Looking for the best San Diego Music Festivals!? Well, look no further, because this list has got you covered with the best upcomign events, parties, and concerts in the San Diego area.
“Discovered by the Germans in 1904, they named it San Diego, which of course in German means ‘a whale’s vagina’.” – Ron Burgundy
Sun, sand, sea and smooth sounds. Music festivals in San Diego are easygoing, laidback and most important of all – fun. Locals also love their food and drink, so food and music are often celebrated together. Tacos, tequila and tunes – yes, please!
Best of all, it’s So-Cal, so it goes without saying that the days are warm and the nights mild for much of the year. Luckily, the annual music festival calendar is designed to match the temperate climate.
Dance under the warm Southern California sun at these…
1) CRSSD Festival
Where: Waterfront Park, San Diego
Genre: Electronic, House, Techno
“CRSSD Festival is a two-day electronic music festival at the 12 acre San Diego Waterfront Park featuring three stages and 36+ performers. In addition to the music, the festival will offer craft beer, mixed drinks, food, and more.
Known for its sunny, oceanside views and roster of talent that ranges from driving techno to powerful displays on its live stage, CRSSD Festival has certainly made its mark since its inception five years ago. From the beginning, CRSSD has maintained unique characteristics that have placed it in a league entirely of its own while simultaneously pushing San Diego forward as a music-centric destination. Five years in and nine editions down, it’s no surprise that CRSSD continues to reign supreme as one of the premier electronic music festivals in Southern California.”
This is one of my favorite music festivals in California!!
2) Kaaboo Del Mar Festival
When: September 2019
Where: Fairgrounds, Del Mar
“Forget what you know about music festivals, we’ve shifted the paradigm and built something new. KAABOO is the perfect weekend escape, described in a word that comes from whatever the hell we feel like yelling when we’re high on life and having fun. A curated three-day sound voyage that combines rock-n-roll music and tastemaking events in a modern wonderland on the warm shores of the pacific. Where every detail is designed for your enjoyment and clean, comfortable amenities inspire you to break from your busy life, let loose and enjoy the experience. Welcome to KAABOO, the place where all of your senses align.”
3) Carlsbad Music Festival
“Not every beautiful beach town offers world-class contemporary chamber music by some of the nation’s most exciting young musicians. Or the opportunity for audience members to mingle with them at workshops, lecture-demonstrations, interviews and receptions. But when two of the founders are hometown boys like Artistic Director Matt McBane and Calder Quartet violinist Ben Jacobson, Carlsbad’s natural friendliness is bound to influence the proceedings. This is the directon of classical chamber music today, so make sure you have your seat for this exciting series of concerts – presented right here in Carlsbad, California.”
4) Tequila & Taco Music Festival
Where: Embarcadero Marina Park South, Downtown San Diego
“California’s Largest Traveling Tequila & Taco Music Festival is coming back to Downtown San Diego at beautiful Embarcadero Marina Park South! Join us for TWO days of fun in the sun on Saturday, and Sunday! Saturday will showcase top-shelf Tequilas sampling, while you enjoy THE BEST gourmet tacos! Enjoy Live Music, Margaritas, Craft Beer, and Art Vendors.”
5) San Diego Soul Music Festival
Where: Pechanga Arena, San Diego
“San Diego Soul Music Festival is a live concert bringing you the best is soul music. Live bands, real singing and real musicians. Get ready to experience the soul. 2019 lineup includes Maze featuring Frankie Beverly; Keith Sweat; Stephanie Mills and more!”
6) Summergrass San Diego
Where: Antique Gas and Steam Engine Museum, San Diego
“Summergrass San Diego 2019 is San Diego County’s premier live bluegrass event and Southern California’s best bluegrass festival. This family-friendly event includes top entertainment on stage as well as impromptu jams, great food, vendors, and an incredible location at the Antique Gas and Steam Engine Museum.”
7) San Diego GypsyFest
Where: De Anza Springs Resort
Genre: World Music / Folk
“San Diego GypsyFest is a world music festival featuring dozens of bands of all genres coming together to celebrate all things gypsy! The third annual San Diego GypsyFest takes place on Saturday, June 9, 2018 at the De Anza Springs Resort in Jacumba, CA (one hour East of San Diego), San Diego GypsyFest, in addition to a robust band lineup, also features independent performers and street musicians, live art/artists, various gypsy entertainers and performers, and houses many new and independent vendors! Get ready for a wild party including great food, loud music, and gypsy art! SDGF 2018 headliners included Larry & His Flask, House of Rabbits, Keep Your Soul, Clint Westwood, CHUGBOAT, Roma Ransom, Quel Bordel! and many more excellent local and regional artists, as well as a handful of touring nationals! Grab your tickets today and let’s make this year the best SDGF yet.”
8) Adams Avenue Street Fair
Where: Normal Heights, Uptown San Diego
“The 37th annual Adams Avenue Street Fair, Southern California’s largest free two-day music festival, will take place along seven blocks of Adams Avenue in the Normal Heights community of San Diego.
The Adams Avenue Street Fair offers exceptional entertainment for all-ages. Headliners include; West London reggae/tropical pop singer Hollie Cook, award-winning blues band the Delgado Brothers, Deke Dickerson & the Ecco-Fonics, local garage band the Schizophonics, salsa/Latin jazz artists Charlie Chavez and Afrotruko, funk/soulsters Sure Fire Soul Ensemble, San Diego rockers Dirty Sweet, and the rockabilly reunion of Hot Rod Lincoln.
The headliners will be joined by more than 80 artists performing on six stages along Adams Avenue. There event includes the Adams Avenue Street Fair Craft Beer Taste (Saturday only from 12-noon to 4:00 pm), as well as four beer gardens, giant carnival rides, festival food, and more than 300 exhibitors selling their merchandise and promoting their services.”
9) UNITE! Music Festival
When: July 2019 (Pride Weekend)
Where: Spin Nightclub, San Diego
“UNITE! Music Festival is an all-inclusive San Diego Pride nightlife experience at Spin Nightclub. Last year they brought all walks of life together for laughs, dancing and live entertainment. Join them again in 2019 as they once again come together for three days of music, fun and good vibes! International and Unified, that’s what UNITE Music Festival stands for.”
10) San Diego Beer & Music Festival
Where: Arts District Liberty Station, San Diego
“The San Diego Beer and Music Festival is a unique event celebrating craft beer and live music. The event is a collaborative effort of Rockstarbeer Productions and many local breweries combining to raise many for San Diego 501c3 Non-Profit, Coastal Conservation Association. Enjoy unlimited samples of over 100 craft beers from local and regional breweries. The Main Stage will feature national headlining bands and DJ’s.”
11) WCKD Village
Where: East Village / Gaslamp Quarter, San Diego
“Prepare to enter a realm of electrifying adventures as WCKD Village takes music festival to a whole new level with interactive elements, amazing talent across 4 stages and over-the-top themed areas to give you a Halloween experience like never before! On Saturday, October 27th, from 6 pm to Midnight, six blocks in the East Village will transform into San Diego’s largest Halloween Festival as the WCKD Village comes to life. Grab your crew, transform your look and take a journey into the unknown–where every which way you turn, something
WCKD awaits…Welcome to the world of WCKD, a festival where innocent dreams are twisted into an epic evening of nightmarish celebrations. Come play in the dark as towering sway pole clowns, stilt walkers and fire breathers greet our WCKD guests into The DEMENTED CIRCUS. Don’t let the devious clowns fool you, you’re the ringleader here–Grab a drink from The Sideshow Specialty Cocktail Bar from the gigantic Sailor Jerry Cocktail Shaker and immerse yourself into the sounds of music, life-sized games, a Haunted Hookah Hideaway lounge and more!”
12) West Coast Weekender
When: May 2-6, 2019
Where: Viejas Casino & Resort, San Diego
“West Coast Weekender is a boutique festival and music conference held in May in San Diego, California. World class talent participate in daytime panel discussions and play parties that run from afternoon to early morning. With a strong focus on local art and industry, West Coast Weekender pays homage to the American westside’s rich underground music culture. With long standing regional producers and sponsors, West Coast Weekender has forged collaborations dedicated to creating an uplifting and positive festival experience for the underground music community. New and seasoned enthusiasts of underground music culture will discover something new to celebrate at West Coast Weekender.”
13) Humphrey’s Concerts By The Bay
When: April – October
Where: Shelter Island, San Diego
“San Diego’s vibrant music scene gets even brighter from April through October, when the stars fill the stage at Humphreys Concerts By the Bay.
Our celebrated summer concert series offers the best of San Diego entertainment, and showcases some of the world’s most legendary entertainers all performing in our intimate, 1,450-seat outdoor concert venue. Since 1982, Humphreys Concerts by the Bay has presented performances spanning genres from rock and jazz to comedy, blues and international beats. Performers like Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Ringo Starr, and Steely Dan have all graced our stage, offering fans an unmatched up-close experience all surrounded by lush tropical gardens, tranquil views of the marina, and Shelter Island vistas.”
14) Horizon Music Festival
Where: Embarcadero Marina Park North, San Diego
Genre: Electronic / Various
“Each Horizon event has its own unique touch and feel. From beer and wine festivals offering unlimited tastings of fan favorites and lesser known (but still amazing) libation brands, to carnival experiences with a ferris wheel overlooking the water and carnival acts, to amazing live concert performances featuring superstar talent as well as local up and coming DJs, guests are treated to an experience unlike any other. Join us as we reach into the Horizon and further expand this iconic brand all summer.”
15) Sherman Heights Latino Music Festival
Where: Sherman Heights, San Diego
Genre: Latin music
“The Sherman Heights Latino Music Festival is an annual family-friendly celebration of Latin music and arts. Each year, it features not only great live music, but also traditional arts & crafts, folkloric dance performances and delicious street food. The lineup of musicians reflects a variety of genres that Latin America is known for such as latin jazz, rock en español, reggaeton, bachata and many others.”
16) Balboa Park Twilight in the Park
When: June – August
Where: Spreckels Organ Pavilion, Balboa Park, San Diego
“For 37 years, Twilight’s live music under the stars has been delighting visitors. The music program ranges from military bands and Dixieland jazz, to big band swing and Latin salsa. Our goal at Twilight is to provide a fabulous, free, family-oriented venue for folks to come and listen to some great music. Bring a picnic, sit back and relax, or kick up your heels to some wonderful tunes.”
17) Pacific Beachfest
Where: Pacific Beach, San Diego
“Come see what all the excitement is about. pacific beachfest is san diego’s premier beach festival located in the heart of beach town: pacific beach.
Enjoy this free, full-day, family-friendly, music-packed event. Throughout the action-packed day thousands of BeachFest goers can enjoy live music on 3 stages.
Hornblend Stage featuring world beat dance music, the Community Stage featuring the best talent in PB, and the Grand Stage where the hottest DJs and Reggae will be featured in the Beachfest Big JOsh Beer Garden.”
18) Avolution Fest
Where: Quartyard, San Diego
“There are super-niche food festivals dedicated to just about everything, from ice creams to chicken wings — so it’s actually quite surprising that it’s taken so long for someone to host a major avocado-themed food festival.
Avolution Fest is set to debut for the first time in San Diego, California next month, and will celebrate all thinks avocado. The music and art festival will include live performances, art installations, and — naturally — plenty of things to eat and drink featuring the green fruit.”
19) BEER X San Diego Beer & Music Extravaganza
Where: Waterfront Park, San Diego
“Beer X is a day of great music and craft beer at Waterfront Park. This event is 21+ from 1pm – 4pm. All ages are welcome after 4:00pm once the craft beer tasting portion is complete. This event will take place in June at Waterfront Park in San Diego, CA. Live music throughout the day featuring Slightly Stoopid, Stick Figure, Pepper, Fishbone & Ethan Tucker Band. The festival area boasts sprawling grassy areas that you can relax in and watch the bands.”
Where: La Jolla Indian Campground
Genre: Electronic, Various
San Diego’s official Burning Man regional event
“YOUtopia is A 4-day camping and arts regional “burn” celebrating the culture and principles of Burning Man. Burning Man only happens once a year, but burner culture is alive and well year-round. Burning Man regional events are held all over the world and are based on the Ten Principles, empowering burner ethos to thrive far and wide. YOUtopia is part of a long tradition of bringing the magic of the playa to the rest of the world while also celebrating the vibrant creative and communal elements of San Diego and the surrounding areas.”
Am I Missing Any Epic Music Festivals in San Diego…?
With it year long sunshine and relaxed atmosphere – San Diego really is one of the best cities in the world for music festivals! There are so many awesome events, food and beer festivals, and frequent parties to keep all music fans happy! If you think I missed any incredible San Diego music festivals, please do reach out to me as I love to keep my site updated as much as possible!! Stay classy, San Diego
Looking for more music festivals around the USA…?
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