Summer tours that can’t be missed

Summer, above all else, is the quintessential season for concerts. This year is unsurpassed with its mashups of hip-hop royalty and pop prowess. Not all shows will be stopping in Arizona, but California is only a short drive away. Here are the top four, can’t-miss tours of summer 2014.

1. Eminem and Rihanna

The Monster Tour is unequivocally the biggest show of the summer. The three-city tour is kicking off at The Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, on Aug. 7 and 8. Eminem hasn’t toured the country since his last two-city tour four years ago, making opportunities to see the rapper live scarce.

After Eminem ended 2013 with one of the most commercially successful albums of the year, “The Marshall Mathers LP 2,” the highly exclusive tour’s announcement was met with great fervor.

 

 

His decision to hit the road with Rihanna is brilliant. The two previously released the summer hit “Love The Way You Lie” and have since expanded their intoxicating collection with “Numb” and “The Monster.” Between the chart-topping duo, the tour will play like a greatest hits album.

2. Justin Timberlake

Justin Timberlake performs during his concert at the Amway Center in Orlando, Fla., on Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013. (Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel/MCT)

Justin Timberlake performs during his concert at the Amway Center in Orlando, Fla., on Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013. (Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel/MCT)

The hardest-working man in show business is doing a second leg of The 20/20 World Experience Tour. Timberlake, who has been touring since last year, will be bringing sexy back to Phoenix on Aug. 9.

While the newly crowned Top Artist by the Billboard Music Awards is putting on the same concert he did in December, the marveling one-man show is worth shelling out the few hundred dollars required to be in the presence of musical genius. You have not lived until you have been to a Justin Timberlake concert.

3. Beyoncé and Jay-Z

In the ultimate collaboration, Beyoncé and Jay-Z are at last giving fans the show of a lifetime at The Rose Bowl on Aug. 2 and 3. Once again proving that Blue Ivy has the coolest parents alive, the spouses released a trailer starring Sean Penn, Jake Gyllenhaal and Blake Lively for their On the Run tour.

Never mind the groundbreaking idea of making a movie trailer for a tour, or that Beyoncé released the first-ever visual album, the creative goldmine residing within the couple alone makes the tour one that can’t be missed.

4. Bruno Mars and Pharrell Williams

Chronic hit-makers Bruno Mars and Pharrell Williams are teaming up at The Hollywood Bowl on May 31 and June 1. While they each only have two albums, the Grammy winners have found immense success with every released single.

Mars was the Super Bowl’s halftime show performer and Williams’s “Happy” song has spent 19 weeks on the Billboard charts. Few artists are as likable as Mars or as skilled as Williams. Putting the two on the same stage will translate to a high-energy show of Michael Jackson-esque dancing to catchy, cheer-inducing songs.

Reach the reporter at jurgiles@asu.edu or follow her on Twitter @MrsMathers94