What began 15 years ago as a fun get-together for like-minded friends has evolved into a destination event that draws people here from all over the world. But even as Athens Popfest has expanded through the years—more bands, more days, more people—we’ve always worked hard to maintain that same intimate feeling we started with. Athens Popfest isn’t just one more multi-day event full of bands and crowds. It is an annual gathering of curious music fans, artists, travelers, and locals. People fall in love (2007 saw an onstage marriage proposal), bands get discovered, memories get made. All of it here in Athens.
2017 boasted a dream lineup that featured legends like Superchunk, ESG, The Apples in stereo, Pylon Reenactment Society, The Veldt, Elf Power, Laetitia Sadier, and new talent like Waxahatchee and R.Ring. But we pride ourselves on finding the best bands before everyone else does—bands like Palehound, Big Quiet, and Superbody. If you haven’t heard from them before, that’s the point. And of course we’ll have HHBTM Records faves like Tunabunny, Eureka California, Antlered Aunt Lord, Noon:30, Linqua Franqa, Marshmallow Coast, Rat Fancy, and more.
In all, there will be 40+ artists performing during the festival’s 4 days, with afternoon shows at Little Kings and our night time showcases at the 40 Watt Club and Georgia Theatre. Devastated by a fire in 2009, the Theatre was rebuilt through the donations and hard work of our community. Today, it’s perhaps the most beautiful place to see a show in all of Athens. Best of all, we don’t schedule shows against each other. If you come to Popfest to see all 40+ bands, you’ll be able to do it.
Of course, there’s more to Athens than music. Spend your day shopping at Wuxtry Records for that hard-to-find bargain. Partake in the area thrift stores. Athens is proud to feature a locally-owned bookstore, a grocery co-op, a world famous vegetarian restaurant, along with great local barbecue, pizza, coffee, and more, all within walking distance of downtown. In fact, if you get hungry during a show, you can take the elevator upstairs to the Georgia Theatre rooftop where they offer a full food and drink menu, quality coffee by local roaster 1000 Faces, and free hi-speed WiFi, all accompanied by one of the most spectacular views of the city. You’ll never run out of things to do—not if you’re only here for four days. But if you stay any longer you’re going to have to start a band of your own.
More than just a music festival, Athens Popfest is a celebration of what makes Athens unique and known all over the world. Join us this summer in Athens, Georgia, the city we love, from August 8th-11th. The event lasts four days, but the memories will last a lifetime.