They say that music is the universal language.
So go ahead and root for Michigan. Or Syracuse. Or Louisville. Or Wichita State. It’s cool. At any point in the afternoon or evening during this weekend’s NCAA Men’s Final Four championship, you can step outside and breathe in the sounds from Centennial Olympic Park, where the Big Dance Concert Series will be taking place.
The series, which began in 2006, is produced by Turner Live Events and the NCAA.
There are some big names attached to the music lineups and, based on the previous Big Dance concerts, more than 100,000 sports and music fans are expected to cram into the park to hear these free shows. So you’ve been warned.
Take MARTA (Red/Gold lines to Five Points, which leaves you with a walk of a few blocks, or a transfer at Five Points to the Blue line which drops you closer at the Philips Arena/CNN stop — but you might have a bit of wait for that Blue line to arrive).
But whatever you decide…rock on.
(For a list of what you can or cannot bring into the park, visit http://www.ncaa.com/final-four#!big_dance.)
Friday: AT&T Block Party. Park opens at 3 p.m.
Saints of Valory (4:45 p.m.): A frequent presence at SXSW, the quartet signed to Atlantic Records in November. Their debut EP, “The Bright Lights,” spawned the semi-hit “Providence” in 2011.
My Morning Jacket (7 p.m.): The Kentucky rockers have released six albums in their 15-year career. The band’s singer, Jim James, recently released his third solo effort, “Regions of Light and Sound of God.”
Zac Brown Band: (9 p.m.) Atlanta’s country behemoths are no strangers in their hometown. The guys stood in the Georgia Dome earlier this year to sing the national anthem at the NFC Championship Game and they’ll be back in the building this summer with Kenny Chesney. But some fans prefer them al fresco.
SATURDAY: Coca-Cola Zero Countdown. Park opens at noon.
Yacht Rock Revue (12:15 p.m.): The Atlanta lite-rockers specialize in covers from such easy-groovin’ acts as Michael McDonald, Hall & Oates and Steely Dan. Captain’s hat not required, but it is appreciated.
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (1:45 p.m.): This is the first area appearance for the duo since their novelty hit “Thrift Shop” became a pop culture phenomenon.
Ludacris (3:15 p.m.): The Atlanta-based rapper is always busy, whether as a musician or an entrepreneur (his Chicken & Beer restaurant is supposed to open in concourse D at Hartsfield-Jackson airport this year). Last fall, he played for 50,000 people at Music Midtown in Piedmont Park.
Flo Rida (4:30 p.m.): Mr. “Whistle” was a key performer at December’s Power 96.1 Jingle Ball. Might Atlanta’s T-Pain pop up to join him on “Low”?
Muse 8:30 p.m.): The British rockers, whose latest album, “The 2nd Law,” dropped last fall, were most recently seen in Atlanta in 2010 when they played Gwinnett Arena.
SUNDAY: Capital One Jamfest. Park opens at 2 p.m.
Blind Pilot (2:30 p.m.): The Oregon-based indie folk rockers are a favorite of Ellen DeGeneres – they made their network debut in January playing for her birthday episode.
Grace Potter & The Nocturnals (4:15 p.m.): Potter and the Nocturnals notched radio play with “Paris (Ooh La La)” and “Stars” and opened for Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney last summer at the Georgia Dome. Potter returned solo for Star 94’s Jingle Jam concert in December.
Sting (6 p.m.): The British mainstay brought his “Back to Bass” tour to Chastain Park Amphitheatre last summer and will return there June 10 if you’d rather see him in a more intimate setting.
Dave Matthews Band (8 p.m.): DMB will preview their annual summer tour — which did not have any Atlanta date planned — with their appearance. The band played Atlanta twice last year, at Lakewood Amphitheatre in May and Gwinnett Arena in December.