Well, I'm back from Coachella. I went to Coachella Music & Arts Festival for my birthday this year. The fest, held in Indio, CA, is three days long & runs for two consecutive weekends. My boyfriend & I were able to catch Weekend 1 (April 10 -12, 2015) just in time for my 25th birthday. Since there was so much music, so much food, & so many people, I'm going to break up my recap posts by day. Follow along & enjoy the Coachella experience with me. Hopefully next year we can go together!

Note: This post is long (somewhat informative) & photo heavy! :]

Car Camping

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The ferris wheel & the setting sun from within Coachella 
coachella ferris wheel
A view of the ferris wheel & car camping from the NRG tent 
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Resting at our car camping site


Before I actually get started on Day 1 (Friday), I should preface by going over Thursday. We got to the polo fields early Thursday, around 8:30 am because we heard people start lining up for parking & that was absolutely true. We got there a little before opening (9 am) & were waiting in the long car camping line for about 90 minutes. We were thankful to have made it to Lot 8 which is the closest to the Coachella grounds, making traveling from the campsite to the festival much easier & faster.

coachella camping
Panoramic view of the car camping lot 
coachella camping
Panoramic view of our little camping home


We immediately got to our campsite in Lot 8 & started unpacking. By this time it was around 11 am & the rest of the campers were setting up their canopies to shield them from the scorching sun. After set up we explored the area. Since the festival was not yet open we ventured to the NRG solar charging station where you could charge your phones -- this place became increasingly busy as the day went on.

coachella camping
Within the NRG area
coachella camping
The NRG area brightly decorated
coachella camping
Coachillin 
coachella camping
Can I Live flag spotted at the car campgrounds
The NRG area was perfect to start off your day in the shade. The inside was air conditioned & ideal to cool off. There was seating, speakers, & little hammocks to hang out in. This was a prime choice for campers to chill after set up.

Art

coachella camping

coachella art
Big Bear by Don Kennell


Coachella is an arts AND music festival. One of the wonderful aspects is taking a look at the enormous art pieces. Big Bear by Don Kennell had a swing in his left hand where Coachella-goers could take a mini ride & in his right was a disco ball lantern. This steel-plated beauty pays homage to the California state animal & can be found in the camping area. 

coachella

The large caterpillar is called Papilio Merraculous by Poetic Kinetics. By Day 3 it turned into a butterfly (photos to come)! It's supposed to symbolize the ever-changing nature of earth: always growing, adapting,  & evolving. Located within the venue.

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coachella art

coachella art

Now this piece is called The Corporate Headquarters by Derek Doublin & Vanessa Bonet. The installation is a mock office building with 3 functioning floors (over 3 1/2 stories or 38 feet tall) & a full-size Jet Ranger helicopter on the roof. You can see many cameras staring back at you. On all three stories are corporate associates "working" with a hippo masks on. 

It was fun to check back throughout the day(s) to see what shenanigans the hippos were up to. I thought there was going to be some sort of climax but this was the gist of the whole art piece. I believe it was meant to show corporate sponsorship & how it affects workers & the outside world. 

Music
the ghost of a saber tooth tiger
Sean Lennon of The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger
the ghost of a saber tooth tiger
Charlotte Kemp Muhl of The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger 
the ghost of a saber tooth tiger
Sean Lennon & Charlotte Kemp Muhl of The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger
And now for the music. Boyfriend & I first ventured off to see The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger (The GOASTT) with Sean Lennon & Charlotte Kemp Muhl at the Outdoor Theatre from 12 - 12:40. Yes, Sean Lennon is John Lennon's son & his voice sounds strikingly similar. I even shed one tear -- then I shed 12 more tears because my first tear caused the sunscreen to drip into my eye. The GOASTT was amazing live & gave off an eerie psychedelic vibe. Lennon's guitar shredding skills were superb. Kemp looked like a gorgeous bohemian bass-playing princess. Definitely a top favorite act from Coachella.

vic mensa


Next up was Vic Mensa at the Coachella Stage from 1:20 - 2:05. His set was upbeat & personal. Although I was far back, Mensa gave a killer performance & engaged with his audience. I didn't know much about him prior to viewing him live, but I'm glad I went.

coachella
coachella

ab-soul


Torn between Lil B or Ab-Soul, boyfriend & I opted for the latter. We saw hip hop artist Ab-Soul at the Gobi tent from 3 - 3:50. The shaded stage was decorated with a red ceiling & several chandeliers. Quite chic. Ab-Soul is part of the Top Dawg Entertainment label with Kendrick Lamar, Jay Rock, & Schoolboy Q.

azalea banks

azalea banks


Prior to seeing Azealia Banks, I witnessed Charles Bradley and His Extraordinaires. He brought so much soul to Coachella. I don't have any photos but he did hand me a rose at the end of his performance; I'm trying to find the footage.

At the same Coachella Stage as Charles Bradley was Azealia Banks who performed at 5 - 5:45. Banks' performance was energetic; I'm excited to have finally caught her live. Her backup dancers brought a little extra oomph. Her beats were on point & she ended her set with crowd favorite, 212.

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Later on Day 1 we saw Interpol, a little bit of Caribou, Tame Impala, & AC/DC. As the night wore on, the crowds grew. Getting up front was a laborious task so to save energy we ended up off to the side or sitting in the back.

Bathrooms

Restrooms were atrocious. Waiting 15 minutes to pee when you feel like you're about to explode is not fun. It's less amusing when there's actual feces on the toilet seat (likely because there were masses of people -- some of whom were very drunk or on some sort of drugs). There were several bathroom areas within the venue. Most of which were Port-O-Pottys. This year Coachella debuted permanent bathrooms with actual toilets, doors, sinks, & best of all soap! Day 1 was the busiest day for bathrooms, with lines up to 15 minutes long.

Alright y'all. That's it for Day 1. Stay tuned for more of the Coachella experience. What have you heard about Coachella 2015 so far? What looks the coolest to you? :]

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