Fight the Power

I didn’t go to the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival this year. I actually have never been to that desert party held each year in Indio, California since 2001. Somehow though I feel a sort of kinship with it and it’s beginnings. Pearl Jam, a band I have almost no familiarity with was the first to test the arid desert locale for viability as part of a dispute with Ticket Master back in 1995. The inaugural show featured J5, Beck, Rage against the Machine, and DJ Shadow. I could see right away after reading this, that I felt a connection with Coachella and it’s rebellious roots as well as its’ taste in music. The need to be out away from everyone else is usually accepted as a desire to accommodate the drug culture that surrounds rock music but for me it is something different. The hordes of L.A. natives who flock there each year now represent part of what I think I talked about a few posts ago.

Sure there are lots of girls who like to take MDMA and go dance with some glow sticks while chomping on pacifiers. There are also a lot of so called “DJ’s” and “producers” who are there to see the contemporary greats put on a show they will emulate on laptops at clubs for weeks to come. But to me getting away from it all and taking it to the desert is really all about one thing…control. No one is going to tell you how to behave at Coachella. It’s an experience and in a lot of ways you just kinda have to learn how to survive it. 3 days in the desert with 80,000 of your closest friends. That’s some serious headache if you’re not careful. Going to shows in regular venues is cool but there is always some element of control that everyone lacks. The band has to play by the house rules, the crowd has to play by the bands rules, and the venue is at the behest of those in attendance. But at Coachella, you can do what you want. The acts are going to be more loose with their set, and the crowd won’t have to worry about being told to make some noise because there are probably 30 or 40,000 people seeing live music on a cocktail of drugs and heat that will handle that for you.

I see where they’re coming from with this whole festival idea. One thing that makes this especially unique, and most unlike me, is that the organizers have never shied away from making things interesting. I would say that I take space from everyone else, to be more like me, but the people at Coachella put it out in the desert in order to make room for people to come fit an image, to be wild, to have a story to tell. In all honesty I would never plan a party in the desert. I don’t like pooing outdoors, I don’t like others disturbing my sleep, and I don’t enjoy loud music if it is an artist I don’t enjoy. (I mean some bands are popular but that doesn’t mean I like ‘em) It just makes me think about how I grew up. I shied away from trouble because I was always trying to secure my future, but Coachella is the opposite. If we don’t find some trouble then we won’t have a future. It kind of makes me wish I’d embraced trouble a bit more as I’ve now pretty well carved out a persona that just doesn’t look very good wearing stripes.

I think she told me her name was "trouble"

Ask yourself what stories they will tell about you when you’re gone because If you don’t think there are any exciting ones, then perhaps it’s time you wrote a few, I know that's what I'm working on.

Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles - Celestica Album Mix by SerpicoJones

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