Culture

Summer Calling: The 2020 Guide To Music Festivals In The USA

From Coachella to Bonnaroo, we're keeping track of all the best lineups and other exciting details so you can decide which one to set your sights on in 2020
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Winter is coming to a close, and that means the 2020 season of music festivals is fast approaching. So if you haven't decided which of your favourite artists you want to catch on tour this summer (or are looking for more of a full experience), it's not long before you can spend the weekend at a major festival and enjoy several concerts on a single stage.

Of course, the headliners are always a major highlight (remember Beyoncé's Coachella performance in 2018, which literally ended up as a Netflix special?), so expect to see lots of hype around artists like Frank Ocean or Lizzo, but there's a lot to be excited about all the way down the lineup. Whether you like hip-hop, R&B, or pop, it's 2020 and you can find the perfect music festival to fit your taste. From the most popular festivals, like Coachella and Gov Ball, to more niche offerings like the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, see all the best music festivals in 2020 below. 

 

Coachella

When: April 10-12 and 17-19 

Where: Indio, California

What: Lasting for two full weekends in a row, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival draws music fans to the Southern California desert every spring. In addition to its music, Coachella will keep your whole crew entertained all weekend with offerings including a Ferris wheel, a vintage market, and a DIY art studio. If you're feeling adventurous, you can even camp in the desert overnight to get the full experience.

Who: Rage Against the Machine, Travis Scott, and Frank Ocean are headlining, but being one of the biggest music festivals in the US, Coachella has high-profile names across the board. Megan Thee Stallion will usher in a Hot Girl Spring when she plays a set, and some other highlights include Summer Walker, Ari Lennox, Lana Del Rey, Calvin Harris, City Girls, and Brockhampton.

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Governors Ball

When: June 5-7

Where: New York City

What: Similar to Coachella, the Governors Ball (also known as Gov Ball) features an eclectic lineup, making it one of the most hyped music festivals in 2020. Held in the middle of New York City, this is a great option for those who don't want to trek out to the desert (plus, if you have any free time over the weekend, the world is at your fingertips!).

Who: You'll find someone for every taste at Randall's Island Park that weekend: Solange, Alessia Cara, Carly Rae Jepsen, H.E.R., Summer Walker, Miley Cyrus, Vampire Weekend, Tame Impala, Swae Lee, and Stevie Nicks (!) are just a few of those confirmed to take the stage.

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Rolling Loud

When: May 8-10

Where: Miami, Florida

What: Rolling Loud is strictly a hip-hop festival. It features both up-and-coming rappers and legends, making it a must for anyone who's a huge fan of the genre.

Who: This year, A$AP Rocky, Travis Scott, and Post Malone are headlining, so even if you can't make it, you'll surely see people talking about their performances all over the internet. The festival will also highlight the likes of Saweetie, Playboi Carti, Megan Thee Stallion, Young Thug, Big Sean, Lil Uzi Vert, Doja Cat, and City Girls. If you'd rather take a trip to Europe, there is also a Rolling Loud festival happening in Portugal from July 8-10 with A$AP Rocky, Future, and Wiz Khalifa as headliners.

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New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

When: April 23 - May 3

Where: New Orleans, Louisiana

What: Similar to Rolling Loud, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival has a niche focus, as it specialises in indigenous music and culture with roots in Louisiana. A few included genres are blues, R&B, gospel, Afro-Caribbean, folk, Latin, rock, rap, and bluegrass. The festival lasts for 10 days and attracts global sensations and local favourites alike.

Who: Expect to see Lizzo, Lionel Richie, Stevie Nicks, Lenny Kravitz, Erykah Badu, Norah Jones, H.E.R., and Big Freedia among many others you can check out below.

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Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival

When:  June 11-14

Where: Great Stage Park, Tennessee

What: Lasting for four days, Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival offers camping, great food, and art installations. The festival features a wide range of popular genres, and paying homage to its Tennessee location, the first of the four days focuses on the Grand Ole Opry.

Who: Throughout the rest of the weekend, you can catch Lizzo (who's the first woman to headline the music festival), fellow headliners Tool and Tame Impala, and other exciting acts like Miley Cyrus, The 1975, Megan Thee Stallion, Glass Animals, Flume, DaBaby, Nelly, and J.I.D.

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Electric Daisy Carnival

When: May 15 -17

Where: Las Vegas, Nevada

What: Often abbreviated as EDC, Electric Daisy Carnival is one of the largest electronic dance music festivals in 2020 and every year. In addition to music, guests can enjoy immersive art experiences (such as glow-in-the-dark and LED creations), carnival rides, and lots more fun for EDM fans to connect on and off the dance floor. You can camp there, too, and the festival keeps expanding its offerings to entertain its growing audience.

Who: According to the official poster, you are the most important headliner, but some major names set to get you dancing include The Chainsmokers, David Guetta, Zedd, Diplo, Martin Garrix, Tiësto, and Louis the Child.

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Pitchfork Festival

When: July 17-19

Where: Chicago, Illinois

What: Held in Union Park, Pitchfork Music Festival is a celebration of artists and bands from the alt-rock, hip-hop, electronic, and dance music, though it sometimes features artists from other genres, as well. You'll also find refreshments, art, and a record fair, and the festival is spreading around the world, with branches in Paris and Berlin.

Who: This year, headliners are The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Run the Jewels, and the National. Some other exciting acts include Sophie, Tierra Whack, Sharon van Etten, Phoebe Bridgers, Caroline Polachek, and Yaeji.

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Other Festivals With Lineups TBA

Lollapalooza (July 20 - Aug. 2 in Chicago, Illinois)

Electric Zoo (August 28-30 in Randall's Island, New York)

Afropunk (August 2020 in Brooklyn, New York)

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