As all you music festival lovers out there may know, Coachella just announced its 2014 lineup last night. As with many music (and film, and literary…) gatherings, Coachella can be a bit of a boys’ club–for example, there is only one woman performing in a headliner act (Régine Chassagne of Arcade Fire), while there are 10 males. Nevertheless, there are plenty of amazing female musicians who will be putting on amazing acts that you should see, whether they’re solo acts or part of a group. Here are but a few of them.
Note: I am not a music writer, nor am I even qualified to call myself a music snob, so my descriptions of these artists will be limited. Rest assured, they’re all wonderful, but since I figured you would want to hear for yourself, I included songs from each! Also, if you are better at knowing music than I am, don’t just leave the silly “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU LEFT OUT _____ OH MY GOD STOP RUINING COACHELLA AND HAPPINESS WTF ARE YOUR BRAINS GRAVEL” comment. Just tell me who I missed so we can give a shout out to them, to!
Let’s just get this obligatory wonderkid out o’ the way, shall we? The world’s current favorite 17-year-old will be there to perform her endlessly catchy songs, presumably with her epically mature demeanor and excellent black lipstick in tow. I would say more on this increasingly awesome young woman, but we’ve already covered how great she is quite a few times.
Speaking of people everybody loves, Solange will also be there! While sister Beyonce is one of the most famous and beloved human beings in the world right now, Solange’s music stands on its own. Yes, she looks very similar to her sister, but they have different sounds and personalities so when you watch Solange’s videos and concerts, you never once feel like you’re at Beyonce Pt. II; you just feel like you’re enjoying the music of another unbelievably talented woman.
This group may be rather young (its members are 27, 24, and 22), but having formed seven years ago, they’ve already got lots of experience under their belt. They’ve performed and/or collaborated with fellow big names like Major Lazer, Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros, Ke$ha, and more. They’re a super fun listen, particularly on a sunny day when you just want to stop having a care in the world, so be sure to check them out.
4. Little Dragon
In college, my friends and I would regularly listen to this Yukimi Nagano-led band in the car. Whether we were on road trips, feeling bummed out, or going to the beach, we loved Little Dragon’s effortless sound–particularly the vocals. And when I first moved to New York last year, I went through a death in my family, a breakup, and an impossibly frustrating housing search in less than 3 weeks. One of the songs I would regularly listen to was “Feather”; as cliche as it sounds, it made me feel like everything wasn’t so f’ing hopeless.
Did I mention the band was formed in 1996 when Nagano was just a high school freshman? Well, now you know that fact and, just as I have realized, that we will never be as epic as she is.
5. Sleigh Bells
Sure, all their songs sound fairly similar, but they’re still a super fun act to see live and erratically jump to. Plus, if you loved The Bling Ring, you likely enjoy their music already and will be into it.
6. Neko Case
Neko Case is awesome, plain and simple. Brilliantly talented, fiercely creative, and very versatile, she has found success as a solo artist in addition to contributing to acts like The New Pornographers, among others. If you haven’t checked her out already, you should definitely see her live at Coachella (and buy her albums, naturally).
It’s hard not to love Warpaint’s dreamy sound. I want to be more articulate than that, but honestly, every time I listen to them I just feel like I might be swimming in nebulas. Perhaps that means the what-I-assume-is-weed smoke from my rather brazen neighbors has floated into my apartment, but whatever–they’re just a great band to listen to when you want something downtempo but not remotely dull.
I admittedly have not listened to a ton of CHVRCHES’ music, I really enjoy the songs I have heard. Plus, my boyfriend is a little obsessed, so I trusted his judgment on this one and added ’em to the list.
9. The Knife
The Knife, made up of siblings Karin Dreijer Andersson and Olof Dreijer, are always fantastic. And this is my favorite of all their music videos; the dancing at 2:25 cannot be topped.
10. Dum Dum Girls
Super catchy, fun music that will make everybody in your friend group feel more pepped up after a long night of camping in a too-crowded little spot (or, if you’re like 2010 me, sleeping in a four bedroom house filled with 16 people). You always need at least one act each day where you all can hang out and collectively get happy as you forget that entirely too much of your rent money is going to food and booze. Plus, not that it really matters, but how amazing are their outfits?
I also recommend checking out Surfer Blood for when you want to feel like a 60s stoner, Kate Nash for when you want to feel hot, and Duke Dumont for when you want to get sexy. See you in a few months when we cover Coachella’s awful celebrity fashion once more! I predict jean shorts and resentment will still be in fashion.