Summer music festivals worth the drive and money

BonnarooTennessee’s own music festival is one of the biggest and best in the Southeast. Located on a 700-acre farm in Manchester, this festival is like nothing else. Every year, this shindig brings some of the biggest names in music and comedy and this year is no different.
Major performances this year include Dave Matthews Band, Jay-Z, Stevie Wonder, Kings of Leon, Conan O’Brien, Weezer, Tenacious D, and The Flaming Lips performing Dark Side of the Moon featuring Stardeath and White Dwarfs.
But, there are quite a few lesser known bands going that are worth your time. Jack White’s side project, The Dead Weather, is on the schedule. She & Him are going to be in attendence hot on the heels of their newest offering, “Volume Two.” And, for you electronica fans, Deadmau5 and Bassnectar are featured. You can find the compelte line-up at Bannaroo’s website.
With all these great names, you should already be buying your ticket to Bonnaroo. But, if you need another reason, here you go. The whole Bonnaroo experience is like nothing else. From camping with friends to living out of your car for four days, you won’t find anything else like this, this close to Tech.
Which is another positive of this festival, it’s only about an hour and change drive from Tech. You don’t have to make too big of a commitment to get there.
Even if you aren’t the camping type, plenty of hotels within driving distance are there at your service. Once the festival gets underway, traffic generally dies down quite a bit, making car travel to the site very easy.

When: June 10 – 13
Where: Manchester, TN


This one will require some driving, but Sasquatch! is set in one of the most scenic venues in the world. You should find some like-minded friends and pack up the car. You’re in college after all, go see the world!
Despite the drive, this lineup is worth the trip: My Morning Jacket, Vampire Weekend, The National, Midlake, The xx, MGMT, Passion Pit, Broken Social Scene, Wale, Deadmau5, Portugal, The Man, and The Temper Trap. And, that’s just to name some of the bigger shows going on.

When: May 29 – 31
Where: Quincy, WA

Austin City Limits

Taking its name from the legendary PBS series, Austin City Limits Music Festival is one of the premier fests in the country.
Although the lineup has yet to released, May 18 is the announcement date, ACLMF didn’t get the ‘premier’ tag for being lame. Past headliners included Kings of Leon, Pearl Jam, Bob Dylan, Wilco, The Killers, and Arctic Monkeys.
So, when the line up is announced, you can trust that ACLMF will be rocking. It is a moderate drive but it’s highly recommended.

When: October 8 – 10
Where: Austin, TX


Summerfest boasts that it’s the largest music festival in the world and with 700 bands, spanning 11 days, it’s hard to argue.
Although the festival lasts 11 days, you can pick and choose when you go with tickets that cost only $15 each day. Plus, when you aren’t at shows, you’re in Milwaukee, so, college chums, I trust you can find something to do there.
Here are some acts you should care about: RUSH, Carrie Underwood, The Bravery, The Roots, Modest Mouse, and 311.

When: June 24 – July 4
Where: Milwaukee, WI


Located in the heart of Chicago, Lollapalooza is a historic summer music festival that takes place in Grant Park. The festival always makes a strong showing, but this year, Lollapalooza is going to tear down Grant Park again with a lineup that has something for everyone.
Lollapalooza’s headliners this year include Soundgarden, Green Day, Lady Gaga, Arcade Fire, The Strokes, Phoenix, MGMT, and The Black Keys. In addition, the festival offers several other acts.
Yeasayer will be attending and performing tracks off their newest album, Odd Blood. Another name that’s big on the indie charts, Grizzly Bear, known for their landmark 2009 album, Veckatimist, will be at the festival. And, for you fans of gypsy-punk fusion, Gogol Bordello will be there most likely playing tunes from their new album Trans-Continental Hustle, which drops this Tuesday.
In addition to a killer lineup, the festival is in the great city of Chicago, which is always worth a visit whether Lollapalooza is going on or not. You can always find something to do in this city in between bands.
This festival is designed more for people staying in hotels rather than camping. If all the hotels near are too enpensive or totally booked, the Metro, Chicago’s train system servicing as far away as Milwaukee, has a station near Grant Park for easy access. Plus, the system usually offers special deals for students during Lollapalooza weekend for the more spend thrift music junkies.

When: August 6 – 8
Where: Chicago, IL