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VOL. 37 | NO. 14 | Friday, April 05, 2013
A look at 6 successful new summer music festivals
NASHVILLE (AP) - Grace Potter & The Nocturnals know a little something about summer festivals after using the circuit to build their following.
So when they started their own festival, Grand Point North Festival in Vermont, they had a lot of specific ideas.
"It's significantly smaller than most festivals and that's intentional," Potter said. "We also built the dream of Grand Point North around really showcasing the city of Burlington, Vt., because that's the other character in the play. So many of my favorite festivals do that."
America's festival scene is no longer just the big four - Coachella, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits.
Grand Point North is one of several new festivals - some artist curated - that are thriving as the culture spreads across America.
Each has its own personality.
For Potter and her band, it's about recreating the sense of discovery they always feel when they play up to 10 fes tivals a year.
"When I go to a festival I don't look at the lineup," Potter said. "I literally just wander around and discover new bands. That's always been my goal because I like to be pleasantly surprised. The seeker in me always appreciates seeing something from the outside."
Here's a peek at a summer six pack of new festivals the seeker in you might want to check out:
- Grand Point North Festival, Sept. 13-14: Potter and her band's festival is inspired by fellow Vermont residents Phish, whose small city-sized festivals could pop up anywhere and include anyone. In its first year the festival drew bands like The Avett Brothers, Dr. Dog and the Carolina Chocolate Drops. Lineup highlights: To be announced.
- Orion Music and More, June 8-9: The members of Metallica mean it when they say music and more. Last year, the festival included a classic car exhibit, the Metallica museum and guitarist Kirk Hammett's horror movie memorabilia collections. Oh, and a n eclectic lineup of bands. This year's festival will be held on Detroit's Belle Isle. Lineup highlights: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rise Against, Bassnectar and a reunited Infectious Grooves will join Metallica.
- Solid Sound Festival, June 21-23: This festival at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art reflects curator Wilco's musical sensibilities. There's a definite improv feel to some of the acts and the museum setting lends a certain versatility that other festivals don't have. Lineup highlights: Neko Case, Low, Medeski, Martin & Wood, Yo La Tengo and White Denim with Wilco and several side projects.
- Hangout Music Festival, May 17-19: One of the faster growing new festivals, the beach setting in Gulf Shores, Ala., and relatively small crowds - tickets are capped at 35,000 - offer a different kind of vibe than most. Fans can step out of condos and directly into the festival, which is held surf side. Lineup highlights: Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, K ings of Leon, Stevie Wonder and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis.
- Outside Lands Festival, Aug. 9-11: The rapidly growing festival reflects San Francisco culture and has been held in the scenic Golden Gate Park since its inception in 2008. It draws as many as 60,000 people and has grown into a regular stop on the festival circuit. Lineup highlights: To be announced April 16.
- Governors Ball Music Festival, June 7-9: Just two years old and housed on Randall's Island in New York City, Governors Ball already sports a huge lineup and like Outside Lands is becoming a destination for many of music's big acts. Lineup highlights: Kanye West, Kings of Leon, Guns N' Roses and Kendrick Lamar.