Lilith Fair 2024:
Assembling a dream lineup

Could Sarah McLachlan’s all-female Lilith Fair music festival happen today?

The original pulled it off in the midst of a male-centric industry defined by the fading grunge scene, the rise of boy bands like NSYNC and Backstreet Boys, and a blueprint (set by Lollapalooza) for modern music festivals. Among those were Ozzfest, The H.O.R.D.E. Festival, The Warped Tour, and of course, Lilith Fair.

That 90s moment was part of Lilith Fair’s success, and just to dispel whatever you’ve heard about the festival, it was much more than a yoga retreat for music-loving mystics. Here’s why:

  • Rallied together female-fronted acts like Indigo Girls, Sinead O’Connor, Fiona Apple, Emmylou Harris, Tracy Chapman, Bonnie Raitt, Sheryl Crow, Queen Latifah and more.
  • Helped introduce the world to Nelly Furtado, Missy Elliott, Christina Aguilera, Dido, Tegan and Sara, Erykah Badu and more.
  • Bucked radio stations’ common practices to never play female artists back-to-back.
  • Established reproductive rights and women's healthcare tents at every show (Sarah McLachlan and Sheryl Crow even threatened to boycott multiple tour stops unless Planned Parenthood was allowed to set up on festival grounds).
  • Donated festival proceeds to women’s organizations in every city visited.
  • Evolved the concept of “safe spaces” on a massive scale.
  • (And yes, there were yoga sessions, cozy festival feelings and howling at full moons, too.)

Even though the festival only lasted from 1997-1999 (plus a 2010 attempt to revive it), it was a massive rallying cry for gender equality in music. And so, in a time when women’s reproductive rights, diversity, gender equity and gender fluidity are in the spotlight, could the same chord be struck today?

Sarah McLachlan, if you’re reading, we say yes. And to get a head start on programming a lineup, here are 18 artists – and a merch table for each one – that fit the bill for Lilith Fair 2024.

Sarah McLachlan

Bring her back. As the visionary behind the original Lilith Fair, Sarah McLachlan’s angelic vocals and badass spirit behind the scenes would be the bridge between now and then. Her presence would serve as a reminder of the movement she started and the impact it continues to have. She wouldn’t have to commit to every stop on the tour, but knowing how much she’s poured into Lilith Fair, she definitely would.

The merch table:

"Fumbling Towards Ecstasy" (1993)

"Surfacing" (1997)

“Mirrorball” (2017)

Brandi Carlile

Quick fact: Brandi Carlile is already taking some inspiration from Lilith Fair with her Girls Just Wanna Weekend tour in Mexico. She’s been vocal about her love of the festival, having shared stories of attending the original shows before playing at the 2010 festival, so it only makes sense that she would be a must for the newest incarnation. She might even be the perfect one to take the reins going forward?

For a revival of the festival, though, her soul-stirring folk-rock sound would be a sure-fire draw.

The merch table:

"Bear Creek" (2012)

"The Firewatcher's Daughter" (2015)

"By the Way, I Forgive You" (2018)

“Rooster Says” (2020)

"In These Silent Days" (2021)

Arlo Parks

Arlo Parks' inclusion would elevate the new festival by embracing the new generation of artists pushing boundaries and challenging conventions. Her explorations of love, identity and self-discovery sync up beautifully with the output of artists featured in the original Lilith lineups.

Food for thought: Parks has covered Radiohead’s “Creep” in the past, so maybe she’d bridge the gap between the 90s and now with a performance of the iconic song.

The merch table:

“Super Sad Generation” (2021)

"Collapsed in Sunbeams" Blue Vinyl (2022)

“My Soft Machine” (2023)

Japanese Breakfast

“Tell the men I’m coming.” With those opening lyrics of the Japanese Breakfast song, “Be Sweet,” frontwoman Michelle Zauner set the stage for her explorations of her place in the world, her role in her family, and her footprint on the music industry. The dance pit would be wild.

Add to her transportive and introspective songs the fact that Michelle Zauner is a celebrated author. Her memoir “Crying in H Mart,” is a soul-bearing feat chronicling her mother’s battle with pancreatic cancer. In short, her art – music or memoirs – is a rare thing that amplifies the conversations around vulnerability, truth-telling and self-discovery for 2024.

The merch table:

 “Soft Sounds from Another Planet” (2017)

“Jubilee” (2021)

Tash Sultana

Tash Sultana has already been playing the festival beat at Coachella, Bonnaroo and Austin City Limits to name a few. Adding them to the bill would give the tour a true do-it-all artist who plays, sings, writes, produces and engineers their own work. Honed on the streets of Melbourne, Sultana’s sunny, busker-street-reggae groove would fit right in.

And it’s worth mentioning: Lilith Fair was, in part, fighting for inclusion. That fight still goes on, and as a gender fluid artist, Tash Sultana’s (and other non-binary artists’) presence would push the boundaries of gender norms in the modern music industry, inspiring change through artists and attendees.

The merch table:

“Notion” (2017)

"Terra Firma" Yellow Vinyl (2021)

“Terra Firma” Gatefold Jacket (2021)

“Tash Sultana: MTV Unplugged: Live In Melbourne” (2022)

Sharon Van Etten

As described with Brandi Carlile earlier, Sharon Van Etten has also teamed up with female powerhouses Angel Olsen and Julien Baker for The Wild Hearts Tour in 2022. (Sensing a trend with these women banding together?) Van Etten’s haunting vocals and intimate storytelling are well established in the indie singer-songwriter world. Her name would be one of the big names at the top of the tour poster.

The merch table:

"Are We There" (2014)

“I Don’t Want to Let You Down” (2015)

"Remind Me Tomorrow" (2019)

“We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong” (2022)

“We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong” Custard Vinyl (2022)

“We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong” Marbled Smoke Vinyl (2022)

Nilüfer Yanya

Can we add a combo of industrial, trip hop and indie rock this time around? That doesn’t quite capture Nilüfer Yanya’s sound, but like so many others on this list, she’s a songwriter setting her feelings and stories to a beat in her own unique way. It was always part of the plan to broaden the spectrum of souls and sounds represented at Lilith Fair; adding Nilüfer (Turkish for water lily) would be a beautiful addition to the roster.

The merch table:

“Painless” (2022)


The Haim sisters would bring a sense of sisterhood to the festival (literally and figuratively). They’ve been compared to Fleetwood Mac plenty of times over the course of their musical career, which feels right for the Lilith crowd.

Their alt-rock R&B sound is delivered by each member playing multiple instruments, and rumor has it their live performances are much rawer than their studio takes. For a band that’s cited influences like Joni Mitchell, Prince, Aaliyah, Destiny’s Child and Spice Girls, you’ve got think this act would have the audience jumping.

The merch table:

"Days Are Gone" (2013)

"Something to Tell You" (2017)

"Women in Music Pt. III" (2020)

Sarah Silverman

Who says comediennes aren’t invited? With her scratchy kid voice and fearless humor, Sarah Silverman would follow in the footsteps of raucous comedy pioneers like Sandra Bernhard, who graced the stage of the original festival. Since Silverman’s unapologetic honesty is often used to tackle topics like religion, racism and sexism, adding her stand-up performance would add a welcome dose of irreverence and humor to poke at the tough topics of the day.

The merch table:

“Someone You Love” (2023)

Brittany Howard

Alabama Shakes might be on hiatus, but we’ve still got Brittany Howard. It’s a delightful thing to hear her finger-pick her way through a tune and sing a note that rides up and up until transforming into a musical squeal. Put her in the lineup and you’ve got a legendary blend of rock, soul and blues that’s bound to electrify ticketholders.

The merch table:

"Jaime" (2019)

“Jaime Reimagined” (2021)

“What Now” (2024)

“What Now / Meditation” Orange Splatter 7" Single (2023)

Alabama Shakes “Sound & Color” (2021)

Alabama Shakes “Boys & Girls” (2018)

Alabama Shakes: “Boys & Girls (10 Year Anniversary Edition)” (2022)


Lucius is fronted by folk sirens. Because Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig have harmonies for days, it’s easy to picture attendees leaning closer and closer during a performance of “Two of Us on the Run.” The tune draws audiences in, ultimately transforming into a thrumming, goosebump-raising, out of body experience.

Their voices would soar over a Lilith Fair crowd, rapturing them to another plain of existence. Like the Indigo Girls before them, the Lucius ladies illustrate just how powerful two voices can be; their souls are the instruments, and they’re a beautiful thing when entwined together.

The merch table:

"Wildewoman" (2013)


As a viral music prodigy with her first record deal at the age of 14, H.E.R. certainly made her mark quickly. And it’s no fluke; H.E.R. plays multiple instruments but she can shred an electric guitar with the best of them. With her ever-present sunglasses and sultry electric sound, she would inject some serious soul into the tour.

The merch table:

"H.E.R., Vol. 1" (2016)

First Aid Kit

The Swedish folk duo, comprised of sisters Klara and Johanna Söderberg, come armed with a unique blend of haunting and heartfelt harmonies. Maybe they’d be game for sharing the stage with Lucius, another harmony dream team mentioned above?

First Aid Kit would for sure captivate audiences with their stirring melodies, but for original fans, it would be a nod to the original Lilith lineup if the band played “Emmylou,” their song commemorating country legend Emmylou Harris.

The merch table:

"The Big Black & The Blue" (2010)

"The Lion's Roar" (2012)

“Drunken Trees” (2013)

"Stay Gold" (2014)

“Palomino” (2022)

Y La Bamba

There’s a contemplative, waves-crashing-in-the-distance quality to Y La Bamba’s “Ojos Del Sol.” It’s the kind of song that tells you to trust the stillness, to just be. At most music festivals, it’s hard to find an environment that embraces that kind of meditative experience. But for Lilith Fair, Y La Bamba’s Mexican-influenced art pop would be a welcome presence on a sunny afternoon. Bring on the Chicanx beats!

The merch table:

“Lupon” (2010)

“Oh February” (2013)

“Entre Los Dos” (2019)

Maggie Rogers

It’s been a long time since that video introduced Maggie Rogers to the world. And in assuming the unofficial title of the next generation of female artists redefining the music industry, she’s a must-invite for any future Lilith Fair iteration. (NPR thinks so, too.)

In addition to her folk-pop-electronic sound, she could also shine a light on the ticket-selling process with her in-person ticket sales program. It’s a throwback to the days when we all had to wait in line to buy tickets for, well, everything. For fans of Lilith Fair, that nostalgia is worth the wait.

The merch table:

“Surrender LP” (2022)

“Surrender LP” Limited Translucent Green Vinyl (2023)

“Surrender LP” Limited Pink Vinyl (2023)

“Don’t Forget Me” (2024)

"Now That the Light Is Fading" (2017)

"Heard It in a Past Life" (2019)


Inviting Boygenius to the tour comes with the added bonus of also having Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus on tour. Solo acts aside, everything about their collaboration syncs up with Lilith Fair’s vision of bringing women together, not pitting them against each other (sounds like a callback to the 90s radio programming mentioned earlier).

Supposedly, the group is on hiatus, but thinking about the genuine love between these three when they perform, we’d keep our fingers crossed to see them in the lineup.

The merch table:

"boygenius” (2018)

"The Record” (2023)

“The Rest” (2023)

Julien Baker “Little Oblivions” (2021)

Julien Baker “Turn Out the Lights” (2015)

Phoebe Bridgers “Stranger in the Alps” (2017)

Phoebe Bridgers “Punisher” (2020)

Phoebe Bridgers "Copycat Killer EP” (2021)

Lucy Dacus “No Burden” (2016)

Lucy Dacus “Historian” (2018)

Lucy Dacus “2019” (2019)

Lucy Dacus “Home Video” (2021)

Tracy Chapman

Chapman is a living legend who’s surging this year following the Luke Combs cover of her song, “Fast Car.” After performing a duet with Combs at The Grammys, the next generation lined up to see what they were missing to the tune of six million streams over the week following the awards show.

More importantly, Tracy Chapman played the original Lilith Fair. Her subtle, soulful authenticity is a rare thing, and adding her to the bill would pay homage to the trailblazers who paved the way for women in music.

The merch table:

** Sold Out! **

Tori Amos

And last, the ultimate Lilith Fair act. A lot of fans wondered why Tori Amos wasn’t part of the original lineup. It’s not that she wasn’t invited; according to Amos, she thought her shows were too theatrical for the festival stage. But maybe times have changed. Maybe 2024 audiences would finally get the chance to swoon at her ethereal piano magic.

We’ll ask Sarah McLachlan nicely: Can you knock on Tori’s door again? Bring other artists to add a little oomph to the invite? We’d appreciate it.

The merch table:

"Little Earthquakes" (1992)

"Under the Pink" (1994)

"Under the Pink 2LP" Black Vinyl (2021)

“Ocean To Ocean” (2022)