© 2012
All Rights Reserved.

Unauthorized duplication or use of Text, Photos, Videos, Site Template, Graphics and or Site Design is Prohibited by Federal and International laws. See our Notice/Disclaimer and Privacy Policy.


Email Login
New users
sign up!

Detroit's Only FREE E-mail Provider



Find a Job
Job category:



<< News >>

National News / Entertainment

Wednesday, 2 May, 2012 9:18 PM

Fans enjoy 7th Annual Stagecoach Country Music Festival in Indio, Calif.


Nicole from Menifee, Calif., Cheyenne from Beaumont, Calif. and Krystal from Banning, Calif. The first two girls skipped their high school prom in order to attend the Stagecoach festival.


by Jason Rzucidlo



INDIO, Calif. -- All 55,000 tickets were sold out for the 2012 Stagecoach Country Music Festival. However, the actual attendance is much higher due to the free tickets and passes given out by radio stations. Fans told us they loved everything about the festival in the Coachella Valley city of Indio. Some of them even skipped their high school proms in order to make it to the festival. Attendees came from all over America and rented RVs, tents and hotel rooms to be a part of what is called Stagecoach. It was definitely a weekend to remember.

"It's fun, it's hot, too hot," said Candice Martinez of Monrovia, Calif. "I got here at about fiveish on Friday, so it wasn't as hot. It was starting to cool down a little bit. I saw Jason Aldean close the show and Alabama. I'm looking forward to seeing Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton tonight and Brad Paisley tomorrow. I brought my daughter here. It was our first time for both of us. We won tickets. It's a lot of fun. It would be nice if it would be a little cooler, but it's nice."

Kelly Clarkston joined Jason Aldean for a song on the Toyota Mane Stage Friday night. That was a big surprise because she was not originally on the schedule.

"This is our first time here," said Omar Arrula of Mira Loma, Calif. "It's a lot of fun. I never imagined it would be so big like this. I'm a little overwhelmed, really. We came late on Friday. We left and had a good time. We got lost trying to find our car. It's a little pricey here. The food is pricey and the beer is pricey. It is an experience. You've got to come out and spend the money. It's great. I'd recommend it to anybody."

Kenny Rogers had the largest crowd out of all three days on the Palomino Stage. The fans went wild when he sang "The Gambler." I think his performance should have been on the Toyota Mane stage since there was a gap between Martina McBride and Sheryl Crow.

"This is our second time here," said Nancy Schlanse of La Quinta, Calif. "It's fun and a lot of good activities, good food and fun people. I saw Alabama last night and today Steve Martin. We paid over time so I forget how much we even paid. The parking is not optimum. We had quite a long walk. Other than that, it's all good."

A couple of weeks ago, the Coachella festival made national headlines with its hologram of the late Tupac. He was shown performing on the stage using special effects during Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg's performance. Fast forward to Stagecoach and there was a big screen that separated Brad Paisley from his fans during his first two songs. A larger-than-life image of a country singer with a cowboy hat was shown. It sort of reminded me of the Tupac hologram.

"This is our third time and we still enjoy it," said Ken Cook of La Quinta, Calif. "The best part about it is people get together and have a good time. Actually last night, I saw Sara Evans and Alabama. Jason Aldean was good. We had a great time last night. Tonight, we're looking forward to Miranda Lambert. I thought the price for the weekend was good. For the amount of people you get to see, it's outstanding. The venue is awesome, it really is. No doubt about it. I could have rode a borough faster than I walked through here. No offense."

I thought maybe Alabama would come on stage during Brad Paisley's performance to sing their duet "Old Alabama." However, that never happened.

"I'm really enjoying the music," said Krystal from Banning, Calif. "I really like the atmosphere as well. Everyone just gets along with everyone so that's nice. I like the Eli Young Band. They played my favorite song. Also, I saw Sara Evans. I saw her in concert at the San Manuel Amphitheater. Jason Aldean is an amazing artist as well. I'm looking forward to Luke Bryan today. I skipped prom to be here and it's totally worth it. I would have been OK with the price if I would have got it on time. I ended up paying $400 for my ticket on Craigslist, but it's well worth it."

Two high school seniors told me they skipped their senior prom so they could attend Stagecoach instead.

"I really like the atmosphere definitely," said Cheyenne from Beaumont, Calif. "It's just really hot, not a lot of shade. Jason Aldean was probably my favorite--more upbeat and dancing. We like to dance. I'm excited for Miranda Lambert tonight. I'm fine with the price mostly because of the payment plan. I think it's worth it. I've seen more red, white and blue than I've seen in a whole year."

Her friend, Nicole from Menifee, Calif., added: "So far, it's like a huge party with our favorite country artists. We saw Jason Aldean and he was amazing. We're going to see Miranda Lambert tonight and I'm really excited for her. I think it was a great deal. We get to see all of our favorite artists. It's three days and it's awesome. I'm looking forward to coming back next year and making it a routine."

Bands came from all over America -- including Detroit -- to perform at Stagecoach

J.D. Souther and Greensky Bluegrass were two of the performers that traveled from metro Detroit to the festival in Indio, Calif. JD Souther was born in Detroit while Greensky Bluegrass is from Kalamazoo, Mich.

"We drove 2,500 miles to get here," said Randy Owen, lead singer of the legendary country group Alabama. The group has been on its reunion tour since 2010. They performed all of their hit songs including "I'm in a Hurry (And Don't Know Why)," "Born Country," "Roll On (Eighteen Wheeler)" and many others.

Country/Folk/Rock group the McEuen Sessions performed on Saturday at 2 p.m. on the Palomino stage.

"This is not necessarily a new group, we've been playing together over the 20 years," said John McEuen, who is also a banjo/fiddle/guitar player for the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. "We've played together many times. The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band is self contained in its own world and something I couldn't replicate. This is something new and exciting. The music is challenging. In a sense, I have more time collectively with my sons now. It's a show that didn't need a warm-up, because it's like 100 degrees and it went fine. The facilities and everything are really first class. It's great to be a part of it."

Bluegrass/Country band Greensky Bluegrass entertained audiences on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. on the Mustang stage.

"We played Stagecoach in 2009 as well," said Paul Hoffman, the band's mandolin player. "This is our second time here. It's hot. Handguns has been about for about six months. It's our fourth studio album. It's got some great songs on it. We produced it ourselves. I went to Western Michigan and Kalamazoo is where we live now. We're honored to be here. It's great. Something that I really enjoy is that we crossover really well. We fit in at this event well and we could have fit in at Coachella as well. This is a really awesome site. It's definitely hot. The company that puts this thing on does a really good job. It's fun."

Bluegrass/Alt-Country group Split Lip Rayfield performed on Sunday at 1 p.m. on the Mustang stage.

"I started playing guitar when I was about 14," said Jeff Eaton, the band's bass guitar player. "I was completely into Iron Maiden and Metallica and Slayer. I started hanging out at this bluegrass festival and met these guys there. It tumbled into this happy accident. While we were recording the I'll Be Around album, I really liked the space we were at. When it was coming to completion, all of this work started paying off. I guess that would be the best part of it when it's done. In our region in the midwest, punk-bluegrass bands have blown up. Most of those bands are surprisingly gracious about how we influenced them. We've been around for 15 years. I guess it's not surprising that we've started a new midwestern wave of bluegrass."

Bluegrass/Country band the Grascals entertained audiences on Sunday at 4:30 p.m. on the Mustang stage.

"It went great, we sold out of all of our records," said Jamie Johnson, a vocalist and guitar player in the band. "It was crazy. The folks pretty much rushed the stage. It was kind of nerve wrecking. I kind of know how the Beatles felt now. We appreciate them liking our music. We played here the very first year they had it, 2008. We're making our 117th appearance on the Grand Ole Opry this weekend. We're excited about it. 'I am Strong' is about a visit we did to St. Jude's in Memphis, Tenn. Their families have to bring them down to fight the battle they're fighting. They invited us to come down a present a check to go to the proceeds. We got to visit the kids and see a wall of the thought the kids wrote. We wrote the song and did the video with Dolly Parton and the kids."

For more information about Stagecoach: California's Country Music Festival, visit

Related Stories: '80s country/rock band The Unforgiven to reunite for Stagecoach show; J.D. Crowe and the New South to kick off final tour at Stagecoach show; Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers to perform at Stagecoach today




Country music fans Omar and Leslie Arrula of Mira Loma, Calif.



Attendee Candice Martinez of Monrovia, Calif.



Country music fans Nancy Schlanse, Kim Cook, Ken Cook and Howard Schlanse, all from La Quinta, Calif.



Legendary country group alabama drove 2,500 miles to perform at Stagecoach.



"I don't see the Steep Canyon Rangers as my band," Steve Martin told the crowd. "I see myself as their celebrity."


::: PAGE ONE :::




  Your Ad Here


>> Bookmark This Site Now! << - free web hosting. Free hosting with no banners.



Copyright © 2012 All Rights Reserved.
Unauthorized duplication or use of Text, Photos, Videos, Site Template, Graphics and or Site Design is Prohibited by Federal and International laws. See our Notice/Disclaimer.