As always, an insane roster of talent graces music festival stages in and around the City of Angels this summer. This isn’t a complete surprise, given this iconic town’s unofficial status as the entertainment capital of the world, but with that in mind get out your calendars and make plans for at least one or two of the most enticing musical festivals in the nation. The following festivals are five of the best that Los Angeles has to have offer.
Date: May 21-25, 2015
Beyond being an enchanting festival serving top rate music and other artistic offerings served over Memorial Day Weekend, Lightning In A Bottle (LIB) is a full-blown, mind/body experience exploring and addressing all kinds of pertinent life subjects, such as sustainability and the local arts. The center of this gathering’s venue has been dedicated as The Temple of Consciousness where so-called wisdom keepers and their colleagues get festival-goers to “open their heart” in the name of the greater good of this planet. Expect dozens of acts from near and far to bring their talent to the stage at LIB, including everyone from Shipwreck to Sirios, Natalya to Dela, and Flume to Panda Bear. Note that this particular festival is kid-friendly, so include yours if you can.
700 Exposition Park Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90037
Date: Aug. 22-23, 2015
So much talent is packed into these two days in late August, that it is hard to imagine this music festival actually exists. Especially handy since the noteworthy scene happens right here in Los Angeles, FYF draws extreme numbers of keen citizens from this part of the Southland who want to join in as everyone from Frank Ocean to Morrissey to Death Grips to FKA Twigs (will “Twilight” star fiancée Robert Pattinson be there to support?) represent. To be sure, this is a winner of a place to rendezvous, all in the name of music. The festival was conceived by a then 18-year-old Sean Carlson, who apparently was a little bored and needed to come up with a plan for his summer, which he did with this festival…and here we are a decade later.
Date: May 14-17, 2015
If your summer fun starts early, this is the festival for you. Bands from Nevada City, California (The Polish Ambassador) to Down Under in Australia (Blue King Brown) are headlining this internationally oriented event held in the Southern California desert not far from where renowned Coachella took place earlier this spring. Now in its 13th year, this Joshua Tree-based happening is aimed at a family audience, with the little ones given their own agenda with experiences like yoga classes and mural painting on the schedule during the day, and a unique astronomy theater on the schedule at night. Camping is the best option for overnight stays as a way not to miss out on a minute of the fun, which can include a family recording of your own tribe’s music manifested on the premises at the Roaming Sounds Recording Studio.
Date: Aug. 1-2, 2015
If you’re into current, eclectic music, this adult-oriented festival delivers. Big Gigantic, Zeds Dead, Odesza, Porter Robinson and The Chemical Brothers are just a handful of acts preparing to hit the stage at Hard Summer. Open to those 18 and older, the goings-on attract hard core fans who aren’t afraid to show their appreciation in any number of wacky ways. Note that this hot and heavy music festival has a no camping policy, but lockers, complete with cell phone charging stations, are provided.
Del Mar Racetrack and Fairgrounds
2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd.
Del Mar, CA 92014
Date: Sept. 18-20, 2015
Make summer last longer than Labor Day by heading down to Del Mar to attend KAABOO. This picturesque venue on the Pacific, complete with seven stages, is refreshing and the line-up is tantalizing. With dozens of acts on the roster including Foster the People, Los Lobos, The Killers, The Roots, Zac Brown Band, Counting Crows, and No Doubt. In addition to the talent on stage, expect all kinds of other endeavors, like comedy performances and contemporary art, to be part of your fun-filled weekend.
Related: 5 Must-Visit Live Music Venues In LA
Los Angeles freelance travel writer Jane Lasky, contributes to publications such as Travel + Leisure, Vogue and Esquire. Her weekly sojourning column ran in 40 newspapers for 20 years. Jane is anything but an accidental tourist and always travels with her pillow. Check out her articles on Examiner.com.