A Guide To Lesser Known Music Festivals


By Katrina Nattress

Nothing says “summer” quite like outdoor music festivals. There’s just something about sitting in a field, basking in the sun and listening to music all day (or weekend). As festivals grow in popularity, so do their lineups—one of the biggest days in the music world’s year is Coachella’s lineup announcement—but great bands play the full festival circuit each summer. Believe it or not, there’s more than just Coachella, Electric Daisy Carnival, and Leeds. Here are some of the best music festivals that you may not know, but you should.

Click to start the list

  • tonexdeaf

    You forgot Trillectro in D.C, they had a couple good acts there last year. ScHoolboy Q, Flatbush Zombies…

  • hankpowerdump

    The Newport Folk Festival is in Rhode Island, and has been since 1959 . . . not New Jersey. Do your research.

  • chris

    This list is why I love P&P…I’m going to full moon this year because of you guys…i need a good festival after the let-down that was gov ball…

  • Kaylee

    Definitely forgot Paradiso Festival — http://www.paradisofestival.com & Sasquatch! — http://www.sasquatchfestival.com in George, WA :)

  • Riikka

    I would like to add the Flow Festival in Helsinki in August! Really cool line up every year and the location is superb. http://www.flowfestival.com/

  • Crunch

    Cool list. Pleasantly surprised to see Pickathon on there. Also, Montreal’s Osheaga festival holds a stellar lineup year to year.

  • Crunch

    Sasquatch is pretty well known

  • PigsAndPlans

    Yeah we weren’t trying to dig up super obscure ones or anything, just some other than the Lollapaloozas, Coachellas, and Bonnaroos. You’d be surprised how many people have no idea that all these other music festivals exist.

  • PigsAndPlans

    Gov Ball was a fucking mess. Not gonna lie, I kind of miss it though.

  • clau

    Definitly Osheaga in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Solid solid line-up = vampire week-end, beck, the cure, frank ocean, ellie gooding, beach house and much more :


  • Professor Green

    awesome list

  • Heidi

    Muddy Roots Festival in Cookeville, TN is a small, friendly fest held annually on a farm featuring a great mix of bands ranging from traditional country, bluegrass, and blues to punk and garage rock and all blends in between. Last year’s headliner was the great Dr. Ralph Stanley, this year’s is the reunited Black Flag. No VIP area (the bands camp with everyone else), no rock star attitudes, and no $20 showers a la Bonnarro, you can take one for free here.

  • Manny

    I’d be remiss if I failed to mention Houston’s very own Free Press Summer Fest. This year’s lineup included Arctic Monkeys, Postal Service, Passion Pit, Calvin Harris, Of Monsters and Men, and Macklemore and Ryan Lewis among others. Houston gets no love as a burgeoning live music city.

  • jhines053

    Enjoyed Gov Ball the mud just tested your spirit made you think about how much you really wanted to see that band all the way across the festival.

  • jhines053

    And being from Louisville I’m clearly excited about Forecastle

  • Jack

    Check out WARMfest while you’re at it. 3 Days, Indianapolis, Labor Day Weekend. http://warmfest.org

    Big Head Todd & The Monsters, Michael Franti & Spearhead, G. Love & Special Sauce, Mayor Hawthorne, Delta Spirit, Red Wanting Blue….

  • groover

    dude Be kind rather than right…

  • Julie Fultz

    Nelson Ledges Quarry Park in northern Ohio has a whole summer full of live music fests coming..check out their Facebook page or main site at nlqp.com

  • K

    Clockenflap too…

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