Indie music festivals offer a unique vibe that you simply can’t find anywhere else. If you like options, an indie music festival has a bunch of genres to choose from, all in one place. Bounce from a reggae set, to an alternative rock set, or to an indie pop set if that’s what your heart desires. As an artist, that gives you tons of opportunities to get booked for one (or more) of these shows.
Here are the best Indie Festivals to check out this year:
Where: Southern California
In the valley of the unbroken horizon, aka Moreno Beach, California, you’ll find majestic mountain ranges, a soothing lake, and rolling hills that come together to create an otherworldly environment. There’s nothing quite like floating in a beautiful lake while your favorite artists play the music you love. There’s also nothing like playing a set and seeing your fans peacefully drift along while jammin’ to your tunes. For any and all inquiries, whether it’s how you can get booked or what type of food they’ll have, email them here.
Where: Dover, Delaware
This fest is the largest music and camping festival on the east coast and always has an amazing lineup. Why not try and get yourself on it! Artists range from rappers to pop icons to underground sensations. This year, artists like Travis Scott, Brockhampton, Death Cab For Cutie, Allison Wonderland, Post Malone and Vampire Weekend are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to just how dope the lineup is every year. In 2017, Bob Dylan even played an amazing set. *cue fangirling* But Firefly is more than just music. It offers a creative environment with gourmet food vendors, hammocks and chill spots galore, and fans from all over the country enjoying every kind of vibe. If you’d like to get in touch with them, contact them here.
Where: Manchester, Tennessee
Keeping up with the trend of diverse lineups, Bonnaroo is one for the books. Everyone has that one friend who never stops talking about how Bonaroo changed their life. And truthfully, I get it. This beautiful festival always keeps positivity and quality at the highest level of importance, and as it grows every year, so do the acts. Bonnaroo is a mix of EDM greats, indie legends and alternative icons all mixed into one jam packed, 3 day event. You’ll find people like The Avett Brothers, Phish, Odesza and sooooo many other amazing artists all playing incredible sets back to back. Not to mention Bonnaroo is also a camping festival known for being a welcoming community for ravers and hippies alike to dance their hearts out all day and all night. Interested in trying to get booked for this one? You can reach out directly here. For questions concerning publicity or press, send your inquiries here instead.
Where: Atlanta, GA
Experience some good ole southern fun in Atlanta, GA for this one. Shaky Knees has more than 60 bands playing at this event each year, so if you stay on top of this one, the odds are in your favor. Some artists you’ll find jammin’ out on these stages include Tame Impala, Tash Sultana, Cage The Elephant, Beck and more. The alternative rock gods really came through when they created Shaky Knees. Test your luck and see if you can finesse your way into this one by hitting them up here.
Where: Chicago, IL
This year will be Pitchfork Music Festival’s 14th year going strong. Over 3 days, this fest presents over 40 artists in Chicago’s Union Park. This one sets itself apart from a lot of other festivals by offering a lot more than just the concerts. They’ve got a Record Fair where you can shop for records in between sets, a Renegade Craft Fair that’s the world’s largest curated showcase of independent craft and design, a Poster Fair that offers tons of prints by your favorite artists, a Book Fort, and even a Kid’s Zone for the little ones. (Pitchfork loves tha kidz.) Get in touch with them here.
Where: San Francisco, California
Over the past decade, Outside Lands has been a staple event in the Bay area and there’s no sign of them stopping now. Outside Lands transforms the beautiful woods of Golden Gate Park into the ultimate wonderland of great music, amazing food and an environment like no other. This fest is essentially a big, grassy party. Outside Lands really utilizes the tall, towering trees of the park to accentuate a super foresty, artsy vibe. The music is a mix of a bunch of different genres from alternative rock to laid-back indie to rap. If all this seems like a perfect fit, you can reach out to get more info here.
Where: Miami, Florida
Among the tropical landscape of historic Virginia Key Beach Park lies a pocket of paradise also known as HOC fest. Virginia Key Beach Park is the perfect spot to sit back and enjoy the Florida vibes at this laid back fest. Stroll along the stretch of pristine beach and clear blue waters as you listen to artists like Foster the People, Chromeo, M.I.A, Little Dragon and more. If you’re into more intimate settings for festivals, this one is your best choice of any of the other fests mentioned in this article. Get in touch with them here.
Where: Napa Valley, California
Bruno Mars called this fest “the fancy Coachella” and he’s not far off. While it may not be as big as Coachella, this festival has a lot to offer. Bottle Rock is known for their supply of extensive variations of wines and craft beers from all around Napa Valley. You’ll find a lot of families at this one, as it’s open to all ages. This years lineup was jam packed full of great artists like Logic, Imagine Dragons, OneRepublic, Sylvan Esso, Flogging Molly and many others. Last year, attendees even got lucky enough to catch Neil Young perform a legendary set. Think you’re ready for a boujie festival like this one? For all inquiries, go here.
Where: West Riverfront Park, Detroit
This festival hosts both underground and established artists alike. The boutique-y feeling festival prioritizes quality over quantity with not only the artists they choose to showcase, but the additional events they hold all around the festival. Along with seeing artists like Tame Impala, Vampire Weekend, Ella Mai and Kali Uchis, you’ll find a bunch of activities spread throughout the park. Beyond the music, Mo Pop has a plethora of restaurants with amazing food and drink options, an arcade pop-up with authentic arcade games, a Craft Bazaar, and a bunch of other fun activities to experience while you’re there. It’s impossible to stand still with all the stuff they’ve got going on at this one. For more info, reach out here.
Whether you’re looking for a huge festival with thousands of fans or a chill ambiance in an intimate setting, at least one of these festivals has something perfect for you. Check our one or all of these festivals to see which fits your vibe.
Have you played at a festival? How was it? Let us know in the comments below!