Summer is upon us, which means music festivals are back. Say hello to beer gardens, camping and pushing past strangers for a front row seat to Megan Thee Stallion. Below is a chronological list of exciting festivals you might want to plan a weekend for. Be sure to pack sunscreen!
(Note: most festivals have not yet announced their COVID-19 protocols, but we will add them as they become available.)
Indio, California; 15-17 and 22.-24. April 2022
Featuring: Harry Styles, Billie Eilish, Swedish House Mafia x The Weeknd
The 2020 and 2021 editions were canceled due to COVID-19 concerns, but Coachella is back this year to kick off the 2022 festival season. Headlining will include Harry Styles, Billie Eilish, as well as the Weeknd and Swedish House Mafia, who will fill in for Kanye West who dropped out at the last minute.
Planet Afropunk Live: Miami
Miami, Florida; 20-22 May 2022
Afropunk has long been at the forefront of celebrating black artists, and last year returned to Atlanta for a one-day festival. This year they announced a new experience called Planet Afropunk in Miami, hosted at The Urban in Overtown, a historically black diaspora neighborhood. The three-day festival includes a day of panel discussions and talks about the issues plaguing the black community, followed by two days of live music and art exhibitions. Although the line-up has not yet been announced, the organizers have announced that they will present Afro-Caribbean and Afro-Latin arts.
Boston is calling
Boston, MA; 27-29 May
Also present: Nine Inch Nails, The Strokes, Metallica, Japanese Breakfast
Taking place as usual at the Harvard Athletic Complex, this year’s Boston Calling will feature more than 50 artists on four stages, a 100-foot Ferris wheel, art installations and dining from 35 vendors.
Primavera Sound Barcelona
Barcelona, ES; June 2-4 and June 9-11
Featuring: Band Aid, Beach House, Gorillaz, Interpol, Grimes (DJ Set)
Primavera is the biggest festival in the Mediterranean and returns to Barcelona’s Parc del Forum for the first time since 2019. With two weekends of live music and a week of concerts across Barcelona in between, this year’s festival feels bigger than ever. The bill features some big names (Dua Lipa, Megan Thee Stallion, Lorde) along with some older favorites (Pavement, Interpol, Yeah Yeah Yeahs).
The Roots Picnic
Philly, PA; 4th-5th June
Contributors: Wizkid, Mary J. Blige, Jazmine Sullivan
After a two-year hiatus, the Roots-led, hosted and curated festival returns and will be held IRL at Mann at Fairmount Park in Philadelphia and also streamed on YouTube. The lineup brings together black talent from around the world including country pioneer Mickey Guyton, chart-topping Afrobeats star Wizkid, the legendary Mary J. Blige and more.
New York, NY; 10-12 June 2022
Featuring: Kid Cudi, Halsey, J Cole, Flume
The Governors Ball returns to Citi Field in Queens this year, having moved there in 2021 from its original location on Randall’s Island. Known for showcasing some of New York’s best food, Gov Ball will host dozens of vendors for attendees to choose from while they enjoy 60-plus musical performances.
Manchester, UK; 11-12 June 2022
Featuring: Tyler, the Creator; jamie xx; Megan Thee Stallion; 50 cents
The independent Manchester festival returns to Heaton Park this June with the likes of Megan Thee Stallion, Sofia Kourtesis and PinkPantheress. Tyler, the Creator’s headlining show is his first appearance at a UK festival since he was banned from the country in 2015.
Manchester, TN; 16-19 June
Featuring: Porter Robinson, Herbie Hancock, the War on Drugs
Bonnaroo is Creole slang for ‘good stuff’ and this year’s festival will feature plenty of it, including 150 musicians, camping, parades, yoga, a 5K run, a beer festival and more. The line-up is eclectic, from Herbie Hancock to Denzel Curry to Indigo De Souza.
Featuring: Billie Eilish, Kendrick Lamar, Paul McCartney, Diana Ross
The UK mega-festival is back this year after a two-year hiatus (the 2020 and 2021 editions have been canceled due to COVID-19, although last year’s edition has been replaced with a paid live stream). The cast includes the youngest-ever headliner Billie Eilish, the oldest-ever headliner Paul McCartney, plus Phoebe Bridgers, Megan Thee Stallion and Caroline Polachek.
Miami, Florida; 22-24 June
Featuring: Ye, Future, Kendrick Lamar, Playboi Carti
Hip-hop’s most prominent music festival is bringing some big stars to Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium this year – hope Kanye doesn’t miss out on this one! This is the third festival to be headlined by Kendrick Lamar in 2022 and signs are pointing to new music…
80/35 music festival
Des Moines, IA; July 8-9, 2022
Featuring: Father John Misty, Japanese Breakfast, Charli XCX, Jamila Woods
This two-day, non-profit festival seeks to bring diverse music to Des Moines. While the cast includes big names like Father John Misty and Charli XCX, half of the acts are from Iowa or have ties to the state, including Iowa City songwriter Pictoria Vark and Des Moines hip-hop artist B.Well . There will be food and drink, crafts by local artisans, interviews from Iowa Public Radio and more.
Pitchfork Music Festival
Chicago, IL; 15-17 July
Featuring: Mitski, The National, The Roots, Japanese Breakfast
Our Pitchfork Music Festival returns to Chicago’s Union Park. Oscar and Grammy winner Questlove will headline Sunday with The Roots; the National and Mitski top the bill on Friday and Saturday. Other cast members include Cate Le Bon, Toro Y Moi and Arooj Aftab.
Chicago, IL; 28-31 July
Featuring: Metallica, Dua Lipa, J Cole, Doja Cat, Machine Gun Kelly
Thirty-one years after its 1991 debut as a touring festival, Lollapalooza returns once again to Chicago’s Grant Park with nine stages and 170 acts, from Metallica and Lil Baby to WILLOW and Wet Leg.
Newport Jazz Festival
Newport, RI; July 29-31
Featuring: Norah Jones, Esperanza Spalding, BADBADNOTGOOD
The self-proclaimed “grandfather of all music festivals” is taking place as usual at Fort Adams National Park this year. Norah Jones is headlining; other artists include the Vijay Iyer Trio, Makaya McCraven and Rundey.
Fuji Rock Festival
Niigata Prefecture, Japan; 29-31 July
Featuring: Jack White, Halsey, Mura Masa, Snail Mail, Japanese Breakfast
Fuji Rock, Japan’s largest open-air music festival, got its name because it was originally held at the foot of Mount Fuji. Nowadays it takes place at Naeba Ski Resort, about 90 miles outside of Tokyo. While last year’s artists were all domestic, this year’s Fest will feature Halsey, Hiatus Kaiyote and Fontaines DC.
St. Charles, Iowa 4th-7th August
Featuring: Billy Strings, Glass Animals, Phoebe Bridgers, Kurt Vile
Iowa’s largest music festival returns to Saint Charles’ naturally formed Avenue of the Saints Amphitheater this summer, featuring some of indie rock’s biggest names (Phoebe Bridgers) and up-and-coming artists (MUNA), as well as on-site art installations, craft vendors and camping.
Outside the countries
San Francisco; August 5-7, 2022
If you’re looking to spend a hot August afternoon in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, then Outside Lands is for you. Festival-goers can expect a one-of-a-kind experience as the 3-day event hosts 75 music artists alongside Grass Lands, “the first curated cannabis experience at a major American music festival.” (Participants can legally purchase cannabis from certified vendors, but they are not allowed to smoke on the festival site.)
This isn’t a picnic
Pasadena, California; 27-28 August
Also present: The Strokes, LCD Soundsystem, Le Tigre
Kathleen Hanna and her Le Tigre bandmates haven’t played live together in over 12 years, but they will reunite for this new festival from promoter Goldenvoice, the creators of Coachella. Also on the bill: Phoebe Bridgers, Beach House and Wet Leg.
Primavera Sound LA
Los Angeles, California; September 16-18
Featuring: Lorde, Drain Gang, Mitski, Arca
If you can’t make it to the OG Primavera Sound in Barcelona, why not have a taste of the LA experience? Indie kids will love this lineup, which includes everyone from PinkPantheress to Faye Webster and Arctic Monkeys.
Chicago, IL; September 16-18, 2022
Featuring My Chemical Romance, the original Misfits, and more TBA
Punk rock’s biggest music festival – also known as The Warped Tour for Adults – takes place in Chicago’s Douglass Park in September. Known for putting on major reunions – including this year’s My Chemical Romance and the Original Misfits planning a 40th anniversary performance Go among us—Riot Fest features many acts and many late-night shows. Last year, the independent festival held a job fair and offered free tickets to all Chicago residents who live within four blocks of Douglas Park.
Austin city limits
Austin, TX; 7th-9th & 14th-16th October 2022
Austin City Limits will be held over two weekends this year at its usual location in Zilker Park. Enjoy vegan tacos or delicious food from a variety of other vendors while dancing to over 100 artists on eight stages in Texas’ most laid-back city.
all things go
Columbus, MD; October 1, 2022
In 2006 a group of friends started a music blog and named it after a text by Sufjan Stevens; Their project has since blossomed into an outdoor music festival, which this year will be held at the Merriweather Post Pavilion Center in Maryland. Last year’s leaders were HAIM and Charli XCX, so expect nothing less this time.