“Music is Sacred”
Words spoken that resonated deeply in each of us as Jack White, formerly of The White Stripes, delivered the performance of a lifetime at the annual Coachella music festival. Words can’t describe the energy of this rock star’s show but I left weekend number two feeling as if I had experienced something akin to one of Jimi Hendrix’s famous rock performances. He blew me away weekend one but weekend two was interstellar. I wasn’t alone. The majority of our group spent the next several hours gushing about what we had just witnessed. It was truly a once in a lifetime experience.
As a lover of music and a long time festivalgoer, I have to say Coachella really is something special. I don’t know if it is the desert energy, or the honest expectation of each attendee to have an amazing time, but whatever it is, it’s worth it. This year I was lucky enough to attend both weekends which gave me an intimate look at how far the energy of this gathering could go. I had doubts after weekend one that I could top the experience and went into the second weekend with low expectations. How could Jack White’s first performance be topped? How could Florence blow my mind in any other way, and yes, why would I even want to see them two weekends in a row?
For the most part I did not revisit any performers that we caught first weekend but Jack White and Florence and The Machine lit a torch in my soul that I HAD to experience again. Whispers of Florence’s broken foot as a result of her stage jumping weekend one begged the question, how will she deliver? Much of this dynamo’s infectiousness is her energy and her movement on stage and into the crowd, as she belts her vocals flawlessly to her audience. How could she capture us on one foot? It’s moments like this when you realize nothing can stop a star from shining. Her second performance felt like an intimate gathering of close friends where we sat quietly drinking in the perfection of her voice, the incredible band, the added orchestra, and the sweet essence that is this talented being. There was more than one occasion when my eyes welled up with tears for this intimate affair and I could have never experienced this with Florence on two feet.
Tears in my eyes seemed to be a common theme throughout the festival for me. I don’t know if it’s because as an artist myself, I can dream about the fantastical experience it must be to put on a show for an audience that is completely with you, which is so often the case at Coachella. I have had glimpses of this energy and I can only imagine what it feels like to be in the apex of your art, sharing it with a world so ready to embrace you. I think this is what makes these artists so mesmerizing. They do it for the art. They do it for the love of their music and for the love of the shared experience with their audience. I don’t know how it comes to be but I know that it is divinely inspired.
There were so many amazing artists but I can’t leave this article without mentioning two other amazing moments for me. One was the Gaslamp Killer Experience. I have seen the Gaslamp Killer Dj before at Cinespia in Los Angeles and was immediately enraptured by his quirky and bazaar energy that was absolutely fun and entertaining. But the Gaslamp Killer Experience was the moment of truth for this musical Einstein. With a diverse band, live art, and the killer himself conducting the entire experiment from a laptop and iPad, you were excited for him to see what must have been a dream for him come to fruition. I don’t know if it was the art, the band or Gaslamp Killer himself, but you just had love the experience.
Finally, I must say that the final night at Kygo was just cool. I left early weekend 2 so weekend one Sunday night was my farewell event. While Drake was being sexually assaulted by Madonna, the cool kids were vibing out to the tropical sounds of this talented and gracious producer. I’m not saying I am one of the cool kids. I am admittedly way older than the average 18 year old in attendance but these kids make you feel welcome and in that tent, everyone belongs. l love these kids and I so appreciate that they would rather be blissed out to the positive vibrations than pressed up into a sea of Drake. The energy was so special in the Mojave tent that night that I just have to say it affected me and it gave me hope for our musical future.