The term "Oldchella" is pretty great, I think, and it's a moniker I bet the organizers of Desert Trip are trying their best to squash. In its defense, it is incredibly hashtaggable.
Music festivals are such an important part of our music experience that a well-organized and marketed one like Oldchella can create as much money in a weekend as the annual GDP of a small country. Festivals are important because they're the only place you can "binge listen," if you will, and have access to more music than you can manage to experience in a day or even three.
So at big festivals like Coachella for instance, or even Colorado's new Vertex Festival, you've got to form a strategy and plan your route so you can catch as many of the acts you know as possible. And of course it's wise to leave some room for discovery. I know in my festival history, I have been heading toward a particular stage only to be drawn to another stage while en route. Good music is a ferocious tractor beam.
Summertime is ideal for outdoor festivals, so I hope you got a chance to get out and see a lot of music in the last few months. But this weekend, I've got another festival for you to check out: the Rocky Mountain Audio Festival, held today through Sunday at the DTC Marriott just south of downtown Denver, off of Bellview and I-25.
This "Audio File" column is essentially about music and music playback equipment. For example, last fall, I spent several weeks talking about headphones, and this spring, I ran through a series about subwoofers. Sprinkled throughout has been album reviews and concert previews. And while I play and record music on top of writing about it, I think most of all at my core, I'm a die-hard gear junkie.
This is the weekend I can finally get my binge on. In its 12th year, Rocky Mountain Audio Festival is much like a music festival in that there are way more high-end stereo systems available to listen to than you can possibly manage over the weekend. I've been attending the show for five years or so, and I usually end up seeing only 20 or 30 rooms each year. That is a fraction of the rooms set up, so strategy is once again important for me.
But I'm familiar with a lot of these brands. If you've never been to a show like this, or if you ever held an interest in good sound or making your music sound better, GO! For something like $10 a day, you can peruse what the whole world has to offer without leaving the Front Range.
In order to have an opinion about anything music and sound related, you must have a standard against which to compare new things. Go raise your standards this weekend. Put on a pair of electrostatic headphones. Sit down in front of half-million-dollar speakers. Witness a small room transform into a huge auditorium through digital signal processing. This festival really is a hidden gem of a local resource, and it's only here for one weekend a year. Don't miss it!