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Bass: Top five California summer music festivals

Arts and CultureCultureScienceSteve AokiEntertainmentDeadmau5 (music group)

Nothing says summertime quite like live music and craft beer with good friends under the bright sun. Music festivals are one of my favorite summer pastimes; there is just something about the welcoming outdoor setting and stimulating cultural environment that makes large scale festivals irresistible.

While the big dogs Coachella, Bonnaroo and Electronic Daisy have already passed, there is still a great line-up of can’t-miss summer music festivals going off across the California coast. From Outside Lands in San Francisco, to Pacific Festival in Orange County, Hard Fest in Los Angeles, Treasure Island Festival in San Francisco, and the new Identity Festival in San Diego, prepare to be amazed with live performances by Muse, Phish, Deadmau5, Snoop Dogg, Cut Copy, Steve Aoki, Calvin Harris, Kaskade, Pretty Lights, Miike Snow and many more.

Rock out at the top five summer music festivals in California.

Hard Summer Fest – August 6

For one day in downtown Los Angeles, the Hard Fest brings a star-studded line-up of electronic music artists to the forefront of SoCal culture. This festival is all about the music, and this year’s line-up includes Duck Sauce, Boys Noize, Chromeo, Ratatat, Skrillex, Odd Future, Digitalism, Nero, Holy Ghost and more. Thinking ahead, the brains behind Hard are planning a “Holy Ship!” three-day music festival cruise in 2012, featuring Laidback Luke, Steve Aoki, A-Trak and more. Learn more at hardfest.com.

Outside Lands – August 12 – 14

One of the most highly anticipated festivals in northern California, Outside Lands is a celebration of music, food, wine, and art, taking place in the gorgeous Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. Indulge in “Wine Lands” with Ridge Vineyards, Kermit Lynch, Gloria Ferrer, The Prisoner and more on-site wineries; and fuel up with participating local restaurants, including Earthly Delights, Global Gourmet, Let’s Be Frank, Andalu, The Little Chihuahua and more. The music line-up is massive, and more artists will be added throughout the summer. Across three days, enjoy live shows by Muse, Phish, Arcade Fire, The Black Keys, Deadmau5, The Shins, MGMT, Girl Talk, The Decembrists, John Fogerty, Erykah Badu, The Roots, Big Boi, Majoy Lazer, Collie Buddz, Sia and more. Learn more at outsidelands.com.

Pacific Festival – August 13

Now in its second year, Pacific is an emerging music and arts festival that was originally developed by Steve Aoki and Orange County residents who wanted to produce a festival for the local community, run by the local community. Best of all, Pacific Fest supports a non-profit cause, the Surfrider Foundation South Orange County Chapter which helps to protect California’s coastline. This year’s music line-up includes headliners Snoop Dogg, Cut Copy, Steve Aoki, Calvin Harris, Ghostland Observatory, Black Lips, Classixx, Afroman and more, taking place at Oak Canyon Ranch in Orange County. Learn more at pacificfestival.com.

Identity Festival – September 2

The biggest hard-hitting electro / house music festival to hit San Diego, Identity is brought to us by the brains behind Gaslamp nightclub Voyeur. LED Presents is known to bring top talent to the club scene every night, but now they’re taking the bass to a whole new extreme with the Identity Festival this September at Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre. On the Skullcandy Main Stage will be headliners Kaskade, Pretty Lights, Afrojack, The Disco Biscuits, Booka Shade, and Jessie and the Toy Boys. The Dim Mak Stage will showcase Steve Aoki, Nero, The Crystal Method, Datsik, Holy Ghost!, Hercules and Love Affair, Le Castle Vania, Afrobeta, and Doorly. And the Beatport Stage will feature Aeroplane, LA Riots, White Shadow, Nervo, RioTGear, Chad Hugo, Marshall Barnes, and The Eye. Learn more at mylifeeveryday.com.

Treasure Island Festival – October 15 & 16

Going off this October in the San Francisco Bay, the Treasure Island Music Festival offers a slew of entertainment perks, in addition to a massive, diverse music line-up. Check out the on-site Madu Salon, Treasure Chest vendor village, Bean Bag Burlesque, Skee-Ball alleys and more. Split across two days, the 2010 line-up featured headliners LCD Soundsystem, Deadmau5, Kruder & Dorfmeister, Miike Snow and more on Saturday; followed by Belle & Sebastian, The National, Broken Social Scene, She & Him and more on Sunday. Stay tuned for the 2011 line-up release. Learn more at treasureislandfestival.com.

More 2011 summer music festivals include Wanderlust Festival in North Lake Tahoe July 28-31; Lollapalooza in Chicago August 5-7; Sunset Strip Festival August 18-20 in Los Angeles; North Coast Music Festival September 2-4 in Chicago; Burning Man August 29 – September 5 in Nevada; Electric Zoo September 2-4 in New York City; Telluride Brews and Blues September 16-19 in Colorado; and A.W.O.L. (Another Way of Life) Lifestyle Music Experience October 14-18 in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Want more San Diego entertainment tips? Follow Michelle Guerin on Twitter - @MichelleScene!

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