Our guide to summer music festivals

  • Chicago rapper Lupe Fiasco is one of the top draws at Mamby on the Beach.

      Chicago rapper Lupe Fiasco is one of the top draws at Mamby on the Beach. Daily Herald file photo | Staff Photographer

  • DangerWayne is one of the Chicago artists playing Spring Awakening.

    DangerWayne is one of the Chicago artists playing Spring Awakening.

  • Catch deadmau5 at Spring Awakening, at Addams/Medill Park June 10-12.

    Catch deadmau5 at Spring Awakening, at Addams/Medill Park June 10-12. Washington Post file photo

  • Robert Cray headlines Blues on the Fox at RiverEdge Park in Aurora.

    Robert Cray headlines Blues on the Fox at RiverEdge Park in Aurora. Courtesy of Jeff Katz Photography

  • Shirley Manson and her band Garbage take the top slot at PIQNIQ June 18 in Tinley Park.

    Shirley Manson and her band Garbage take the top slot at PIQNIQ June 18 in Tinley Park. Associated Press

  • Rockford's The Color Morale is heading out on the 2016 Vans Warped Tour.

    Rockford's The Color Morale is heading out on the 2016 Vans Warped Tour. Courtesy of The Color Morale

  • Electronic music producer Zedd headlines the North Coast Music Festival this September.

    Electronic music producer Zedd headlines the North Coast Music Festival this September.

  • The Smoking Popes rep Lake in the Hills at September's Riot Fest.

    The Smoking Popes rep Lake in the Hills at September's Riot Fest.

  • Grayslake native Pete Loeffler and his band Chevelle play the Chicago Open Air festival in July.

    Grayslake native Pete Loeffler and his band Chevelle play the Chicago Open Air festival in July. Associated Press

  • Northbrook native Kaskade is one of the big draws to the Spring Awakening music festival.

    Northbrook native Kaskade is one of the big draws to the Spring Awakening music festival.

 
 
Updated 6/9/2016 3:53 PM

Lollapalooza sold out in roughly three seconds, but there are plenty of other music fests bringing major acts and up-and-comers to Chicago and the suburbs this summer.

So don your comfy shoes, forget about your to-do lists and just get in tune with the beats washing over you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Spring Awakening

June 10-12 at Addams/Medill Park, 1301 W. 14th St., Chicago, springawakeningfestival.com

In its fifth year celebrating Chicago's electronic music scene, Spring Awakening is bringing some of the best DJs and music producers to the home of house music.

Top billing: The usual suspects top the list of national and international artists coming to town, including Steve Aoki, Above & Beyond, deadmau5 and Northbrook native Kaskade.

Local draws: Suburban and Chicago talent is ripe for the picking with sets by trance DJ Andrew Renegade, trap's 2fac3d, Ron Carroll, Xonic, DangerWayne, GoodSex, Dani Deahl, Milk N Cooks and more.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Tickets: $199-$250 for three-day general admission wristbands; three-day VIP access starts at $325.

Marcia Ball heats up the stage at Blues on the Fox in Aurora.
Marcia Ball heats up the stage at Blues on the Fox in Aurora. -
Blues on the Fox

June 17-18 at RiverEdge Park, 360 N. Broadway, Aurora, riveredgeaurora.com

Easy, breezy RiverEdge Park in Aurora is a prime place to catch some soul-waking blues.

Top billing: Blues guitarist Robert Cray and his reputation as a hot and fiery live performer should pack in the crowds Friday night, bolstered by Marcia Ball's sassy Louisiana swamp blues. Even married couples can have the blues, as Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi show when the Tedeschi Trucks Band headlines Saturday's full day of rockin' blues.

Local draws: Guitarist Scott Tipping and his local musical collective Leland pay tribute to "The Leland Sessions," a collection of blues hits recorded in Aurora in the 1930s. Be sure to catch these gifted local artists.

Tickets: $10-$20 for Friday, $30-$40 for Saturday.

Robert DeLong heads to PIQNIQ June 18.
Robert DeLong heads to PIQNIQ June 18. - Associated Press
101 WKQX PIQNIQ

June 18 at the Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, 19100 S. Ridgeland Ave., Tinley Park, 101wkqx.com

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Chicago's 101 WKQX-FM's PIQNIQ is proving once again that a single-day music festival has drawing power.

Top billing: "I got guns in my head and they won't go." If you don't now have those lyrics running through your head, then you probably haven't heard the Strumbellas' "Spirits," possibly one of the catchiest songs to hit the airwaves so far this year. The Strumbellas are one of the standouts in a list chock-full of standouts, including industrial rock darlings Garbage, the ubiquitous Lumineers, Robert DeLong and his catchy dance pop, Young the Giant, Bear Hands and more.

Tickets: $20-$75

Sheryl Crow headlines Naperville's Ribfest in July.
Sheryl Crow headlines Naperville's Ribfest in July.
Naperville's Ribfest

July 1-4 at Knoch Park on West Street, Naperville, ribfest.net

Naperville's Exchange Club has pretty much mastered the art of putting together this midsummer collection of rock 'n' roll, country tunes and good old barbecue.

Top billing: This fest's headliners include the fun, chill-rocking Sheryl Crow, '90s alternative rockers Sister Hazel, Lee Brice and 3 Doors Down. The Gin Blossoms/Tonic pairing rounds out the Fourth of July entertainment. Local rockers Tres Moustache and Seventh Heaven also feature high on the Navistar Main Stage lineup.

Local draws: Naperville's own Within 4 Days heads back to Ribfest for another year of eclectic rock. You can get your country rock fix with the Thirsty Boots Band from St. Charles. Psychedelic prog-rock band The Ents play Saturday along with JJ & Dre. And barbecue is best washed down with down-home Chicago blues, courtesy of Mike Wheeler and Toronzo Cannon.

Tickets: Gate entry is $20; free for children 11 and younger. Show tickets are extra; see the website for special pricing.

Wild Belle, featuring Barrington natives Natalie and Elliot Bergman, plays Mamby on the Beach July 2-3.
Wild Belle, featuring Barrington natives Natalie and Elliot Bergman, plays Mamby on the Beach July 2-3. - courtesy of Tom Oxley
Mamby on the Beach

July 2-3 at Oakwood Beach, 4100 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, mambybeach.com

Get ready to feel the sand between your toes (and everywhere else) when Mamby on the Beach returns for its second year rocking Chicago's lakefront.

Top billing: Milky Chance's "Stolen Dance" was all over the radio last year, and with their headlining slot you can dive deeper into the German reggae-electronic band's catalog. Barrington's Wild Belle also earned a high slot on Saturday's lineup. Australian electronic artist Chet Faker steals the spotlight Sunday night, with a lead-in from Santigold, Chromeo and Chicago's own Lupe Fiasco.

Local draws: The MixMag DJ Tent will be home to lots of homegrown talent, including legendary house producers Gene Farris, Derrick Carter and The Black Madonna.

Tickets: General admission single-day wristbands are $65; VIP single-day admission is $150. GA two-day wristbands start at $125; VIP two-day wristbands start at $229.

Chicago Open Air

July 15-17 at Toyota Park, 7000 Harlem Ave., Bridgeview, chicagoopenair.com

Stretch your headbanging muscles and dust off your moshing shoes: Chicago Open Air is rolling into town. And it's bringing craft beer and "man food" with it.

Top billing: In its debut year, the Open Air lineup is heavy with metal and hard rock, featuring the likes of Rammstein (in their only U.S. performance of 2016), Slipknot, Marilyn Manson, Korn and more. This should be a more-than-adequate replacement for this year's missing Mayhem Festival.

Local draw: Chicago heavy metal band Disturbed was tapped as a Saturday headliner, while Grayslake post-grunge rockers Chevelle and Chicago's princes of industrial metal Ministry factor high on Friday's lineup.

Tickets: Single-day passes are sold out, but weekend passes start at $149.50; weekend VIP packages start at $399.50.

Singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens returns to Illinois for the Pitchfork Music Festival in July.
Singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens returns to Illinois for the Pitchfork Music Festival in July. -
Pitchfork Music Festival

July 15-17 at Union Park, 1501 W. Randolph St., Chicago, pitchforkmusicfestival.com

By keeping lineups tight, the Pitchfork Music Festival has established itself as Chicago's premier indie rock outlet, with a few poppy and electronica elements tossed in for fun.

Top billing: Dream pop band Beach House is headlining Friday night, but don't forget to count how many members Canadian indie (We're not a supergroup!) supergroup Broken Social Scene brings along for the show. Singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens delivers poppy folk Saturday, perhaps showcasing a few songs off his "Illinoise" album. And former Beach Boy Brian Wilson is sure to draw some crowds.

Local draws: A few local artists have made the Pitchfork list this year, including garage rockers Twin Peaks, hip-hop songwriter BJ the Chicago Kid and rock band Whitney.

Tickets: Single-day passes run $65, with three-day passes for $165 if purchased in advance.

Twin Peaks will represent Chicago's music scene at the Pitchfork Music Festival.
Twin Peaks will represent Chicago's music scene at the Pitchfork Music Festival. -
Vans Warped Tour

July 23 at Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, 19100 S. Ridgeland Ave., Tinley Park, vanswarpedtour.com

The Vans Warped Tour is traditionally full of bombastic energy, with a lineup packed with punk, pop-punk, metalcore, rock and alternative bands. The tour itself caters to younger crowds, featuring a Reverse Daycare Tent, where parents accompanying kids can chill in air-conditioned comfort.

Top billing: With seven different stages, plan your schedule carefully so you don't miss your favorite headliners, including Good Charlotte, Less Than Jake, New Found Glory and more.

Local draws: Check out Knuckle Puck, Real Friends, Veil of Maya and The Color Morale for some local flavor.

Tickets: $41.50 for general admission.

North Coast Music Festival

Sept. 2-4 at Union Park, 1501 W. Randolph St., Chicago, northcoastfestival.com

Fill Labor Day weekend with music when the three-day North Coast pops up to visit.

Top billing: Electronic artists Odesza, Bassnectar and Zedd snagged the headlining slots, but make time to catch crowd favorites Umphrey's McGee and the always lovable Matt & Kim.

Local draw: Chicago favorites The Trap House, CZBOOGIE and more will keep you on your feet.

Tickets: Three-day general admission passes are $159; VIP weekend passes run $259.

Plainfield's pop-punk go-getters Marina City earned a slot at Riot Fest in September.
Plainfield's pop-punk go-getters Marina City earned a slot at Riot Fest in September. - Courtesy of Marina City
Riot Fest and Carnival

Sept. 16-18 at Douglas Park, 1401 S. Sacramento Drive, Chicago, riotfest.org

The best billing I've seen all year belongs to the eclectic Riot Fest.

Top billing: Catch some punk with the newly reunited Misfits, hear Rob Zombie perform his "Astro-Creep: 2000," or head to sets from Fitz & the Tantrums, Ween, Social Distortion, Pierce the Veil, Method Man and Redman, The Hold Steady and many, many more.

Local draws: Chicago's local scene is well-represented with the Northwest suburban pop-punk band Smoking Popes, reggae rockers Deal's Gone Bad, The Walters, Sleepy Kitty, School of Rock and Marina City.

Tickets: Three-day general admission tickets start at $169.98; VIP access goes for $299.98.

More not-to-miss music fests

Two Brothers Summer Festival: June 3-4 at RiverEdge Park, 360 N. Broadway, Aurora, twobrothersbrewing.com

Do Division: June 3-5 on Division Street from Damen to Leavitt in Chicago, do-divisionstreetfest.com

Chicago Blues Festival: June 10-12 at Grant Park, Jackson and Columbus avenues, Chicago, cityofchicago.org

Country LakeShake: June 17-19 at FirstMerit Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island, 1300 S. Linn White Drive, Chicago, lakeshakefestival.com

B.A.M. Fest: June 17-19, at McHenry Extreme Sports and Event Park, 1911 W. Fernview Lane, Holiday Hills; bamfest2016.com

Taste of Randolph: June 17-19 at 900 W. Randolph St., Chicago, tasterandolph.com

Wicker Park Green Music Fest: June 18-19 on Damen Avenue between North Avenue and Schiller Street, Chicago, greenmusicfestchicago.com

Logan Square Arts Festival: June 24-26 at Logan Square, Chicago, logansquareartsfestival.com

Motoblot Road Show: June 24-26 outside the Cobra Lounge, 235 N. Ashland Ave., Chicago, motoblot.com

World's Largest Block Party: June 25 at the UIC Festival Lot, 1145 S. Morgan St., between Taylor Street and Roosevelt Road, Chicago, worldslargestblockparty.com

B96 Pepsi Summer Bash: June 26 at the Allstate Arena, 6920 N. Mannheim Road, Rosemont, b96.cbslocal.com

American Music Festival: June 30-July 3 at FitzGerald's, 6615 W. Roosevelt Road, Berwyn, fitzgeraldsnightclub.com

MoonRunners Music Festival: July 1-3 at Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint, 2105 S. State St., Chicago, moonrunnersmusicfestival.com

Taste of Chicago: July 6-10 at Grant Park, Jackson and Columbus avenues, Chicago, cityofchicago.org

West Fest: July 8-10 on Chicago Avenue between Damen and Wood, Chicago, westfestchicago.com

Square Roots Festival: July 8-10 on Lincoln Avenue between Montrose and Wilson avenues, Chicago, squareroots.org

Laid Back Festival: July 16 at FirstMerit Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island, 1300 S. Linn White Drive, Chicago, laidbackfest.com

Taste of River North: July 22-24 at Ward Park, 630 N. Kingsbury St., Chicago, tasteofrivernorth.com

Wicker Park Fest: July 23-24 on Milwaukee Avenue from North Avenue to Paulina Street, wickerparkbucktown.com

Lollapalooza: July 28-31 at Grant Park, 337 E. Randolph St., Chicago, lollapalooza.com

Summer Stomp Music & Camping Festival: Aug. 5-7 at McHenry Extreme Sports and Event Park, 1911 W. Fernview Lane, Holiday Hills, mackeyshideout.com

Homegrown Arts & Music Festival: Aug. 6 at BaseCamp Pub & Eatery, 5750 Lakeside Drive, Lisle, homegrownartsandmusicfestival.com

Last Fling: Sept. 2-5 at Rotary Hill, 440 W. Aurora Ave., Naperville, lastfling.org

0 Comments
 
Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.