Two days of not-for-profit entertainment mingling big names with unknowns.
When: May 28–29
Where: Comcast Theatre, Hartford, CT
Risk Heatstroke For: Weezer headlining one night, Snoop Dogg the other, Wiz Khalifa and Best Coast sprinkled in for good measure.
Getting There: Difficult. Unless you have access to a car or are willing to pay for a taxi from the train station, you're pretty much out of luck. Although, hitchiking is an option.
Price Gouging: Medium. A two-day general-admission pass starts at $99, but add in transportation and having to buy all food on the premises, and the cost escalates quickly.
They Stand for Something: The acronym is for "Bring Our Music Back," referring to the healthy dose of local bands on the lineup.
Hot 97 Summer Jam
The radio station’s annual bacchanalia for hip-hop heads.
When: June 5
Where: Meadowlands Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ
Risk Heatstroke For: Big (male) contenders: Lil Wayne, Drake, Rick Ross, Waka Flocka Flame, etc., etc.
Getting There: Medium difficulty. You'll need to take a train or bus, or drive it if you've got it.
Price Gouging: Tickets are actually a steal for this lineup, starting at $45. But don't forget to add in transportation costs.
Beef Potential: Sadly, low. But with Chris Brown and Drake on the lineup, you may catch a catfight or two among the teen gals in the crowd.
The L Magazine's Diet SXSW, bringing over a hundred bands to north Brooklyn.
When: June 16–19
Where: McCarren Park, pretty much every bar in Williamsburg, and one church in Greenpoint.
Risk Heatstroke For: Guided by Voices’ “classic” lineup, Mount Eerie, and the peripatetic Beirut.
Getting There: Easy. The L train effectively becomes a festival shuttle.
Price Gouging: Low. Advance badges run for $70, while tickets to individual shows range from $8 to $35.
They Love the Nineties: Guided by Voices won’t be the only band representing the decade before last: Performing as Deervana, Providence’s Deer Tick will play a full set of Nirvana covers at Brooklyn Bowl.
Clearwater Music Festival
Two days in picturesque Hudson Valley at Pete Seeger's annual music and environmental fund-raiser.
When: June 18–19
Where: Croton Point Park, Croton-on-Hudson, NY
Risk Heatstroke For: Pete Seeger, Arlo Guthrie, Billy Bragg, and Suzanne "Luka" Vega.
Getting There: Low Hassle. MetroNorth has a package with a discount round-trip fare, plus a free shuttle to and from the festival.
Price Gouging: Low. A single-day pass is $60, but dig out the tent for the best deal: a full weekend and camping pass for $140.
Come Sail Away: Concertgoers can purchase a supplemental ticket for a scenic boat ride on Haverstraw Bay, or try their hand at kayaking.
The Village Voice moves its popular indie Siren Fest north and re-christens it after the speed of the East River.
When: July 16
Where: South Street Seaport
Risk Heatstroke For: Black Angels, Davila 666, Obits, and Oberhofer.
Getting There: Easy! Just a subway ride away. Or, if the weather's nice, walk.
Price Gouging: Nonexistent! (It's free.) Save your cash for sno-cones or "I heart NY" T-shirts from the Seaport mall.
Don't Forget Elbow Pads: The Seaport tends to get insane when crowded (anyone remember the Drake/Hanson fiasco?), so show up early to grab a good spot, with an easy exit route should things get dicey.