Gigs Galore: Coachella runoff


“I wish I was going to Coachella.” In the next couple of weeks, this will be the refrain uttered by scores of friends and classmates dreaming of one of the world’s greatest live music experiences. With a lineup chock-full of huge acts that redefines the term star-studded, this year’s rendition is of particular cause for envy to those missing out. What’s more, Coachella 2012 will be held over two, that’s right, two weekends (April 13-15, 20-22), providing punters with two opportunities to catch the likes of Radiohead, The Shins, Florence + the Machine, and even the legendary Dr. Dre, among myriad other eye-popping names.

While there’s nothing like viewing these performances at the festival among thousands of boisterous merrymakers, the annual live music splendor presented by Coachella is not exclusive to courageous festival-goers willing to make the trek to the desert. Every year, many of the touring bands playing at Coachella stop by the Bay Area around the time of the event. Given the festival’s lineup, this year’s Coachella spillover concerts are certain to please Bay Area music fans.

Let’s start with the foreigners, shall we? Over the next few weeks, concert-goers will have the chance to see some of today’s top European acts. British band Kasabian, who boast a massive following in their native UK, will be gracing The Fillmore in SF on April 16. Meanwhile, acclaimed Swedish act Miike Snow and French eletro gods Justice will appear at Oakland’s Fox Theater on April 12 and 17, respectively. Most excitingly, the newly reformed Brit-pop band Pulp (of 90’s fame) will play The Warfield, also on April 17.

Of the American names arriving in the Bay Area, most notable are Coachella headliners The Black Keys, who will be rocking Oracle Arena on May 4, with support from British aces Arctic Monkeys. Other performances worth mentioning include M. Ward (The Fillmore, April 11), Andrew Bird (The Fox Theater, April 13), and Childish Gambino (The Fox Theater, April 19).

So if you’re missing Coachella, instead of sulking, go out and see some of the many artists visiting the Bay around the time of the festival. Over this period, the Bay Area will witness some of the best live shows the current music scene has to offer.