By: Taryn Poe
Every year, hundreds of thousands flock to the Empire Polo Grounds in Indio, California to attend the highest grossing music festival in the world; Coachella. This music fest is highly anticipated year after year for its lineup, celebrity guests and attendees, delicious gourmet food, innovative art installations, and so much more. With the 2018 lineup having the one and only Beyoncé as one of three headliners, this years Coachella featured several female-fronted powerhouse performances.
Let’s start off with rock band, PVRIS, because they have really skyrocketed as a band with the level of their success. Originating from Lowell, MA, this once “warped tour” band played a set on the Gobi stage each weekend of Coachella. Personally, it was a full circle moment watching PVRIS play to an insanely large crowd out in the desert. Seeing this band grow from playing a small stage to the main stage of the Vans Warped Tour festival a few summers back was nothing compared to watching them perform at Coachella. Front woman Lynn Gunn dazzled the crowd with her rockstar vocals and her multi-talent. She rocked the mic, the guitar, the keyboard, AND the drums. PVRIS is moving on up to big and better things, with Coachella being one of those, which is perfect timing since Warped Tour is in its final cross-country year.
Another act that really stood out was Tash Sultana. She put on a really bold performance and was truly outspoken with her words. She spoke to the audience cussing out anyone who was trans-phobic, etc. and the crowd roared with applause. She won’t tolerate any bull, and she used her platform to make that aware and stand up for injustice. Tash is a one-woman show, and like Lynn from PVRIS, plays a multitude of roles within her music including the guitar. Tash is an Australian beat-boxing bad-ass and put on one hell of a show.
One of the newer names in the game was Bronx native, Cardi B. This female rapper pulled out all of the stops for her Coachella debut. The whole crowd was definitely enjoying themselves as she rapped her hit songs such as “Bodak Yellow.” Her stage performance was very impressive as she had professional dancers and strippers busting out all the “money moves”. It’s very empowering to see an artist like Cardi B, who has openly discussed her former career as a stripper, up on the main stage for the world to see singing her original music showing us that anything is possible. Cardi B, who’s currently pregnant and was during her Coachella performance, had no shame in twerking on the stage and letting loose. Cardi is a bad b*tch who made a name for herself and deserves all of her success.
Saving the best for last, you probably already guessed it; Queen Bey. Set to headline Coachella 2017 Beyoncé had to drop out since she was pregnant with twins at the time, leading to Mother Monster (Lady Gaga) to take her place. One year later, and Beyoncé came to slay, slay, SLAY! The production that went into Bey’s performance must have taken thousands of hours to plan out. It was all so seamless, syncopated, and organized. Her outfits were iconic, she must have changed for every hit song. Her backup dancers were stellar too. The dancers along with Beyoncé hit every beat and were on the same rhythm. Everything about her set was on point; the music, the dancers, the band, the visuals. It was quite possibly the largest crowd I have witnessed at Coachella. Beyoncé delivered a phenomenal performance, and the night she played went out with a bang. Her Coachella set is definitely comparable and on par to her Super Bowl half-time show.
There were countless other awesome female performers, as well as crew members, and each and every one of them took Coachella by storm. Music has been primarily a male dominated industry, especially in certain genres such as rock. It’s nice to see so many talented female artists up on the stage and headlining the festival as Beyoncé did each Saturday night of Coachella’s two weekends. We are all already anticipating next years lineup, and we hope it is chalked full of influential female performers.