In 2016, we covered over 50 festivals across the world, taking us everywhere from Indio, California, to Reykjavik, Iceland. During that time, we saw major reunions (LCD Soundsystem, Guns N’ Roses), the biggest artists and bands (Kendrick Lamar, Radiohead), and some unbelievable tributes to those that have fallen (Prince, David Bowie).
While the spectacles are traditionally reserved for the headliners, who are seasoned to dazzle casual onlookers and die-hard fans alike for 90-plus minutes, another great joy of the festival experience is discovering lesser known musicians. You know, those oft-thankless performances that keep the opening gates warm in the wee hours of the day.
Considering festivals tap into rising talent each year, it’s very likely one of those unlucky performers will one day be a future headliner. With that in mind, we decided to look back on 2016 and pick out a few festival acts worth following in the months ahead. Not all of them are rookies, per se, but most are still chewing on their salad days at festivals.
And pretty soon they’ll be eating from a big bowl.