March 2021

Well, br33zzyy, we are now living in the Corona history book lesson, one of the weirdest times of life (but it’s all been weird, hasn’t it?). Professor James at Hult has asked you to write a note to yourself for one year from now that you will read. You wanted to go to London and rotate to Dubai and Shanghai (then move to Thailand) sooo badly, but when getting to London hated it and wanted to go back to the sunny, care-free festival and party times of LA. Finally, after a few months, you got used to it, loved it even, made friends in uni and outside in your music scene, felt focused and unstoppable, and BAMMMMMM CORONA. Just to remember to live in the present and be careful what you wish for. After working on a start-up for 2 years (that you’re now in debt because of), you decided to say no mas due to your team. It’s hard to know when to leave/stay sometimes, but this was probably for the best.

The future is uncertain, and is hard to get clear in the moment. You have always had a hard time being certain because of how free you are and open to new experiences. In the future you could work for the EPA and help with climate change, be a sustainability consultant for events in Dubai, create digital content around the world through your Youtube budget travel blog, teach English and DJ in Thailand, launch your thrifted festival fashion start-up, who knows? The opportunities are really endless. However, through the trial and tribulation you know you have always loved music and live experiences, and their ability to move people. With the passion and love for that, you will jet-set your music career and actually be able to profit from it by this time next year.

You have just created your website for Satnam, your start-up dedicated to thrifted/vintage festival fashion that will donate money to charities of the buyers’ choice, could be issues of minority or environmental rights. At this time it’s hard to put into practice since everything is on LOCKDOWN, however in the future it will be easier. This just makes you even more certain of the necessity to be one thing you already are- a resilient digital nomad who can work remotely. You have lived in 4 countries in the last 4 years, over 6 cities, and you can be planted and thrive everywhere. You have worked over 50 festivals in CX, performance, and media. You released your first album and music video. In quarantine, you have finished a song that you think will be your best of all time.

In this time next year, you will be continuing this legacy and making an income through private music production, DJing/live shows, Satnam, and many other projects you are taking to learn this time such as Forex trading. Who knows, maybe one of Hult’s alumni referrals will land you a job at Google or Facebook after Hult has taught you to be the most confident and educated you have ever been. Hult has given you the gift of knowing people from all over the world, and truly believing in the ability to improve it.

LIB Lifts 2019

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The LIB sign in front of attendees flocking to the cool lake 

Almost no one could have predicted what began as a small birthday party for friends and family in Santa Barbara in 1999 with 1,200 people to balloon into one of California’s, and the world’s, most loved music and art festivals. It wasn’t until 2004 that people paid to attend, and more DJs and artists were recruited. The founders (the production company known now as The Do Lab) grew up going to Burning Man, and have been greatly influenced by that and their work with Coachella to mesh the corporate and off-the-grid worlds into a creative and like minded community. 

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Co-stage builder Alina poses in front of the Woogie stage

As co-founder Jesse Flemming said, “We now have a younger crowd, a Coachella college crowd, and that’s great, but we have to show them the way and address some of the issues of the world. That’s what sets LIB apart from other festivals. We have a 6 Ways of LIB code of conduct that we really push to teach people the ways that we wish to see and interact with the world. One of our major goals is to respect the land, and use sustainable workshops so that people can take this back to their everyday life after they leave the festival. We only allow 5% of our food vendors to sell meat to really highlight how big sustainability and climate change are for us. That’s the goal, for people to come here and have a reset from everyday life, to get away from their anxiety and politics and keep this energy as alive as possible throughout their lives.” 

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A sustainable food vendor hands out free Acai bowls that benefit an organization that fights climate change 

Indeed, LIB boasts some of the largest amounts of workshops of any festival in the U.S. besides Burning Man, covering everything from physical Kundalini yoga and breathwork to energy healing and massage; dietary classes such as plant-based Keto and others in the Learning Kitchen; ArtClave art classes, and many others. This is what makes LIB a ‘Transformative’ festival, as it’s more than just partying- rather it’s about growing your limitless potential and focusing on what you want to for yourself with the help of and connection to others. 

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A body paint artist works their magic 🙂

Speaking of connection with others, the entire vibe of the festival is a family one, and what it takes to run a festival often asks of people to give more than they have- this is how the Do Lab gets everything done so quickly between Coachella and LIB. Everyone works together to give their all, and even the founder’s parents help at LIB every year. “We have so many babies that are LIB babies- whose parents met at LIB through a magical connection. These are the types of stories that keep us going even in the chaos of creating a festival,” said Flemming. 

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Expert Kundalini teacher Jai Dev Sing teaches his ways

This year the festival was held at a new venue in Buena Vista Lake and also incorporated a new stage, which always poses challenges, but the team pulled it off gracefully. For many, this was their first LIB and they didn’t notice much of a difference, but others missed key LIB monuments from the past such as Meditation Mountain. Regardless, there was still a magical energy of play, as this new venue is typically a thriving park used by mostly families. Music headliners such as Flying Lotus, who used immersive 3D experiences during his set, in conjunction with the art and magic abound, made it an elevating weekend!

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Psy Trance DJ Khromata on the right breaks in the new Stacks stage

To DirtyBird or to Dirtybird?

I have been to many, many festivals in my life, but DirtyBird Campout is something unique- it’s fun for adults! I haven’t been to a festival that has so many games- and DJs host different games to interact with fans! This makes the entire environment inclusive and friendly. Between water balloon tosses, sac races with DB Producer Claude VonStroke (“The Claudefather”) and yoga with Omnom, there is always a wide array of activities going on during the day, along with delicious food (I was so happy to see a vegan BBQ menu alongside a traditional meaty BBQ!) . During the nighttime, amazing techno and house DJs take over the stage, with everything from dark techno to funky house mixed with hip-hop to trancey house. Camping with a group of amazing Canadians, it was awesome to see that they had traveled outside of their country because they enjoyed DBC so much the last two years! It’s this kind of energy that keeps this festival going, bringing back fans annually. I met a lot of people who have been to every DBC, which is unusual and says a lot.