Forget about accusing us of sourgraping as a result of we couldn’t go to this 12 months’s Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival. Beyoncé opted out of being the headliner so we didn’t lose a lot. But we nonetheless keep in mind how the proprietor of the competition is “a 77-year-old super-rich white dude” who has been funding anti-LGBT teams and local weather change deniers for years.
Phil Anschutz of Anschutz Entertainment Group, the corporate that acquired Coachella again in 2001, has lengthy been a supporter of teams just like the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF). The ADF “litigates instances to oppose abortion, same-sex marriage, and civil unions.” The Washington Post, one of many first to speak about Phil’s connections this 12 months, even positioned him in an infographic explaining the opposite patrons of those anti-LGBT organizations.
While Phil has denied it and mentioned that that is a smear marketing campaign in opposition to Coachella by rivals, tax filings verify the claims. And Phil hasn’t been very secretive of his methods as effectively. A 2012 profile in The New York Times reads that Phil “has contributed to the Institute for American Values, whose founder, David Blankenhorn, opposes same-sex marriage, and who testified in the trial on the constitutionality of California’s ban on same-sex marriage, known as Proposition 8, in 2010.”
Various information outfits tried to contact Phil because the information unfold however to no avail. His solely assertion comes out via Rolling Stone and it reads like a Trump tweet with the favourite buzzword from the US President—you guessed it, “fake news.” He mentioned to the music journal, “Recent claims published in the media that I am anti-LGBTQ are nothing more than fake news—it is all garbage. I unequivocally support the rights of all people without regard to sexual orientation. We are fortunate to employ a wealth of diverse individuals throughout our family of companies, all of whom are important to us—the only criteria on which they are judged is the quality of their job performance; we do not tolerate discrimination in any form.”
What’s upsetting is how there wasn’t a lot backlash from the artists concerned within the competition after the experiences surfaced. Musicians Mitski and and Ted Leo tweeted about it however not one of the massive gamers actually mentioned a lot. So the offensive headdress wearers went on to listen to some Kendrick Lamar and Lady Gaga. Leonardo DiCaprio, a staunch advocate of the atmosphere, was additionally there to catch some reveals. Business as standard.
ah fuck. effectively I agreed to do that+not going would solely harm me not the fest, however u can nonetheless not go (cont’d half 2) https://t.co/a7Nq2MtNc4
— mitski (@mitskileaks) January 5, 2017
I assume if I would’ve identified AEG stood for Anschutz Ent. Grp., it would’ve advised me one thing. Read @JaneMayerNYer’s #DarkMoney. He’s throughout it.
— Ted Leo (@tedleo) January 5, 2017
It’s painful to see how Phil and his mechanisms have arrange a tangled net. These celebrities will little question undergo in the event that they went up in opposition to Phil and the Anschutz group. Why? Basically, his holdings personal each different particular person in your Spotify playlist and even your boyfriend’s favourite sports activities crew as Pitchfork writes:
“It owns or operates venues accounting for 61 p.c of ticket gross sales worldwide within the third quarter of 2016, in response to the newest Pollstar knowledge, together with London’s O2, Los Angeles’ Staples Center, and Brooklyn’s Barclays Center (if it helps, Beyoncé, at the least Jay Z bought his Barclays stake). It owns sports activities groups, together with the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings and a stake within the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers. In music, simply amongst festivals, it has coordinated not simply Panorama, FYF Fest, Camp Flog Gnaw, and Bumbershoot, but in addition Desert Trip, the classic-rock blockbuster maybe higher generally known as Oldchella. It places on excursions by Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, and others.”
Lest we neglect that Coachella is a money-making instrument for lots of its sponsors. These sponsors create the various in-house actions for the 2 weekends and entice (by way of paid flights and lodging, at the least) the competition’s high-profile friends and influencers.
The two weekends of Coachella handed almost scratch-free of the controversy. Sure, we obtained some good music however at what value? It’s time to rethink if Coachella is de facto residing as much as the free vibes it’s giving to all, if the racist outfits, didn’t make you consider it already.
What’s the worth of staying woke? Apparently not sufficient to surrender a Coachella ticket that would presumably gas the damaging sentiments of its proprietor.
Photo courtesy of Coachella’s Instagram account
Follow Preen on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and Viber