It’s all fun and games until someone from the group gets lost in the Sahara Tent in a crowd filled with over ten thousand people, all while having no service, trying to make their way over to the next set to secure the perfect spot.

Welcome to Coachella, a music and arts festival that takes place in my very own backyard, Coachella, California.

The month of April for the Coachella Valley is like no other, welcoming people from all over the world to enjoy a taste of the beautiful desert atmosphere, and most importantly, some pretty rad music. Coachella is hosted and run by GoldenVoice for two thrilling weekends, which very well might be the two best weekends of the year.

This year’s lineup has been said to have gone worldwide, as the festival welcomed artists such as Badbunny and Blank Pink. Coachella wants to gravitate toward its audiences, and since music has gone worldwide, you can bet Coachella has too.

Sunday night’s headliner, Frank Ocean, gave a performance no one was expecting, as most of the performance took place backstage while being recorded. The set was like no other, and can best be explained as a bit bizarre. The set was planned on having dozens of ice skaters skate on ice around Ocean while performing. Hours before show time, Ocean had called this off resulting in having to literally melt the stage. Alternatively, he started an hour late, was hard to see from the crowd’s view, and was one of the acts that were not live-streamed, unlike most artist sets at Coachella.

“‘It was chaotic. There is some beauty in chaos. It isn’t what I intended to show but I did enjoy being out there and I’ll see you soon.” Frank Ocean.

“Novacanes” singer representative made it official in a statement that Frank Ocean would not be headlining the final weekend of Coachella after his first performance the week before. Statements had come out saying that Ocean was suffering a leg injury, and by doctors’ orders, was not to perform for the thousands of people who solely went to Coachella just to see Frank perform.

Frank Ocean headlining this year’s Coachella was a big deal, considering he hasn’t been on stage since 2017. Fans were upset to see that Ocean’s merchandise was non-existent as signs were posted reading “No Frank Ocean Merchandise”. This was a surprise to fans, and is now turning into an online joke as people are selling graphic tees that pen “No Frank Ocean Merchandise”.

I feel sorrow for the artist as I don’t think he was ready to headline such a widespread festival, with him grieving the loss of his brother who passed away in 2020. He told the crowd during his set that the two of them used to come to Coachella a lot; they would dance and simply just take in all of the music. Many fans are disappointed with the outcome Frank Ocean gave them, but I think it’s time to start being grateful for the little things. His performance was random, and even though it was not my favorite set, it was still a neat experience to be a part of.

I went to Coachella this year for three reasons: to see hometown friends, dance in the Dolab, and for the overall experience. With going just about every year, I can confidently say I have enjoyed previous lineups better than this year. I am not a crazy Frank Ocean fan, but I appreciate his story and the beautiful music he creates. I should have bought a lottery ticket after it was confirmed that Ocean would not be performing the second weekend, for the reason that I bet my friends he wouldn’t make it on the stage to perform.

No matter what people thought of the lineup this year or how the outfits gave off 2016 vibes, I wouldn’t change my decision about going this year. Coachella is an experience, one that I think everyone should experience. Unbiasdly, I believe the location is beautiful, the people are like no other, and the music and art structures are spectacular. Being a local at one of the world’s most popular festivals is pretty cool, and it’s not every weekend I would pay $16 for a lemonade, but trust me when I say, it’s worth it.

Frank Ocean might have brought the unexpected to Coachella this year, but why have any expectations in the first place? Coachella brings people together from all over the world to experience live music. This Coachella will go down in history for Frank Ocean, and let’s be honest, even if his performance was remarkable, people would still find something to be upset about.

If you’re thinking about going to any festival in the coming years, do it. I recommend Coachella, You won’t regret it.

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