With the Live Music Capital of the World smack-dab in the middle of Texas, we’re lucky to have a great variety of music festival offerings every year, right in our home state. Since the variety can become a little overwhelming at times, we sat down with our Texas team members to ask them: which are your favorites? Their answers were surprising!
Texas Indie Fest
Founded by Indie on Air Records in 2011, Texas Indie Fest returns to Austin during music week (that’s March 17-21) for the 10th consecutive year of free showcases. In 2020, the festival features 6 shows over a 4-day span at 3 unique venues – Eureka!, The Austin Winery and Still Austin Whiskey Company. It will feature an eclectic collection of independent bands from around the country, in addition to a core of Austin area artists in a 50-band, multi-genre lineup.
River Revival Music Fest, New Braunfels TX
With five successful years under its belt, Splice Record’s River Revival approaches 2020 with momentum, a stunning legacy and (no doubt) some big plans for the future. Anyone who has attended will tell you; this is not just another music festival. It’s a mash-up of handpicked Texan music, the tried-and-true summer tradition of tubing on the river, a campout, a cookout, and a giant family retreat. Every year, a community of music lovers collects on the Guadalupe River at KL Ranch Camp just outside of New Braunfels, TX for incredible music and a low-key river weekend. You’ll witness jam bands, some indie, alternative, jazz, rock, soul, and even a little gospel and punk rock. We attended the sold-out 2019 festival and fell head-over-heels in love, to this day we are grateful for having discovered this Texan treasure.
A Day in the Vines, Spicewood Vineyards
2020 will see the Inaugural A Day In The Vines take place May 9 and 10 at Spicewood Vineyards with headliners Norah Jones and The Revivalists. This Mother’s Day weekend event is 100% family-friendly, offers incredible wine and top-notch cuisine and brings us to a spectacular Hill Country winery for two days of music. It also takes a philanthropic slant, donating a portion of proceeds to Kids in a New Groove. This brand new mini-fest fills a big niche in Texas and highlights the diversity and beauty of our very own wine region.
Old Settler’s Music Festival, Lockhart TX
Old Settler’s Music Festival has become a Texan tradition, taking place this year on April 16-19 near Lockhart. This free-spirited camping festival has run since 1988, albeit in a variety of locations, and is known for incredible acoustic jazz and blues, bluegrass, local favorites, and award-winning artists from around the world. 2020’s lineup features headliners The Head and the Heart and St. Paul and the Broken Bones, in addition to a veritable smorgasbord of incredible musical talent.
Skunkfest, Austin TX
Now in its third year, Skunkfest 2020 is a two-day rock and metal music festival held in Austin, Texas. In previous years it has brought an incredible variety of rock talent; from acoustic early afternoon collaborations, to the colorful, the heavy and even some tributes. Highlights last year included performances by metal stars The Crowned, eclectic rock band A Good Rogering and Austin up-and-coming band Luke and the Lonely. This year’s festival takes place on June 19 and 20.
Float Fest, Gonzales TX
Also rapidly becoming a Texas summer tradition, Float fest is the perfect mix of summer music festival, camping with your best friends and a relaxing afternoon spent floating down the river, beer-in-hand. Following an unfortunate festival cancellation in 2019 when their brand new property wasn’t quite ready, the 2020 event returns on July 25 and 26 on a 765-acre private ranch in the Central Texas town of Gonzales. And 2020 is guaranteed to be even bigger and better. Previous artist lineups have been a mix of popular genres; hip-hop, rock, EDM, alt/indie and some heavier rock mixed in, with a nice mix of international acts and Texan talent. We can’t lie – this festival has been one of our favorites for years, and we eagerly await it’s triumphant return this summer.
Utopia Music Festival, Burnet TX
Also quickly becoming a cherished annual tradition, this family-friendly outdoor-oriented BYOB camping festival fills a weekend with yoga, disc golf, mountain biking, crafts, hiking, silent disco and great music. Capped at 2000 attendees, it’s meant to be small, and it’s built a loyal extended family around that concept. Held this year on September 17-19, Utopia hasn’t released a lineup yet, but previously featured a Texan-heavy list of rock, soul, jazz, alt, indie and popular artists.
Austin City Limits, Austin TX
If your taste in festivals is the big and bold, ACL is our pick for Best and Brightest. Brought to you by C3 Presents, and drawing more than 450,000 attendees on two consecutive three-day weekends, this mega annual festival brings the biggest names in music, up-and-coming acts, underground talent and a pleasant blend of Austin’s own for a multi-genre, 8-stage musical extravaganza. Recent years’ headliners have included Guns N Roses, Mumford and Sons, Childish Gambino, The Cure, Cardi B, Paul McCartney, Metallica, Travis Scott, Arctic Monkeys, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jay-Z, The Killers, Chance the Rapper and so many more.