Music Festivals in Birmingham in 2022
Who loves live music? Apparently, the British. Every summer, the UK erupts with some of the biggest and best-known music festivals on the planet.
As the second biggest city in the UK, Birmingham certainly has its share of live music festivals. And the central location of the city, almost at the dead center of England, means it's easy to get to many different festivals around the UK from Birmingham. Whether you're into jazz, soul, funk, dance music, pop, or rock music, there's probably a music festival in Birmingham that can scratch your itch and let you party with Birmingham's music-loving audiences.
There are plenty of good reasons to visit Birmingham if you get the chance, and the city's many festivals are just one of them. Drop off your bags at a Bounce luggage storage in Birmingham, and you'll be ready to enjoy some of the best musical acts around. And if you're wondering how to navigate the city and its surroundings to get to all the best events, check out our guide to getting around Birmingham by public transit.
The Best Music Festivals in Birmingham in 2022
Birmingham Fake Festival
Even better than the real thing? Maybe. Birmingham Fake Festival gives you the chance to see some true musical legends - or at least a very good imitation. The Fake Festival brings together some of the top musical tribute acts from around the world to perform the greatest hits of artists you may never get a chance to see otherwise. These tribute artists are devoted to their craft, and on a Festival stage, you may struggle to tell the difference between them and the icons they pay tribute to.
This year's lineup features tributes to P!nk, Oasis, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Kasabian, Jamiroquai, and Green Day. It's a great way to hear some of your favorite hits in a single location, and this festival is geared around family fun, with face painting and activity stalls for children and a good selection of food available from vendors in the festival area. Held under a giant marquee in Kings Heath Park, this fun Festival kicks off the live music season in Birmingham at the start of May.
Birmingham Jazz Festival
One of Birmingham's longest-running music festivals, Birmingham Jazz Festival celebrates its 40th year of operation in 2022. Held this year on the 13th, 14th, and 15th of May, Birmingham Jazz Festival focuses on UK jazz music, which brings together influences from the Caribbean and India as well as classic African-American jazz traditions. As a result, this festival is an intriguing place to explore for jazz lovers and offers an intriguing take on this musical form that you won't find elsewhere.
The festival is held at 1000 Trades, a bar and restaurant in Birmingham's famous Jewellery Quarter. A weekend pass to all events costs £60 or £25 for students, or you can pay at the door for the individual events you want to attend for £15 per ticket. Book in advance for an individual event, and you'll only pay £12.50. Plus, of the 12 bands playing the festival, three of them can be seen for free. The first gig of each day of the festival will be free to visit, making this a great way to explore some new music while you're in Birmingham. Artists this year include Locomotive, Bryan Corbett, Sara Dowling, and Xhosa Cole. Check out these and other jazz artists at this small but perfectly formed Festival of UK jazz.
Rave Anywhere Presents The Experience
Rave Anywhere is an organization devoted to dance music events held in unusual venues. This year, their The Experience event will be held on Friday, May 20th, and Saturday, May 21st at Thornborough Farm in Birmingham. This two-day event will be the biggest Rave Anywhere has held to date, and promises to be one giant party. With 60 artists spread across three different stages, The Experience brings together some of the best names in dance, trance, and hardcore music. There's even a DIY turntable where you can put your name down and play a set of your own for the festival crowd. If you're a fan of dance music or just longing for a classic rave experience, pick up a ticket for £99 and head out to the farm to enjoy an unforgettable musical experience.
Mostly Jazz, Funk, and Soul Festival
Taking place in beautiful Moseley Park from July 8-10, this cleverly named festival takes an eclectic and diverse approach to the artists it books. This year's lineup includes legendary local ska band The Specials, Cameo, and the Earth Wind and Fire Experience featuring Al McKay. There's also an impressive roster of other artists to enjoy, contributing to the broad-minded feel of this festival. You'll also find a selection of some of the best food trucks in Birmingham here, so it's a great place to enjoy a summer afternoon of food and music.
Tickets for the whole weekend cost £145 for adults and £65 for children ages 12 to 15. Under 11's are admitted free with a paying adult.
Sometimes, it's nice to be on the cutting edge of something big. The Supersonic Festival is devoted to the underground scene and has been called the UK's best small music festival. Originally held back in the early 2000s, this festival was on hiatus for several years. But in 2022, when many other festivals have faltered, Supersonic is back, bringing new life to Birmingham's underground and experimental music scene.
You won't find big names here. Instead, you'll find a good mixture of up-and-coming performers and cult legends. This year's lineup includes Bunuel, Follakzoid, No Home, and Farida Amadou, among others. But instead of going to see the headliners, this is the kind of festival you attend to encounter something new. The eclectic mix of performers means you'll find just about every musical genre represented.
Held this year from July 8 to the 10th, Supersonic offers weekend tickets for £130 or single-day tickets for £50. The festival is held in multiple venues throughout Birmingham city center, so visit the website to check out which concerts you most want to attend. The festival also offers a good selection of food and drink at its venues, including vegetarian and vegan options.
National Bhangra Festival
Bhangra started off as traditional folk music in the Punjab region of India. But thanks to a huge Punjabi diaspora in the UK, this musical form evolved considerably to become a uniquely British - though undeniably Indian-influenced - musical style. As a center of immigration for decades, Birmingham has a huge population of Punjabi descent, and so it's not all that surprising that the biggest Bhangra festival in the UK is held in the city.
Held on Sunday, July 17th at the Regency Suite, this is the eighth edition of this lively festival. Performers include Inderjit London, Kamal Chopra, Mariam Kajol, and Birmingham Crew. These performers all have their own styles, running from highly traditional to deeply experimental, so you'll be able to enjoy all facets of the current trends in Bhangra music and dance.
One of the biggest festivals on the Birmingham music calendar, MADE Festival takes place on July 30th in Dunstall Park just outside Birmingham. Devoted to dance music in all its variety, this year's MADE Festival is headlined by AJ Tracey and Bad Boy Chiller Crew and also features Shy FX, Nicky Blackmarket, and dozens of other DJs, both established and up-and-coming. With acts performing across several different stages, you'll be able to enjoy a great variety of music while you attend one of the top single-day festivals in the UK. The festival also features fairground rides, street food, and artistic performances, so it's a great place to spend some time and enjoy the atmosphere.
Tickets to this festival are released in batches, with each getting more expensive than the last, so it's a good idea to book early. Final release tickets will cost £73, and there's an additional charge to attend the after-party.
Moseley Folk and Arts Festival
Held from September 2 to 4 in Moseley Park, this family-friendly festival is the perfect way to say goodbye to the summer. The parklands setting makes for a relaxed vibe, and the festival features lots of family-friendly activities to keep kids occupied along with the musical acts. The festival tries to combine big names with up-and-coming talent, and while it bills itself as a folk festival, you'll find that they take an expansive view of what can fit in that label.
This year's lineup is headlined by Supergrass, Jethro Tull, and The Coral. Other performing acts include Kurt Vile & The Violators, Anaïs Mitchell, and poet John Cooper Clarke. More than just folk, this is a festival to celebrate many different forms of art and the cross-pollination that comes when creative people get together. There's also a great variety of food available, with some of the best street food vendors in Birmingham attending. Check out Vegeteria, Brum Mi, and the West Midlands Jerk Centre to sample some of the most exciting flavors of the city while you enjoy live music and beautiful natural surroundings. A ticket for the entire weekend costs £145 for adults and £64 for those aged 12 to 15. Children under 11 can attend for free, which encourages a family atmosphere at the festival.
Planning to stay some more days in Birmingham?
If you're in Birmingham to see a festival, it's a good idea to try and find some time to enjoy the other things the city has to offer. If time is limited, check out our guide on how to spend 3 days in Birmingham.
This formerly industrial city has lots to offer tourists, including a revitalized city center where you can experience the best shopping in Birmingham. With a long history of immigration, Birmingham is also home to some truly spectacular restaurants, and fans of Indian food shouldn't miss the chance to dine in Birmingham's Balti Triangle to try some of the best curry houses in the whole UK.
Alternatively, you could visit some of the best museums in Birmingham, including Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and the IKON Gallery. The city also has plenty of more family-friendly attractions to offer, including Cadbury World and ThinkTank Science Centre. Once the festival is over, or before it begins, you'll be able to enjoy the best of what the UK's second city has to offer in terms of food, entertainment, and tourist attractions. Don't miss this chance to explore what is often an underrated city and see everything it has to offer.
And don't forget to drop off your bags at a Bounce luggage storage in Birmingham. However you decide to spend your time in this big and vibrant city, you'll enjoy yourself a lot more if you're not carrying more than you need to.