Where to Take Her
The best summer music fests. For both of you.
Because every man needs a plan, and some of us need that plan with pretty pictures, we present Where to Take Her: a series that answers a gentleman’s most pressing lifestyle questions and recurs whenever we get around to it. Today: the summer music festival edition. Remember: always go for the VIP tickets, make good use of StubHub, and check out our Spotify playlists to keep up on all the bands you’re going to see.
Bonnaroo (June 12-15, Manchester, TN) Camping. Funky dancer contests. Super late-night jams. A “clean vibes” trading post. It’s a bit Burning Man, but the lineup makes up for it. You and your lady can enjoy Lionel Richie, Elton John, Skrillex and Frank Ocean. A different artist for every mood.
BottleRock Napa (May 30-June 1, Napa Valley) Easily the most relaxed, romantic getaway for music, Bottlerock features 60 bands (veering toward classic acts like The Cure and Weezer, with a few outliers like TV on the Radio and Deerhunters), dozens of Napa vineyards and … Outkast!
Capitol Hill Block Party (July 25-27, Seattle, WA) The summer fest for those who hate hot weather. A mix of indoor and outdoor, the Block Party has the year’s most eclectic line-up (Chromeo, Matt and Kim, Tanlines, A$AP Rocky) and a new fave, The War on Drugs. All should provide you with some hazy chills.
Electric Daisy Carnival/EDC (May 24-25, New York and June 20-22, Las Vegas) An EDM dance line-up that runs the gamut from classic (Carl Cox, John Digweed) to pop (Calvin Harris) to the underground (Dusky, Tale of Us). Plus, helicopter transport and a VIP Ferris Wheel for you Vegas big spenders.
Governors Ball (June 6-8, New York, NY), Firefly (June 19-22, Dover, DE), Summerfest (June 25-29, July 1-6, Milwaukee, WI), Lollapalooza (Aug. 1-3, Chicago, IL) Just a few of your many, many chances to see Outkast this summer (But be warned: “They had zero chemistry … totally phoned it in,” according to one Coachella attendee/InsideHook editor). Good news: all these fests feature an abundance of alternative/indie faves, from Foo Fighters to Jack White.
Newport Folk Festival (July 25-27, Newport, RI) Abutting Newport Harbor, this classy and secretly hip fest is not really folk: it’s geared toward adults who like good music and hot showers (no on-site camping, FYI) . Ryan Adams, Band of Horses, Jeff Tweedy, Conor Oberst, Lucero and more.
Outside Lands (Aug. 8-10, San Francisco, CA) A diverse mix of A-listers (Kanye West, The Killers, Tom Petty) and up-and-comers (Warpaint, Dum Dum Girls) in beautiful Golden Gate Park. Also: very eco-friendly, lots of vegan options, and plenty of art and wine.
Pitchfork (July 18-20, Chicago, IL) Sure, Pitchfork the publication is occasionally insufferable, but props to their affordable ($60/day), forward-thinking fest, one where Danny Brown rubs elbows/speakers with Cloud Nothings and Beck. Totally an 8.3.
Vans Warped Tour (June 14-Aug. 3, Nationwide) What are the kids listening to? Complex prog rock (Of Mice and Men), ’90s ska-punk (Less Than Jake), aggressive New Jack swing (Bad Rabbits) and singalong post-punk (Plague Vendor). And also: a lot of crap. But there’s a beer tent with NO line.
Wakarusa (June 5-8, Ozark, AR) More mellow groove than dance, this camping festival — sorry, “pilgrimage” as they call it — mixes psychedelic rock faves (The Flaming Lips) with jammy/electronic vibes (Infected Mushroom, STS9).
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