Growing up in the suburbs of Chicago, Lollapalooza was always a great event I admired. When I finally had the chance to go in 2009, I was in complete awe of the three-day fest’s fundamentals–good people, good music, good times.

One of my favorite big Lolla moments. Coldplay, 2011.

While some of my fondest musical memories from high school are from Lollapalooza, the momentum of my enthusiasm for the Chicago moneymaker has slowly flickered in and out.

Lollapalooza, which takes place the first weekend of every August, used to be a process of anticipation. From lineup speculation, to buying a ticket (sometimes months in advance, sometimes days in advance), to seeking out festival buddies, to rocking out for three days straight under the hot Midwestern sun.

But now, the festival’s process of anticipation has been disrupted,  its reputation corrupted and its lineup obstructed.

With three-day passes selling out in a matter of hours, then the lineup being released and single-day passes selling out the following day, the anticipation is gone. No longer are the days of working all spring and summer to afford a mid-July ticket purchase. If you can’t afford that ticket now, you’re S.O.L.

Once a festival attended by a variety of music lovers young and old, all coming together under a common love, Lollapalooza has recently become a spectacle of EDM-crazed high school kids looking to make an appearance. Festival, boho fashion has usurped its core purpose of witnessing fantastic moments in music. As someone who is finally on the cusp of their first summer of legal drinking age, I think I’d be far too annoyed by dazed and confused 16-year-olds to enjoy my own earned status.

For three days every August, Chicago’s Grant Park is transformed for Lollapalooza

Finally, in accordance with the new audience Lollapalooza appeals to, electronic music is king. I enjoy my share of the genre, but let’s keep it in the clubs, yeah? Aside from the overwhelming EDM takeover, this year’s lineup is hardly exciting in comparison to its cousins (re: Bonnaroo, Sasquatch, Coachella.)

Despite my bitterness, one benefit I have found since my time at WUSC is recognizing far more of the lower-tier performers, so fortunately there are still names to look forward to (Typhoon, White Denim and Chance the Rapper, to name a few.) And just like any experience, it truly is what you make of it, so I won’t rule out an awesome time just yet.

If I can get over my stubborn nostalgia, Thursday’s featured artists on the Diagnosis will be from the Lollapalooza lineup. Tune in 12 p.m.-2 p.m. on 90.5 in Columbia or at to see whom I’m still hoping to catch.

Written by Kate Appelbaum

Former WUSC station manager and DJ Katekat on WUSC's The Diagnosis.

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