Top 10 Artist Predictions for Summerfest 2016


Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

It is anybody’s guess every year when it comes to asking which artists will be at Summerfest. In the past they’ve thrown out enough curveballs to leave anyone excited. From The Rolling Stones and Kendrick Lamar last year to Outkast and the Dave Mathews Band the year prior, it has always been one of the best festivals when it comes to representing all genres and tastes. Spanning 11-days and boasting over 800 bands and artists, you’d be ignorant to think there would be nothing there for you.Tickets are extremely reasonable typically and even better if you buy them early. I know it is a bit soon to know for sure if your favorite band is going to be there this year and if the rest of the lineup warrants you forking over your credit card digits online, but we are expecting a pretty good show this year. To perhaps help assist you in your decision, we have put together a list consisting of 10 of our top guesses for who may be walking out onto those stages this Summer.

1. Adele

For starters, Adele will already be in the Midwest for part of her U.S. tour in the beginning of July and she mysteriously has three days off from July 7th-9th. She dropped an undeniably great album 25, at the tail end of last year and this is also her first ever U.S. tour, I would be surprised if she didn’t make her way on to the Amphitheater’s stage on one of those “off” nights. All I’m saying is, if you want one of those tickets, you better keep three tabs open on your browser awaiting the announcement and even go a step further, hire someone to sit at said computer and click that “buy tickets” icon when the moment comes. I foresee these (currently imagined) tickets selling out in the same time-frame as a fresh Yeezy release, followed by a lot of tears, both at home and at the concert.

2. Lana Del Rey

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Yet to announce much other than a probable 5th album for 2016, it would seem that Lana’s schedule is pretty open. It would seem also that Summerfest likes to bring in its fair share of pop/alternative artists to the fairgrounds. Last year they brought Ed Sheeran and Bastille who both have that same newcomer appeal, yet I would argue that Lana already may have a more interesting appeal than both of them.

3. Dead and Company

Photo by Seth McConnell

Let us all hope that John Mayer’s words held some fortuitous meaning when he threw out the casual, “See you next year” line at the Dead and Company show at their New Year’s Eve show in L.A. They are already confirmed for two sets at Bonnaroo this year, which takes place about three weeks prior to Summerfest and it is far enough away to keep us midwesterners hopeful for a little concert love from the supergroup.

4. Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers

Photo by Britt Bickell

If you say to yourself, “I don’t really care about seeing a Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers show”, you are doing two things. One, you are lying to yourself and two, you are lying to those you care about. This year marks the 40th anniversary of what is likely the best heartland rock group of all time. I don’t think it is too far fetched to assume that there is an anniversary tour in the making and that it will be looking to reach a plethora of the large market music festivals that take place all over the Summer months.

5. Pearl Jam

Photo by David Hall

Another Bonnarro 2016 act that is safe from the radius clause that prohibits artists from playing within 300 miles of the Tennessee festival. If there is another thing that Summerfest is known for, it would be its ability to bring back rock and grunge bands that formed somewhere between the 70’s and the 90’s and bring with them droves and droves of middle-aged men and women who never miss any chance to relive that drug-induced nostalgia of their younger years. Not to say these band don’t have a large modern-day following, just maybe not one as inclined to turn up at a show as the beer-loving folks of Wisconsin. After Bonnaroo, Pearl Jam is wide open until August.


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