State Fair

5 Cal State Fair musical acts you don’t want to miss this year

Country music star Trace Adkins sings to a cheering crowd attending the 2015 Rock the Ocean’s Tortuga Music Festival at Fort Lauderdale Beach Park on Saturday, April 11, 2015. Named for the turtles that nest on that beach, the two-day event continues Sunday, April 12, 2015. Since its 2013 debut, the event has raised nearly $200,000 for marine conservation organizations.
Country music star Trace Adkins sings to a cheering crowd attending the 2015 Rock the Ocean’s Tortuga Music Festival at Fort Lauderdale Beach Park on Saturday, April 11, 2015. Named for the turtles that nest on that beach, the two-day event continues Sunday, April 12, 2015. Since its 2013 debut, the event has raised nearly $200,000 for marine conservation organizations. MARSHA HALPER/Miami Herald

The California State Fair has more than just fried food to offer - this year, the fair has a wide variety of musical acts, from R&B to rock to mariachi. And so you don't miss out on all the music, here's a list of 5 musical acts to look out for this year.

1. Trace Adkins

This year, the country singer is making a stop in Sacramento on July 15 as part of his national, seven-month long r"How Did We Get Here" tour. The singer has performed chart-toppers for over 30 years, and throughout his career over 20 of his singles have made it onto the Billboard country music charts.

Last year, Adkins released Something's Going On, his 13th studio album. And at this concert, you can expect to hear Adkins' new hits, as well as old favorites like Ladies Love Country Boys and You're Gonna Miss This.

2. Youth Mariachi Band

For the first time this year, the California State Fair is hosting a youth mariachi competition. Youth bands from across the state will have the opportunity to meet each other, talk to professional mariachis, and compete in front of an audience for the title of best youth mariachi band in California.

The competition is a good opportunity to experience the music that runs deep in California's state history and is foundational to many in California's Mexican-American community. And the prizes are lucrative – the first place team will receive $5,000, the runner-up will receive $3,000 and the third place team will receive $2,000. The competition is taking place on July 22nd at the PG&E center stage.

3. ZZ Top with George Thorogood and the Destroyers

Rock band ZZ Top, along with George Thorogood and the Destroyers, will be performing head-smashing hits on July 26 at the Papa Murphy's Park.

The musicians have both been in the rock scene for over 40 years, George Thorogood is known for his blues rock sound, and ZZ Top and ZZ Top is one of the top 100 selling artists in the country – and the band has also been named official heroes for the state of Texas.

The concert will require a separate admission ticket that can be purchased through Ticktmaster. And while waiting for the concert to start, you can browse the rest of what the State Fair has to offer – the tickets give admission into the fair as well.

4. Kool & the Gang

Celebrate good times this July 16 smooth R&B tunes from Kool & the Gang, the band behind hits Get Down on it, Jungle Boogie, and Celebration, a song that held the Billboard No. 1 position on the charts for two weeks.

Throughout the band's tenure, they've won two Grammys, seven American Music Awards, and earned a lifetime achievement award from the National Association of Recording Merchandisers. And even though they were founded in 1964, this year they're scheduled to play nearly 100 venues – including the California State Fair.

5. Happy Together Tour

If you're looking for a concert that will give condense the best of 60's classic rock into a couple hours, the Happy Together Tour, performing on July 18, is the concert for you.

The tour features rock acts Chuck Negron, The Association, Gary Puckett & the Union Gap, Mark Lindsay, The Cowsills, and, of course, The Turtles, whose hit song Happy Together gave the tour its name. Together, the performers have amassed dozens of hits and sold tens of millions of records.

This will be the ninth year of the Happy Together tour; this year the musicians are hitting over 40 stops across the country, from New Jersey to Sacramento. It's a performance sure to be a rockin' good time.

But beyond these five acts, the Cal State Fair has much more to offer in terms of music – here's a full list of all the dates and performers for this July.

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