Got the winter doldrums? Research shows that when people have something to look forward to, their outlook improves immediately. This is all the excuse we need to start planning for 2018’s biggest music festivals. The hottest tickets sell out fast, so don’t sleep on these big events.
Ultra Music Festival (Miami)
Spring break means the Ultra Music Festival, a chance for fun in the sun for EDM fans from just about everywhere. The festival is held on the streets of downtown Miami, with DJs and rappers providing the vibe. 2017’s headliners were Major Lazer, Ice Cube, and The prodigy.
: 23-25 March 2018, Miami, Florida
Sasquatch! Music Festival (George, WA)
You’ll know summer is on the way when you arrive at Sasquatch! on Memorial Day Weekend, held in remote George, Washington. The festival is held at the Gorge Amphiteather, a perfect venue for artists like Chance the Rapper, The Shins, Twenty One Pilots, LCD Soundsystem and more. The indie rock bands and their fans like to camp on site.
Dates: 25-27 May 2018, George, Washington
Coachella (Indio, California)
Coachella is always among the cream of the crop for festivals and it appears on many music fans’ “must do before I die” list. For many of you, that means 2018 is your year. The headliner is Beyonce. Enough said.
Dates: 13–15; 20–22 April 2018, Indio, California
Electric Daisy Carnival (Las Vegas)
The EDM experience takes on new dimension at the popular Electric Daisy events, where the music has co-billing with neon decorations and walking performers. Escape the mundane with musicians like 2017 headliners Martin Garrix, Axwell ^ Ingrosso, Tiësto, and Major Lazer.
Dates: 18–20 May 2018, Las Vegas, Nevada
People love to talk about the hot, messy Burning Man, but this year you could up to hit up Denmark for the wild party that is Roskilde, with its naked runs and late night party scene. The history behind this great festival brings out the best bands every year, including Justice, Arcade Fire, Foo Fighters and more.
Date: 30 June – 7 July 2018, Roskilde, Denmark
Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival (Tennessee)
The four-day Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival has strayed from its original roots in folk and jam bands to include a wide variety of styles and genres. The festival is held on a 700-acre farm in Manchester, Tennesssee. Despite drawing massive acts like The Weekend, U2 and Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Bonnaroo still has the feel of its early Phish-inspired ethic.
Dates: 7–10 June 2018, Great Stage Park, Tennessee
Awakenings Festival (Netherlands)
Enjoy the countryside of the Netherlands for this amazing venue, which features dance music at its best. Past headliners included Maceo Plex, Nina Kraviz, Adam Beyer, and Chris Liebing.
Dates: 30 June – 1 July 2018, Spaarnwoude, Netherlands
Although the annual Chicago Lollapalooza event in Chicago is all that remains of alt-rocks seminal summer tour, it’s about more than just nostalgia. The event has turned into one of the best events of summer, encompassing dance, music, comedy, arts and crafts. Get tickets now; the Grant Park institution sells out fast. Last year’s headliners were Chance the Rapper, The Killers, Muse, and Arcade Fire.
Dates: 2-5 August 2018, Grant Park, Chicago
Electric Zoo (Randall’s Island)
Calling all EDM lovers: Electric Zoo is fast becoming EDM’s most visionary American festival. With 2017 sets by Galantis, DJ Snake, Above & Beyond and deadmau5, you can be sure that 2018 will draw on similar artists. The event is held on Randall’s Island Park, a natural oasis in a sea of urbanity.
Dates: September 2018, Randall’s Island, New York
No EDM fan’s bucket list is complete without Tomorrowland, the biggest electronic music celebration anywhere. The festival never fails to land the hottest artists, such as Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Armin van Buuren ,Martin Garrix, and Alesso.
Dates: July 2018, Boom, Belgium
Afropunk Fest (Brooklyn)
Afropunk Fest celebrates black culture within the punk and alternative music scenes, drawing great artists from around the world. 2017’s headliners including Gary Clark JR, Michael Kiwanuka, Soul II Soul, and Kaytranada. Genres include rap, punk, metal, and world.
Dates: 25-26 August 2018, Brooklyn
Download Festival (Derby)
Heavy metal still exists and so does its first and oldest festival, Download. The festival is still a major destination for bands from all over the world, both old and new. Last year’s headliners included System of a Down, Biffy Clyro, Aerosmith, and Slayer.
Dates: 8-10 June 2018, Derby, UK