Governors Ball’s 2023 Lineup One Day Later: Highlights, Lowlights, Surprises, and Omissions

Breaking down NYC's biggest festival line by line

Governors Ball 2023 lineup reaction
Pusha T (photo by Ben Kaye), Rina Sawayama (photo courtesy of the artist), and HAIM (photo by Ben Kaye)

    New York City festivals are always tricky. Not only is there a general lack of large, open fields ripe for thousands of festival goers, it’s difficult to compile a music festival that aligns with the city’s fusion of cultural identities. Governors Ball has been adamant about offering both components in their 10+ year history, and their 2023 lineup, announced on Tuesday, January 17th, is a testament to that mission.

    With Kendrick Lamar, Lizzo, and ODESZA topping the bill this year, Governors Ball is taking after their older festival siblings by prioritizing unique, global, and must-see artists. Though you can catch an act like ODESZA at virtually any other North American festival and Lizzo’s been making the headlining rounds for a while, there is a global twist that stands out this year. Notably, South Korean girl group aespa is set to be Governors Ball’s first-ever K-pop act, while Nigerian star Tems — who also made our 2023 15 Rising Artists to Watch list — also appears on the lineup.

    However, the biggest change to Governors Ball is not in its lineup, but in its location: This year, the festival will be moving down the street from the Citi Field parking lot in Queens to Corona Park in the neighboring Flushing Meadows. Though Citi Field was a logistical upgrade from Randall’s Island (which had some wonderful grass fields, but led to a few instances of being stranded on the island during a ridiculous summer rainstorm), multi-day festivals that take place in parking lots have a pretty gnarly impact on your feet, especially by the end of the weekend. Hopefully, moving the event to fields in Corona Park will lead to a more comfortable festival experience.


    With so many exciting, breakout artists to choose from this year, Governors Ball 2023 — and the overall future of the festival — is looking pretty solid. Check out the lineup poster and see for our full breakdown of this year’s Governors Ball lineup below.

    Tickets to Governors Ball 2023 — including general admission and VIP passes — go on sale starting Thursday, January 19th at 10:00 a.m. ET via the festival’s website. Fans are encouraged to sign up via Governors Ball’s website for early access to tickets.


    The Best Bookings:

    Kendrick Lamar

    King Kendrick has been very selective about which festivals he’s taking his Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers show to. After debuting his updated festival set at Glastonbury in 2022, he’s been named as a headliner for Bonnaroo, Osheaga, and now, Governors Ball. Needless to say, Kendrick Lamar is at the very top of his game, and this headlining set is sure to be one of the most memorable in the festival’s history.

    kendrick lamar live shows of the year 2022 glastonbury

    Kendrick Lamar, photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage


    The trio of superstar sisters took the radiant songs of their most recent album, 2020’s Women in Music: Part III, on tour for much of last year. However, they were relatively light on North American festival dates. Having them at Governors Ball, with the potential of new music, is a major win for the festival. Not only that, they’ve never been better live — as evidenced by their phenomenal performance at Madrid’s Mad Cool Festival last year.


    HAIM Boston Calling 2022 photos

    HAIM, photo by Ben Kaye


    After appearing on last year’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever soundtrack with a stunning rendition of Bob Marley’s “No Woman, No Cry,” Tems is in store for her biggest 2023 yet. Outside of Governors Ball, she only has a solo date at an Orlando “Spring Break” festival in March, so it’s a great booking on Governors Ball’s part to nab the Nigerian star for an exclusive show in New York.

    2023 Tems Gov Ball

    Tems, photo by Burak Cingi/Getty

    The Forgettable Bookings:

    Oliver Tree


    While Oliver Tree has successfully garnered a devoted fanbase, it’s still too easy to write off the songwriter and producer. He’s become a festival staple in recent years, but we’re still waiting for his music to move beyond the meme or for his vocals to evolve beyond a pop-punk whine. While his music might be forgettable, his persona certainly isn’t — so perhaps his set will be more of a visual spectacle than an auditory one.

    2023 Gov Ball Oliver Tree

    Oliver Tree, photo by Tim Mosenfelder/Getty


    With ODESZA nabbing the top spot on Saturday, Governors Ball organizers certainly had to grab some more high profile EDM names for this year’s lineup. Diplo is pretty much the sole compliment to ODESZA (besides Sunday’s SOFI TUKKER), which isn’t really saying much — there are so many more interesting EDM-adjacent acts that could be in this spot. Even one of Diplo’s many collaborative projects would have a rarity factor, but a solo set has a much higher chance of falling a bit flat.


    diplo sexual assault lawsuit dropped plaintiff prejudice

    Diplo, photo by Philip Cosores