If you’re going to Coachella next week, you probably should already be packing, but if you’re not, I’m here to help.
Since it’s Friday, I’ll be blending in a few free downloads along with my preachy soapbox advice for surviving three days in the desert. Let’s start by providing a mix to light a fire under your tush to get you moving. Sure, Prince Fox may not actually be performing at Coachella, but he may as well have made the theme for his Too Future guest mix. The 25-minute mix drops Drake, Kimbra, Hayden James, Flosstradamus, and SBTRKT. Listen below, then download here.
Don’t worry about making a list. Plenty of other people have already done that for you. There’s the one below, and there’s another here, courtesy of redditor r/reserva_privada. People are awesome like that, because they recognize that the better time you have, the better time everybody has.
You probably won’t need everything on these lists. Obviously, you’ll need basic toiletries, somewhere to sleep, sustenance, and for god’s sake, don’t forget the sunscreen. Here’s a few more key ingredients for your festival packing:
- Body Glide: You’re going to be walking quite a bit at Coachella. Scratch that, you’re going to be walking a LOT, and your future self will thank you for it. Forget about the Gold Bond, and use what the pro’s use. Body Glide is a product engineered for long-distance runners, so it can stand up to plenty. Apply a couple times a day and pat yourself on the back.
- Shoes: Forget your Chuck’s, and leave your flip flops at home. (Unless you’re a crazy person from Florida with some kind of weird super-feet. Then skip this bullet point.) Last year, my non-dancing friend Germano wore a fitbit to track the distance she traveled. Keep in mind, Germano isn’t the dancing type. She’s more of a post-up about halfway back, off to one side and sort of rhythmic sway type. That also means she didn’t make the trek out to the Sahara tent, or the baby-in-the-cornered DoLab much. Over the three days, she walked well over 27 miles. Your feet are going to be put to work, and it’s best not to piss them off. Don’t go buying new shoes now. Take the advice from a guy who bought shoes the day before Coachella 2011. Wear your best quality running shoes, cross trainers, indoor soccer kicks, whatever works that you already have on hand. I myself rock New Balance 574’s, and have no complaints. Opinions abound on the topic of the most appropriate footwear.
- Phone with charger: There are plenty of places to charge your phone inside the festival, even one with poolside massages, so take advantage of the amenities. Sure, your phone allows you to show off to everybody back home, but it’s real value is in its use as a friend-finder. No, not using the official Coachella app, or on your phone’s battery-draining GPS. Disable that shit and download the FireChat app instead. It’s a chat app that doesn’t use your phone’s cell service, or Internet at all. It creates a mesh network of all the users in the area to pass communication back and forth. Lastly, a Life Pro Tip for phone management if you’re planning to forego FireChat: Turn Wifi off, and keep your phone in airplane mode unless you’re actively using it. If you have a message pending, or if you know you have messages pending, send yourself a text. It will force anything queued up to be pushed through along with yours.
Next up is a thirty-minute mix from Alison Wonderland, also featuring fellow lineup mates Drake and Hayden James. Kind of a lot of attention for a guy playing DoLab, don’t you think? Playlist available here. Catch Alison, one of the small contingent of female performers, and one member of the huge influx of talented Australian producers, on Saturday at Coachella.
My final piece of advice is nested in this shameless plug for a piece I put together for Electrojams, ahead of the release of daily schedules. You need to get yourself a planning strategy. You need to remain mentally open and limber. And yes, all those scribbles and scrawls represent a carefully thought out plan. Out of chaos comes order, right?
Last up is one of my favorite mixes of all time, in or outside of Coachella. It’s also one that I missed when it was recorded. I was at the main stage watching the slow, building story arc of Radiohead play out while Kaskade played the set of his life.
I particularly like this mix because of how he melded the sound from his boards in with the live sound. Masterfully mixed in more than one way. Stoked to see Kaskade tear it up at Sahara again.