MAJOR MUSIC FESTIVALS... can lean overwhelming, for sure, but there's a sense of thoughtfulness, too, if you're open to it (and, more concretely, display some thoughtfulness in return). Giving someone cuts in the bathroom queue, for example, is just plain polite, and sharing your hot dog, fries, or beer? Please. Your friend'll remember forever. Making room for the person behind you to get a clear view of the stage is up there, too, on the music-festival-karma scale (which should come in pamphlet form and be handed out at the gate to all attendees). What we speak of here has to do with person-to-person interaction, of course, but Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival gets the niceness, the helpfulness, the we're-all-in-this-together-ness. Not only does San Francisco's peaced-out Golden Gate Park August songfest have a rep for helpin' other humans out -- Golden Gate's rep for chillaxin' and easin' along go waaaay back, of course -- but the fest itself is pretty dang nice. Why? They always announced the big line-up right around Coachella, a nifty bit of timing that serves as a most excellent Save the Date reminder card. And that date? Aug. 8-10, 2014.
THE 2014 LINE-UP: So what bands and artists made the strum-and-warble roster? Kanye West, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, The Killers, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, and Arctic Monkeys are some of the bevy of headliners. That's right, "bevy"; Outside Lands is a biggin'. So biggin' that a wine festival, a beer festival -- "Beer Lands" and "Wine Lands," -- natch -- as well as a food extravaganza fill up the non-concert, non-music, non-jam-it-out goings-on. Art, art, art, and more art -- and then some other art -- are part of the lively, fill-your-mind-with-goodness three-dayer. Yep, it's one of the hugest of the huge, music fest-style, but that doesn't mean that people aren't watching out for their people. That's the spirit, right down to the concert backers themselves reminding fans, during the week of another huge music festival, that it is time to think tickets.