While three days in the desert with sweltering hot temperatures may not be everyone's cup of tea, it is just part of the experience for the more than 50,000 music lovers that gather every year in Indio, California, for the Coachella Music and Arts Festival. Coachella has long been known as one of the premier music festivals in the country, and always seems to attract the music industry's biggest stars. Past performers have included everyone from Madonna and Coldplay to Paul McCartney, Kings of Leon and the always controversial Kanye West.
From Humble Beginnings
Coachella has come a long way from it's indie start. The first Coachella festival was held as a two-day event on October 9 and 10, 1999, and featured headlining acts like Beck, Morrissey, Tool, and Rage Against the Machine. 25,000 people attended the inaugural Coachella, which took place just months after the disastrous Woodstock '99 Festival that ended in fires and riots. Although the festival ran smoothly for its first run, it failed to make a profit and the next Coachella wasn't held until 2001.
On-site camping, which the event is now famous for, was first offered at the 2002 festival and has since become a favorite activity for festivalgoers. As the event gained world acclaim, promoters were finally able to make a profit and decided to expand the festival to three days in 2007, which featured headliners like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Bjork. It has remained a three-day festival ever since, and although the dates have been moved up to April to try and beat the summer heat, it has still remained true to its groundbreaking roots and has become well known for reuniting some of the world's biggest musical acts and this year is no different.
Creating Living Art
Each year, the festival also features interesting installation art and sculptures. Most of the pieces are interactive and provide entertainment for attendees walking throughout the grounds as a celebration of creativity, culture, and technology. The foundation aims to support emerging artists worldwide who are using technology to push the bounds of creative expression. Whether you're an art aficionado or simply an admiring bystander, Coachella is sure to offer a once-in-a-lifetime creative experience.
The Ticket Dilemma
Now that we've drawn you in with all of Coachella's wonders, let's get to the bad news. Coachella Festival sells out faster and faster every year and they don’t offer single-day tickets. The website is also quick to advise against purchasing tickets from third party vendors, as they will not be deemed legitimate. So in other words, if you got a ticket, hold onto it for dear life. For those who weren't lucky enough to snag a ticket, there will be a live webcast of the festivities from Coachella's official website beginning the opening day of the festival. And there's always next year.
What act are you most looking forward to?