Since summer is almost here, and school is nearly done for the summer, if it isn't already, I've put together a list of festivals around the Pacific Northwest that I think are worth checking out, just in case you were looking for something to do. So in no particular order....
1. Northwest Folklife - May 28th - 31st, 2010, Seattle WA.
- A 4 day festival over Memorial Day long weekend, with 25 stages and over 900 bands, there's bound to be something to entertain everyone, whether you like jazz, blues, country, folk, world music, dance, or storytelling. An added bonus? Its not one of those festivals where you have to pay hundreds of dollars for a weekend ticket. Entrance is by donation.
2. Sasquatch - May 29th - 31st 2010, at the Gorge.
- Another Memorial Day weekend music festival, with multiple stages and big name bands, such as Massive Attack, Pavement, Tegan Sara, and Nada Surf, as well as lesser known indie bands, like The Lonely Forest, Shabazz Palaces, and Japandroids. Unfortunately, this year is sold out, so if you managed to get tickets, I am very, very jealous.
3. Vancouver Island Music Festival - July 9-11th, 2010, Comox Valley, BC.
- A folk music festival featuring a variety of performers on Vancouver Island, in British Columbia, Canada. Although its not cheap - $129 if you buy before July 1st, $149 after, its worth the money. Last year it was ranked as one of the best summer music festivals in North America.
4. Victoria Ska Festival - July 7th - 10th, 2010, Victoria BC.
- A ska music festival in Victoria BC, featuring a variety of Ska bands from all over the Northwest, as well as Canada, and the world. Not only is it a chance to hear some amazing little - known ska bands, Fishbone will be playing a show. Its not an expensive festival either, $99 for the entire weekend.
5. Vancouver Folk Festival - July 16th - 18th 2010, Vancouver BC.
- Although the full lineup isn't out yet, the lineup for this years Vancouver Folk Festival looks amazing. there's a wide variety of performers and genres, including world music, folk, jazz, and blues. This years festival includes The Avett Brothers, Calexico, Sarah Harmer, and Valdy, just to name the better known performers, there are also bands from Colombia, Haiti, and Mali, as well as a wide selection of performers from across Canada. Adult Weekend Tickets are $133 before June 11th, $160 before July 15th, and $185 at the Gate.
6. Bumbershoot - September 4th- 6th 2010, Seattle,WA
- I know that calling this a summer festival is a bit of a stretch, since its at the end of August, but its still technically during the summer holidays, so I'm calling it a summer festival. Its the 40th Anniversary of this festival, and although the artist lineup hasn't been released yet, personally, I haven't had a problem finding something to listen to. Its interesting to see that tickets are a bit different this year, rather than charging one price, and having people line up to see mainstage bands, they've got two different types of tickets - one which allows you to get into the mainstage, presumably without lining up, and one that doesnt include entrance to mainstage shows. strangely, they seem to have done away with the idea of a weekend pass entirely, unless you pay $250 for a "VIP pass" Tickets - $22/day, without mainstage access, $40/day with mainstage access