Summer has arrived, folks. And with that comes the plethora of summer music festivals located all across the country. What’s better than all of your favorite artists compiled into one giant (sometimes overpriced) festival? Absolutely nothing.
This summer is jam packed with festivals, so we took the liberty of organizing them here based on their start dates. Also included: our personal opinions on who the best bands are to see live. Obviously, we won’t all have the same music taste. But we have good taste. So you should probably take our advice.
Governors Ball – May 31- June 2
New York City, NY
The first festival to kickstart the summer: Governors Ball. This is a three-day concert series where headliners include Tyler, The Creator, Florence and the Machine and The Strokes. The Governors Ball was created nine years ago in hopes to bring a contemporary music festival to the Big Apple.
And bring it, they did. There are over 60 artists performing across four stages, so there’s something for everyone. A must see band is The 1975 who’s performing on Saturday. A not-so-must-see artist (in our opinion) is Clairo. Don’t get us wrong, her bedroom-pop style rocks, but only in, well, the bedroom. Her stage presence leaves something to be desired.
General Admission 3 Day Pass: $305
VIP 3 Day Pass: $705
Bonnaroo – JUNE 13-18
Next up: Bonnaroo. This festival is roughly 2 weeks after the Governors Ball, so you can hit up both if you’re feeling boujee. And not only is it a music festival, it’s an entirely new experience. Camping, yoga, fish tacos, painting with watercolors and so much more are featured here. Childish Gambino, Brockhampton and Cardi B take the stage here as well as more than 150 other artists spread out among 10 stages. You could opt in for the general admission pass, but the VIP pass has so much more to offer! VIP lounge areas, a private-event party and exclusive viewing areas are at your fingertips.
General admission 4 Day Pass: $339
VIP 4 Day Pass: $825
Lollapalooza – August 1-4
Lollapalooza is hosting its 29th festival this year where more than 170 bands will be performing across eight stages. Big name artists like Ariana Grande, 21 Pilots and, again, Childish Gambino are included in the lineup. Not only are there great performers, the windy city’s best food will be offered here as well. Lolla puts an emphasis on “fresh” and tries to steer clear of the typical carnival style food, which is a plus. If we were you, we’d (obviously) see Ariana Grande above anyone else. We’ve been fans of hers since her days on the show “Victorious”, and look where she is now! And speaking from experience, she rocks the stage like no other.
General Admission 4 Day Pass: $340
VIP 4 Day Pass: $2,200
Hard Summer – August 3-4
Hosted at the Fontana Speedway, Hard Summer is coming in hot this summer with a lineup consisting of artists like Kid Cudi, Sheck Wes, Major Lazer and Dillon Francis. This festival is only two days, so if you’re looking for as little commitment as possible, Hard Summer might be for you. What makes this festival different is that you have to be 18+ to get in, while at other summer concerts all ages are accepted. Two day general admissions are sold out, but you can get tier 4 or 5 VIP tickets.
Tier 4/5 VIP Pass: $184/$359
Outside Lands – August 9-11
San Francisco, CA
Located in beautiful Golden Gate Park, the Outside Lands music festival (OSL) includes not only music, but comedy, art, sustainability, shopping and more as well. Not to mention a culinary stop called Cheese Lands where you can sample award-winning cheeses by Humboldt County’s Cypress Grove. Yum.
Musical artists include Paul Simon, The Lumineers, Flume, Anderson .Paak and so many more. If you are really wanting to treat yourself, then bypass the general admission AND the VIP pass and opt in for the Golden Gate Pass. This exclusive pass offers you access to a new Golden Gate Club that has elevated views of of the main stage and so much more.
General Admission 3 Day Pass: $386
VIP 3 Day Pass: $815
Golden Gate Pass: $1,595
We hope that this guide to music festivals has helped you decide which one is right for you. Each festival is unique and offers a wide range of exciting things to do, see and hear. Make the most of this summer, and try to make it to at least one festival. Trust us, you won’t want to miss these.
Written by: Madyson Goss and Isabella Huljev