Music festivals continue to expand in number and size in North America. That's a great deal for music fans. The opportunity to choose from over 100 artists on multiple stages in the larger festivals is a bargain and unique opportunity to explore performances you might not choose on your own. There are certainly many more worthwhile festivals to attend than simply these 10, but these will get you started with some of the biggest and best for pop music fans.
Milwaukee Summerfest - June 26 - July 6
Billing itself as the world's biggest music festival, Milwaukee's Summerfest lasts for 11 days. The primary venue is the 23,000 seat Marcus Amphitheater. Among this year's performers are the Jonas Brothers, Alicia Keys, John Mayer, and Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers.
Essence Music Festival - July 4 - July 6
The Essence Music Festival in New Orleans, Louisiana lays claim to being the largest event celebrating African-American music and culture. This year's performers include Mary J. Blige, Chris Brown, Rihanna, and Kanye West.
Mile High Music Festival - July 19 - July 20
Being billed as the biggest musical event Colorado has ever seen, the Mile High Music Festival will be held just outside of Denver. Scheduled headliners for the event are John Mayer, Dave Matthews Band, and Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers.
Pemberton Festival - July 25 - July 27
Concert promoter Live Nation is sponsoring this new festival as a multi-day destination music festival to match similar events they sponsor in Europe. Located in Pemberton, British Columbia, this event will feature Coldplay, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Jay-Z, and Nine Inch Nails.
Lollapalooza - August 1 - August 3
Lollapalooza returns for its 4th big year as a weekend festival in Chicago. The original Lollapalooza was a touring festival which began in 1991. This year's performers include Kanye West, Radiohead, Nine Inch Nails, and the Raconteurs.
All Points West - August 8 - August 10
Put together by the same company that does the early spring Coachella festival in California, All Points West takes place in Jersey City, New Jersey. The venue, in a park along the Hudson facing Manhattan's famous skyline, is one of the most alluring of all festivals. Featured acts include Jack Johnson, Radiohead, and the Roots.
Virgin Mobile Festival - August 9 - August 10
Outside Lands - August 22 - August 24
This new music festival will take place in San Francisco's famed Golden Gate Park. There will be 5 main performance stages. Among the acts set to perform are Jack Johnson, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and Radiohead.
Treasure Island Music Festival - September 20 - September 21
2008 is the 2nd year for this San Francisco music festival. Among the acts scheduled to appear this year are the Raconteurs, Hot Chip, and Vampire Weekend.
Austin City Limits Festival - September 26 - September 28
The festival closely associated with the venerable PBS television show of the same name takes over downtown Austin, Texas. This year look for Foo Fighters, Gnarls Barkley, and Against Me! to be among those performing.