The Honeycomb Chronicles

Top Ten Thursday – Top Music Events of 2015

Posted on - Friday, December 11th, 2015 by admin

By: Hope Millard

 ”Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand” — Stevie Wonder

Music festivals are nothing new, it’s the ever-growing popularity of these festivals has changed over the last 20 years. The alternative, counter-cultural spirit of festivals has evolved into more mainstream comprehensive events.  Thousands of festivals are held in hundreds of countries giving music lovers the “full experience”, where they can eat, drink, be merry, & live the music.

When we think about music festivals arguably the most recognizable festival that comes to mind is Woodstock.  Originally created as a 2 day event to raise money to build a recording studio for musicians in Woodstock, NY,  what Woodstock actually became was a 3 day free event with more than 500,000 attendees at times doused with rain and covered in mud (not to mention the estimated million more turned away) that revolutionized the modern day music festival.  Over the next 4 decades, festivals like Glastonbury and Isle of Wight became widely popular in the 70′s, Lollapalooza and Lilith Fair in the 90′s, and most recently with Bonnaroo and Coachella.

Woodstock was not held in Woodstock but actually on a farm in nearby Bethel, NY because residents blocked their plans and their permits were revoked.

The Food for Love concession stand was running low on burgers so it raised the prices from .25 cents to $1. Festival goers saw it as capitalist exploitation, against the spirit of the festival, so they burned the stand down.

Thousands of cars were abandoned by festival goers who gave up on driving and decided to walk for up to 20 miles from the farm , leaving locals trapped, and performers to be flown in by helicopters.

Governor  Nelson Rockefeller threatened to send in the National Guard to break up the festival when he saw how huge the crowd was.

For the weekend, the festival became the 3rd largest city in the state of New York.

Here is a breakdown of the best 2015 had to offer.

Voodoo Music & Arts Experience

Held in the end of October in the heart of New Orleans @ City Park. Like New Orleans itself this festival is a melting pot for musical genres Across the festival grounds Voodoo host interactive and immersive large scale art installations, calling to you to stop, take a moment , & worship the arts.  There is a marketplace where vendors sell the wears as well as you can purchase and indulge in just of the tastiest food in town.

 Top Performers– Florence & The Machine, Modest Mouse, Ozzy Osbourne, Jane’s Addiction, Slightly Stoopid, Zac Brown Band, DeadMau5, Chance the Rapper, Third Eye Blind, & The Cult

Get more up-to-date info @

CMA Fest

Held in June, thousands of country music fans from all over the world move in to Nashville for 4 days to experience this festival that includes celebrity sporting events, meet & greets, autograph signings, live concerts and so much more.  The 2015 country musical festival sold out 7 months in advance prompting a record setting daily attendance of 87,680 fans. Biggest draw for this festival is you don’t need a ticket to enjoy the music being played on the streets, at the parks or in the clubs. The only exception being for the nightly concerts held at Nissan Stadium which are filmed for special broadcast every year that airs on NBC.

Top Performers — Carrie Underwood, Little Big Town ,Keith Urban, Eric Church, Sam Hunt, Hunter Hayes, Jana Kramer, Gary Allen, Kelsea Ballerini & The Cadillac Three

Ultra Music Fest

Considered the most famous North American EDM (electronic music festival) is held in one of the US’s hottest party towns– Miami, FL the last weekend in March. It also happens to coincide with the annual Winter Music Conference which is also held in Miami.  Over the years  the festival has expanded to other locales throughout the world such as Thailand, Macau, Singapore, Phillipines, Taiwan, Puerto Rico, Bolivia, Peru, & Paraguay.  There is nothing quite like the atmosphere of Ultra it boasts an unparralled production & light show along with the largest array of djs from around the world all in one place.

Top Performers– David Guetta, Skrillex, Steve Aoki, Tiesto, Armin Van Buren, Aviccii, Afrojack, Alesso, and Adam Beyer

Bonnaroo Music and Arts

Held in Manchester, TN on a 700-acre farm during four days in June. Bonnaroo is considered to be one of the greatest camping experiences at a music festival anywhere in the world. This is a festival with a mission “to change the world” buts also begs to question what the world would look like if this temporary society on “The Farm” became a way of life.  In 2009, the organization that created the festival started The Bonnaroo Works Fund that supports regional and national organizations with mission of making communties healthy in areas of the arts, education, and environmental sustainablilty.  At Bonnaroo you can experience everything from music performances,  dance parties, yoga, and other forms of exercise, as well as vast variety of food options ranging from places like Baconland to FoodTruck Oasis.

Top Performers–Slayer, Billy Joel,  Mumford & Sons, DeadMau5, Kendrick Lamar, Glass Animals, Tove Lo, Hozier, Ben Folds, Twenty/One/Pilots,  Awolnation, & SOJA


A 4 day music festival held Benicassium on the east coast of Spain between Valenncia and Barcelona during July.  Due to the nocturnal nature of this event as a result of the sweltering summer heat on adds to the draw of this festival. Widely considered Europe’s largest music festival it is considered a “must go to” for a seasoned festival goer. This event boast not only an amazing lineup of musical groups,performers, and djs each year but also features short film viewings, fashion shows, and art exhibits.

Top Performers– Blur, The Prodigy, Portishead, Florence & The Machine, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Public Enemy, and Bastille


One of the longest running music festivals, held in June for 5 days in Somerset,UK.  Inspired by the hippie counterculture and free festival movements at Glastonbury you can immerse yourself in dance performances, circus acts, cabaret, theatre as well as watch live musical performances from an endless range of genres. This festival is also unique in the fact that it is held intermittently every 5 years giving the land, local population, and organizers a break.

Top Performers– The Who, Motorhead, DeadMau5, Hozier, Rival Sons, and George Ezra


Held in aptly named Boom, Belgium in July this is THE biggest EDM festival in the world.  With more than 15 outrageously decorated stages becoming home to the worlds best dj’s for 2 days, prepare to have your ears and eyes opened for one unforgettable weekend.

Tomorrowland’s popularity has grown so much that in 2013 organizers created American spin-off in Georgia and followed up this year with festival in Brasil.

Top Performers– David Guetta, Hardwell, Armin Van Buren, Martin Garrix, & Teisto


Taking place in Austin, Texas, South by Southwest is an annual set of film, interactive media and music festivals and conferences. Being the largest music festival of its kind in the world featuring more than 2,000 performing acts over two week period in March. The draw for music lovers is the chance to move from bars  & music venues to the streets to catch up-and-coming performers or seasoned pros.

Top Performers– Incubus, Scott Weiland & The Wildabouts, AWOLNATION, Halsey, James Bay, Chance the Rapper, & Gary Clark Jr.


This festival held in Indio, CA for two weekends in April is the official kick off of the summer music festivals. Its inception came in the wake of the infamous  ticket-gouging battle between Pearl Jam and Ticketmaster in 1993. It not only hosts live music ranging from well known legends to those hoping to make their mark but it is also a showcase for the visual arts including installation art and sculptures. In recent years, Coachella has become the “IT” music festival becoming a favorite of celebrities from Twilight crew to the Kardashians to Kate Hudson and Aaron Paul. With celebrity comes fashion and Coachella did not disappoint, setting the trend for this summer’s hottest fashions. Beyond the music and fashion is the food… Coachella is a foodie’s heaven, you can have everything from pizza, mahi tacos,  garlic crab fries, asian bbq, and every flavor ice cream sandwich you could imagine.

Top Performers– AC/DC,David Guetta, The WeeknD, Jack White, Bad Religon, Drake, Alabama Shakes, Alesso, Alt-J,  Chet Faker, and Jenny Lewis

Burning Man

Undoubtedly the most famous music and arts festival on the list held for a week at the end of August in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada. A lot of people ask “What is Burning Man?”… Well, truth be told even the website has a hard time answering that question.  Burning Man began as an experiment in community & art influenced by 10 main principles that allowed its attendees to become participants rather than just observers. Burning Man is city within itself where its “citizens” experience, educate, entertain, and enlighten. While walking& bicycles are the biggest from of transportation @ Burning Man , another form of art and mode of transportation was created– Mutant Vehicles. These are unique, motorized creations that have been modified from the base vehicle to the point that they are no longer recognizable. Communities within Burning Man are created and from these communities you can experience many forms of self expression such as theatre, music, poetry, and dance.  Burning Man is not your typical music festival. No bands are booked to perform, no line-ups are released. There is music but performers pay to play. Most music is in the form of electronic performed by some of the worlds top dj’s and non electronic music is coffee-house style by singer/songwriters or the occasional no-name band.

Whatever your musical tastes there is most likely a festival out there for you.  Music festivals go beyond your typical concert, the beauty of a festival is not only a wide range of great music but you can also try yummy food, participate in great activities, have opportunities to buy hand crafted goods, make new friends, and enjoy new cultural experiences.

Hope is our HIVE expert in all things musical. She has a great ear for sound and that makes her awesome at picking our office playlists! She is constantly looking for that next great great sound and attends more concerts than the entire HIVE combined. When not on Youtube searching for epic sounds, she also is pinning away on the latest fashion trends. Also our resident fashionista, Hope gives great fashion tips!