Words by Shannon Graham @shanldn
There’s a lot to be excited about this year when it comes to festivals. Glastonbury is back and there are a couple of new ones to shout about. Even though my fingers are practically frozen as I type this, I think planning a trip to at least one of these should keep you going for the next few months…
Annie Mac Presents Lost and Found Festival – 2-5 May
It’s the 5th anniversary of L&F and I’m proud to say I’ve attended it for the last 3 years. If you feel like kicking off the festival season abroad this year this festival is the one. The lineup is looking saucy already and it’s only on the first announcement. After a huge 2018, AJ Tracey and Yxng Bane will be hitting the stages. Personally, I can’t wait to see what Lady Leshurr does this year. I remember her handing out toothbrushes at a pool party in 2016 and her performance went off! Keep an eye on the Lost and Found website for more announcements. Get your tickets here.
We Are Festival – 24-26 May
This festival is combining Dance music with UK Rap. We Are FSTVL gets bigger every year and this years line up looks juicy. From a small event to a 3-day festival with camping, this event is definitely moving in a positive direction in the festival world. The line-up has Bugzy Malone, Yungen and Lisa Maffia (who recently dropped a video online of her reciting ‘All Over’).This festival has the potential to be very lively. All 135,000 tickets are now sold out. It’s due to be a movie.
Field Day- 7-8 June
This is the festival I keep swearing I’m going to attend and never do. I then have to deal with the FOMO when watching everyone’s snaps and Insta stories. The Line up has just dropped and I can’t lie, it’s mad. Skepta, Jorja Smith, Pusha T (Getting gassed just from writing this!) Get tickets here.
Berlin Carnival – 7-10 June
For the Dancehall, Soca, carnival lovers! For real, this is one that you have to reach in your lifetime. Imagine Notting Hill Carnival in a more intimate space, with parties everyday, for 4 days. I’m a regular at Berlin Carnival and don’t see that changing anytime soon. If you book in advance flights are probably cheaper than going to some parts of the UK. Get tickets here.
Parklife- 8-9 June
Every year I look at the Parklife flyer and get a headache because of how many names are squeezed onto the one image. They always deliver. They’ve just dropped their line up and as always, it’s madness. There’s even a video to celebrate the announcement. Cardi B, Migos, Solange and The Streets are just some of names confirmed for the tenth edition of Parklife. Tickets are on sale here
Strawberries and Creem – 15th June
Probably one of the only festivals I can say I’ve been to 3 years running. Every year it outdoes itself. This festival started off with 1000 goers and has now gone from strength to strength, with over 10,000 in attendance at previous years. I couldn’t finish writing this guide until this line up dropped and guess what, it’s here. I am so gassed. Not only for the fact that females are dominating the line up. But the talent levels are crazy. Stefflon Don, Ms Dynamite, The Heatwave, Cuppy. This is gonna go off. Get tickets here.
Glastonbury – 26-30 June
I only went for one day of the last Glasto and it was honestly one of the best festival experiences I’ve had. It’s like stepping into another planet, a planet that’s going all the way off! After a break in 2019, it’s back and recently announced Grime artist, Stormzy as the first headliner, which is absolutely mad and a movement for the culture. I remember the days when people were saying Grime would never be mainstream. This is definitely history in the making.
Wireless Festival- 5-7 July
As someone that’s been going to Wireless since it was in Hyde Park, I really appreciate the progress. Last year saw the introduction of a ‘Women’s Stage’ following the backlash of an allegedly male dominated line up. It seems to have been a success though as it’s back this year with a lot more female acts on the line up. Ella Mai, Cardi B, and Yinka are just some of the legends that will be at Wireless across the weekend. Get the last remaining tickets here.
Lovebox – 12-13 July
This festival actually lives up to its name every time. Everyone’s on a good vibe at Lovebox. Last year saw the festival move from Victoria Park to Gunnersbury Park in West London. It’s one of the only festivals that hasn’t dropped its 2019 line up, I’ll assume that’s because it’s going to be the best one yet. If last year’s line up is anything to go by, it’s going to be a unmissable event. Get tickets here.
Afro Nation Festival- 1-4 August
Anyone feel like reaching Portugal this year? Now you have an excuse, imagine a first wave line up featuring Davido, Wizkid, Afro B, Maleek Berry, Yxng Bane, Not3s and so many more. Imagine living your best Afrobeats life in the Algarve.
Lost Village Festival – 22-25 August
If you’ve still got festival energy left at the end of August then you should definitely consider hitting Lost Village Festival. This isn’t just a music festival. Get involved with music and art workshops and live debates and interviews. Slowthai, who was recently featured on BBC Radio 1Xtra’s hot for 2019 list, will be performing along with many other talented UK artists. Get tickets here.
Outlook Festival 4-8 September
Sometimes you’ve got to do international festivals and this one of the best. If you appreciate sound and decent speakers then you’ll love Outlook Festival as much as I do. You can chill out on the beach in the day and have a little reggae jam if you’re not too hung-over. If you love music as much as I do you’ll know good speakers are a game changer. I’m yet to come across speakers that can level with Outlook. The line up dropped recently featuring Loyle Corner, Flohio and Shy FX.It was also recently announced that this year would be the last year the festival is held in its unique location in Pula, which is definitely a reason to make sure you’re there. Tickets are here.