Because every man needs a plan, and some of us need that plan with a flowchart, we present Where to Take Her: a series that answers a gentleman's most pressing lifestyle questions. Today: the summer music festival. Remember: always go for the VIP tickets, and make good use of StubHub (or worldly equivalent). Want something more global? Try our National bureau.
For a preview of the tunes on tap, check out our Summer Festivals 2015 playlist on Spotify.
Afropunk Fest (August 22-23, Fort Greene)
No official lineup for NYC’s premier multicultural fest yet, but with past old-school performers like D’Angelo and Living Colour as well as upcoming Paris and Tennessee shows featuring up-and-comers like Twin Shadow and Gary Clark Jr., the smart money says it’s gonna be good.
Float Fest (August 28-30, Martindale, TX)
You begin your day by sipping cold beer and basking in the Texas sun as you float the pristine San Marcos River in a large black inner tube. You finish the day by sipping cold beer and enjoying sets from Ghostland Observatory, Local Natives and Phantogram. Be sure to grab that VIP ticket for a climate controlled tent and open bar.
Full Moon Festival (August 1, Governor’s Island)
Celebrating its five year anniversary on Gov. Island’s sandy shores, Full Moon is somehow still NYC’s most unsung summer music jam — a low-key two-stage setup packed with disco and electronic acts that brings out the city’s most pretense-free (and arguably best-looking) crowd. Beware: ATM fees are extortionate, so bring cash.
Groovefest (Sept. 6-13, Dominican Republic)
There’s seeing an all-star lineup of the world’s most of-the-moment electronic musicians (Klangkarussell, Art Department, Dennis Ferrer), and then there’s seeing that all-star lineup at a gorgeous oceanfront villa with luxury spa treatments, beach butlers and a secluded waterfall to bathe beneath. Yeah, no brainer.
Jazz Aspen Snowmass (June 26-July 6, Sept. 4-6, Aspen, CO)
JAS boasts two separate summer sessions featuring everyone from Jimmy Cliff to No Doubt to Chicago. The best part: retiring post-show to a suite at the Hotel Jerome and perhaps sneaking in a dinner at Matsuhisa — not your typical festival digs and fare, to be sure.
Red Bull Music Academy (May 6-30, Citywide)
Half concert series, half music summit, all awesome. This go-round of Red Bull’s annual month-long music bacchanalia boasts a Q&A with George Clinton, a Jamaica-style dancehall party and a record fair in the Brooklyn sunshine. Like music college taught by the coolest possible people.
Trans Pecos (September 24-27, Marfa TX)
Having showcased the likes of Heartless Bastards and Deer Tick, Trans Pecos ain’t not about the music. But half the fun here is staying in El Cosmico’s famed canvas teepees, enjoying some sandlot baseball and Texas BBQ, and digging on Marfa’s eclectic art scene — all with a killer live soundtrack, of course.