A guide to Nor Cal’s 2011 spring and summer music festivals
Lean times mean a slimmed-down festival season this year. A couple of the new kids are already gone (Sustenance World Music Fest in Belden, and Momboosa in Chester), and the local fave Bobolink Fest (also in Belden) is taking the year off. While the music/yoga Wanderlust Fest is expanding all over the country, the Squaw Valley production has cut back on the number of musical acts.
The favorites remain, though, and the season is still filled with plenty of reasons to get out of town and enjoy a marathon of music.
Strawberry Music Festival
May 26-30, Camp Mather, Groveland (near Yosemite National Park)
Featuring: Sam Bush Band, David Lindley, Court Yard Hounds, Bill Kirchen and Too Much Fun, March Fourth Marching Band and more. Tickets $170-$200 for three- to four-day passes (includes camping), $65 for single day (no camping). Info: www.strawberrymusic.com, (209) 984-8630.
Harmony Music Festival
June 10-12, Sonoma County Fairgrounds, Santa Rosa
Father’s Day Weekend Bluegrass Festival
June 16-19, Nevada County Fairgrounds, Grass Valley
Featuring: Travelin’ McCourys, Gibson Brothers, Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver, The Freighthoppers, plus jamming, workshops, children’s programs and many more performers. Tickets range from $15-$130 for many choices of single- or multiday passes. Children 15 and younger are free with adult. Camping is available—extra charges may apply. Info: www.fathersdayfestival.com.
The Bounce Festival
June 17-20, Belden
Electronic music festival featuring: Tipper Sound Experience, Emancipator, lowRIDERz, Justin Martin, Black Rock City Allstars and many more. Tickets $141-$175, plus $100 parking (carpooling encouraged). Info: www.thebouncefestival.com.
Sierra Nevada World Music Festival
June 17-19, Mendocino County Fairgrounds, Boonville
Featuring: Ozomatli, Toots and the Maytals, Steel Pulse, Rebelution, New Kingston and more. Tickets $150 for three-day pass, $60-$70 for single days. Camping is available (extra fees apply). Info: (916) 777-5550; www.snwmf.com.
Wild Mountain Faire
June 24-26, Concow Campground, Concow
Kate Wolf Memorial Festival
June 24-26, Black Oak Ranch, Laytonville
Featuring: Los Lobos, Bruce Cockburn, Taj Mahal, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Mavis Staples, The Wailin’ Jennys, MaMuse, Hot Buttered Rum and more. Tickets for children and adults range from $25-$170 for many choices of single- or multiday passes (some with camping, some without). Children 6-younger are free. Info: www.katewolf.com/festival.
High Sierra Music Festival
June 30-July 3, Plumas-Sierra County Fairgrounds, Quincy
Featuring: Gillian Welch, My Morning Jacket, Neko Case, Ween, Yonder Mountain String Band, Dr. Dog, MaMuse and more. Tickets $115-$205 for two-, three-, or four-day passes (includes camping), $30-$99 for several options of teen (13-16) and kid (5-12) passes (4-younger, free). Info: (510) 547-1992, www.highsierramusic.com.
California World Fest
July 14-17, Nevada County Fairgrounds, Grass Valley
Reggae on the River
July 16-17, Benbow Lake State Recreation Area, Benbow
Featuring: Ky-Mani Marley & Gramps Morgan, Seun Anikulapo Kuti & Egypt 80, Tony Rebel, Queen Ifrica, Rootz Underground, Mystic Roots and more. Tickets: $95 for two-day pass. Info: www.reggaeontheriver.com.
July 28-31, Squaw Valley USA, Lake Tahoe
Featuring: Music by Michael Franti & Spearhead, The Wailers, Girl Talk, Jai Uttal and more. Plus, classes with renowned yogis from around the world. Tickets are $24.50-$34.50 per day for just music, and $99.50-$450 for single-, three- or four-day yoga + music passes. Info: www.squaw.wanderlustfestival.com.
August 12-14, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco
Arcade Fire, Phish, The Shins, Muse, MGMT, Erykah Badu, John Fogerty, Toro y Moi, Lyrics Born, Big Audio Dynamite, Old 97’s and many more, plus food, wine and art. Tickets $199.50 for three-day pass. Info: www.sfoutsidelands.com.