WPGU’s Festival Feature: Lollapalooza

Ever since its change from a tour to the Chicago based festival it is today, Lollapalooza has become a staple of the summer festival scene. The festival is annually held for three days near the beginning of August in Chicago’s Grant Park. This year the festival will take place August 6th, 7th, and 8th. Although the lineup won’t be announced for a little bit longer, speculation abounds for this year’s headliners. According to some websites Lady GaGa, Soundgarden, and Green Day are all but announced, and there is speculation that the festival is in talks with Arcade Fire and The Strokes as well.
But for those of you unfamiliar with Lollapalooza as a festival, here’s a brief overview. Lollapalooza usually has a variety of acts over the course of its three days. Although it is mostly populated today by what some would call “indie rock” groups, there still remains a place for hip-hop and alternative rock bands. One can also usually expect to see a reunited or otherwise older band as a headliner. The festival usually picks up acts that are on either side of “breaking-through.” As a rule of thumb, it can be expected that much of the set-list is comprised of groups that performed at Pitchfork Music Festival the year before. Lolla has a variety of stages; there are two main stages at either side of the park, and near each main stage is another stage that might be considered a “secondary main stage.” In addition there are a few other small stages, a DJ area, and even a Kids’ stage.

As mentioned before it has a great selection of artists, and usually can be expected to lump must-see performers into one weekend
As it is in the city, Lollapalooza is very accessible and offers a commuting option.

Tends to get crowded with drunken people over 40 who don’t know any of the bands and just wanted something to do over the weekend.
More expensive than festivals like Pitchfork, which have a very similar scene of acts.
Pretty crowded throughout the day; to get to a comfortable distance for a headliner one pretty much has to camp out at the main stage all day.

Overall, Lollapalooza makes for a good festival experience, and it is a good opportunity to knock out seeing a lot of must see bands. But if one doesn’t want to spend as much money on a 3-day Lolla ticket, there are a lot of comparable festivals that come out cheaper.

Be sure to check out the continuing coverage of other festivals throughout the week!

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