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ACL survival guide, brought to you by GSD&Mers

As ACL Fest comes barreling around the corner and Austin prepares for the madness that takes over Zilker Park, we reached out to our in-house festival experts to help guide festival newbies and old hats alike through not one but two of the wildest weekends in ATX. Complete with pro tips and must-see artists, everything you need to survive is right here, including a playlist featuring this year’s artists.

 

Name: Mariah Kline

Years attending ACL: 2

Pro tip: Unless you’re camped out, skip the headliner. You’ll be so far back you’ll just be watching a screen.

Must-see artist: Marian Hill

 

Name: Jacob Stern

Years attending ACL: 11

Pro tip: Get there early and see someone you’ve never heard of. Wander around with open ears and no agenda, and you could stumble onto your new favorite band.

Must-see artists: The National, St. Vincent, Alvvays, Japanese Breakfast, Sweet Spirit

 

Name: Kevin Lane

Years attending ACL: 5

Pro tip: Bring a handkerchief. Tie it around your neck and breathe through it so you don’t die of allergies when the dust gets kicked up.

Must-see artist: Golden Dawn Arkestra. Their feel-good music and theatrics make the perfect festival act.

 

Name: Marie Graw

Years attending ACL: 4

Pro tip: Keep your head up and your eyes open—you never know who you’re going to see out in the crowd.

Must-see artists: Brandi Carlile for the sweetest voice, Trampled by Turtles for some Northern Minnesota jammy bluegrass and Sweet Spirit if you’re looking to dance your face off.

 

Name: Karla Macias

Years attending ACL: 5

Pro tip: Organize beforehand. Make a spreadsheet of bands you want to see and the stages they’re on. Don’t forget nondrowsy allergy meds.

Must-see artists: Greta Van Fleet will take you back through time. Golden Dawn Arkestra will get you moving. Sweet Spirit is a must-see local band. Charley Crockett if you like country/blues.

 

Name: Jack Eptseen

Years attending ACL: 5

Pro tip: When you want to recharge, check out the BMI stage. Always great music, always mellow.

Must-see artists: The Nude Party, Ruston Kelly. I also hear that McCartney guy is gonna be huge.

 

Name: Miguel Masso

Years attending ACL: 4

Pro tip: Force yourself to go to the restroom prior to waiting for an artist.

Must-see artist: Khalid

 

Name: Alex King

Years attending ACL: 1

Pro tip: Bring an empty water bottle or Camelbak. Bring a totem if you have a big group, and bring a bandana for sweat, cooling down and as an emergency napkin.

Must-see artists: St. Vincent and Golden Dawn Arkestra

 

Well, the experts have spoken. Let the festival come to you and go with the flow, don’t forget to take allergy precautions and get your dance moves ready for Sweet Spirit. In case you need some help deciding who to see, press play on this playlist featuring a whole bunch of this year’s performers and find your favorites.

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