Where Are All The Pop-Focused Music Festivals?

04.30.18 6 months ago 6 Comments

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Pop music is a force to be reckoned with. A rotation of artists like Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, Adele, Ariana Grande and Bruno Mars are constantly topping the Top 40 charts, selling out arena tours, and stacking bills.

Pop stars accounted for nearly half of Forbes’ 2017 list of highest-paid musicians in the world, with Justin Bieber, Adele, and Beyonce all landing in the Top 10. If you look at the top-earning women in music last year, it’s virtually all pop acts. And that is not unusual. The pop landscape is just that — it’s popular music. The general public gobbles it up, radio overplays the hits, and people are willing to pay sometimes egregious amounts see a pop concert, because they know it will be a spectacle, and they want to hear that one song they just can’t get out of their head.

As a result, pop artists are always in the big print, headlining spots of the world’s best music festivals. Beyonce absolutely changed the game at this year’s Coachella; Bruno Mars is set to play Lollapalooza, among others; Janet Jackson’s making a comeback at Outside Lands, Panorama, and FYF Fest; Halsey’s proving her stardom at Governors Ball — the list goes on and on. However, though pop may seemingly dominate most festival lineups these days, there aren’t any pop-specific fests out there. Not a one.

Some may argue that there aren’t any festivals that are dedicated to one specific genre anymore, as the landscape continues to become overly saturated and exceedingly underwhelming with every passing year, but that’s not the case. Hip-hop’s got fests like Summer Jam, the Roots Picnic and the inaugural Smoker’s Club Festival; country has the coveted Stagecoach; EDM has too many genre-specific festivals to name, and even the music festival’s dying breed — rock — has Shaky Knees and Arroyo Seco. Beyond that, there are a multitude of new fests coming into production every year, from small-scale events to grandiose spectacles trying to be the next big thing. With music festivals becoming a dime a dozen, and pop music’s, well, popularity, how has no one conjured up a pop-specific fest yet?

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