Music Festivals are back with a vengeance and that’s a good thing for music lovers. Ever since Woodstock we seem to enjoy parking our butts in a big field and listening to bands play all day and night for anywhere from cheap to top dollar. Here are just a few of this summer’s offerings
Summer Fest: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Running from June 24-28 and June 30-July 5 this is billed as the world’s largest music festival and it seems as bands go, with 800 bands booked, everyone will be here. Tickets start at $19 for general admission with a Tuesday-Friday pass for $12. The cheap tickets don’t get you in the Marcus Amphitheater where the biggest stage is located but you can see everyone from Paris Hilton doing whatever the hell it is she does to Weird Al for $19. Real entertainment will be provided by the likes of Stevie Wonder, Jane’s Addiction, Kings of Leon, and Foghat just to name a few.
Mountain Jam: Hunter Mountain, NY
With Robert Plant, Grace Potter, and The Alabama Shakes, you know this mountain will be jamming. You add in Warren Haynes as a producer and performer with his band Gov’t Mule and there will definitely be some long jams going down. Running from June 4-7 a 4-day pass with camping comes in at $259 with single days running from $49- $85 depending on the day. Other acts include The Black Keys, Rusted Root, and MOE. If you really want to splurge the Super VIP package will run you a jamming $1799 per ticket.
WAKARUSA: Mulberry Mountain, Ozark, Arkansas
This affordable jam in hillbilly country starts with general admission on Sunday for $69 or a full festival pass for $204, making this fest running from June 4-7 a great deal for sure. Featuring Ben Harper and The Innocent Criminals, Young the Giant, The Roots, Thievery Corporation, Slightly Stoopid (one of the best band names around), and Umphrey’s McGee you can bet this will be a younger crowd than is going to see Stevie Wonder at Summerfest. This lineup seems to set up as a true festival in that the odor in the air may lean more towards Ganja than Old Spice.
The Peach: Montage Mountain, Scranton, Pa
Running from August 13-16, this is a jam festival for sure and should be a lot of fun. Featuring Greg Allman, Willie Nelson and Family along with Rusted Root, Santana and more, these bands are all over the spectrum in age so the crowd should be as well. Tickets start at $155 for a 4 day advance pass with 4 day reserved seats starting at $300. A four day super VIP pass can be had for $1000 and who doesn’t want to be a Super VIP?
Lollapalooza: Grant Park, Chicago, Illinois
This one has been around awhile but doesn’t tour the country like they used to. Located in Chicago this festival runs from July 31 to August 2. The eclectic lineup ranges from Paul McCartney to Metallica, and Florence and The Machine to Bassnectar. According to their website General admissions are sold out, but the secondary market should be thriving if you really, just have to go. Travel packages are available for 3 nights’ hotel and tickets and range from $1764-$9039. When you’ve been around this long, tickets go fast—and besides, where else can you see Paul McCartney and Metallica at the same festival?
Bonnaroo: Manchester, Tennessee
This is the big daddy of the summer and as such features bands ranging from Billy Joel to Florence and the Machine, Mumford and Sons to Tears for Fears, and My Morning Jacket plus hundreds more. The $299.50 general admission tickets are already sold, of course, putting this festival in the same boat as Lollapalooza. If you want to be a VIP but are not VIP enough to get in free, you’ll fork over $1524.50 per pair. The festival running June 11-14 is about 60 miles southeast of Nashville on a 700 acre farm, which reminds us of Woodstock from years ago, so prepare for Woodstock-epic traffic as well.