Top 10, Music Festivals, List

10 Music Festivals to Look Forward to After the Pandemic

With more people around the world receiving their first and second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, the world of live music is reawakening. Bands are announcing fall tour dates. Music award shows, like the recent BRIT Awards, are opening their doors to larger crowds. Most excitingly, music festivals are coming back with dates.

After a difficult year dealing with a deadly virus, music festivals are just what the world needs. Not only are they able to be held outdoors, where chances of COVID infections are slimmer (the CDC has announced fully vaccinated Americans can go without masks outdoors, save for crowded settings), but music festivals are a fun de-stressor. They're hip, filled with culture, and full of celebration.

As coronavirus-related restrictions ease, we can't wait to return to our favorite festivals. Some of them have already announced 2021 lineups! Here's Live365's list of 10 music festivals to look forward to after the pandemic.

Governors Ball

Held at Randall's Island in New York City, Governors Ball is a festival built for New Yorkers by New Yorkers. It boasts four stages and over 70 acts every year. Additionally, there's good food, visual artists, and a 360° festival layout that prevents sound bleed and eliminates long walks between stages.

Governors Ball is one of the first music festivals to announce a 2021 lineup. It will be celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. While the 2021 festival will be held at Queens' Citi Field rather than the usual Randall's Island location, it is still set to be a great festival. Artists performing this year include Billie Eilish, Megan Thee Stallion, and Post Malone. You can get tickets before they sell out here.


Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Lollapalooza is an annual Chicago-based festival typically held at Grant Park. It spans four days, has 8 stages, and features over 170 acts. It tends to book artists in the alternative rock, heavy metal, punk rock, hip hop, and electronic music genres. Since its inception, it has expanded to other countries and provides a platform for nonprofits, political groups, and various visual artists.

Like Governors Ball, the Lollapalooza location is changing. While it's unclear where in Chicago it will be held, the festival is still set to happen this summer on its original dates. Guitarist Neal Schon has said Journey will headline this year's festival, however nothing has been confirmed yet. Last year, the festival held a livestream event featuring over 150 new and archival performances.


The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is held over two weekends in Indio, just east of Palm Springs, California. It's basically held in the middle of the desert, and considered one of the largest, most famous, and most profitable music festivals in the world.

While there will be no Coachella this year, the dates planned for the October 2021 festival have been pushed back to April 2022. This is because Coachella tends to sell out its 125,000 per day tickets immediately, and the sheer logistics of more than 100,000 people traveling to and gathering at a single location could be dangerous when it comes to the pandemic.

We're keeping our fingers crossed the April 2022 date will be the last time Coachella reschedules due to pandemic fears - they've already done so four times! In the meantime, you can watch the festival's newest documentary, Coachella: 20 Years in the Desert on YouTube.


Glastonbury Festival is a five-day celebration of contemporary performing arts that takes place in Pilton, Somerset, in England. Besides musicians, it also hosts dance, comedy, theatre, circus, cabaret, and other acts.

While a festival won't be happening this year, Glastonbury will release a 5-hour livestream concert this May called "Live at Worthy Farm." It will feature sets from Coldplay, HAIM, Jorja Smith, George Ezra, and more. You can purchase tickets for the stream here.

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (also called Jazz Fest) is an annual celebration of the music and culture held at the Fairgrounds Race Course in New Orleans, Louisiana. It draws hundreds of thousands of visitors and locals every year in an enthusiastic gathering of good music, cuisine, and authentic New Orleans culture.

According to the event's website, Jazz Fest will be happening this year! While a lineup has yet to be announced, tickets for October dates are available for purchase.


Tomorrowland is a Belgian electronic dance music festival held in Boom, Flanders, Belgium. The festivities stretch out over two weekends and tickets tend to sell out very quickly. With several stages and a mesmerizing light show, Tomorrowland was made with EDM fans in mind.

Because the Belgian Government has given a realistic perspective for large events towards the end of the summer, Tomorrowland is expected to happen in 2021. For this year only, Tomorrowland will commence the weekends of August 27 and September 3. No lineup has been announced yet, but the festival plans to have vaccination and rapid testing at the door.


Bonnaroo is a Tennessee music festival held on a 700-acre farm in Manchester. It features artists from a wide variety of genres, including indie rock, classic rock, world music, hip hop, jazz, Americana, bluegrass, country, folk, gospel, reggae, pop, and electronic.

The festival typically starts the second Thursday in June and lasts four days. This year, however, the festival will begin on September 2. The Grand Ole Opry, Foo Fighters, Megan Thee Stallion, Lizzo, Tame Impala, Tyler, The Creator and Lana Del Rey are all set to headline. You can check the full lineup and buy tickets on Bonnaroo's website.

Ultra Music Festival

Ultra Music Festival takes place during March in Miami, Florida. Usually coinciding with spring break, it features outdoor performances by several EDM artists and happens across three days.

While Ultra Music Festival was cancelled in 2020 and March of this year, it will be happening next March, in 2022! More updates and an eventual lineup will be coming soon.


This famous festival is for more than just movies. South by Southwest (SXSW) features several musical performances, as well as interactive media and conferences. The artists booked for SXSW tend to be on the newer, undiscovered side. It takes place in mid-March in Austin, Texas, and guests from all over the world attend.

This year's SXSW happened virtually. However, the festival is hopeful 2022 will bring an in-person gathering. 2022 dates have been announced and Austin Public Health’s Interim Authority Dr. Mark Escott recently said “I’m very confident that SXSW will look normal, or near-normal next year.”

Austin City Limits

Another great music festival in Austin, Austin City Limits is held annually in Zilker Park and takes place over the course of two consecutive three-day weekends. It's also produced by C3 Presents: the same company behind Lollapalooza. Musical groups from genres including rock, indie, country, folk, electronic, and hip hop perform, and the concerts go for 12 hours straight: from 10am to 10pm.

Austin City Limits is celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2021. Unlike its sister festival SXSW, Austin City Limits will be happening in person this year. The festival will happen from October 1 to October 10, and a lineup is expected to drop soon.

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Article Image: Two women in the crowd at a music festival. (monkeybusiness via DepositPhotos.)

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About Kathryn Milewski

  • New Jersey