Bigger doesn't always mean better, especially when it comes to music festivals.

Everyone's buzzing about Lady Gaga replacing Beyonce at Coachella. They're either pumped about U2 headlining Bonnaroo, or they're realizing that The Farm might have finally lost its allure. Whichever it is, America clearly has power rankings when it comes to music festivals. They're the ones that make headlines, whether you like the lineups or not. And as a result, smaller, more niche curated ones tend to get ignored. We're here to tell you that smaller doesn't mean worse. It often means, if the genre aligns with your style, that the lineup is less focused on star power and more so on acts you actually want to see. 

These are our Top 8 music festivals that may not be on your radar, but should be.


While maybe bigger than the rest of the festivals on this list, Panorama is a baby when it comes to New York City.

Only in its sophomore year, the folks at Goldenvoice have created a formidable contender for the true heir to Governor's Island. This year's lineup is potentially the most accurate representation of who put out last year's most critically acclaimed albums. Solange, Frank Ocean, A Tribe Called Quest. Maybe their sales were low (or maybe they didn't even put out an album to buy; I see you Frank Ocean), but each could be found in most critic's Top 10 Albums of 2016. And as for the headliners who didn't have a new album last year, well, they are Tame Impala and Nine Inch Nails. So, enough said about that. 

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