The Best of the Big Spring 2015 Music Festivals
The clocks have sprung forward, the flowers are giving us allergies and you still haven’t filed your taxes, which can only mean one thing: Spring is here. With that comes the best and biggest spring music fests of 2015, and although Richard Ashcroft thinks that “nostalgia is suffocating festivals,” there is still a warm blanket of good new music to balance out the old timers. Have a look at some of the huge acts of the spring festival season.
Coachella (Indio, CA)
When: April 10-12, 17-19
If you’re wondering if Coachella is worth it, let the headliners AC/DC, Drake, Tame Impala, and The War on Drugs help you decide. They’ll be joined by singer/songwriter acts like Jack White, Ryan Adams and Father John Misty, as well as European guests Kasabian and alt-J. And don’t forget about the myriad of trendy electronic music, including Flying Lotus, Tycho and Ghostface Killah.
New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (New Orleans, LA)
When: April 24-26, May 1-3
An eclectic bill for a place such as New Orleans highlights Elton John, The Who and Jimmy Buffett as headlining acts with resurfacing acts like No Doubt, Chicago and Widespread Panic to boot. Other noteworthy acts include Ryan Adams, Steve Winwood, Wilco, Keith Urban and a surprising duo of Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga.
Beale Street Music Festival (Memphis, TN)
When: May 1-3
Classics like John Fogerty, Wilco and Pixies are set to perform, along with ’90s sensations The Flaming Lips and Lenny Kravitz. If that’s not enough, wrap your head around the idea of seeing Slash, as well as Ryan Adams, Band of Horses and The Avett Brothers all in the same weekend.
Rock in Rio USA (Las Vegas, NV)
When: May 8-9, 15-16
Vegas offers few healthy things, but a little eccentric Bruno Mars, Ed Sheeran and Sam Smith could go a long way, bringing their solo acts to the sweaty stages of the desert. Oldies (but goodies) will also appear, including the familiar faces of No Doubt, Deftones and Linkin Park. Other big music acts will come in the form of Foster the People, Metallica and Empire of the Sun. Why anyone would pay $300 to be in Las Vegas is beyond us, but if you’re going to do it anyway, this is the time to go.
Big Guava Music Festival (Tampa, FL)
When: May 8-9
Pulling in a fun mix of musicians, Tampa’s Big Guava will fill the yard with fans of The Strokes, Pixies, Passion Pit, Cold War Kids and TV on the Radio. Songwriter acts include Ryan Adams, James Blake and Jenny Lewis, along with the impressively innovative, one-man electronic show, Robert Delong. This is not to be missed for such an affordable price.
Shaky Knees Music Festival (Atlanta, GA)
When: May 8-10
Only a few years into the festival scene, Shaky Knees is back for Atlanta so you can enjoy new music from Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Ryan Adams and Tame Impala. Pretty boy bands like The Strokes, The Kooks and The Avett Brothers will also be in your company with pretty hair and charming music, along with Old Crow Medicine Show, Minus the Bear, Interpol and a surprising appearance from Spiritualized.
Hangout Music Fest (Gulf Shores, AL)
When: May 15-17
Heavy on songwriters this year is the Gulfs Hangout Fest, inviting the likes of Beck and new solo acts with a solid back-up band, St. Lucia and Father John Misty. The Foo Fighters will take you down their sonic highway, in addition to blown-up indie bands Cold War Kids, Grizfolk and My Morning Jacket. And if you need to let your ears bleed out while you drown on acid and mushrooms, Skrillex, Phantogram and Odesza will be the soundtrack of your dehydration as they turn things up at this year’s Hangout.
Rock on the Range (Columbus, OH)
When: May 15-17
Here’s a little bit of flavor for you hard rockers out there, as Rock on the Range will host big name headbangers like Godsmack, Marilyn Manson, Slash, Slipknot and Judas Priest. Haven’t shed enough blood and sweat? How about Linkin Park, Papa Roach, Rise Against and Scott Weiland And The Wildabouts as well?
Boston Calling Music Festival (Boston, MA)
When: May 22-24
A quick spring weekend in Boston will bring Tame Impala, Beck and Pixies to your doorstep, along with My Morning Jacket, Ben Harper and Tenacious D. They won’t actually be coming to your home, although they could if they wanted to. Have plenty of groceries in the fridge come late May.
Sasquatch! (George, WA)
When: May 22-25
This year’s Gorge festival is heavy on the singer-songwriters as Sasquatch! invites Father John Misty, James Blake, Robert Plant, Ryan Adams and Lana del Rey to perform. New music will rise from headliners Modest Mouse, Tame Impala, Of Monsters and Men and The War on Drugs. If that lineup and the view alone aren’t enough, you might want to consider abandoning civilization and becoming one with The Gorge.
Bottlerock (Napa, CA)
When: May 29-31
Here are a few names you might – doubtful – recognize: Robert Plant, Snoop Dogg, No Doubt. They’ll be running the stage at this year’s Bottlerock in Napa, along with Scott Weiland with his new band, The Wildabouts. Small but sturdy acts like Passion Pit, Portugal the Man and The Chris Robinson Brotherhood are set to show, as well as up-and-comers Grizfolk, Cage the Elephant, American Authors and Foster the People, not to mention California locals, The Mowglis and The Record Company. Be there and drink way too much wine while you sweat.