Summer Groove: A Guide To Seattle and Chicago Music Festivals

Words by Matthew Vanatta
Photos by Jake Hanson

Summer vibes are in full effect and the sun-drenched energy is in the air. For most, summer means shedding the layers and leaving behind the indoor activities of winter. We embrace the beautiful outdoors for a few months of fresh air, sunny days, and for music lovers a full line up of summer festivals.

Festivals have taken over a life of their own over the last several years becoming a favorite way for enthusiastic music fans to enjoy a weekend full of both headlining and up and coming bands. From city festivals to large-scale national festivals, there is seemingly something for everyone in the day and age of the modern festival. 

From the niche to the mainstream we have compiled a list of some of the most unique and well-known festivals in two of our favorite cities and home to two of our flagship stores Chicago and Seattle.

Washington –

Timber- July 12th – 14th

Located in beautiful Carnation, Washington, Timber is the perfect music festival for those that are big on communing with nature and music. Not your typical neon day glow EDM drenched music festival Timber is a festival for those that dig mellow vibes and a lineup that fits the natural setting the festival is located in.

Capitol Hill Block Party- July 20th – 22nd

The Capitol Hill Block Party is a right of passage for any Seattle music fan. Locate in Seattle’s hip Capitol Hill Neighborhood, the three days music fest has had its fair share of headliners but also caters to up and coming bands both regionally and nationally. This years lineup features an eclectic mix of acts from Chong The Nomad to Father John Misty.

Bumbershoot – August 31 – September 2nd

A long-standing Labor Day tradition for Seattle music heads, Bumbershoot is Seattle’s premier music festival. Featuring three jammed packed days of visual art, comedy, music and much more Bumbershoot is the defacto king of Seattle’s various music fests. While Bumbershoot has a full lineup full of diverse acts it definitely features some heavy hitters and this year’s headliners include J. Cole, SZA, Fleet Foxes, Little Wayne and many more.

Chicago –

Mamby On The Beach – June 23rd – June 24th

Chicago’s only music festival that is set on the shores of beautiful Lake Michigan, Mamby On The Beach is a weekend full of good vibes and good music. Featuring a full lineup of headliners like Common and Cold War Kids, Mamby is also a favorite amongst the EDM set as they feature a full line up of prominent DJs in their Beatport tent. Chicago is a techno and house mecca and Mamby On The Beach caters to beat lovers.

Pitchfork Music Festival July 20th – 22nd

If you are a music nerd then the Pitchfork Music Festival will be right up your alley. Pitchfork is dedicated to creating a lineup of the most highly acclaimed artists on the planet. This year’s lineup reads like a record shop employees fantasy lineup featuring favorites like Courtney Barnett, Earl Sweatshirt, Julie Byrne, The War On Drugs, Ms. Lauryn Hill and many more.

Lollapalooza- August 2nd – 5th

If you enjoy music festivals you should probably send a thank you card to Lollapalooza as the festival, which started way back in the 90’s has set the tone for our modern conception of a music festival. This year’s festival doesn’t disappoint with what is one of the most star-studded lineups of headliners in the country including Jack White, The Weekend, The National, Arctic Monkeys, and Travis Scott.

Riot Fest- September 14th -16th

Riot Fest doesn’t care what you think and they release the line up whenever they damn well feel like it. That might be a risky attitude to take when selling tickets to a festival, but Riot Fest was built on a Punk Rock ethos and has continued to wear it like a badge of honor. What you should know about Riot Fest is that they continue to book an eclectic mix of underground and above ground Punk, Alternative, and Hip-Hop acts. Last year everyone from Wu-Tang to Dinosaur Jr. was on the bill and the odds are good that this year’s lineup once again won’t disappoint.

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