LA Festival Season Is Upon Us With 2 Oceanside Music Fests This Weekend

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The sun is shining, the Hollywood Bowl's new season is launching, and prime outdoor concert season is upon is.

Now that everyone's back from Coachella, L.A. is hosting its own festivals.

Last weekend, we had the Back to the Beach ska/punk festival in Huntington Beach, and this weekend we have two more oceanside fests: BeachLife in Redondo Beach, and Just Like Heaven in Long Beach.

Both offer chill vibes — whether that's a beachy brand of chill or a more indie-rock kind of chill... it just depends on what kind of chill you're searching for, like this dog.


For more things to do this weekend, we've got picks for comedy, music, family fun, Cinco de Mayo and Derby Day.


Here are some deets:

BEACHLIFE

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One of BeachLife's core features is that it takes place on the beach (hence the name), offering an ocean backdrop for jam bands and nostalgia acts. According to the festival's organizers, it's the first ticketed live music festival to take place on an actual L.A. County beach.

"We've noticed together how underserved live music is on the Westside of Los Angeles, in the beach communities in general," co-founder Rob Lissner told LAist.

The festival's focus is celebrating Southern California's beach culture, according to Lissner. He and BeachLife co-founder Allen Sanford have both been in the area for decades.

BeachLife's headliners include Jason Mraz, Willie Nelson, and the Beach Boys' Brian Wilson.

"There are a bunch of artists that are either from here or wrote their music on the beaches here — somebody like Brian Wilson," Lissner said. "And you have great artists that really work well on the beach — Ziggy Marley and the Steel Pulse."

Each day's lineup has a little bit of a different vibe — Friday's more jam band, Saturday's more beach party, and Sunday's more country and reggae.

Chevy Metal, featuring the Foo Fighters' Taylor Hawkins, is even doing a Van Halen cover set. The festival's music programming criss-crosses eras, while being largely nostalgia-driven.

BeachLife is following the trend of festivals like Coachella in livestreaming their sets, though we don't recommend re-creating the feeling of the beach on your feet at home (sand is a real pain to get out of carpet).

You can watch the day one stream here:

JUST LIKE HEAVEN

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Speaking of Coachella, Just Like Heaven is produced by the same concert mega-promoters, Goldenvoice. This lineup is more focused on throwbacks than top 40 hits — the festival feels a bit like a chance to recapture some of the vibe of 2000s-era Coachella and the dearly departed FYF.

Headliners include Phoenix, MGMT, Beach House, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. The fest has also made headlines by reuniting dance-punk group the Rapture.

Just like BeachLife, Just Like Heaven (try saying that five times fast) will also give festivalgoers those ocean vibes... because (drum roll, please) it takes place on a boat. The Queen Mary will be this festival's buoyant grounds.

Rather than presenting different bands over multiple days, Just Like Heaven is like a compact Coachella. The premise of the show was so hot that what was originally planed as a Saturday-only festival expanded, much like Coachella. But instead of scheduling two weekends of the same bands, the festival creators are presenting two days in the same weekend utilizing the same lineup.

Among the special attractions is Passion Pit celebrating the 10th anniversary of their first album Manners.

Beachlife takes place this Friday through Sunday in Redondo Beach; Just Like Heaven runs Friday and Saturday in Long Beach.