Every year, people complain that the major summer music festival lineups are too similar. (“How many times do I need to see Jack White in one summer?” was a popular question in 2014.)
For the most part, that’s a fairly niche concern. Unless you’re a festival junkie or a music writer, you probably aren’t seeing more than one music festival in one summer anyway. Realistically, what do you care if Florence + the Machine are playing more than just your favorite fest?
Full 2015 Music Festival Coverage
That being said, the complaint is based on fact. Some of the festival lineups are suspiciously similar. We decided to look at 2015’s music festivals and see just how much crossover there is between them.
In the graphic above (click to enlarge), we’re looking at the Big Three — Lollapalooza, Coachella, Bonnaroo — and four other fests (Sasquatch, Outside Lands, Firefly and Governors Ball) with national appeal. One note: We’re not looking at all festivals with a national audience, but rather the ones whose lineups cross over the most with Lolla, Coachella and Bonnaroo (for example, there wasn’t a ton of crossover between Pitchfork and the Big Three, so we left it off). And we didn’t list absolutely every artist playing these fests — just the bigger names on the bills.
The majority of the similarities are shared between the Big Three. In a way, that’s inevitable: If there are more artists on a lineup, that means stronger odds of crossover. Among the Big Three, the Lollapalooza and Coachella lineups resemble each other the most.
Stylistically, however, the artists who are repeat performers are an eclectic bunch: There’s Flying Lotus‘ masterful melange of jazz, rap and electronica, Sturgill Simpson‘s retro country, Alabama Shakes‘ soul-rock, Sylvan Esso‘s synthpop, etc. So at the very least, the recurring performers are bringing different sounds to the table (or in this case, to the beer-and-sweat-soaked field of mud).
As for the hardest-working artist on this list, Odesza steps out for all seven fests on our list. That means no matter where you go this summer, the Seattle electronic duo won’t be far behind.
Check out the list above and see how many of these artists you’re likely to see once, twice or ten million times in concert this summer.