When the sun comes out indie rockers hit sun salutations
Festival season is upon us! And you don’t have to work at a record label to be bombarded with images and stories of Coachella, the quintessential peace, love, sun, and rock-n-roll weekend that is about to have its second weekend of music in Indio, California.
Watching your favorite band perform at one of these outdoor festivals can be a totally different experience than at a club or theater. Generally the image we see of a rocker is in dark rooms, lit only by stage lights and the glow of cell phones.
From their serious stage personas, it’s easy to picture the “hard” side of musicians. But watching them outside, the dank dinginess is stripped away and in the natural sunlight we see a new, lighter side of the bands.
A drummer friend told me a story about playing a festival similar to Coachella a few years ago: sore from playing, he started doing some mellow stretches in the artist tent area. The lead singer of another band joined him, and soon a number of indie rockers were doing full-on sun salutations together. It’s really hard to imagine this happening in a beer-sticky green room at a normal venue, but in a grassy field with the sun beating down, it seems perfectly natural.
This week’s playlist of my favorite Coachella 2013 bands has mostly mellow songs that show their softer side — a reminder that even bad-ass rockers need a little time in child’s pose now and then.
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Ed: Kate Bartolotta