Every year since 1999 people from around the world gather in the Indio desert for Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and this year was no different. The festival has various stages that feature artists that play rock, indie, hip hop, rap, and electronic music. The festival also always features different art installations and sculptures. This year included a field of large colorful stucco sculptures that looked like something out of a Dr. Seuss book.
Various companies create smaller tents that have lounges to hang out in, areas to charge their phones or interactive pieces. HP had a tent called The Antarctic Dome that was an air conditioned, planetarium like structure that played a trippy digital show.
Coachella also offers attendees over 100 food vendors to try throughout the weekend. The cater to vegetarian, vegan, or meat eaters and have food offered at varying prices. There are also beer gardens scattered throughout the fields, some of them perfectly situated behind stages so you can enjoy you drink while not missing out on the show. A few years ago, Coachella introduced Beer Belly’s Rare Beer Bar at the Craft Beer Barn and brought it back again. This barn like structure offered different and rare beers each day ranging from IPA’s to sours to ciders. There were also some food vendors selling tacos and pizza to go along with the beers.
Coachella is also known for fashion and for what people wear when the attend the festival. Loud patterns, bright colors, fringe and flowers are all very common and attendees are able to express themselves through their clothes. One of my favorite things to do is sit in the grass and watch people walk by in elaborate and creative outfits. Definitely adds to the visual experience.
But the main attraction of the massive festival is of course the music. And this year did not disappoint. As mentioned before, the range of music is vast and there is something for almost anyone. The headliners this year were Kendrick Lamar, Radiohead and Lady Gaga but as always it was some of the artists that played during the day that stole the show. NAO, an up and coming artist from East London rocked the crowd during her 4:55 set on Sunday, providing listeners to a funky R&B sound. SOHN, another English singer, also had an amazing set of soothing and ambient vibes. Two Door Cinema Club, an Irish indie band, rocked main stage on Saturday with their fun, upbeat, and happy songs. An artist that stood out from the weekend was Hans Zimmer. Zimmer, a German composer and producer, has composed music for over 150 films, some of the most popular being The Lion King, Pirates of the Caribbean, Interstellar and Inception. Intrigued by the idea of a composer having a set, we made our way over and we were not disappointed. With a band and orchestra behind him, Zimmer shocked the crowds with masterful live renditions of familiar tunes with a twist. SNBRN and Anna Lunoe were two other artists that performed in the Sahara tent that made the crowd jump to their dancey beats.
The festival has gotten so big, that they started offering two weekends since they have been in such high demand. If you go this following weekend be sure to bring sunblock and stay hydrated, as it is going to be significantly hotter this coming weekend. Until next year, Coachella!