No New Notifications

Six Alternatives to Popular Summer Music Festivals

BY: Dan Caffrey | May 29, 2015
Six Alternatives to Popular Summer Music Festivals

Even if you have $275 to shell out for Lollapalooza, you’re flat out of luck—the festival sold out back in March, less than 45 minutes after passes went on sale. But don’t worry. If you’re looking for summer music festivals that still have tickets available (and won’t break your bank), we’ve got six.

KS 107.5 Summer Jam

Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre | Englewood, CO

Trey Songz

Date: June 12 
Lineup: Tech N9ne, Trey Songz, Kid Ink, Childish Gambino, and more
Tickets: starting at $29.50 (also available via Groupon
Why You Should Go: Pretty much every hip-hop station hosts its own festival during the summer. KS 107.5, however, stands out by covering an especially diverse amount of ground within the genre, from motor-mouthed icon Tech N9ne to alternative rapper (and actor) Childish Gambino.

Chicago Blues Festival

Grant Park | Chicago, IL

Chicago Blues Festival  guitar player

Dates: June 12–14 
Lineup: Zora Young, Buddy Guy, Clarence Carter, Taj Mahal Trio, and more
Tickets: Free 
Why You Should Go: Though it’s the largest of Chicago’s music festivals (and the largest free blues festival in the world), Blues Fest tends to be much less chaotic than Lollapalooza. You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who wants to mosh, crowd surf, or start a fight during Buddy Guy’s laidback headlining set on Saturday.

Mamby On the Beach

Oakwood Beach | Chicago, IL

Dates: July 11–12 
Lineup: Passion Pit, Empire of the Sun, Phantogram, Röyksopp, and more
Tickets: $59+ (also available via Groupon
Why You Should Go: Plenty of summer festivals veer toward EDM chaos, but Mamby On the Beach tends to favor synth pop. As far as electronic music goes, it’s a sweet spot that’s danceable without overwhelming your senses. Oh, did we mention this is on the beach?

Festival Deals

The Forecastle Festival

Waterfront Park | Louisville, KY

Forecastle Festival Beach House

Dates: July 17–19 
Lineup: Sam Smith, My Morning Jacket, Widespread Panic, Modest Mouse, and more
Tickets: Starting at $74.50. VIP and travel packages also available here
Why You Should Go: Because it’s the closest you’ll get to the “anything goes” lineups of Lollapalooza and Coachella, while still being significantly less expensive than both. This year features everything from the gospel pop of Sam Smith to the cosmic roots rock of Louisville heroes My Morning Jacket. Expect an ecstatic crowd for the latter’s hometown show.

Delaware Junction

Harrington Fields | Harrington, DE

Toby Keith Delaware Junction

Dates: August 14–16 
Lineup: Toby Keith, Florida Georgia Line, Jason Aldean, Lee Brice, and more
Tickets: $199 for three-day passes. Camping and VIP packages also available here
Why You Should Go: If you’re aching to live out the rugged stories told in songs by mainstream country acts such as Toby Keith and Jason Aldean, you can do so right at the festival by camping under the stars of verdant Harrington Fields.

Get Shamrocked Irish Music Festival

Town Square Park | Murrieta, CA

Get Shamrocked Irish Music Festival

Dates: September 18–20 
Lineup: Flatfoot 56, Gaelic Storm, The Young Dubliners, The Mahones, and more
Tickets: starting at $35 (also available via Groupon
Why You Should Go: The minds behind Get Shamrocked refer to it as “The Irish Coachella,” and for good reason. The lineup reads like a who’s who of Celtic rock, celebrating traditional Irish acts such as Gaelic Storm as well as the punk fervor of Flatfoot 56.

Concert Tickets

Images: Trey Songz (30) by Mikey Hennesy, Chicago Blues Festival by gingerbydesign, and Beach House Panorama by, all under CC BY 2.0.

Guide Staff Writer
BY: Dan Caffrey
Guide Staff Writer