January 11, 2019 Slideshows » Music

20 Texas Music Festivals Every San Antonian Should Attend At Least Once 

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Music festivals give us life. From good tunes to meeting new friends, and extra activities that make fests stand apart from one another, there's plenty of reasons why music festivals make for some badass memories. With Texas being as grand as it is, that means there's just that many more fests for you to check out. Whether you want to stay in town or make a road trip out of it, here are 20 music fests that you should definitely save up for this year, or at some point in your life.
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JMBLYA
Usually in May, Austin/Dallas/Houston, jmblya.com
Hip-hop heads should already know about JMBLYA, and get some tickets stat if you haven’t. With three chances to get in on the fun, JMBLYA has dates in Austin, Houston and Dallas with a load of rappers and hip-hop artists taking the stage. Previous entertainers include J. Cole, T.I., Young Thug, Bun B, Chance the Rapper, Travis Scott and plenty more, so you can trust this fest to be bangin’.
Photo via Instagram / thejmblya
Float Fest
$99-$549, July 20-21, 601 Dupuy Ranch Road, Martindale, floatfest.net
While a lineup has yet to be announced or even teased, Float Fest organizers have let us know that the fun AF festival is coming back for a sixth year. Growing bigger every year, the festival joins floating on the river with live music, two obvious favorite pastimes of Texans. Why the hell wouldn’t you go?
Photo by Jaime Monzon at FF 2018
Euphoria Music & Camping Festival
Usually in May, 8500 Hergotz Lane, Austin, euphoriafest.com
With camping and music filling the weekend, Euphoria is one of those happenings that makes for memories that will last a lifetime. The annual offering lets you kick off the summer with a four-day weekend of all the electronic music you could ever want in your life. Don’t worry, there’s also acts in other genres, like hip-hop, indie and jam band. Whether you plan to make friends there or make it a vacay with the crew, this badass fest should definitely be on your shortlist.
Photo via Instagram / euphoriafest
Willie Nelson’s 4th of July Picnic
Thu July 4, Austin360 Amphitheater, 9201 Circuit of the Americas Blvd, Austin
An annual tradition since 1972, leave it to Willie Nelson to make 4th of July even better. Good ol’ Willie takes the stage every year, and brings a bunch of friends to provide live music, too. So sit back with a beer in your hand and enjoy the live music with your own friends. Split between two stages, think of this bash as a way to celebrate ‘Merica and, more importantly, Texas.
Photo via Instagram / willienelsonofficial
Austin City Limits
$255+, Oct. 4-13, Zilker Park, 2100 Barton Springs Road, aclfestival.com
For two weekends in October, eight stages pop up across Austin’s Zilker Park and bring more than 100 artists. From indie bands and artists to chart-topping superstars, ACL is a full-fledged music festival right in SA’s backyard. You’d be silly not to take advantage of that.
Photo by Jaime Monzon at ACL 2018
Jaime Monzon
Tejano Conjunto Festival
$15+, May 15-19, Various locations, guadalupeculturalarts.org
Celebrating tunes beloved by puro as hell San Antonians, the Tejano Conjunto Festival will return for a 38th year so you can appreciate the culture and, of course, dance. Hosted by the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, the festival features dates at the center and others at Rosedale Park. The schedule has yet to be announced, we can guarantee that this one will have you feeling nostalgic.
Photo by Jaime Monzon at TCF 2016
South By Southwest
$1,125+, March 8-17, Various locations, sxsw.com
If you’ve got money to blow, you might as well blow it at SXSW. Regarded as one of the most badass festivals in the world for its week-long schedule of film screenings, conferences, informative sessions, and live music, SXSW should definitely be one of those things you splurge on at least once. Hell, even just hanging around downtown Austin during SXSW will still let you feel like you’re experiencing it in some miniscule way. If you can’t scrap together enough cash before March, you can always sign up to volunteer to get in on the fun.
Photo via Instagram / thegr8khalid
Taco Fest
$15, Sat April 13, La Villita Historic Arts Village, 418 Villita St #9, tacomusicfest.com
When you love tacos and live music, you surely dedicate a whole festival to it. We did just that with Taco Fest – which lets you eat all the tacos you want while jamming out to bands known locally and across the country. The family-friendly fest is honestly everything you could ever want.
Photo by Jaime Monzon at TF 2018
Neon Desert
Usually in May, Cleveland Square Park, El Paso,neondesertmusicfestival.com
Sure, details are pretty much non-existent, but that shouldn’t stop you from check out Neon Desert. Taking place in the literal desert of El Paso, this music festival takes over the downtown portion of the border town for a weekend of electronic dance, hip-hop, rock and Latin music. We may not know the lineup yet, but think of this as the summer getaway you deserve. Go ahead and snag some tickets when they become available.
Photo by gregnoire via Instagram / ndmf
Trans-Pecos Festival
Fall 2019, Marfa, elcosmico.com
In the vein of peace and love, the Trans-Pecos fest offers serious Woodstock vibes in the modern age. With live music from a number of indie artists and camping in the middle of nowhere in stylish digs, this fest should definitely be a bucket list item for your consideration.
Photo via Instagram / mollyray.images
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State Fair of Texas
$18+, Sept. 27-Oct. 20, Fair Park, 1300 Robert B Cullum Blvd, Dallas, bigtex.com
Held annually in Dallas, the state fair brings the biggest and best carnival fare you will sinfully enjoy. It also brings a crapload of live entertainment! With three stages plus a square reserved for performances by U.S. Marine Drum & Bugle Corps and a garden with relaxing tunes, you’ll have your pick from plenty of artists and vibes depending on how you want to jam out. No lineup yet, but you can expect to have a blast no matter who’s playing.
Photo via Instagram / statefairoftx
Levitation
Nov. 7-10, Austin, levitation-austin.com
Founded in 2008 and billed as Austin Psych Fest, Levitation has grown to be an embodiment of Austin’s music scene. Though specializing in psychedelic tunes, Levitation is just one of those fests where you’ll have a rad time whether you’re crazy about the music or not. Seriously, it’s inspired curated events across the world, so you know this shit is legit.
Photo by rohofoto via Instagram / levitation
Fortress Festival
$109-$229, Sat April 27, Will Rogers Memorial Center, 3401 W Lancaster Ave, Fort Worth,
Returning for a third year, Fort Worth’s Fortress Festival offers two days of tunes in the city’s Cultural District. This year’s lineup includes notable artists, including Leon Bridges, Chvrches, Rae Sremmurd, Tinashe, Abhi the Nomad and plenty more. Yes, tickets are kinda pricey, but if you’re gonna make the road trip to Fort Worth you might as well go all out.
Photo via Instagram / fortressfest
River City Rockfest
Usually in September, AT&T Center, 1 AT&T Center Parkway, rivercityrockfest.com
After bringing in Nine Inch Nails last year, you can expect for the 2019 edition of RCR to be one hella fun day of rock. The Alamo City festival hasn’t announced details yet, but with thousands of dedicated fans, returning for a seventh year is most likely.
Photo by Jaime Monzon at RCR 2018
In Bloom Music Festival
Usually in March, Eleanor Tinsley Park, 18-3600 Allen Pkwy, Houston, inbloomfestival.com
We’ll be honest, we’re not so sure if Houston’s In Bloom is happening again this year. While it usually takes place in March, no information for this year has been released. We’re hoping the music fest returns, ‘cause it makes for two days of tunes from big names and indie artists alike. Last year, the fest brought Beck, Queens of the Stone Age, 21 Savage, H.E.R. and Cigarettes After Sex to name a few.
Photo via Instagram / casiuss_
San Antonio Music Showcase
$5-$10, Sat Sept. 28, Various locations, sanantoniomusicshowcase.com
One city. One night. Dozens and dozens of locals artists and bands at more than a music venues across the city. Yep, we’re talking about the SA Music Showcase. With a $10 wristband, you can hop from venue to venue throughout the night, with each venue dedicated to a different genre. Supporting local music has never been so affordable or so fun.
Photo by Jaime Monzon at SAMA 2017
Mala Luna Music Festival
Prices vary, October 2019, 5757 US-90, malalunamusicfestival.com
We don’t know who’s coming for the 2019 edition of Mala Luna, but we do know that it will be lit! Whether you come for the big-name headliners or enjoy the smaller acts, Mala Luna will undoubtedly bring fresh tunes during the wild weekend.
Photo by Jaime Monzon at ML 2018
Old Settler's Music Festival
$40+, April 11-14, Tilmon, oldsettlersmusicfest.org
Bringing a mixture of Americana, folk, blues and country, Old Settler’s fest is all about variety. Held not too far from the BBQ capital of Texas of Lockhart, this year’s fest includes some familiar faces, like Los Legends, which features Flaco Jimenez and Augie Meyers. Get away (but not too far) and enjoy the four days of uninterrupted bliss that Old Settler’s has to offer – plus camping!
Photo via Instagram / oldsettlers
Waterloo Music Festival
Usually in September, Carson Creek Ranch, 9507 Sherman Road, Austin, waterloofest.com
Head to the ranch for three days of tunes from a variety of rock, folk, blues and soul artists. Just up the road in Austin, Waterloo spotlights the 5-1-2’s music culture alongside a weekend of camping. If a chill music festival is what you’re looking for, we found it, fam.
Photo by joshtimmermans via Instagram / waterloofest
Viva Big Bend Festival
$48-$103, July 25-28, Big Bend, vivabigbend.com
Scattered throughout venues in Alpine, Fort Davis, Marfa and Marathon, you can head west to explore four days worth of shows throughout these four towns. A shuttle will drive you from town to town, so all you have to worry about is deciding which acts you want to catch. The lineup won’t be announced until May, but maybe you should start saving your spare change before then.
Photo via Instagram / sarahmvasquez
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JMBLYA
Usually in May, Austin/Dallas/Houston, jmblya.com
Hip-hop heads should already know about JMBLYA, and get some tickets stat if you haven’t. With three chances to get in on the fun, JMBLYA has dates in Austin, Houston and Dallas with a load of rappers and hip-hop artists taking the stage. Previous entertainers include J. Cole, T.I., Young Thug, Bun B, Chance the Rapper, Travis Scott and plenty more, so you can trust this fest to be bangin’.
Photo via Instagram / thejmblya

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