Over 32 million in the USA attend music festivals each year, and this number continues to grow. There are more music festivals today than ever before catering to all different types of musical genres. Chances are, there's a music festival close to you as well, so there's no need to hop in your car to go on a road trip to rural Tennessee! Below is our list of the 11 best music festivals of 2020.
When: March 16-22, 2020
Where: Austin, TX
Tickets: $825 - $1,650
South By Southwest (or SXSW) brings together the global music industry, film, and technology professionals for an incredible 7 days of music, speakers, and performances. SXSW began in 1987 and has continued to grow and attract new artists and attendees every year. If there's one festival on this list to attend, SXSW is it.
When: March 20 - 22, 2020
Where: Miami, FL
Tickets: $399 - $1,499
Ultra Music Festival is a 3 day outdoor electronic music festival, hosted at Bayfront Park in downtown Miami, FL.The festival was founded in 1999 as a one day festival, before expanding to three days in 2011. If you're an electronic music fan, Ultra Music Festival is not to be missed!
When: April 10-12 and April 17-19, 2020
Where: Indio, CA
Tickets: $429 - $999
Coachella is an annual music and arts festival held in beautiful, sunny California. Over 250,000 people attend every year. The festival dates back to 1993, when Pearl Jam performed at the Empire Polo Club in protest of fees being charged for tickets by TicketMaster. The inaugural show was held on October 9-10 in 1999 and featured headliners such as Beck, Tool, and Rage Against the Machine.
When: May 1 - 3, 2020
Where: Atlanta, GA
Tickets: $179 - $595
Shaky Knees, begun in 2013 as a two day festival, and has since expanded to a three day festival held annually in Atlanta, Georgia. Shaky Knees features artists from around the world, as well as smaller, regional acts. The primary genres are Indie Rock, Alternative Rock, Indie Folk, and Country. The 2020 headliners are The Black Keys, The Smashing Pumpkins, and The Strokes.
When: May 22 - 24, 2020
Where: Allston, MA
Tickets: $249 - $599
Over 40,000 people pack into the Harvard Athletic Complex every year to hear incredible bands. This years headliners include Red Hot Chili Peppers, Foo Fighters, and Rage Against the Machine. Boston Calling has been attracting music fans since 2013, originally debuting at City Hall Plaza in Boston as a two-day event before moving to the Harvard Athletic Complex. Spend your memorial day weekend at Boston Calling!
When: June 4 - 7, 2020
Where: Nashville, TN
Tickets: $235 - $500
The CMA Music Festival is a four-day festival centered on, you guessed it, country music. Hosted every year in Nashville, TN by the Country Music Association, if you're a country music fan, this festival is not to be missed. This is also one of the oldest festivals on this list, having begun in 1972 as Fan Fair, and attracts country fans from all 50 states and 41 different countries.
When: June 11 - 14, 2020
Where: Manchester, TN
Tickets: $319 - $825+
Bonnaroo originally started in 2002 and attracts over 80,000 attendees every year. Held at a 650-acre farm in Manchester, Tennessee, Bonnaroo features performances starting at noon and playing until 3:00am or later, across all types of genres like hip hop, country, classic rock, indie rock, and many more. 2020 Headliners include Tool, Miley Cyrus, Lana Del Rey, Tenacious D, Lizzo, and more.
When: July 30 - Aug 2, 2020
Where: Chicago, IL
Tickets: $130 - $4,200
Lollapalooza is one of the oldest festivals on this list (started in 1991), and also one of the largest, with over 160,000 concert goers in attendance each year. Tickets sell out extremely quickly each year, so be sure to get yours as soon as possible. 2020 Headliners include Ariana Grande, Childish Gambino, Twenty One Pilots, The Strokes, and more.
When: June 5 - 7, 2020
Where: Randall's Island, NYC
Tickets: $275 - $705
Governors ball launched in 2011 and features a wide variety of genres and styles of music, including pop, hip-hop, rock, electronic, and more. Annual attendance is around 150,000. Headliners in 2020 include Flume, Tame Impala, Missy Elliott, and many more.
When: July 31 - August 2, 2020
Where: Montreal, Quebec
Tickets: $325 - $1,250
Osheaga is a multi-day festival, focused on indie music, which began in 2006. It is also one of the largest annual music festivals in Canada, held in Montreal at Parc Jean-Drapeau. Osheaga's goal is to find the best local and nationally emerging talent and to provide them the opportunity to play alongside some of the biggest international artists like Coldplay, The Killers, and many more. In 2020, the headliners are Foo Fighters, Lizzo, and Kendrick Lamar.
When: September 4 - 6, 2020
Where: Randall's Island, NYC
Tickets: $79 - $899
Electric Zoo began in 2009, just two yeras before Governor's Ball. Unlike Governor's Ball, Electric Zoo is an electronic music festival, typically held on or around the labor day weekend in September. Over 100 electronic artists from multiple countries come together to host over 65,000 attendees each year. If you're a fan of Electronic music, this is one event you shouldn't miss!
When: October 2-4 and October 9 - 11, 2020
Where: Austin, TX
Tickets: $105 - $3,600
Austin City Limits, an annual music festival held on two consecutive weekends, dates back to 2002. Not to be confused with the PBS series by the same name, Austin City Limits music festival runs from 10am to 10pm and features artists across multiple genres including Rock, Indie, Country, Folk, Hip-hop, and Electronic. Over 450,000 people attend each year. Between Austin City Limits and SXSW, Austin is the premier destination for fans of live music throughout the entire year.
When: June 18 - 21
Where: The Woodlands, Dover, DE
Tickets: $299 - $699
Firefly music festival is one of the newest festivals on this list, held at the Dover International Speedway in Dover, Delaware. Over 100 artists attend each year, performing across 7 stages across multiple genres. Between 60,000 and 90,000 people attend every year, and has featured acts such as Paul McCartney, Eminem, and The Arctic Monkeys. In 2020, Blink 182, Rage Against the Machine, Khalid, Billie Elish, and more are headlining.
Regardless of where you live or what music genres you prefer, going to a music festival is always an exciting experience. Be sure to mark the dates on your calendar and get tickets early, as many festivals will sell out, and some may offer early bird discounts if you get your tickets sooner rather than later. Most festivals occur on weekends, roughly around the same time each year, so be sure to set yourself a reminder if you missed this years festival! Most of the festival websites allow you to signup for email alerts to be reminded when tickets go on sale.