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Genre Trends at America's Biggest Music Festivals

Music festivals are not static entities. Just as musical tastes change through the years, music festivals can vary and evolve the makeup of their lineups.

Vivid Seats studied the music genre makeup of four major music festivals by assigning a music genre to every festival performer over the last five years. We then charted the percentage of each music genre for all festivals yearly. Even in just a five-year window, it's clear that festivals are changing, as some genres of music grow in popularity while others shrink.

But no music festival is identical. Click the music genre tabs above each chart to single out a genre in each festival to observe its five-year trend.

Austin City Limits

Austin City Limits graphic
  • In 2017, the percentage of Country and Folk music in Austin City Limits hit a four-year low, with just 10 percent of festival acts falling into that genre.
  • Rap/Hip Hop is on the rise at Austin City Limits. After comprising just 6 percent of all acts in both 2014 and 2015, the genre represented 16 percent of ACL in 2018.
  • With acts like Kali Uchis, King Princess, Billie Eilish and Bea Miller, ACL 2019 has a very strong Pop flavor, while continuing to have a larger share of Rock acts than other festivals.

Bonnaroo

Bonaroo Graphic
  • In 2017, 14 percent of Bonnaroo's acts were of the Rap/Hip Hop genre, double the share it occupied at the festival in 2014 (7 percent).
  • At 10 percent of the 2018 Bonnaroo lineup, last year's share of Rap/Hip Hop acts was 2.5 times the share that the genre enjoyed in 2015, when just 4 percent of the festival acts were of the Rap/Hip Hop variety.
  • Rap ticked down ever so slightly to 9% this year.
  • In 2014, just 10 percent of Bonnaroo acts were Dance/Electronica. In 2019, a quarter (25 percent) of all performers fall into that genre.
  • Rock is more present in 2019 than it was in 2018, comprising 23% of the festival, up from a six-year low of 13% in 2018.

Coachella

Coachella Graphic
  • After three years of steady decline, Dance/Electronica is on the upswing in 2019, with 34% of the acts.
  • Dance/Electronica peaked at Coachella in 2015, when the genre occupied 42 percent of the entire festival.
  • Rock declined again in 2019, with just 12% of the Coachella lineup.
  • In 2018, Coachella made waves for not having a single rock headliner for the first time ever.
  • The share of R&B acts doubled from 2017 to 2018.
  • Pop continues to grow as well, hitting an all-time high with 18% of performers.

Lollapalooza

Lollapalooza Graphic
  • It seems that as Pop grows at Lollapalooza, Alternative declines. In 2014, Alternative represented a fourth of all festival acts; in 2018, just 14 percent of all acts were Alternative. Conversely, Pop has grown from 13 percent to 19 percent during the same time frame.
  • Also stealing share from Alternative is Rap/Hip Hop, which hovered at 11 percent in 2014 and 2015 but now represents 15 percent of the festival, including multiple headliners in 2018. R&B and Dance/Electronica both continue to grow.
  • With Ariana Grande headlining Lollapalooza, the strong Pop flavor to Lolla 2019 carries through the entire lineup, as Pop constitutes 17 percent of the entire lineup.
  • Rap/Hip Hop is bigger than it's ever been at Lollapalooza, with 17 percent of the lineup, surpassing the share of Alternative acts for the first time ever.