Wireless Festival
Wireless Festival
July 1st

The ultimate hip-hop festival in the UK now stretches across two weekends at three different venues in both London and Birmingham.

When: July 1 – July 10
Where: London, UK

Wireless is 100% the go-to festival for premier hip-hop lineup chasers. The first weekend happens at Wireless’ usual South London home of Crystal Palace Park, where ASAP Rocky, J. Cole, and Tyler The Creator lead the loaded bill. Then weekend two goes down at both North London’s Finsbury Park with headliners Cardi B, SZA, and Nicki Minaj, as well as the Dave, Cardi B, and J. Cole-led function at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham.

But what truly sets Wireless Festival apart is how artists that are headlining other festivals around the world occupy the second and third lines of these bonkers lineups. Think Playboy Carti, Megan Thee Stallion, HER, and Jack Harlow. Plus, there are a number of UK festival exclusive appearances from rappers like Fivio Foreign, Lil Uzi Vert, and The Kid Laroi.

Mosswood Meltdown
July 2nd

From the ashes of the old Burger Boogaloo comes the more-inclusive celebration of punk, indie, and riot grrrl bands, hosted by the venerable John Waters.

When: July 2 – July 3
Where: Oakland, CA

On 4th of July weekend, Oakland’s modest four-acre Mosswood Park becomes the grounds for a delightful celebration of the punk rock ethos. This year represents the turning over of a new leaf for the festival formerly known as Burger Boogaloo, and the lineup, heavy on influential female artists, reflects that.

Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth and the riot grrrl holy grail that is Bikini Kill take the stage at the festival hosted by the fabulous John Waters, who says, “…we’re hot to trot, infected with attitude, nuts from social distancing and ready to slam dance to the moon.” As if it couldn’t get any more punk, Mosswood Meltdown 2022 also helps usher in the return of the famed Thee Stork Club, co-operated by festival operator Total Trash Productions. Let the party — and after parties — begin!

Mad Cool Festival
July 6th

Now a five-day festival, Spain’s Mad Cool continues to grow into one of the largest open-air, rock-focused festivals in the world.

When: July 6 – July 10
Where: Madrid, ES

In typical Spanish style, the day’s programming at Mad Cool starts late and ends even later. This helps to errr… cool the air a bit from Madrid’s often sweltering summer heat. From there, amazingness ensues, with one of the most impressive rock and roll-centered lineups in the world. Metallica, The Killers, Pixies, and Muse? Check. Jack White, Imagine Dragons, Kings of Leon, and Florence + the Machine? You got it! The slate of indie acts is impressive as well with performers including Sylvan Esso, The War On Drugs, and Tom Misch.

All in all, over 200,000 people will descend upon the sweeping lawns of the “Espacio Mad Cool” in the urban community known as Valdebebas, less than 30 minutes from the center of Madrid.

July 6th

On the shores of the Tagus River and with stunning views of historic Lisbon, Nos Alive is meant to make you feel the essence of Portuguese life with top-notch talent to boot.

When: July 6 – July 9
Where: Lisbon, Portugal

Some claim that the sunset beyond the Passeio Marítimo de Algés — the backdrop for Nos Alive’s main stage — is among the most beautiful in the world. You see, Nos Alive is built around taking in the sights and sounds of Lisbon and the surrounding areas. Not only can you experience huge headliners like The Strokes, Florence and The Machine, Metallica, and Imagine Dragons, but there’s also an emphasis on Portuguese acts from top to bottom of the lineup, including legacy rap rockers Da Weasel.

After a nearly three-year hiatus due to multiple cancellations, Nos Alive 2022 is dubbing its 14th edition as the “Best Return Ever.” Besides the primary stages, there’s also the Art of Laughter comedy stage, the WTF Clubbing tent, and the Paradise Called Portugal outdoor DJ zone. And in the food hall, you can even get burgers made with local Alentejo beef. Bora!

July 9th

This brand new fest at Goldenvoice’s recently established de facto SoCal home base is pushing wonderful boundaries of what can be considered country music.

When: July 9
Where: Pasadena, CA

At the brand new Palomino Festival, you can take in both classic and modern sounds of country music. The new event makes its home across a series of expansive golf course fairways nestled among lush trees at the foot of the iconic Rose Bowl Stadium. This is Brookside at the Rose Bowl, the LA-Area venue that will host one glorious day of headliners in Kacey Musgraves, Willie Nelson & Family, and Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit. Meanwhile, undercard acts like Orville Peck, Nikki Lane, and Zach Bryan help round out a well-curated slate. Palomino seems destined to capture LA’s new bohemia, with the fresh air of the gargantuan nearby Angeles National Forest feeding the atmosphere.

Pitchfork Festival
July 15th

The influential music criticism site’s namesake festival, Pitchfork is the place to go to see the buzziest artists and to witness the next big thing.

When: July 15 – July 17
Where: Chicago, IL

Back to its usual July dates after last year’s edition in September, Pitchfork Festival is a haven for fans of indie music in all its forms. Brave the Chicago summer heat and the sometimes dusty Union Park and you’ll be handsomely rewarded with indie rock mainstays like The National, Japanese Breakfast, and Mitski, hip-hop from The Roots, Tierra Whack, and Earl Sweatshirt, and heatseekers like L’Rain, Magdalena Bay, and Injury Reserve.

60,000 people congregate over the festival’s three days, which is committed to a programming slate with a 50/50 gender parity ratio. It’s refreshing to say the least and nothing short of trailblazing. Make sure to bring your tote bag, because Chirp FM’s on-site record swap is legendary

Rolling Loud Miami
July 22nd

The prevalent landscape of mainstream hip-hop is captured at Rolling Loud’s Miami edition, put on at the home of the Miami Dolphins, Hard Rock Stadium.

When: July 22 – July 24
Where: Miami, FL

Say what you will about other hip-hop festival lineups, but there is no more intriguing set of headliners than at Rolling Loud Miami. Fresh off the release of his much-anticipated Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers album, Kendrick Lamar will close everything down on Sunday while Future holds down Saturday’s slate. And while Kanye West might’ve bailed on his Coachella appearance, he’s confirmed to be on stage for Friday night’s closing set — a spectacle that might be worth the price of admission alone.

But all in all, this festival is a dream for hip-hop heads. Every of-the-moment rapper imaginable seems to be on the bill for this one, from Playboy Carti and Gunna to Lil Baby and Saweetie. Heck, even ex-NFLer Antonio Brown (AB) is going to perform. And if Miami isn’t in the cards, Rolling Loud seemingly owns July, with their editions in Portugal (6th – 8th) and The Netherlands (1st – 3rd) on the docket.

Splendor In The Grass
July 22nd

The 660-acre North Byron Parklands is transformed into an… err, splendid playground for music, experiences, and higher consciousness.

When: July 22 – July 24
Where: Byron Bay, AU

While the 2021 edition of the Australian festival went down online as “Splendour XR,” 2022 marks a grand return to the one-of-a-kind North Byron Parklands venue. The lush, 660-acre space features a massive natural amphitheater in the center and it’ll play host to headliners Gorillaz, The Strokes, and Tyler The Creator, as well as globally recognized acts like Liam Gallagher, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and Glass Animals.

But Splendour In The Grass sets itself apart through the all-encompassing community that sprouts up across its three days (and up to five nights if you’re camping.) There’s a variety of programming in the Global Village where you can do yoga or lay back on comfy chairs in the Bohemian Lounge, or zone out in the silent disco. The World Stage presents traditional sounds from across the globe, while an outdoor dance party arises in the Tipi Forest. And if you want to bring the kiddos, Little Splendour has you covered.

July 28th

With editions now throughout the world, Lollapalooza might be the most recognizable festival brand on the planet. But the flagship function in Chicago is still the granddaddy of them all.

When: July 28 – July 31
Where: Chicago, IL

Lollapalooza’s Chicago festival is the biggest and baddest among the multitude of Lolla properties around the globe. With spacious Grant Park as its longtime home, the footprint along the Lake Michigan shore with an omnipresent view of the Chicago skyline is now the grounds for nine stages and over 170 artists.

This year’s summer-starter headlining slate includes Dua Lipa, J. Cole, Metallica, Green Day, Machine Gun Kelly, Kygo, Lil Baby, and now BTS’ J-Hope stepping in for the sidelined Doja Cat. Chow Town is a centrally-located food area, with an emphasis on Chicago Area eats, while VIP and premium options have grown to feature swanky lounges, viewing decks at six of the stages, and even golf cart transports. But regardless of your ticket status, there’s not a bad perch in the house for this pinnacle of festival decadence in the sun.

Hard Summer
July 29th

While still an EDM-centered fest, HARD has tapped into big-name hip-hop headliners to bring some flavor to one of SoCal’s biggest destination dance parties.

When: July 29 – July 31
Where: San Bernardino, CA

The NOS Events Center lies on a 120-acre plot of land that used to host a citrus trade show for Inland Empire farmers more than 100 years ago (NOS = National Orange Show). And while that may sound perplexing, it’s actually a perfect venue for a dance music festival. While the main stage is outdoors, the majority of the festival’s areas are located across multiple hangars that make HARD Summer feel like a series of fantastic warehouse parties.

This year’s headliners include Megan Thee Stallion, Lil Uzi Vert, and Porter Robinson. And while there’s an increasingly bigger hip-hop presence throughout the three-day festival (Gunna! Denzel Curry!), it’s still all about the concise EDM slate featuring Zeds Dead, Alison Wonderland, Griz, and 100+ other acts.

Fuji Rock
July 29th

The largest outdoor music event in Japan brings together world-class artists in the pristine summer setting of the Naeba Ski Resort — minus the snow of course.

When: July 29 – July 31
Where: Niigata, JP

While Fuji Rock Fest first occurred at the base of Mount Fuji (hence the name), it has taken place under the glorious shadow of Mount Takenoko at the Naeba Ski Resort for more than 20 years. You traverse forests and crystalline streams as you move between the festival’s seven Main Stages, including the main Green Stage, which accommodates up to 50,000 spectators. You can even ride the Dragondola (the world’s longest gondola) to the top of the mountain with a bird’s eye view of the festival below.

2022’s theme of “Music with nature, and living with corona,” brings uncompromised and innovative covid safety measures to ensure that this magical experience is as safe as possible. Vampire Weekend, Jack White, and Halsey are headlining with a ton of Japanese artists also spread out across the lineup, as well as sets from Bonobo, Mogwai, and Cornelius — it’s like a series of rare Japanese import record releases brought to life.

Newport Jazz Fest
July 29th

An American institution, Newport has been a purveyor of the finest jazz vibes along the serene New England harbor mouth since 1954 — ditto for their long-running Newport Folk festival the weekend before, too.

When: July 29 – July 31
Where: Newport, RI

Few festivals can claim the history and tradition that Newport Jazz has had. For over 60 years, summers at beautiful Fort Adams State Park have yielded stunning views of Narragansett Bay and Newport Harbor, to the tune of the finest jazz in the world, including legendary past prefers like Miles Davis, Nina Simone, and John Coltrane. This year is headlined by spectacular female artists in Norah Jones, Esperanza Spalding, and Anjelique Kidjo’s Remain In Light.

But as the festival has evolved, the booking continuously captures the brightest stars of jazz’s globally-minded future, like Canada’s Badbadnotgood, and England’s Nubya Garcia and Yussef Dayes. And hey, if you don’t got that jazz in you, then check out the sister Newport Folk festival the weekend before with headliners The National, Japanese Breakfast, and The Roots.