We're quickly headed towards festival season and as an LA native, Coachella is calling. Outside Lands, Treasure Island, and Burning Man are in the vicinity, but with all the music talk, I've been looking into festivals elsewhere in the States in hopes of someday traveling around to experience all the different fests. Lollapalooza, SXSW, Sasquatch, and Bonaroo are some of the most well-known and well-stacked music festivals to start saving up for. With recent line up announcements and some festivals right around the corner, I thought I'd take a look at some of the talent they're bringing out to make sure you DON'T miss.
SXSW (Music: March 12-17):
Location: Austin, TX
Headliners: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Tegan and Sara, Of Mice & Men, Krewella, The Crystal Method, Baauer, Vampire Weekend.. and more.
But Don't Miss..: Kiven, Surfer Blood, Tommie Sunshine, Flume, Local Natives, Talib Kwell, Skating Polly, TOKIMONSTA, He's My Brother, She's My Sister, HAIM, XXYYXX, Sweatshop Union... and so much more.
It's actually near impossible to properly list all the "headliners" of South by Southwest, a nearly 2 week festival in Austin, TX. SXSW is a film, music, and "interactive" festival and the largest of it's kind and takes over the entire city. For any well-versed SXSW attendee, one knows that there are countless performances from all kinds of talent - prominently dominated by rock, folk, and alternative, but plenty of electronic, hip hop, and DJ sets in between. Check out the schedules, but don't be too bound by time slots - there are plenty of parties and bar to stop by in, and a majority of them are free with a previous RSVP by email. Try your best not to miss out some of the incredible names on the extensive line up.. my personal favorites right now are Flume, an Australian producer (who has created his own genre to explain his style, "Flume Step"), Kiven, a Los Angeles based alternative rock group that has been making big noise in the city, and He's My Brother, She's My Sister, a group of 5 (you guessed it, the Kolar's are brother and sister) with a totally unique garage country folk sound.
Coachella (April 12-14/April 19-21):
Location: Indio, CA
Headliners: The Stone Roses, Blur, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Phoenix, The XX, Postal Service, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Lumineers, Wu-Tang Clan, Jurassic 5... and more.
But Don't Miss...: The Neighbourhood, TNGHT, Alex Clare, Mimosa, Aesop Rock, Purity Ring, Eric Prydz... and so much more.
We're all wondering how Coachella plans to top their incredible holographic, two weekend debut of 2012.. but it seems like they're already coming in strong with a theme of reuniting. The Postal Service announced their comeback a few days before Coachella's line up release, and Jurassic 5 is returning again (first time in 2012 at SXSW) to headline the 3 day weekender. Coachella's Friday brings The Stone Roses and Blur from across the big pond and Phoenix's surprising headliner position has Daft Punk enthusiasts (who were highly disappointed with the rumored return of the mysterious duo) hopeful. (At Phoenix's 2010 Madison Square Garden show, Daft Punk appeared for a surprise set.) This year's line up is heavy on indie, rock, and electronic and as usual, has plenty of new names to keep an eye on. TNGHT's electronic new age sounds have grabbed my attention, I'll make sure I don't miss them at Coachella.
Sasquatch! (May 24-27):
Tickets on sale NOW.
Location: The Gorge @ George, Washington
Headliners: Mumford and Sons, The Postal Service, Sigur Rós, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Vampire Weekend, The XX, The Lumineers, Cake, Empire of the Sun.. and more.
But Don't Miss..: Steve Aoki, Baauer, Laidback Luke, Azari & III, Chvrches
Sasquatch! (don't forget the "!") is a relatively new festival compared to the rest of the list but the underdog is never one to ignore. Emphasis lies in indie singer song writer groups, but with the huge boom in alternative rock and electronic, Sasquatch! has wasted no time making sure to add big names to their line up as well. (AKA, don't miss Baauer, maybe he'll throw down some Harlem Shake..) Combined with an unbeatable venue, 5 stages, and West Coast vibes, Sasquatch! will no doubt be a fantastic precursor to some of summer's biggest festivals.
Bonaroo (June 13-16):
Tickets on sale this Saturday (02/23) @ noon.
Location: Great Stage Park @ Manchester, TN
Headliners: Paul McCartney, Mumford and Sons, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Björk, Pretty Lights, R. Kelly, Wu-Tang Clan, The Lumineers, The XX, Pasison Pit.. and more.
But Don't Miss..: Matt & Kim, Alt-J, Cults, HAIM
Yep, you heard me right, R. Kelly is making his come back this summer in Tennessee! There really are too many headliners to even summarize this year at Bonaroo, but like any respectable show, this 4-day festival features big names from indie rock, hip hop, jazz, americana, country folk, electronica, and alternative. Even Daniel Tosh is listed on the linup. As music festivals continuously try and top one another (hello, hologram Tupac?), I can only imagine what Tennessee has in store for this weekend of music, art, and great food. The line up is stacked with names from every genre that are in high demand (including Grammy nominees and winners!), but don't overlook some of the up and coming talent like Cults and HAIM in the midst of festival craziness. Check out HAIM's newest release, Falling.
Lollapalooza (August 2-4):
Location: Grant Park @ Chicago, IL
2013 Headliners: TBA
2012 Headliners:Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Black Keys, Black Sabbath, Jack White, Florence + The Machine, Bassnectar, Avicii, The Shins, Kaskade, The Weeknd... and more.
And I Hope You Didn't Miss..: Big Gigantic, Fun., Little Dragon, Wax, Yuna...
Affectionately known as Lolla, this three day annual fall festival in the midst of Chicago brings in people from all over the States. With a heavy focus on alternative rock and electronic, Lolla's popularity exploded in 2010 with an international debut in Chile and São Paulo. Though the 2013 line up is still in the works, it's easy to see how far all the headliners of Lolla 2012 have come - The Black Keys' prominence at the 2012 Grammy Awards, Fun.'s sweep at the 2013 Grammy's, and Kaskade's successful 2012 summer tour (Freaks of Nature), Grammy nomination, and the first electronic DJ to sell out the famous Los Angeles Staples Center. I have no doubt Lolla's line up will continue to bring in the biggest names, and those that will be on the rise in the next year.
So there's the low down on festival season v. 2013. I really hope to make it out to these festivals sometime soon and I hope to see the rest of you out there.