Music festivals have always been a rollercoaster ride of anticipation, awe and energy, inspiring masses with the power of sound. Celebrated widely all over the world, India too as a country rooted in music, has its share of local music festivals. Lifestyle Asia lists 5 of the biggest upcoming music festivals in India that are sure to keep music enjoyers at the edge of their seats.
The diverse music across India is an amalgamation of traditional and contemporary tied together by the ropes of culture. These local music festivals harp the strings of setting a stage for that very same culture in a culmination of musical talent in the country. An unforgettable experience that all music enthusiasts and performance junkies will be up for. With a range of talented artists in the lineup for each event, experience the diversity of sounds with the likes of renowned indie musicians like Taba Chake and Peter Cat Recording co to the innovative upcoming hip hop phenom that is Chaar Diwaari, along with world-renowned international guests like Jonas Blue and boy band Blue. These music festivals do it all. Experience the ultimate experiences of India’s sound this year at these upcoming events.
5 Upcoming local music festivals to visit this year
South Side Story
Mark September 2 to 16, on your calendars and get ready for a South Indian experience as Red FM presents South Side Story in the cities of Mumbai and Delhi this September. The event celebrates all things South Indian, providing a space for merchandise and art that hail from South India along with culinary options. The artist lineup for the events comprises the cream of South Indian indie music with Bengaluru’s very own rap sensation Hanumankind to cult favourites multi-genre artists and Kerala’s pride Thaikkudam Bridge. These musicians along with the list of more have been forerunners of the indie music scene in the country and now set the perfect stage for their listeners from across the nation. Experience the sounds of South India at this year’s South Side Story.
When: September 2–16
Where: Mumbai, Delhi
Being promoted as a street festival, Beat Street Festival brings together some of the best names from the indie scene along with international guests for a fun cultural and musical experience. With multiple stages, food zones, and entertainment zones for other fun and games, the event aims to curate an exciting musical event for all the cultured folk at the festival. Some of the names as seen in the lineup are Taba Chake, Dhanji, Vilen and Mitraaz, known across India for their additions to the indie sound of the country. The three-day event is also set to be closed by British boy band, Blue. The festival sets the stage for some of the finest musicians for the crowd to sing their hearts out to the fullest.
When: September 15–17
Ziro Festival of Music
One of India’s largest open-air and heavily anticipated music festivals is back with its 10th edition. Set in tourist destination and cultural hot spot Ziro Valley in Arunachal Pradesh in North East India, the Ziro Festival of Music not only promotes indigenous tribes and artists from North East India but also showcases global independent music scene with a large number of Indian artists from across the nation as well as international artists. An outdoor experience that brings together culture, music and art at a travel destination spanning across 4 days as one of India’s largest musical festivals. The lineup this year consists of Grammy winner Vishwa Mohan Bhatt to the likes of Mohit Chauhan, multiple international artists along with rising artists like Chaar Diwaari as well as Arunanchal’s very own indie star Taba Chake and many more. An experience like none other, India’s very own Coachella likelihood, the Ziro Festival of Music is where things are happening.
When: September 28–October 1
Where: Ziro Valley, Arunachal Pradesh
Cherry Blossom Festival
As the Eastern Khasi hills of India welcome the annual Himalayan cherry blossom every November, the Cherry Blossom Festival is held in Shillong. A cultural extravaganza to celebrate nature’s beauty the annual festival sees many a performance and events including competitions and dance. However, the highlight is the music festival that sets the perfect stage for visitors to enjoy their Cherry Blossom viewing with a side of partying with the top music globally. This time’s lineup brings international artists like chart topper Jonas Blue to perform for the folks at the festival. Other names from the EDM music scene performing at the festival include Hybrid Theory, Kenny Musik and more. Irish pop star Ronan Keating is a headliner of the event as well. The Cherry Blossom festival also gives a stage for the local Khasi musicians to perform their music and elevates the Meghalayan music scene. A perfectly planned event for Meghalaya’s tourism and culture doubled with global music to give way to one of India’s biggest music festivals.
When: November 17–19
Where: Shillong, Meghalaya
Magnetic Fields Festival
India’s much anticipated much-awaited premiere contemporary music festival spanning 3 days demonstrates India’s vibrant heritage and culture, through this culmination of traditional and contemporary India. The Magnetic Fields Festival aims at unity and inclusivity and spreading a united essence of brotherhood through soulful music performances. Set in the beautiful Alsisar Palace in Rajasthan the event blends traditional folk Rajasthani music and the contemporary acting as a cultural exchange for the large number of international tourists that come to experience Indian culture. From a royal experience at the palace to a nomadic desert camping lifestyle, the Magnetic Fields Festival is open to all from different backgrounds and cultures as a combined unit of Indian culture and beautiful music. The lineup goes from international artists to contemporary indie brands renowned across India like Peter Cat Recording co and Till Apes. A long list of soulful music to create an unforgettable experience to close the year.
When: December 15– 17
Where: Alsisar, Rajasthan
Hero image and Feature image: Courtesy Cherry Blossom Festival