Day two of the Coachella Music & Arts Festival is underway at the Empire Polo Club with a jam-packed lineup that features festival staples and newcomers, a goodbye performance and the possibility of unreleased music being debuted by one of hip-hop’s biggest stars.
A shirtless Justin Bieber and a Harry Styles-Shania Twain duet were among Friday’s first-night highlights as the festival returned to the Empire Polo Club following two years of cancellations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, drawing thousands to the Indio area.
Styles, a longtime fan of the veteran singer, joined Twain to sing her 1999 hit “Man, I Feel Like a Woman” and also introduced two new songs. Elsewhere, Bieber showed up during singer-songwriter Daniel Caesar’s set to perform their chart-topping hit “Peaches.”
Styles headlined Friday, which also included performances by Caesar, Princess Nokia, MIKA, Ari Lennox, Anitta, and Grupo Firme.
Billie Eilish, who performed at the festival in 2019, is set to headline Saturday night. Preceding her will be Megan Thee Stallion, who teased playing an unreleased song during her set, tweeting last week: “I got this song that I recorded and every time I play it for a woman they start jumping and clapping. I think I wanna perform it at Coachella for the first time before I actually drop it.”
Saturday night will also see American hip-hop boy band Brockhampton take the stage for the final time in the Sahara tent. After 12 years together and six studio albums recorded, the group announced earlier this year that Coachella will be their final performance together.
At 51 years old, electronic music pioneer Richie Hawtin is set to make his seventh appearance at Coachella, closing out the Yuma tent on Saturday. Hawtin, who was on the inaugural Coachella lineup in 1999, recently released a re-imagined version of his 1998 album “Consumed,” which was put out under his musical alter ego Plastikman.
The entire lineup will be repeated next weekend.
Ye — the rapper formerly known as Kanye West — pulled out of his headlining spot last week, threatening to unravel the performance lineup. But The Weeknd and Swedish House Mafia were more than willing to step in to fill the void on Sunday’s lineup.
Attendees are not required to show proof of COVID vaccination or testing, and masking is not required at the outdoor event. But health officials continue to urge precautions against spread of the virus, and testing is available on site and around the Coachella Valley.
This year’s festival also features an innovation that has never factored into previous events — a commemorative NFT. Two years ago, NFTs were almost unheard of, but the Coachella Music & Art Festival is offering all attendees a free 2022 In Bloom seed digital NFT, redeemable through the FTX app with each individual’s ticket wristband. Once redeemed, the NFT comes with perks, including a dedicated entry lane, limited-edition merchandise, along with food and beverage vouchers.
As the In Bloom seed NFT blossoms into a desert flower, owners could get one of six rare flowers that can grant them premium upgrades at the festival. Upgrades include a 2023 weekend-two general admission festival pass, premium merchandise, access to the FTX VIP Lounge, Ferris wheel rides, Goldenvoice Concert Tickets or a 2022 VIP upgrade.
Ticketholders also got some welcome news Thursday when performance set times were released — and Arcade Fire showed up as a surprise addition to the weekend’s lineup. The group performed at 6:45 p.m Friday in the Mojave tent, squeezed between Carly Rae Jepsen and Idles. Their last album, “Everything Now,” was released five years ago, but the band’s new album is set to be released May 6 via Columbia Records.
For those who can’t attend the festival, performers including Louis the Child, Tokimonsta, Tchami, John Summit and more are scheduled to perform at events such as Day Club at The Hilton in Palm Springs this weekend and next.
Performances are also being livestreamed on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q3jFQ_UrIxU.