Music Festival Roundup (part three of a series)

Continued from Music Festival Roundup (part two of a series)

Here a lineup, there a lineup. Everywhere a lineup-lineup.

Early birds like The Electric Forest and Summer Camp have already had their artist rosters out for several weeks, but the smaller, more-local festivals seem to still be ironing out the details to their respective events. Most of the major players in our Midwest region have also been keeping tight lips on what they’re brewing up for 2012 until recently. In the last few weeks, many have made one or more rounds of artist announcements, enabling festival-goers to finally hone in on who they want to see and where they want to go.

Here are the top five major festivals the Midwest has to offer in 2012 (excluding the aforementioned Electric Forest), in order of distance from Indianapolis.


July 13-15

Drive time from Indianapolis: 2 hours

Round one of announcements; additional artists likely to be announced

Forecastle returns after a one year hiatus with a well-balanced offering of indie rock and folky Americana topped with a dabble of EDM, rock, and hip hop.


July 19-22

Drive time from Indianapolis: 3.5 hours

Round one of announcements; more guaranteed to come

As mentioned in part one of this series, All Good is relocating to Ohio from West Virginia this summer. With an already loyal group of All Good veterans in the area and drive time cut in half by the relocation, Midwesterners have been itching for All Good’s initial lineup. Round One of announcements indicates the festival promises to stay true to its history of a jam-centric musical offering.

Round one confirmed artists: The Allman Brothers Band, Phil Lesh & Friends, The Flaming Lips, Bob Weir & Bruce Hornsby, Branford Marsalis, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Lotus, G. Love & Special Sauce, Galactic, Shpongle presents The Masquerade, Mickey Hart Band, Trampled by Turtles, SOJA, Railroad Earth, Papadosio, The Werks, The Wood Brothers, Lettuce, The Lumineers, Everyone Orchestra, The Rex Jam


May 25-27

Drive time from Indianapolis: 4 hours

Round three of announcements; additional artists not likely

Obvious seasoned veterans at what they do, Summer Camp was among the first to make announcements this year. Three rounds into it, they’re likely done adding to the lineup, with the exception of the winners from their Summer Camp On The Road Tour.

Round three confirmed artists: Yonder Mountain String Band, Lotus, Rebelution, Sierra Leone Refugee Allstars, ALO, New Orleans Suspects, Gaelic Storm, Devil Makes Three, Lance Herbstrong, Kids These Days, Gramatik, VibeSquaD, Anders Osborne, Orgone, The Dead Kenny G’s, Future Rock, Sister Sparrow and The Dirty Birds, Rubblebucket, Elephant Revival, Strange Arrangement, Ponderosa, Wyllys and the New York Hustler Ensemble, Tauk, David Gans, Hogslop String Band, Caravan of Thieves, The Lumineers, Sexfist, The Steepwater Band, Zoogma, Team Bayside High, Afternoon Moon, UV Hippo, Milk N Cookies, DJ Tim Williams, Kaboom Fantastik

See: Music Festival Roundup (part one of a series) and Music Festival Roundup (part two of a series) for additional Summercamp artist announcements.


May 26-28

Drive time from Indianapolis: 5 hours

Round one of announcements; more guaranteed to come

Stiring up a bit of controversy, Detroit’s Electronic Music Festival announced Public Enemy as one of the headlining artists on their 2012 bill. Alongside Flavor Flav will be Chicago house DJ and Producer Lil’ Louis and Detroit native/techno DJ and producer The Wizard.

Round one confirmed artists: Brenmar, Busy P, Carl Craig, Carlo Lio, Cassy, Claude VonStoke, Damina Lazarus, Danny Daze, Davide Squillace, Derrick Carter, DJ Sneak, dOP, Droog, Earl Mixxin’ McKinney, Eddie Fowlkes, Greg Wilson, Ian Pooley, Jay Haze, Josh Wink, Juan Atkins, Kevin Saunderson, Keys N Krates, Kyle Hall back-to-back with Jay Daniels, Lil’ Louis, Lindstr8m, Loco Dice, Maceo Plex, Major Lazer, Mathew Jonson, Marco Carola, Mark Farina (Mushroom Jazz set), Maya Jane Coles, Michael Mayer, Mike Huckaby, Monty Luke, Mr. Oizo, Nadastrom, Nina Kraviz, No Regular Play, Public Enemy, Radio Slave, Rick Wilhite, Roni Size, Slow Hands, Stacey Pullen, Steve Bug, Subb-an, Tale of Us, The Martinez Brothers, The Wizard aka Jeff Mills, Todd Terje, and Wolf + Lamb.


June 7-10

Drive time from Indianapolis: 6 hours

Round one of announcements; more guaranteed to come

Historically one of the biggest festivals in the country (and certainly the largest on this side of the Mississippi), Bonnaroo boasts 80,000+ festival goers every year. To accommodate such a large, diverse gathering of people, the lineup has become increasingly eclectic (and arguably commercialized) featuring everyone from hip hop stars like Lil’ Wayne and Kanye to indie rockers such as The Flaming Lips and My Morning Jacket to jam band classics like Phish and Widespread Panic to unforeseen left fielders like Metallica and Kings of Leon.

Which of these festivals are most appealing to you? Are there any you advise against attending? What makes them good or bad, in your opinion? Share your plans and wishlist for the 2012 summer music festival season in the comments below.

Continue reading:

Music Festival Roundup (part four of a series)