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Radcollector.com: Columns | Laura Austin | My First Coachella: 2011

Laura Austin

My First Coachella: 2011

20 April 2011, 22.51 | Posted in Music, Party, Photography | 3 comments »

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Kings Of Leon

Ohhh Coachella… I honestly don’t even know where to start. First of all I didn’t even know if I was going until a few days before the event. Tickets had sold out within a week and after that they were very hard to come by unless you wanted to pay an arm and a leg to get one. Thankfully some friends at Vitamin Water pulled through for me and I was set. Going into this extravaganza I had no idea what to expect. All I knew was that it was going to be hot, there would be around 100,000 people and a ton of music.

More photos and the rest of my experience after the jump.

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People watching at a festival like this…. incredible

All of that ended up being true. I was posted up at the Ace Hotel, about a half hour drive from the actual venue. With a pool party going on every day right outside your front door, it is hard to motivate to hop on a shuttle to go stand among thousands of other people, dust, and 90 something degree temperatures. So my friends and I ended up sending the daylight hours poolside. Tip for the future, don’t go balls to the wall at 6am if you want to be able to function that night.

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I don’t know what was more entertaining, watching the lightning, or watching all the people on who knows what mesmerized by the lightning.

Without going into too much detail, let’s just say I went in with very high expectations and left with only about half of them fulfilled. I had plans to meet up with so many people, see so many bands, and go to so many after parties. But in reality trying to link up with people you knew at such a large event with limited cell reception was like trying to find cocaine in a snowball, I spent more time at my hotel than I did the actual venue, and by the time the parties were happening I was too exhausted from spending a whole day drinking in the sun.

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Right outside my hotel room… made it difficult to motivate to go anywhere else.

Not to say that I didn’t have a memorable time… a few highlights included a bottle of Dom Perignon at 7am, the decorations on the wall of my hotel room, the weirdest dinner experience I’ve ever had, people watching, and the last night of the show. Luckily I kept it mellow during the last day of the event so that I could go and really enjoy the music that night. I wasn’t really concerned with being as close to the stages as I could, or taking as many photos as I should have…. I was just a bystander taking in the alternate universe that simply is Coachella. Now that I have one year under my belt I know what to do differently next year. But don’t let this scare you, if you have the opportunity to go, do it. The festival in itself is amazing… how you experience it is up to you. Just don’t promise anyone you will meet up with them, don’t expect to see all of the bands you want to see, and don’t start partying at 6 in the morning.

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Finishing off a bottle of Dom Perignon at probably around 7am

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Adam Hawes paid a visit to the cabana.

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This photo only makes sense to those involved. We may or may not have tied a belt, to a robe tie, to a hook in order to steal a bag of chips from the patio below us.

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We decided to redecorate my hotel room.

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These girls were in one of the bands playing at the Ace pool parties. I took this picture as an excuse to talk to that girl about her amazing Rolleiflex camera.

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One of the strangest dinner experiences I have ever had. I think we walked into a retirement home field trip and apparently we were sitting at Frank Sinatra’s table… that was only the beginning.

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Only in Palm Springs would a hotel advertise “Affordably Hip Rooms!”

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Cut Copy

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One of the many “fashion statements” seen in the VIP area.

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I asked these two if I could take a picture of them simply because the guy had a cool bike. The chick proceeded to insist that she did a booty shake for the photo. Couldn’t say no.

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Duran Duran…. or The Strokes? They all kind of blended together.

  1. andrew:

    well written and insightful. also less words than usually used to discribe that place. well done! i actualy read the whole thing. my back is sore with pats right now.
    looks like it was fun and i kinda love pool parties even though i’ve never been to one.

  2. caralho velho:


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