Let’s Go to Coachella!

For two weekends every April, the town of Indio in the Coachella Valley (a low area of land between hills or mountains) becomes a happening (fashionable, popular) place. More than 75,000 will flock (go in large numbers) to Indio each Friday evening. And many won’t leave until Sunday night.

The Coachella Valley hides between the San Jacinto/Santa Rosa Mountains and Little San Bernardino Mountains about 80 miles inland (away from the Pacific Ocean) in southern California. At the north end of the valley you’ll see golf courses, tennis courts, and retirees (people who have retired from full-time work) in the cities of Palm Springs and Palm Desert. At the opposite end, near the U.S. border with Mexico, you’ll find the Salton Sea, which is about 225 feet (69 meters) lower than the Pacific Ocean.

Since 1993, when the rock band (musical group) Pearl Jam performed in front of almost 25,000 fans (people who like something very much), the Coachella Valley Music Festival (an organized series of concerts) has been drawing (attracting) performers and fans from around the world. It’s become one of the largest and most important festivals in the U.S. It’s so popular that the first weekend sold out (all the tickets were sold) in less than one hour. The tickets for both weekends disappeared in less than three hours.

Music at Coachella is non-stop (it’s happening all the time). Music fans can choose from five stages (raised areas that bands perform on) and a dance tent with DJs (people who play recorded music for dancing). Many Festival-goers camp (sleep in tents or recreational vehicles) in a field next to the Festival site (location).

Festivals like Coachella are becoming more and more important in the world of popular music. Because of the Internet, it’s difficult for musicians to make money selling their recordings. A writer on The Atlantic Cities website explains that many bands sell their songs online (on the Internet) but don’t make a profit (money you earn after paying expenses). So they tour (travel and give concerts) to develop a following (group of fans, supporters) and try to get noticed by (attract attention of) major labels (companies that make and sell recordings).

Festivals are an important part of this process. If groups and musicians do well at a festival like Coachella, they will be noticed by major labels and other tastemakers (someone who decides or influences what will become popular). The result could easily be a recording contract (agreement), greater popularity, and more money.

The 2012 Coachella lineup (list of performers) has a few surprises. If we measure the number of acts (groups of performers) for every one-million people in a city, Stockholm, Sweden, has the largest number of acts at the Festival, followed by Austin, Texas (U.S.). London and Los Angeles are near the top of the list. And cities like Portland, Oregon (U.S.), Manchester, England, and Toronto and Montreal, Canada, are in the top ten. This year more than half of the acts come from outside the U.S.

Headliners (main performers) at this year’s Festival include Radiohead, The Black Keys, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Squeeze, and well-known reggae performer Jimmy Cliff. If you’d like to see a list of past performers, you can visit the Festival Wikipedia page.

This year’s Festival began last weekend – April 13-15 – and will conclude (end) this weekend. If you’d like to learn more about it, try a Google news search using “Coachella” and “2012”.

~ Warren Ediger – creator of Successful English, where you can find practical suggestions for better English.

Photo by Flickr user Mick O.

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17 Responses to Let’s Go to Coachella!

  1. Hilario says:


    I’d like to know whether there’s any root sharing or morfologic derivation between the name of the little town of Indio and the name given to an independent label as a form of producing and promoting recorded music and live performances of current “indi” labels own runned by signers, musicians and concert players.

    Festivals are the more and more being seen as a key asset when it comes up at developping and building a city’s marketing strategy. Not a few cities around the world are meeting end financial terms based on successful Festivals’ programming policy.

  2. Warren says:

    Hilario – The use of the word “indie” in music and other arts comes from the word “independent” as you suggest. “Indio” is the Spanish word for “Indian”, as in American Indian (or Native American). Many towns in California have Spanish names.

  3. Betty says:

    Dear Warren

    Thank you so much for this article about the Coachella Valley Music Festival. I am not very interested in music festivals like this because of the noise and fast pace life in those places. It belongs to the younger generation.

    However, it is important we read different types of articles and learn more about what is happening in the world, so I have read your article a few times to fully absorb the spirit of the festival.

    I am pleased to learn that Modonna performed in the Coachella 2006 Festival. She has not done it again since. Better give a chance to the new and younger singers, I guess.

    I have never been to any music festival like this before. There is a very famous one in the U.K. called Reading Festival which takes place in August coincides with the bank holiday (public holiday). It is suppose to be a good place for people to chill out, but unfortunately it was unable to stop drug and other crimes happening there during the period – what a shame!

    Music concerts are very expensive in Hong Kong, and we definitely will not have the luxury to camp out. Open air concerts are not welcomed because it is far too noisy for the residents living nearby. The end result is, big concerts have to be held in completely enclosed sound-proof venus.

    I think people who can enjoy the music festival in beautiful California are very lucky people. Perhaps one day I will buy an air ticket and fly to California to be amongst the crazy music fans.

    The question is, will I be able to buy the ticket quick enough? Will I be the lucky one?

    Thanks again, Warren, I enjoy reading your article and writing my silly message here.

    Best regards

    Betty 😉

  4. sirjoe777 says:

    Dear Warren,
    Hearing Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath was the only way I could be a bit transgressive in my youth!
    No long hair, no “smoking”, no free love and so on. What a nostalgia!
    This is why today yet I like to listen to all kind of music but particularly “indie” groups and,
    when nobody can’t see me, dance as a raging devil until I’ve… breath!

  5. Dan says:


    I “visited” Coachella valley with Google Earth. Nice valley you got there!.

    I also live in a valley, it is called Valceresio and it is much greener than yours.

    Hi Betty,

    Couple of question:

    1:How is it called a resident of Hong Kong?

    2: You’ve got a big city there, I was wondering where do you go when you want to be in contact with Nature and get out from the city, caos, ext..?

    Thanks Bye!

  6. Betty says:

    Hi Dan

    Thanks for your interest in Hong Kong.

    You see, the same questions that you asked me could be asked by anyone in future. I’d better prepare for it.

    The information below about Hong Kong resident is from the wikipedia – I am not clever enough to write them down myself.

    According to the Wikipedia:

    “Hong Kong residents, also called Residents of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. According to Hong Kong Basic Law, Residents of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region include permanent residents and non-permanent residents. Rights of Hong Kong residents are protected by the Basic Law such as freedom of speech, freedom of movement and freedom of religious belief.”

    “Hong Kong permanent residents have the right of abode in Hong Kong and the right to vote in elections for the Legislative Council and the District Council. A permanent resident who is also a Chinese citizen can also apply for Hong Kong Special Administrative Region passport and a Home Return Permit.”

    “The non-permanent residents of the Hong Kong are persons qualified to obtain Hong Kong Identity Cards (HKID) but have no right of abode. According to the Registration of Persons Ordinance, Chapter 177 of the Hong Kong Law, all residents of age 11 or above who are living in Hong Kong for longer than 180 days must, within 30 days of either reaching the age of 11 or arriving in Hong Kong, register for an HKID. Non-permanent residents do not qualify for Hong Kong passport but can obtain Document of Identity if they need a travel document.”

    In fact, I believe the wikipedia was not detailed enough, because I know some people are in between permanent and non-permanent residents. They have the right of abode but cannot get a Hong Kong Permanent I.D. Card until they have lived in Hong Kong for 7 consecutive years.

    Regarding to your second question about where the Hong Kong people go when they want to be in touch with the Nature and get out from the city.

    The answer is in your question: get out from the city – people travel to mainland China or abroad if they want a complete “Get Away”; or they can go hiking in the countryside in Hong Kong if they are clever and brave to explore the undeveloped parts of Hong Kong which are opened to public access.

    In fact Hong Kong has a lot of undeveloped land. The reason why we need to live in tower blocks is, the government has very tight fist in controlling the release of land for development. Many tragic news recently revealed how many people living in appalling situation in this world famous “Pearl of the East”. It is very sad to see the news.

    Anyway, Dan, I am glad you have asked me the two important questions. I hope I can answer quickly if someone asks me the same questions next time.

    Thanks and best regards.

    Betty 🙂

  7. mohammad says:

    Thank you for your up to date news. it is very fantastic to being in such a lovely place and enjoying the concerts. i wish i could join them but…

  8. emiliano says:

    Years ago I liked to listen to Deep Purple, ACDC, Scorpions, Led Zeppeling, Black Sabbath (as Sergio) and so forth.
    Some times it seems to me they make good music even close to “classic music” but I can not say why, some how it was
    my point of view.
    It was funny just to listen firs to Vivald/Bach or Mozart and in a while to Depp Purple or Judast Priest, yes it was so
    odd to some of my friends but “about choices there is nothing written” as we say here in Spanish.

    Now I do not know these groups you have told us Warren, just a pity.
    It is difficult to be alert about new music movements or groups, there are so many.


    Thank you Betty for your good information about Hong Kong it is always nice to know about your city.
    I think it would be nice if all our friends here could tell us something about their own city, nation or
    the place where they are living.



  9. emiliano says:

    Hi Sergio, do you remember “Made in Japan” ?
    Ian Gillan, Jon Lord and Ritchie Blackmore were really great and good.

    Ian Gillan´s voice was so incredible good that I was never tired of listening to the Deep Purple
    Group, it was as my blood started to flow faster inside the body as I was listening heavy metal
    in a good, very good high fidelity equipment:
    Bowers & Wilkins speakers, one of the best models ever made, that still I have
    Nad amplifier and CD player…that also still I have, what not?

    Now Cuca likes to listen to Opera with the same speakers but with a dvd/blue ray player

    Yes, it was too much for the body.

  10. Betty says:

    Hi Emiliano

    I read your message about music and I feel ashame of myself because I have almost become totally out of touch with any music.

    Whenever my husband or my children are at home, we have to be quiet because they have to work – all doing some work on computers or on study books.

    My children use headphones when they watch films or listen to music from their computers or smartphones. I do so as well but I do not like the headphones very much. My husband uses the headphone only when he has Internet Conference or Internet meetings.

    A few years agos I still wanted to listen to music when I was driving, they were so beautiful.

    One of the songs I remember very well is “Patience” by British boy band “Take That”.   I think many of our friends know about this song because it reached the top of the charts in Germany, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, as well as reaching the top ten in countries such as Ireland, Italy, Austria and Sweden.

    I don’t listen to Chinese songs any more because the chance for me to listen to them is almost none. I rather listen to Jeff and Lucy when I have time.

    Thank you for your encouragement for me to write about the places I am living and lived.

    It is true, it actually helps us improve our English faster if we learn about the U.S. from this website, and then we talk about our own countries or places we have visited or lived in.  Our teachers here try to encourage us to do that as well.

    Best Regards

    Betty 😉


    Some of our regular contributors are not writing here in recent blogs.

    Could it be because it is exams seasons and so a lot of people are too busy to write anything here.

    Myo Ko Ko used to lead us in thanking our teachers.  I hope he is fine.  Peter has not shown up for a while neither.  I hope he is fine also.

    I hope to see more messages from our blog friends.


    I think I am too worried about getting “Blank Page Syndrome” or “White Page Syndrome” that I keep writing too much – even though I have no computer at the moment and it is quite difficult to write a message from my iphone.

    Am I worrying too much?

  11. Dan says:

    Hi Betty,

    Thank you!

    If you do not mind I have this curiosity about older Asian men:
    Why do they use gianormous amount of dye?
    Is there something wrong in showing grey hair?

    I have noticed that almost all Politicians in Asia dye their hair, from the leader of noth Korea and his followers, to the leaders of Japan, China, South Korea…you name it.

    Have you noticed something anusual with our politicians?

    Thanks bye 😉

  12. Sergio says:

    Surely, I remember that band too, Emiliano…
    My Deep Purple favourite song is “Child in time” (studio version): an awsome voice and an amazing solo guitar.
    Ian Paice was one of the most famous drummer at that time!
    Nowadays I listen to a wide range of music, from modern classic like Arvo Part to Irish music like Flogging Molly
    or more pop genre (Amy McDonald):
    it depends which is my mood that particular day… For exemple, today – today, that is April 22nd – I’m some average as (Indie 90s + George Harrison)/2 !
    I’m trying to be up to date and hearing the new bands like Black Keys… but if you force me to choise one vinyl only –
    you know for the usual desert island – well I’ve no doubt: LED ZEPPELIN I ! It comes from my heart… No matters if it is some trivial.
    About the Opera? Ready: “Oh! dolci baci, o languide carezze, mentr’io fremente le belle forme disciogliea dai veli!”
    I’m singing right now, Emiliano, can you hear me? Join to me, Cuca!
    Un fuerte abrazo a todos los amigos aquì!

  13. emiliano says:

    So nice and beautiful language Italian is for me and for Cuca.
    Despite I love English to me Italian first, French secondly and
    English the third.
    My lack has been always not to learn enough French and of
    course nothing about Italian.
    If I would born again that should be my first task, learn
    French, Italian and of course English with Jeff and Lucy being
    my teachers.
    By this reason I could imagine you Sergio, singing aloud in
    your own language.
    Last nigh we were watching a “Montalbano” tv. movies, incredible
    landscape of Sicilia with its beaches and old monuments and
    Other nights we like to watch “Brunetti” tv. movies, of Donna Leon
    books and Venice canals. With such gorgeous pictures it does not
    matter too much about the plot.
    Sometimes it seems we are looking to a Canaleto´s oleo that
    I like so much, till the point I have one at my first home as a
    remembering of our travel to Italy.
    Our trip to France, nearly a full month, was more or less the
    same so I love also this country and their people absolutely.
    La Bretagne, St. Malo, La Rochelle…the Loira´s Chauteaus, so much
    History and Europe´s Capital Paris, of course.
    Sorry about London, but I have not been ever overthere despite I have
    always wanted to go.
    I could speak English, also I may understand it, but I have nothing to
    do about English countries, it is such a pity.
    I hope Sergio that on the first time we meet each other in Madrid you´ll
    sing us a beautiful nice Italian song, that´s a promise I ask you for…..

    Yes, Betty I miss some of the friends here.
    I was mailing with Myo Ko Ko for the last two or three months and I did
    not get news from him since a month till now.
    I hope he is all right.
    Your are an absolutely polite person that do not want to disturb your
    family with music aloud, it is a truth that frequently I have done such
    a thing with less consideration than you Betty.
    Be proud about that.


  14. emiliano says:

    It is so funny what I said above that I think it is necessary to clarify my point of view a little more.

    When I am listening Jeff´s or Lucy´s English that is perfect, even some other persons that I have
    met before was incredible nice to speak with them.
    Listening to a good English accent like from some good actors and so forth, yes that is also perfect.

    Listening to Bush, Obama plus other politicians or even all the European´s first ministers or
    economic rules English sound so horrible.
    Listening to me English sound so awful that I prefer not to listen ever to emiliano, it is just a pity
    to know I could never get a good accent….

    It is different when I listen to Italian or French, it sounds always so nice, so good that it is
    not so harsh if a person do not pronouce them with not so good accent.

    That is the point I would like to explain now about my preferences.

    English is the perfect language to travel, to be understood every where, to make business
    to write letters every place and so forth….
    It is so ruled, so difficult, so precise that I like very much to read in English but another question
    is trying to speak it, listening to it as evey different one who speaks it has a different accent.
    Some times I could understand a lot, sometimes I do not understand anything and so forth.
    It has been always like an aventure, it would be possible to understand he/her or not?
    I could made myselft made understood or not?
    So many years with the same question, yes it is really funny.

    There is a novel in Spanish where in the plot there is a man who is all his life trying to learn English
    for years and years he is trying to speak and to know the language.
    At the end when he is dying the last words he said to his son is: I am sorry, I failed.
    It could be the story of my own life, funny but true.

    In English, a single person a different accent….for good or for bad it is so.
    For us, Spaniards, it is very difficult to get a good level of pronunciation and consequently
    listening to us it is a funny subject.

    Having in mind all of these that´s the reason I said I like Italian, French and English
    the last, but in fact it is unreal because just by knowing a little English I am here writing and
    I have such so good friends like all of you as the final result of English language learning.
    Either Jeff, Lucy and Warren my always dear teachers thar are like friends also to
    Of course, the real subject is that I love English absolutely despite some times I hate
    it not understanding anything like the Opera Maria Estuardo of Donizetti.
    Last sunday Cuca and me were watching it, and after Cuca said to me….good you may
    understand the lirycs…..I was desperate about the few I could follow the plot and the
    singers saying…..

    No, I do not want to be an ungrateful chap with Shakespeare language, so incredible
    perfect but so difficult to speak and understand rightly.

    My best. emiliano

  15. Betty says:

    Hi Emiliano

    It is the first time I heard you talked about accent. I am sure your English accent is very good.

    By the way, this afternoon, I was going to tell my daughter I failed because instead of picking her up at 11:30 am, I thought I was picking her up at 12:30pm.

    When she called me, I realised I was a failed mother.

    I did not want to use the word ‘fail’ because she was taking exams. I apologized by saying, “sorry I miscalculated the time”.

    So, might be on the day that I need to leave this world and I still have not acquired enough English, I will say, “I regret I have miscalculated the time it takes me to acquire enough English, it does not matter any more now, I am please to go with what I have got”. And then I will go with a smile.

    I am really impressed with your passion with languages.

    Passion is very important whatever we do.

    Thank you again for sharing your story with us.

    Best Regards

    Betty 😉

  16. Betty says:

    Hi Dan

    I am sorry it took me so long to reply.

    I had never thought about the question before. I just took it for granted that ‘they do what they like!’

    Anyway, after reading your question, I searched the web to see what I could find. I was surprised to find a lot of articles talking about contemporary Chinese politicians dyeing their hair. Why don’t I receive the same amount of attention when I dyed my hair?

    In fact I think we don’t care too much about our politicians dyeing their hair. That’s how they like to present themselves, it’s their own choice.

    In any case, I would like to thank you for asking this qestion. There has been a lot of interest in the world about this question. I found the 2007 article by Jason Leow appeared in The Wall Street Journal titled “Chinese Bigwigs Are Quick to Reach For the Hair Color” relevant.

    If I am right, Jason was basically saying the politicians who dyed their hair wanted to look younger.

    I think the Chinese leaders are somewhat different from the Western countries leaders – they have different emphases in how to present themselves to their own people and to the outside world.

    I hope some of our Chinese friends can correct me if I am wrong.

    By and large, I think the world is changing, and we may see Western countries’ leaders dyeing their hair soon. Don’t believe in me? Take a look at the 12th April 2011 article by Cindy Lynn titled “Should a U.S. president colour his gray hair?” to see if you agree with her.

    Best Regards

    Betty 😉

  17. emiliano says:

    No Betty, it is not a good accent.

    Spaniards have a strong accent even for our own language and it difficult us to acquire the
    right English accent required to speak the language in its good way.

    Take note of this Betty.
    None of our first ministers had spoken English when they were elected for the charge.
    Only J.M.Aznar tried to learn it when he was the president, but every body make fun of
    his way of speaking.
    The last, Mr. Rodriguez, did not know a single phrase in English and he was always
    apart when he traveled out of Spain while the other were talking among them.
    It was a shame.
    Now Mr. Rajoy is learning English as he have seen what happened with his predecessor
    Mr. Rodriguiz Zapatero.

    When I was conscious about the important of knowing a language I was not a young
    person, it was a pity as afterward I could see that I was skill enough to learn some
    of them, but too late.
    It was funny that the first girl I dated was a nice French girl of Lille who could speak
    Spanish. I could not say her anything in her own language and I was quite frustate.
    Just at that moment, I was eighteen, I could see my lack about French.
    At least the second time I was dating a girl from Michigan I could speak in English
    with her. It was the first time I could practice my English with a native. It was
    absolutely great by the girl and by my ocassion.

    I know what are you thinking about, but all of this was before I met Cuca, so you
    may know now why I am so passionate about languages.

    That´s true, I am a very passionate person with the persons I love and the
    things I like. I hope to be so till my end.

    Your phrase is beautiful Betty but it could be a little long just at that
    moment….ja, ja,….don´t you think so?.

    My best dear, you are so absolutely nice that it is always a honor to
    speak with you Betty.


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