Bonnaroo just announced the spectacular lineup for its 15th anniversary. This year’s event will bring an eclectic roster of acts like Pearl Jam, Dead and Company, LCD Soundsystem, J. Cole, Ellie Goulding, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Tame Impala, and more to The Farm for four days of nonstop music. Here’s a closer look at every artist in the Bonnaroo 2016 lineup.
Bonnaroo is scheduled to take place from June 9-12 in Manchester, Tennessee.
2016 Bonnaroo Lineup
In celebration of their 25th anniversary this year, Pearl Jam just announced a big North American tour for this spring and summer, during which they’ll be making a stop at The Farm to headline Bonnaroo. Since the release of their insanely successful debut Ten in 1991, Pearl Jam has been one of the most sought-after rock bands out there, never failing to sell out arenas and stadiums over the last two decades thanks to a massive and dedicated fan base. Though the band hasn’t put out any new music since their 2013 album Lightning Bolt, they’ve got plenty of stuff to rely on for a full and crowd-pleasing set. Their headlining performance at Bonnaroo is surely one to get excited about, as they’ve been consistently deemed one of the best live rock acts over the years.
Dead and Company
Missed the Grateful Dead’s Fare Thee Well shows last year? Well, while they may not be touring as Grateful Dead anymore, band members Bob Weir, Mickey Hart, and Bill Kreutzmann are offering you the next best thing with Dead and Company, the combination of the aforementioned Grateful Dead members and adult contemporary radio mainstay John Mayer. While genre-wise they are very different, Mayer actually has pretty impressive guitar chops, enough to win over the hordes of Deadheads that caught them on tour in 2015. Though their tour has now ended, they’ll be back again for Bonnaroo this summer, playing not one but two sets at the fest.
Back in 2011, James Murphy and the rest of LCD Soundsystem played their “final show” at Madison Square Garden. Now five years later, the band is back once again. After releasing a Christmas song this past December, rumors swirled around the internet about a reunion and headlining performances at major festivals, and soon enough those rumors became fact. The resurrected group will be touring again this year, as well as headlining festivals like Coachella and, of course, Bonnaroo.
As the first artist signed to Jay Z’s Roc Nation label, rapper J. Cole was surely the subject of much attention in 2011. That year, the label released his debut album, Cole World: The Sideline Story, which debuted at the top of the U.S. Billboard 200. He followed that up in 2013 with his equally successful, chart-topping sophomore record Born Sinner. In the fall of 2014, J. Cole dropped his highly anticipated and now platinum-certified third album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive, which again debuted atop the Billboard 200, making it his third consecutive #1 album.
English pop star Ellie Goulding, known for hit singles like “Lights” and “Love Me Like You Do,” has become an established presence on mainstream radio in the last few years. After starting her career off rather quietly in the UK, Goulding eventually won the prestigious BBC Sound of 2010 poll, signifying her promise as a talented emerging artist. Soon afterward, she released her debut album Lights, which reached number one on the UK Albums Chart and went on to become an international success. Following the success of her first album, she released a sophomore record called Halcyon in 2012, after which she went on tour supporting Bruno Mars. In 2015, Goulding dropped her third album, Delirium, which is her most successful record yet.
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
Seattle hip hop duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis seemingly came out of nowhere in the last few years, rising to fame almost instantly with their 2012 breakthrough album The Heist. Having later earned four Grammy Awards, including Best New Artist and Best Rap Album in 2014, they certainly established themselves as hip hop royalty. A few months ago, the duo released their catchy new single “Downtown,” off their upcoming sophomore album This Unruly Mess I’ve Made, which is due out on February 26
Australian psychedelic rock band Tame Impala began as a bedroom recording project in 1999 when vocalist/guitarist Kevin Parker and bassist Dominic Simper were only 13 years old. The duo was joined in 2007 by drummer Jay Watson, after which the band signed with Modular Records. The ’60s-inspired, fuzzy, psychedelic sound of their 2010 debut album Innerspeaker attracted international critical praise, and their follow-up effort, 2012’s Lonerism, was even more successful, thanks to hit singles like “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards” and “Elephant.” Last year, Tame Impala released their highly anticipated third album Currents, and their ever-growing fame has made them the frontrunners of modern psych rock. That kind of sound is perfect for the late night set they’ll be playing at Bonnaroo.
Death Cab For Cutie
Last year, Grammy-nominated alternative rock band Death Cab For Cutie came back with their first album in four years, Kintsugi. Despite the recent amicable departure of lead guitarist and founding band member Chris Walla, the band remains intact with frontman Ben Gibbard still at the helm after all these years. Known for earnest lyrics across several stunning and emotional albums, highlights of which include 2003’s Transatlanticism and its 2005 follow-up Plans, Death Cab For Cutie has made an indelible mark on indie rock history.
French electronic music outfit M83 has become one of the leading bands in synthpop right now, thanks to their explosively popular single “Midnight City,” which has been used in everything from commercials to sports broadcasts to movies and television shows. The now platinum-certified single launched the band toward international fame, and helped earn their 2011 album Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming a nomination for a Grammy Award.
If any band has proven the power of families making music together in the last few years, it’s without a doubt HAIM, made up of sisters Este, Danielle, and Alana Haim. The Haim sisters released their acclaimed debut album Days Are Gone in 2013, quickly earning a nomination for Best New Artist at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. They are currently at work on a sophomore album, which we all know is bound to be just as excellent as their first.
Halsey is the stage name of New York’s Ashley Frangipane. In true hipster fashion, the New Jersey native took the name of a Brooklyn L train stop to use as her musical alias. She self-released her first single, “Ghost,” and based on the strength and popularity of that song alone she signed a deal with Capitol Records-owned electronic/dance label Astralwerks in 2014. Currently, the young singer is burning up the charts with her newly-released debut album Badlands, which dropped in at #2 on the Billboard 200.
Though they called it quits in 2012, cult-favorite duo Ween will be reuniting this year, starting with two shows in Colorado in February. Formed back in the eighties by Aaron Freeman and Mickey Melchiondo, Jr. (better known by their stage names Gene Ween and Dean Ween, respectively), the group released eleven albums over the years, through which they’ve taken an eclectic approach, spanning a wide range of genres and incorporating their trademark absurd humor into each. Their live shows are said to be spectacular, and they won’t be playing many this year, so don’t miss the chance to see them at Bonnaroo.
After spending six years as a member of the Southern rock band Drive-By Truckers, singer/guitarist Jason Isbell stepped out as a solo artist in 2007, issuing his debut album, Sirens of the Ditch, earlier that year. He has since released four more well-received studio albums, the most recent of which came out this past July. Isbell’s new record, titled Something More Than Free, impressively topped the rock, folk, and country albums charts upon its release.
Glasgow-based synthpop trio CHVRCHES mercifully stylizes their name with a V in order to make it easier to search for them on the internet (thanks, guys). The group formed in 2011 and is comprised of vocalist Lauren Mayberry along with keyboardists Iain Cook and Martin Doherty. In 2012, the band’s songs “The Mother We Share” and “Lies” earned them some buzz around the internet, leading to the chance to open shows for Passion Pit on their U.K. tour. Chvrches later finished fifth in BBC’s prestigious Sound of 2013 poll, and that same year released their acclaimed debut album, The Bones of What You Believe. In 2015, the band released their sophomore album, titled Every Open Eye.
R&B singer Miguel came to attention in 2010 with his debut single “All I Want Is You,” off his debut album of the same name. Though the album performed relatively poorly upon its release, it became an unexpected sleeper hit that year, eventually spending a total of 45 weeks on the Billboard 200. However, Miguel’s sophomore album, Kaleidoscope Dream, is what really put him on the map. Released in 2012, the album contained his biggest single to date, “Adorn,” for which he was the recipient of the Grammy Award for Best R&B Song. This past summer, Miguel put out his third album, titled Wildheart.
Country and bluegrass musician Chris Stapleton began his career as an established Nashville songwriter, having penned hit songs for many popular country artists, including Darius Rucker, George Strait, and Kenny Chesney (he co-wrote Chesney’s #1 single “Never Wanted Nothing More”). With those credentials, it was only a matter of time before he launched his own career as a recording artist, and unsurprisingly he’s proving to be quite a success. Stapleton dropped his debut album Traveller in 2015, earning a #2 spot on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart upon its release.
The Chainsmokers is a production duo based in New York City consisting of Andrew Taggart and Alex Pall. They came to attention last year with their EDM hit single/ode to the modern day club scene “#Selfie,” which has since been certified platinum in several countries. The Chainsmokers have not yet released a full-length album, but they recently dropped a new EP called Bouquet, along with a handful of fun singles.
What do you get when you cross solo rapper Big Boi (a.k.a. one half of Outkast) with electronic rock duo Phantogram? You get a phenomenal collaboration in the form of hip hop trio Big Grams, who recently dropped a self-titled debut EP on Epic Records. Though it’s an unlikely pairing, the result was pretty fantastic, and we’re excited to see what they’ve got in store for the festival crowds in the next few months.
Band of Horses
Band of Horses was formed in 2004 in Seattle by frontman Ben Bridwell. Their music, mainly midtempo indie rock with a somewhat somber feel and reverberated vocals and guitar, reflects the atmosphere of their native Pacific Northwest. In 2006, Band of Horses released their debut album, Everything All the Time, which contained their wildly popular single “The Funeral.” The band’s latest effort is a ten-track live album called Acoustic at the Ryman, which they released in 2014.
Texas native Leon Bridges is a singer/songwriter who blends Southern soul and gospel. His sound has been compared to that of ’60s-era crooners like Otis Redding and Sam Cooke. Bridges built up a local following in his hometown of Fort Worth before signing with Columbia Records in December of 2014. Having impressed the masses around the festival circuit last summer, Leon Bridges has made himself known as an up-and-coming artist. His debut album Coming Home came out last June.
Vermont native Grace Potter is best known as the frontwoman and namesake of the rock band Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. In addition to work with her band, Potter has collaborated with a number of big-name artists like Gov’t Mule and Kenny Chesney, but lately she’s been focusing on a solo career. Her latest release with The Nocturnals, The Lion the Beast the Beat, came out in 2012, and just last summer she put out a new solo record titled Midnight.
Father John Misty
Singer/songwriter Joshua Tillman, also known as J. Tillman, currently performs under the name Father John Misty. Formerly a member of indie band Fleet Foxes, he left the group in 2011 but continues to make soft, folk-inspired music in the same vein. In 2012 he released his debut album Fear Fun on Sub Pop Records. His sophomore effort, titled I Love You, Honeybear, came out last February to nearly universal critical acclaim.
Purity Ring is an electronic music duo formed in Edmonton, Alberta in 2010. The group consists of vocalist Megan James and instrumentalist Corin Roddick. They released their first track, called “Ungirthed,” in 2011, which led to critical acclaim and a record deal with 4AD. Purity Ring’s debut album Shrines came out later that year, followed their sophomore effort, Another Eternity, in early 2015.
The Claypool Lennon Delirium
The newly-formed duo The Claypool Lennon Delirium is exactly what it sounds like: the collaboration between famed musicians Les Claypool (of Primus) and Sean Lennon. The duo hit it off while touring together last year, and decided to make a project out of it. Claypool is of course showcasing his virtuosic bass talents, while Lennon takes the reins on the rest of the instrumentation. Thus far, their set at Bonnaroo is their only scheduled performance.
Two Door Cinema Club
Northern Ireland’s Two Door Cinema Club features vocalist Alex Trimble, guitarist Sam Halliday, and bassist Kevin Baird. Making music in the style of synth-drenched rock that’s so popular nowadays, Two Door Cinema Club has released two albums thus far full of catchy, danceable tunes. Though they haven’t released an album since 2012’s Beacon, frontman Trimble has stated that the band is in fact at work on a third.
Singer-songwriter Sam Hunt got his start writing hit songs for big-name country artists like Kenny Chesney, Keith Urban, and Billy Currington. Hunt independently released his first solo single, “Raised On It,” in 2013, followed by a 15-song mixtape called Between the Pines. He swiftly earned a recording deal with MCA Nashville in 2014, and soon released his single “Leave the Night On,” which became a #1 hit. The success of his first single paved the way for his full-length debut album to top the charts as well.
Flosstradamus is the project of DJs Autobot and J2K, which began as a series of DJ parties in their home city of Chicago. People took notice of their eclectic style and soon their monthly parties were selling out almost instantly, with people travelling from all over the country to attend. Their newfound fame led to them releasing their own music, as well as taking their performance from the clubs to major festival stages.
Zeds Dead is the Toronto-based duo of DJs Dylan “DC” Mamid and Zach “Hooks” Rapp-Rovan. They have been making music together since 2004, when they formed the hip-hop-influenced Mass Productions. They eventually decided to move towards a house/dubstep style, and relaunched themselves as Zeds Dead in 2009. Soon, they were releasing tracks on big-name labels like Diplo’s Mad Decent and Steve Aoki’s Dim Mak.
Tyler The Creator
Tyler, The Creator first gained recognition as the leader and co-founder of the alternative hip hop group Odd Future. He has recently branched out to embark on a solo career, which been met with nothing but success. While he could get by on his music alone, his live shows are really something to see. He’s known for making jokes and bantering with the audience, often saying some pretty controversial things and stirring up the crowd. Nonetheless, his high-energy performances are always thrilling for all in attendance. His latest album, Cherry Bomb, arrived in 2015 and features collaborations with the likes of Pharrell, Kanye West, and Schoolboy Q among others.
GRiZ is the stage name of DJ and producer Grant Kwiecinski. He began playing music at a young age, learning piano and alto saxophone in elementary school, and he incorporates his saxophone playing into his funk-inspired dance music. GRiZ has toured with artists like Bassnectar, Pretty Lights, and Big Gigantic, eventually earning himself his own headlining tour as well as appearances at huge festivals all over the country.
As the lead vocalist for the iconic group The Staple Singers, Mavis Staples is recognized as a leading voice in rhythm and blues and Gospel music. She first began recording as a solo artist in 1969, releasing a self-titled debut album that year. In 2011, Staples won her first Grammy Award for her album titled You Are Not Alone, produced by Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy. Two years later she teamed up with Tweedy again and released her latest album, One True Vine. Staples has a new album coming out this year titled Livin’ On A High Note.
Lamb of God
Heavy metal band Lamb of God formed in Richmond, Virginia in 1994 under the name Burn the Priest. Since then, they’ve risen to the forefront of modern metal music, releasing seven successful albums since rebranding themselves as Lamb of God in 2000. Over the years, they’ve been nominated for five Grammy Awards, including one for Best Metal Performance for their song “512” at the upcoming Grammies this year. Their latest album, VII: Sturm und Drang, came out in 2015.
Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats
Soulful musician Nathaniel Rateliff makes music that falls somewhere between Americana, blues, folk, and roots rock. Rateliff, along with his backing band The Night Sweats, released an eponymus album earlier this year. You may have heard the album’s lead single, “S.O.B.,” which is a refreshingly old-school-sounding track that somehow broke through to the alternative radio airwaves this year.
Kurt Vile & The Violators
Philadelphia-based musician Kurt Vile rose to prominence as a former member of the indie rock band The War on Drugs. After the band released their debut album in 2008, Vile left the group to focus on a solo career, wasting no time to issue his first solo record within that same year. He released another album after that and soon signed with the distinguished indie label Matador Records, through which he released his three latest albums. Last year, Vile released a sixth studio album titled b’lieve i’m goin down…, and is currently touring with his backing band The Violators.
Blood Orange is the alias of English musician Dev Hynes. Thus far as Blood Orange, Hynes has released two acclaimed albums, Coastal Grooves in 2011 and Cupid Deluxe in 2013. He recently released a new single called “Sandra’s Smile,” which we hope signifies an upcoming new album.
Adventure Club is the EDM duo of Canadian producers Christian Srigley and Leighton James. They began putting remixes on the internet until they earned enough attention to be invited to perform at several electronic music festivals. Their debut EP reached #1 on the iTunes Dance Album chart and they had several hits on Hype Machine, which earned them spots at bigger festivals like Lollapalooza and Electric Daisy Carnival.
LA-based indie band Lord Huron initially came about as the solo effort of Michigan native Ben Schneider, who eventually developed the project into a full-fledged band. The group currently features Schneider on vocals and guitar along with guitarist Tom Renaud, bassist Miguel Briseno, and percussionist Mark Barry. Lord Huron just released their sophomore album, Strange Trails, last April.
DJ/producer Henry Steinway, a.k.a. RL Grime, makes music in the “trap” genre, combining electronic and hip hop to make bass-heavy beats. RL Grime first emerged in 2011 with a series of tracks uploaded to the internet that were released a year later on the WeDidIt label. He kept building up his following with more original music as well as several bootleg remixes. His most recent album, Void, came out in 2014 and features appearances from Big Sean, Boys Noize, and How To Dress Well.
Brooklyn’s X Ambassadors was originally formed by brothers Sam and Casey Harris and their childhood friend Noah Feldshuh in upstate New York. Once the trio moved to the big city, they joined up with drummer Adam Levin and released an EP called Love Songs Drug Songs in 2013. Last summer, the group released their debut full-length album VHS, which contains their #1 rock song “Renegades.”
Lucius is an a quintet from Brooklyn fronted by classically-trained singers Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig, whose dual vocals provide sharp, symmetrical harmonies that come together to sound like a singular voice. In addition to Wolfe and Laessig, the band consists of drummer Dan Molad, guitarist Peter Lalish, and guitarist/drummer Andrew Burri. They released their latest album, Wildewoman, in 2013 via indie label Mom + Pop, and earned critical praise galore from the likes of Rolling Stone, TIME, NPR, The New York Times, and more. Lucius just dropped a new single called “Born Again Teen” ahead of their upcoming sophomore album Good Grief, which is due out on March 11.
Rapper Vince Staples surfaced in 2010 with appearances on albums from members of the renowned hip hop collective Odd Future. In October 2014, he released his debut EP, tiled Hell Can Wait, via Def Jam Recordings. Back in June, Staples dropped his debut album, Summertime ’06.
Third Eye Blind
Third Eye Blind secured their place in the pantheon of ’90s alternative bands with their debut single “Semi-Charmed Life.” Formed in 1993 in San Francisco, the band has been fronted by vocalist/guitarist Stephan Jenkins ever since. They have released five albums to date, though none have been quite as successful as their self-titled debut. Third Eye Blind’s latest album, Dopamine, came out last summer.
British funk band Cymande emerged way back in the 1970s to become pioneers in the funk genre. Formed by Steve Scipio and Patrick Patterson in 1971, the band is influenced by their Carribbean roots, incorporating reggae rhythms and calypso sounds into their funk music to create something new and interesting. Now decades later, the band is active once again, touring all over and awaiting the release of a brand new album titled Crazy Game.
MisterWives is an indie pop band based in New York City. They have garnered a lot of buzz over the last year, and have opened for acts like Twenty One Pilots, Bleachers, and American Authors. They released their debut EP, Reflections, in 2014 on the New York indie label Photo Finish Records, followed by their first full-length record, Our Own House, in early 2015.
Maryland-based rock band Clutch is comprised of vocalist Neil Fallon, guitarist Tim Sult, bassist Dan Maines, and drummer Jean-Paul Gaster. Since their formation in 1991, the band has released ten studio albums with a sound that combines elements of funk, classic rock, and metal. Their latest effort, Psychic Warfare, came out in 2015.
Enigmatic young rapper GoldLink has been stirring up a lot of buzz lately, with mentions from Pitchfork, VICE, Billboard, and others tastemakers. Last year, he released his debut, The God Complex, earning positive reviews. This year he followed his successful first album with a second one titled And After That, We Didn’t Talk.
Funk band Lettuce formed in Boston in 1992, when its members were all attending Berklee College of Music. They got their start playing in jazz clubs in the Boston area before building up a substantial following through word of mouth. Lettuce has released four albums since 2002, and they are particularly known for their energetic and highly entertaining live shows.
St. Lucia is the solo project of South African-born, Brooklyn-based musician Jean-Philip Grobler. Grobler started making music when he was just 12 years old, influenced by artists like Michael Jackson, Sting, and Phil Collins. He still incorporates the ’80s influence of those musicians who inspired him as a child into his music today, using a lot of synthesizers and pop beats. St. Lucia’s new album, Matter, drops January 29.
Cashmere Cat is a producer and DJ from Norway. In his early days, he represented his country at the DMC World DJ Championship under the name Final. He gained widespread recognition as Cashmere Cat in 2012 and 2013 with popular remixes of artists like Lana Del Rey, 2 Chainz, and Jeremih, and later for producing songs for big names like Ariana Grande and Kanye West. He has also released his own original productions, his most recent issue being his 2014 EP Wedding Bells.
Los Angeles-based band FIDLAR emerged several years ago during a time when skate punk was seeing a comeback, garnering easy comparisons to bands like blink-182, The Misfits, and the Offspring. They signed with indie label Mom + Pop in 2012 and released their 14-song eponymous debut a year later. The band has since received critical praise for both their recorded music and live shows. FIDLAR recently released a sophomore album titled Too.
Ibeyi is the duo of twin sisters Lisa and Naomi Diaz, the daughters of the late Cuban percussionist Anga Diaz. Influenced as much by their diverse roots as their Parisian upbringing, their music is eclectic to say the least, and it incorporates some really unique elements, such as their father’s West African culture, Yoruba (their name “Ibeyi” means “twins” in Yoruban) and traditional Cuban percussive instruments like the Cajon and Bata drums. The duo has received heavy praise lately for their original and stunning music, and they’re currently at work on a debut album.
Keys N Krates
Keys N Krates is an electronic band based in Toronto, Ontario. Formed in 2008, the group consists of turntablist JR Flo, keyboardist David Matisse, and drummer Adam Tune. Between a series of successful singles, extensive touring, and appearances at major music festivals like Lollapalooza and Electric Zoo, Keys N Krates are establishing themselves as an act to watch at the moment.
Sam Bush Band
Grammy Award-winning musician Sam Bush is one of the leading figures in bluegrass, known as a pioneer of the modern “Newgrass” style. In fact, he’s sort of a bluegrass legend, with a multitude of awards and recognitions from well-known music organizations and a designation as the “Father of Newgrass.”
The Wood Brothers
Folk band The Wood Brothers consists of brothers Chris and Oliver Wood, along with third member Jano Rix. In October 2015, the band released a new album titled Paradise, which is by far their most successful album to date, having reached #12 on the US Country charts.
Saint Motel is an indie pop band formed in 2007 by pianist/vocalist A.J. Jackson and guitarist Aaron Sharp. The duo met while both studying film at Chapman University in Orange, California, and soon recruited bassist Dak Lerdamornpong and drummer Greg Erwin to round out their lineup. Using their film school knowhow, the band put together appealing videos for each of the six tracks on their debut EP ForPlay. Saint Motel’s 2012 debut full-length was met favorably by critics, earning the band more popularity and the chance to tour with internationally famous acts like Imagine Dragons, Arctic Monkeys, and Weezer.
London-based trio Daughter consists of vocalist Elena Tonra, guitarist Igor Haefeli, and drummer Remi Aguilella. They released their debut album, “If You Leave,” in 2013 on noted indie label 4AD. The record earned them critical praise and plenty of buzz in the indie music scene, and soon they were touring with the likes of Ben Howard and The National.
The Floozies is the electronic music project of brothers Mark and Matt Hill. Hailing from Lawrence, Kansas, they create electro-funk sounds with Matt on guitar and handling production while Mark plays the drums. In January of last year, The Floozies released their latest studio album titled Do Your Thing.
Marian Hill is an electronic pop duo from Philadelphia comprised of producer Jeremy Lloyd and vocalist Samantha Gongol. Their debut single, “Whisky,” was popular with music blogs and made it to the top ten on the Hype Machine charts. Their latest release, Sway, came out last year, and the band is expected to release a follow-up sometime in 2016.
Jazz musician Kamasi Washington first picked up the saxophone when he was 13, and from then on was set on a path towards becoming a jazz saxophonist. As early as his sophomore year of college, he was already heading out on tour with Snoop Dogg, and later earned opportunities to work with artists like Gerald Wilson, Lauryn Hill, Mos Def, and Quincy Jones among others. Last year, Washington worked with acclaimed rapper Kendrick Lamar on his latest album To Pimp A Butterfly, and soon after released his own solo album titled The Epic.
B∅RNS is the solo project of musician Garrett Borns. Originally hailing from Michigan, he eventually moved to Los Angeles, where he signed with Interscope and released his debut EP Candy. The EP came out in 2014 and contains four songs that blend dreamy pop with electronic synths, folk, and glam rock. B∅RNS recently released a debut full-length album called Dopamine in October.
Rapper Post Malone recently became an internet success story with the meteoric popularity of his hit single “White Iverson.” The track, though only released mere months ago, has already received millions of streams on SoundCloud. Without even a full record out yet, Post Malone is already selling out shows, signaling that he may just be rap’s next big thing.
Shamir Bailey, better known as just Shamir, is an artist from Las Vegas whose music evokes ’90s-style house, pop, and R&B. Shamir released his debut EP, Northtown, in 2014 and put out his first full-length record, titled Ratchet, in May 2015. He has since earned considerable attention for his catchy, falsetto-fueled single “On the Regular.”
Singer-songwriter Allen Stone takes his influence from classic R&B and soul of the 1960s and 1970s. He self-released his first two albums, Last to Speak in 2010 and a self-titled effort in 2011. His eponymous record earned tremendous success, particularly through internet sales, and it earned a place on the Billboard Heatseekers chart without the help of any label. Soon, Stone was playing bigger shows and making appearances on late night television, earning him a deal with ATO Records, who reissued his self-titled album in 2012. Currently, Stone is signed to Capitol Records and released a third album titled Radius last May.
Folk pop artist Brett Dennen released his self-titled debut record in 2004, earning attention for his single “Desert Sunrise” and soon leading to a deal with Dualtone Records. Within the next few years, Dennen earned the opportunity to open for John Mayer and was recognized by publications like Rolling Stone and Entertainment Weekly as an artist on the rise. His latest album, Smoke and Mirrors, came out in 2013.
London-based pop duo Oh Wonder consists of Josephine Vander Gucht and Anthony West. They independently released a self-titled debut album last September, which reached #80 on the U.S. Billboard 200.
Boy & Bear
Aussie indie folk band Boy & Bear formed in 2009 in Sydney, beginning as the solo project of frontman Dave Hosking. The band released their debut album Moonfire in 2011, and it soon received a double platinum certification in Australia. Their second album, Harlequin Dream, became the band’s first Australian #1, and their 2015 follow-up Limit of Love topped the chart once again upon its release in October.
Swedish rock band Dungen has risen to international fame since their humble beginnings around the turn of the century. After a five-year hiatus following the release of their 2010 album Skit i allt, the band put out their eighth studio album, Allas Sak, last year.
Judah & The Lion
Folk trio Judah & The Lion hails from Nashville, Tennessee. The band consists of singer/guitarist Judah Akers, mandolinist Brian Macdonald, and banjoist Nate Zuercher. They released their debut EP, Sweet Tennessee, in 2013, succeeded by a full-length album, Kids These Days, in 2014. Judah & The Lion will be releasing a new album in March titled Folk Hop ‘N Roll.
Brooklyn-based guitarist and singer/songwriter Steve Gunn has been the subject of praise for both his solo and ensemble work throughout his career. He has worked with a variety of artists, including touring with Kurt Vile as a member of his backing band The Violators. Gunn has released a number of solo albums, most recently his 2014 record Way Out Weather, which earned him high praise for his vocal ability and song crafting skill.
Steep Canyon Rangers
Steep Canyon Rangers is a bluegrass band from North Carolina. Though they may not necessarily be a household name, they’ve had some pretty impressive accomplishments over the years, including winning a Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album in 2012 and collaborating with actor Steve Martin. Of their eleven acclaimed albums, the latest, titled Radio, came out this past summer.
The Oh Hellos
Folk rock duo The Oh Hellos consists of siblings Tyler and Maggie Heath. It’s hard not to respect them, as they’ve remained independent artists by choice, opting to promote their own music rather than use the assistance of any label. Their D.I.Y. approach is clearly working, as they’ve released four successful albums and earned enough attention to be featured on popular music blogs and perform at major festivals like this one.
The Internet is the soul band formed by Odd Future members Syd the Kyd and Matt Martians. In 2011, shortly after coming together, they released their debut album Purple Naked Ladies, the first Odd Future album to be released on Odd Future Records. Two years later, they came out with a sophomore record titled Feel Good, followed by a third album titled Ego Death in 2015.
Oklahoma-based singer-songwriter John Moreland punctuates his music with stripped-down instrumentations and emotional lyrical depth. He has released three studio albums thus far in his career, the latest of which, titled High on Tulsa Heat, came out in 2015.
Classically trained singer Andra Day has a powerful voice combined with a retro sound that evokes the late greats like Billie Holiday, Nina Simone, and Etta James. After releasing outrageously successful covers that became some of the most popular videos on YouTube, Day signed with Warner Bros Records. Her debut album Cheers To The Fall just came out last August.
Southern soul musician Anderson East self-released his first two albums, in 2009 and 2012 respectively. Last summer, East finally made his major-label debut with his third album Delilah, which was released to critical acclaim in July. The album’s lead single “Satisfy Me” quickly became a hit, rising to the top 10 viral tracks on Spotify and receiving consistent radio airplay.
Twin Peaks is an indie garage rock band that formed in Chicago in 2009. The group consists of vocalist/guitarist Cadien Lake James, guitarist Clay Frankel, bassist Jack Dolan, and drummer Connor Brodner, who started the band when they were all still in high school. Twin Peaks released their debut album, Sunken, in 2013, followed by their sophomore record Wild Onion the next year.
Nashville-based band Bully is the project of singer/songwriter Alicia Bognanno, who sounds a bit like a grungier Gwen Stefani. The full band is made up of Bognanno, Stewart Copeland, Clayton Parker, and Reece Lazarus. They released a self-titled debut EP in 2014 followed by a proper full-length titled Feels Like earlier this year. Bully has since been recognized by plenty of critics as a band on the rise.
Virginia native Natalie Prass began her career in Nashville, working as a songwriter and playing in backup bands before going solo in 2009. In between writing and recording her own album with high school friend and noted artist Matthew E. White, she joined Jenny Lewis on the road as her touring keyboardist. After three years in the making, Prass’ self-titled debut album finally saw release in early 2015.
The Los Angeles-based band Chicano Batman aims to reclaim the musical roots of the past, drawing influence from genres like soul, samba, bossa nova, and psychedelic rock. Their name is inspired by the political movements of the 1960s, when Mexican people were fighting for recognition and equality, and their music reflects a similar mission. Their goal is to bring overlooked musical styles, as well as overlooked issues, into the foreground.
Indie pop band Givers formed in the late 2000s in Lafayette, Louisiana. The group is currently comprised of vocalist/percussionist Tiffany Lamson, vocalist/guitarist Taylor Guarisco, drummer/vocalist Kirby Campbell, bassist Josh LeBlanc, and keyboardist Nick Stephan. Givers released their debut album, “In Light,” in the summer of 2011, and enjoyed both commercial and critical success, particularly for their hit single “Up Up Up.” Last year, they came back with a sophomore effort titled New Kingdom.
Hermitude is an electronic instrumental hip hop duo hailing from Australia. The group consists of producers and multi-instrumentalists Luke “Luke Dubs” Dubber and Angus “El Gusto” Stuart. They created Hermitude in 2000 and have since released five studio albums and three EPs.
Australian singer-songwriter Jarryd James is a newcomer to the music scene, having just released his debut single “Do You Remember” only a year ago. The single performed amazingly well in Australia upon its release, eventually earning ARIA-certified double platinum status, paving the way for his debut album Thirty One to reach #2 on the charts over there when it came out last fall. Now that he’s won over his fellow Australians, James is ready to take his music to international crowds.
Lizzo is the stage name of Minneapolis-based alternative hip hop artist Melissa Jefferson. She has been compared to artists like Missy Elliot for her strong, sassy style that comes at you hard. Lizzo performed with several groups before stepping out solo and releasing her album Lizzobangers in 2013. She’s been generating a lot of industry buzz lately, and recently collaborated with Prince on his track “Boytrouble,” so needless to say, Lizzo is definitely an artist to watch right now.
Papadosio is a five-piece jam band hailing from North Carolina. In October 2015, they released their fourth and latest studio album, titled Extras in a Movie, which they self-produced and self-released.
Nashville-based alternative country artist Rayland Baxter began his career in 2010. He released his debut album, Feathers & Fishhooks, in 2012 on ATO Records, followed by an EP called Ashkelon in 2013. Baxter released a second studio album in August titled Imaginary Man.
Funk band and self-described “rhythm section” Vulfpeck formed in 2011 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Starting off as studio musicians at Vulf Records (from which they obviously derive their name), members Jack Stratton, Theo Katzman, Woody Goss, and Joe Dart soon came together as Vulfpeck and have since released five albums under that name. They released their latest album, Thrill of the Arts, in 2015.
Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter Sara Watkins made her musical debut as a founding member of the progressive bluegrass group Nickel Creek. Though still an active member of Nickel Creek, Watkins has released two solo records of her own, the latest of which came out in 2012. Now, four years after her last solo effort, Watkins is ready to put out a third solo record in 2016.
The Knocks is the DJ duo of James “JPatt” Patterson and Ben “B-Roc” Ruttner. The two producers met in Manhattan and shared an apartment in the East Village where they started recording music together in bedroom studios. They took their name from the fact that their neighbors would knock on their paper-thin walls when their music got too loud, which it usually did, and they dubbed the phenomenon “the knocks.” Initially gaining recognition for remixing songs by artists like Foster the People, Santigold, and Passion Pit, the duo began releasing original tracks of their own and has since garnered considerable critical acclaim.
Singer/songwriter Katie Crutchfield makes music as Waxahatchee, adopting the name of a lake where her parents have a house in her native Alabama. She released her debut album, the bedroom-recorded “American Weekend,” in 2012, to much critical acclaim. From there, she began performing in the Philadelphia area, where she put together a full band for her live appearances, and released her sophomore album, “Cerulean Salt,” in 2013. Now, Waxahatchee is signed to Merge Records, and just released a third record titled “Ivy Tripp” last April.
Brooklyn-based indie rock band Beach Fossils started off as the solo project of frontman Dustin Payseur in 2009. Known for their lo-fi, surf-oriented sound, Beach Fossils has released two albums thus far. The band is at work on another, although no release date has been provided yet.
Whilk and Misky
London-based duo Whilk & Misky attracted a lot of buzz in 2015, making waves with popular remixes and original tracks that had a lot of critics talking about them. After releasing their debut EP The First Sip in 2014, the duo began receiving positive attention, particularly for their catchy track “Clap Your Hands.”
Hundred Waters is a four-piece band from Gainesville, Florida consisting of Nicole Miglis, Trayer Tryon, Paul Giese, and Zach Tetreault. They came to attention in 2012 after releasing their eponymous debut album, which earned critical praise across the board and caught the interest of Skrillex, who signed them to his OWSLA label. The band followed their well-received debut with their sophomore album, The Moon Rang Like a Bell, which came out in 2014 and once again received astounding praise from critics.
The London Souls
New York City’s The London Souls is a rock duo consisting of guitarist/vocalist Tash Neal and drummer/vocalist Chris St. Hilaire. In 2011, they released their eponymous debut album, followed by a sophomore record called Here Come the Girls in early 2015.
Lolawolf is the trio of Jimmy Giannopoulos, James Levy, and Zoe Kravitz (a.k.a. the daughter of Lenny Kravitz and Lisa Bonet). They self-released their ’90s-influenced debut album, Calm Down, in 2014. The band recently toured with acts like Lily Allen, Miley Cyrus, and Twin Shadow, and just released a new EP last summer.
South African quartet Civil Twilight consists of Richard Wouters, Kevin Dailey, and brothers Andrew and Steven McKeller. Debuting in 2010 with their eponymous first album, the band hit huge commercial success internationally, with singles like “Human” and “Letters from the Sky” used in a number of popular movies and television shows and exposing the band to wide audiences. A sophomore album, Holy Weather, followed in 2012, followed by Story of an Immigrant in 2015.
Roman GianArthur does it all. He’s a composer, producer, and performing musician/multi-instrumentalist. Notable for his collaborations with singer Janelle Monae, and as a member of her Wondaland Arts Collective, GianArthur was also featured on Jidenna’s Grammy-nominated single “Classic Man.” Last fall, Rolling Stone named GianArthur as one of their top 10 new artists to know, so he’s probably someone you’ll want to check out now, because he’s bound to get a lot more popular soon.
Up-and-coming electronic/alt-pop trio LANY has been a much buzzed-about act over the last year. From being featured by major music blogs to touring with artists like Halsey, Twin Shadow, and X Ambassadors, there’s no doubt that members Paul Klein, Les Priest, and Jake Gloss experienced a whirlwind 2015. Last month, the band dropped a new EP, titled Make Out.
Con Brio (named after a musical direction meaning “with spirit”) is a San Francisco-based group led by Ziek McCarter. Their sound is inspired equally by funk legends like James Brown and Sly & The Family Stone and R&B pioneers like Prince and D’Angelo. Last February, Con Brio released an EP called Kiss the Sun, after which they toured around North America.
Pennsylvania’s Flux Capacitor is a band made up of three brothers. Their mix of rock, electronic, and improvisational music has earned them opportunities to share stages with the likes of Carlos Santana, Umphrey’s McGee, Trey Anastasio, and plenty of other big-name artists. They come to Bonnaroo this year as the winner of the Bonnaroo Spotlight Series Battle of the Bands winner.
The Bluegrass Situation SuperJam Featuring Ed Helms and Friends
Judd Apatow & Friends
Piff the Magic Dragon
Goddamn Comedy Jam