6 Upcoming Music Festivals!

Festival season was just getting started with Coachella–read on for more on music festivals coming to a city near you this summer!

For the past two weeks, Coachella has all but taken over our social media feeds. There was Harry Styles’ colorful and uplifting performances with special guests Shania Twain and Lizzo (and the unveiling of new songs from his upcoming album Harry’s House), and Billie Eilish and Finneas performing the pop-punk hit “Misery Business” alongside Paramore’s Hayley Williams

While the Coachella lineup did not disappoint, many festival-goers reported that it felt more like a work convention for influencers representing brands than a traditional music festival. Not to mention, the controversy surrounding the nearby Revolve festival clouded the many performances that day. The clothing brand has since apologized for the transportation issues at their event.

If you’re a music festival lover eager for live music in the first in-person festival season since before the Covid-19 pandemic, you’re in luck–here are six music festivals coming up this spring and summer, which incorporate numerous artists and genres.

Stagecoach Festival

This country music festival takes over California from April 29 to May 1 at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, CA. Headliners include Thomas Rhett, Carrie Underwood, and Luke Combs. Orville Peck, who rose to a new level of fame a few months ago when his song “Dead of Night” was featured in Euphoria, will also be performing, as well as Marren Morris, Brandi Carlisle, and many more.  The festival began in 2007 and rapidly grew into the most popular country music festival in the world. 

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

This unique festival incorporates a blend of jazz, country, and rock music, and takes place from April 29 to May 8. This year’s headliners are the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stevie Nicks, Luke Combs, Willie Nelson, The Who, and Jimmy Buffet. The festival offers a colorful celebration of New Orleans’ thriving local jazz scene as well, including Trombone Shorty, who was a jazz camp classmate alongside a young Jon Batiste–this year’s Grammy Album of the Year Winner. The pair continue to collaborate, and remain active within the music community in their home city of New Orleans.

 

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Boston Calling

New England’s biggest music festival comes to Cambridge May 27–29 and will host artists of several different genres, primarily focusing on rock, rap, and alternative. Headliners were originally Foo Fighters, the Strokes, and Metallica, but due to the sudden passing of drummer Taylor Hawkins, Foo Fighters chose to cancel the remainder of their tour and festival run. Rock band Nine Inch Nails was recently announced as their replacement. Avril Lavigne, Cheap Trick, Weezer, and Modest Mouse are among the popular alternative and rock acts also performing. This year, 18 New England locals are also slated to perform, including Frances Forever, whose song “Space Girl” took TikTok by storm in 2020.  The festival started in 2013, and initially happened in September and May. This year, the festival will take place at Harvard Athletic Complex in Boston, MA.

 

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The Governor’s Ball

New York City’s summer music festival takes over Citi Field June 10-12 this year, with headliners Kid Cudi, Halsey, and J. Cole. The multi-genre festival is leaning into mostly pop and rap artists this year, with Migos, Jack Harlow, and Aly &AJ performing on day one. For alternative fans, day three hosts Del Water Gap, Soccer Mommy, Japanese Breakfast, and Coin. The first Gov Ball took place back in 2011.

 

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Bonnaroo

The Nashville-area festival takes place from June 16 to June 19 at Great Stage Park in Manchester, TN.  Despite its location typically being associated with country music, Bonnaroo is hosting primarily pop, rock, and alternative acts this year. Headliners include Gryffn, J. Cole, the Chicks, Illenium, Tool, Flume, 21 Savage, Stevie Nicks, Machine Gun Kelly, and Roddy Ricch. The festival was started back in 2002 by promoter Ashley Capps and gets its unique name from a 1974 album called Desitively Bonnaroo by New Orleans pianist and vocalist Dr. John. In New Orleans slang, Bonnaroo roughly means “best on the street.”

 

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Lollapalooza

The Chicago music festival at Grant Park will be from July 28-31. Headliners are Metallica, Dua Lipa, Green Day, Doja Cat, Machine Gun Kelly, Lil Baby, and Kygo. The many other acts are primarily newcomers–many of whom you may recognize from TikTok. Chicago locals Beach Bunny’s songs “Prom Queen” and “Cloud 9” began trending on TikTok between 2019 and 2020, and their fanbase has only grown ever since, through their Gen Z relatable lyrics and energetic stage presence. Sam Fender, often dubbed “the British Bruce Springsteen,” went TikTok viral in 2021 for his 80s-rock-inspired “Seventeen Going Under”. Also, Maude Latour, the colorful indie pop musician who doubles as a Columbia University student, has amassed a large social media following as well for her thoughtful lyrics and upbeat tracks. Other well-known indie acts performing include Willow, Wallows (fronted by actor Dylan Minette), The Regrettes, Still Woozy, Manchester Orchestra, Maneskin, and many more. One of the older festivals, Lollapalooza began in 1991 when Jane’s Addiction band leader Perry Farrell booked the venue for the band’s farewell tour. The name comes from a funny quote Farrell remembered from The Three Stooges.

 

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Get ready for an energetic festival season full of iconic performers and newcomers alike. Each event has something for everyone this year, and we can all relate to one thing––our shared joy at the return of live music after an isolating two years.

About the Author

Madison Goldberg

Madison E. Goldberg is a senior at Emerson College majoring in journalism and minoring in publishing and photography. She’s covered numerous topics in news and entertainment as a multimedia journalist.