The staff & board of Lincoln Calling acknowledge the difficult time our community is going through with regards to COVID-19 and ongoing systems of oppression (racism, sexism, ableism, classism, homophobia & transphobia).

We recognize that these issues are not mutually exclusive. With the majority of Nebraska’s COVID-19 cases being people of color, race is a crucial factor to consider when building our response plan to the pandemic.

Lincoln Calling stands with the Movement for Black Lives, and therefore we cannot plan an event that will encourage people to gather and risk further harming communities of color in this city. For the safety of artists, staff, board, volunteers, and community members, Lincoln Calling will only offer virtual programming in 2020. 

Our programmatic offerings this year will respond to the unique needs of our community at this moment. 

× Lincoln Calling will prioritize booking/paying local and regional artists of color. Artists everywhere have been hit hard and Nebraska is no different. We recognize that recovery resources are not equitably distributed, thus, the equitable distribution of resources to local and regional artists will be a top priority. 

× Lincoln Calling will again offer educational programming in the areas of wellness, civic engagement, sustainability, innovation and entrepreneurship. Programs will be curated using a lens of equity and will directly address current needs in the community.

Our team will continue and mindfully accelerate our evolution towards greater diversity, deeper inclusivity and uncompromising equity. 

How we have been changing 

× Lincoln Calling has made diversity in artistic and educational programming our top priority for the past five years.

× Lincoln Calling changed the structure of the organization, now a 501c3. We are a decentralized team, composed of many collaborators and a board. LC is more representative of and better responding to the community we serve. 

× Lincoln Calling has made some progress toward achieving a more diverse board and staff, but there is much work left to do. 

× Though our organization has decentralized power and we have achieved greater diversity by some measures, LC is still a predominantly white organization. As such, we acknowledge that our collective inherent biases cause harm to communities of color and minoritized communities. We are committed to taking action to address our blindspots and to earnestly engage in harm reduction.

Actions we are taking to reduce harm and increase equity

× We formed an Equity, Diversity & Inclusion committee. These board & staff members are tasked with:

    • Authoring, implementing and evaluating an Equity, Diversity & Inclusion plan.
    • Planning anti-bias, anti-racism trainings for staff, board, and volunteers.
    • Overseeing artistic and educational programming to ensure inclusive and equitable curating.

× We’re developing an equity plan that will function as the core of our 3-year strategic plan.

Our plan will formalize the ways in which we ensure the equitable distribution of Lincoln Calling resources. It will prioritize recruitment, cultivation, and retention of staff & board members from BIPOC and other minoritized communities. And it will chart a path towards new leadership more representative of the Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, Disabled, LGBTQIA2S communities we serve.



Lincoln Calling highlights some of the state and country’s most exciting and emerging artists. This festival is dedicated to creative artist curation featuring underrepresented populations while driving new culture to Lincoln.

Our History

Lincoln Calling is an annual, non-profit music festival that transforms the streets of downtown Lincoln, Nebraska into a weeklong celebratory explosion of the arts, culture, and the collaborative spirit tantamount to our city’s ever-ramping vitality.

In 2019, Lincoln Calling – which has thrived on featuring bands just before they break, while showcasing a diversity of genres, artists, and artistic disciplines since its inception in 2004 – drew more than 8,500 music lovers to downtown Lincoln, including patrons from 25 cites, 18 states, and 4 countries.

Over the past 6 years, Lincoln Calling has joined forces with long-running community events including Make Lincoln, YP Week and Startup Week bringing to the festival a 2-day Night Market/beer fest, The Lincoln Arts Festival, wellness activities, professional development workshops, and an acute focus on festival sustainability practices.

In 2019, Lincoln Calling featured free, professional and artist workshops, ranging in topic from “Building Civil Discourse and Bridging Ideological Divides” to “Finding the Right Sound in the Studio: A Conversation with the Experts”. The festival also prioritized environmental sustainability efforts, capturing 1.5 tons of recycled materials from venues over three days.

In 2020 and beyond, by highlighting some of the country’s and state’s most exciting emerging artists, Lincoln Calling is only growing bigger and better. 

Past Headliners


lee fields & the expressionssoccer mommycautious claya tribe called redtt the artistcharly bliss • taylor mcferrin • fat tonyzuzuka poderosabad bad hatssamiasquirrel flower


japanese breakfastwaxahatcheejoey dosikparquet courtsron gallofantastic negritolion babeleikeli47oughtohmmereynathe nude party


charli xcxbest coastangel olsenbeach fossilsfrankie cosmossandy (alex G)pupel ten elevenjohn morelandcupcakkepalehouse


domo genesisreal estatecloud nothingstwin peaksalan kingdom • ceremonygosh pithhidea giant dogscreaming females


desert noiseshead of femurbandit soundwestside proletariatjosh hoyer and soul colossalfreakaboutuniverse contest


sidewalk chalkbailiffdeerpeoplethe kickbackwhite mystery


future islandsboyjeremy messersmithhenhouse prowlershot buttered rumallie kral of cormeal


wolfgang gartnerlaetitia sadier of stereolabivan and alyoshaauthor and punisherdesert noiseshume


larry and his flaskthe kickbacklionizegauntlet hairuuvvwwzthe photo atlas


roger clyne and the peacemakerssea wolfthe hood internetthose darlinsthe love languagethe flatliners


sleepy sunthe rosewood thievesfrontier ruckusflowers foreverbroken spindles


pattern is movementthe killigansthe machete archivetatsuya nakatanicameron mcgill and what army


head of femurgito gito hustlerflobotssomasphere


criterianeva dinovamaritimeheiruspecsthe prids56 hope road


tilly and the wallorenda finkdavid donderorailbenderslegendary shake shakers


for againstshanti groovefalconfive-0ad aspera per asperathe architects