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NAU ENG 105 - Kristina_Simonovic_Evaluation_Essay

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Kristina Simonovic 2/24/14Ashley DuckworthEvaluation Essay Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival 2013The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is a three-day music festival heldin Indio, California during the month of April. It takes place during two consecutive weekends, the first being April 12th -14th and the second being April 19th-21st. The festival venue is at the Empire Polo Club located in the middle of the desert. By mid-April, temperatures reach extremes. During the day, the scorching hot weather reached a high of 110 degrees. As soon as the sun had set, temperatures dropped extensively, getting as cold as 40 degrees by 3am. Regardless of the harsh weather, the Coachella Music Festival attracts tens of thousands of concertgoers each year. Tickets go on sale for a well-spent $350 and are securable for only about ten minutes before they sell out completely. Coachella broke its record by bringing in a total of 90,000 attendees to each day of the festival. This extremely popular festival lures in people of all ages that enjoy its incredible line-up, which has expanded vastly over the years. Since the first Coachella Festival in 1999, the musical performances have become far more widespread featuring genres of rock, hip-hop, indie, alternative, and electronic, making the festival appealing to a broader audience. As a result, the Coachella Festival improves each year by bringing in a greater number of people.1The venue is comprised of six stages: Coachella Stage, Outdoor Theater, Gobi Tent, Mojave Tent, Sahara Tent, and Yuma Stage. Each stage holds multiple concerts each day. Over 15 hours of nonstop live music promises hundreds of memorable shows that give more meaning to a 24-hour day. With the less popular gigs kicking off the start of the festival in the mornings and the big time headliners capping off the long nights, about two hundred and fifty artists perform over the span of three days. Headliners included Blur and the Stone Roses on Friday night, Phoenix on Saturday night, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers on Sunday night. Friday consisted of Blur and The Stone Roses as the headliners of the evening. The first weekend, Blur was scheduled to open for the Stone Roses, but the Stone Roses didn’t draw a big enough crowd, so they swapped and Blur took the headlining position for the second weekend. Ultimately, many people didn’t know who The Stone Roses were and that being the case chose to see Tegan and Sara or Earl Sweatshirt instead.The headliner for Saturday night was Phoenix. A lot of people were skeptical about Phoenix headlining, saying the French band didn’t know much about headlining big festivals. Coachella fans seemed to think otherwise. Phoenix put on a very intimate performance with a surprise appearance from R. Kelly. Phoenix played “1901”, while R. Kelly sang “Ignition” as a cover. The duo sounded quite phenomenal together. The show ended with Mars (lead vocalist) crowd surfing to about the middle of the crowd and then somehow making it all the way back to the stage, leaving people overall satisfied with their performance. 2The Red Hot Chili Peppers headlined Sunday night, closing the festival. In all honesty, the band was missing that spark. While they performed some of their biggest hits, which were undoubtedly enjoyable, it felt like it was just an ordinary show for them. Not to mention, Anthony Keidis’ (lead vocalist) voice was all over the place and the old guitarist, John Frusciante, was replaced with Josh Klinghoffer, the new guitarist, who doesn’t exactly compare. The band had also headlined Coachella twice before, as recent as 2007, and as a result, the hype wasn’t there. In either case, the Red Hot Chili Peppers maintained a massive crowd from start to finish. Headlining a festival is crucial for the artist being given the privilege. The headliners are essentially the main performers of that day, and there’s a lot at stake with their performances. They’re strictly critiqued due to their fan’s high expectations. Surely, the headliners didn’t perform as well as people had anticipated,with the exception of Phoenix; but at any rate, Coachella has a line-up with a wide variety of genres, making it a popular festival that is alluring to a sizable fan base. If people aren’t a fan of the main headliner, they have alternative options, one of which will certainly satisfy them. One of the most notable performances of Friday night belongs to the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Karen O (lead vocalist) ruled the main Coachella stage wearing a gold outfit with a matching gold crown for much of the concert. The band opened with “Sacrilege”, a popular single from their comeback album, Mosquito. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs drew one of the largest crowds on the opening night of the festival by putting on a striking performance that left the audience in awe. 3Major Lazer’s daytime performance in the Mojave Tent made them the highlight of Saturday. The trio managed to put on one of the most dynamic dance parties of the entire festival. The Mojave Tent was completely packed with people during Major Lazer’s performance, to the point where personal space was out of the question. When “Pon de Floor” was played about halfway through the show, the energetic crowd in it’s entirety jumped around and danced. Diplo, Jillionaire, and Walshy Fire closed their set with the biggest, most lively “Harlem Shake” of the weekend, outdoing Baauer, the original “Harlem Shake” creator. These guys were definitely on-point with their set. The Wu-Tang Clan reunion was not one to be forgotten. The rap collaborationstole the show on Sunday night, outperforming the Red Hot Chili Peppers and other subsequent headliners for that night. Their concert can be described as legendary. All of the Wu-Tang members, Red Man, and Cappadonna made history that night by performing together on the Outdoor Theater. Wu-Tang Clan’s set made up for the lack of well-known hip-hop/rap artists on the line-up. And despite performing at the same time as the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Wu-Tang Clan maintained an immense crowd throughout their entire set. Enclosed in the Coachella bubble is a lot of exclusive art, which had never been seen prior to the two weekends of the festival. The enormous thirty-foot snail was thought of as the festival mascot. Helix Poeticus (the snail) slowly moved it’s intricate design through the Coachella fields as the primary art piece of the event. The


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