Creek and the Cave and Barbarella will also be joining in on the summertime festivities with an expanded roster of fourteen total venues participating in this Austin summer tradition.

Hot Summer Nights 2023 Venus:

  1. Barbarella
  2. Cheer Up Charlies
  3. Chess Club
  4. Elysium
  5. Empire Control Room & Garage
  6. Flamingo Cantina
  7. Mala Vida
  8. Mohawk
  9. Stubb’s
  10. Swan Dive
  11. The Creek and The Cave
  12. Valhalla
  13. Vaquero Taquero
  14. 13th Floor

Hot Summer Nights Music Lineup 2023

There will be over 75 different music performances over the weekend varying in genre and style. You’ll find everything from alternative rock, blues and jazz, and late night DJ sets. The festival’s daily schedule shows performance times across the multiple venues for each day of the festival.

Festival Food and Drink Specials

Hot Summer Nights will also offer limited time only food and drink menu discounts to attendees including promotions from restaurants such as Hoboken Pie, Stubb’s Bar-B-Q, Pelon’s Tex Mex, Marina Miracles, Shawarma Point and Vaquero Tauqero.

You can also find festival-focused drink specials such as the “Red River Limeade”, “Mezcal Union Hot Summer Rita”, “The Red River Mule” and more all weekend-long at favorite District bars in addition to discounted drink specials from Wanderlust Wine and The Side Bar.

Food Specials

  • Hoboken Pie: $4 pizza slices on Thursday, July 20th (available 2:00 p.m. – 2:30 a.m)
  • Marinara Miracles: Meatball Heros for $10, while supplies last
  • Pelon’s Tex-Mex: $5 margaritas all weekend (Thursday, July 20th through Sunday, July 23rd)
  • Shawarma Point: Free side with purchase of any main entrée
  • Stubb’s Bar-B-Q: Discounted 10% off food all weekend
  • Vaquero Taquero: $1 tacos available for any fans who tag @Redriverculturaldistrict AND @Vaquerotaquero on any social media post (available 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 a.m)
  • The Side Bar: $5 cocktails including Ramblin’ Tito AND Red River Limeade
  • Wanderlust Wine: Spanish wine tasting experience for $20 (per person) featuring 8 Spanish wines and meet-and-greet with the winemaker

Drink Specials

  • Central District Brewing’s Red River Kolsch
  • The Ramblin’ Tito (Tito’s Handmade Vodka & Rambler Sparkling Water)
  • The Red River Mule (Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Ginger Beer, Cranberry, Lime)
  • The Red River Limeade (Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Cherry Juice/Grenadine, Lime Juice, Sprite)
  • Boilermaker (shot of Jack Daniels alongside a can of Lone Star or Lone Star Light)
  • Mezcal Union’s Hot Summer Paloma (Mezcal Unión Uno, Lime, Salt, Grapefruit Soda)
  • Mezcal Union’s Hot Summer Rita (Mezcal Unión Uno, Lime, Orange Liqueur, Agave, Salt)

Hot Summer Nights is a can’t-miss live music event with great performances to see and food and drinks to enjoy. Attending the festival supports local musicians and venues that make Austin the Live Music Capital of the world. Pick a day or even all four days from July 20th-23rd to support the local music scene and have an incredible experience.

Eva Rogers

A Texan through and through, her passion for the Lone Star State is evident in every word she writes.Hailing from the vast plains of West Texas, Eva has a deep appreciation for the unique blend of tradition and innovation that defines the Texan spirit. Eva crafts articles that celebrate the diverse tapestry of Texas, from its bustling urban centers to its serene rural landscapes.