Posted in association with Get To The Front.
When choosing which festival tickets to buy, most people look at the headliners, but I’m usually more interested in the up-and-coming acts I can see on the smaller stages before they get big. Each of the major UK festivals has many Future Pop featured acts on the line-up this year, so here’s my guide to the superstars-in-waiting you can catch at whichever summer shows you’re attending.
BST Hyde Park, London, 30th June-9th July
BST is more like a series of outdoor gigs than a festival as such, but it has been a great addition to London’s summer event calendar in the last few years with poptastic headliners such as Taylor Swift and Kylie. This year’s pop day gives top billing to Justin Bieber, but I’ll be heading along to check out Tove Lo and other international acts such as Icelandic teen star Glowie (above) and Australian group Sheppard.
Ones to watch: Anne-Marie, Dagny, Glowie, Mabel, Sheppard, Ward Thomas
Latitude, Suffolk, 13th-16th July
Latitude was the first proper music festival I went to as a teenager, and although I left certain I’d never camp again, I had a great time seeing mid-’00s faves like Arcade Fire, Bat For Lashes and CSS. It’s a pretty chilled, grown-up festival but they do still have some quality pop acts on offer. If I was going this year, I’d be most excited to see Leon Bridges and Sigrid. The comedy and literary line-up is also always strong.
Ones to watch: Jorja Smith, Leon Bridges, Maggie Rogers, Sigrid, Skott, Ward Thomas, Youngr
V Festival, Chelmsford/Staffordshire, 19th-20th August
V Festival is the most mainstream of the major festivals, and you can always see the acts behind the biggest radio hits of the year, alongside plenty of throwback faves. There will be many major label pop hopefuls performing this year, including Anne-Marie, Imani and Raye, who will all undoubtedly be playing the hit singles they were featured on. And if you’re looking for something more rowdy, Nadia Rose (above) is the one.
Ones to watch: Anne-Marie, Imani Williams, Mabel, Nadia Rose, Raye
Reading & Leeds, 25th-27th August
Although I grew up in the area, I always said I’d never go to Reading as I saw it as a rock festival full of smelly losers, but actually if someone offered me a ticket this year I’d definitely accept. The line-up has loads of great pop acts with a really diverse mix of sounds. I’ve already seen Muna, Sigrid (below) and Off Bloom’s festival sets, and definitely recommend checking them out if you’re going to Reading or Leeds this year.
Ones to watch: Fickle Friends, Jax Jones, K.I.D, Lany, Muna, Off Bloom, Pvris, Ray BLK, Sigrid
Bestival, Dorset, 7th-10th September
This year the final festival of the summer season moves to a new home in Dorset, after 13 years on the Isle of Wight. Bestival is known for its lively atmosphere and tradition of encouraging fancy dress. Despite this I have always wanted to go, because it usually has one of the best line-ups of all the UK festivals. This year’s headliners include the Pet Shop Boys, supported by a range of up-and-coming pop, dance and urban acts.
Ones to watch: Alma, Nadia Rose, Ray BLK, Stefflon Don