Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts

An estimated 75,000 music fans filled 2017’s Stagecoach Festival April 28-30 to sing and dance to A-list acts such as Dierks Bentley and Shania Twain.

The festival was held at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California – the same venue as Coachella, which was held the previous two back-to-back weekends.

Headlining and performing at the festival for the first time, Twain was the highlight of the festival on Saturday night, opening with fan-favorite, “Rock This Country,” setting the scene for a performance which had the audience packed into any available space in front of the Mane stage.

Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts
Photography: Erik Voake ©Stagecoach 2017

Filled with hit after hit, her electric 90-min set showcased her illustrious career and was a reminder that Twain is one of the most dominant and exciting artists of all time.

Surprises of the night included performances from pop heartthrob Nick Jonas, who came out to join his idol on stage for a version of Twain’s hit “Party For Two” and country darling Kelsea Ballerini, who accompanied Shania for “Any Man of Mine”.

Nick Jonas - Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts
Photography: Brantley Gutierrez

The three-day festival kicked off at noon on Friday, bringing an eclectic mix of performers to the festival’s stages.

One of the first acts of the festival was Minnesota-based band The Cactus Blossoms who made their Stagecoach Festival debut on the Mustang Stage shortly after 1:30 pm.

With their Red House Records debut, You’re Dreaming (produced by JD McPherson), the Cactus Blossoms brought a new energy and vitality to a classic sound with their blood harmonies — think Everly Brothers — and timeless, instantly memorable songs.

The Cactus Blossoms Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts
Photography: Michael Drummond ©Coachella 2017

One of the late Friday afternoon highlights was a set by Anderson East on the Mustang stage.

He is currently working on a new album for release this fall, the follow up to Delilah.

This summer, East will open for Chris Stapleton on several dates in addition to playing festivals (including Shaky Knees).

Photography: Michael Drummond ©Coachella 2017

Friday night’s headliner Dierks Bentley arrived with plenty of surprises, including bringing out Pop-R&B singer Elle King for a live rendition of their hit country duet “Different for Girls.”

King had her own set on the Palomino Stage earlier in the afternoon, pleasing fans with her hits songs and energetic vibes, telling fans “I’m already drunk” during the 3 pm set.

Dierks Bentley Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts
Photography: Mitch Brown ©Coachella 2017

If that wasn’t enough, Bentley also brought out another guest: singer-songwriter Jon Pardi (who performed on the Mane stage earlier in the day).

Other notable Friday acts included Cole Swindell, Randy Houser and Jerry Lee Lewis.

The California sun continued to shine on Saturday with temperatures in the mid 90s.

Just before 2 pm, American Rock’n’Roll band The Walcotts took to the Palomino Stage with their music that captivatingly distills roots music, soul, blues, and country.

The Walcotts Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts
Photography: Michael Drummond ©Stagecoach 2017

Armed with a large line-up, their sound was fueled by male-female vocal harmonies with the accompaniment of horns, pedal-steel, fiddle, and piano.

While the Los Angeles band draws inspiration from more than a half century’s worth of American traditions, the music of The Walcotts is contemporary and fresh.

Switching gears back to the Mustang Stage, Nashville singer-songwriter Brent Cobb performed close to 3 pm.

Brent Cobb Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts
Photography: Everett Fitzpatrick ©Stagecoach 2017

Brent is currently in the midst of an extensive worldwide tour, including over 30 dates supporting Chris Stapleton as well as shows with Jamey Johnson, Margo Price, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill.

A highlight of the set was his performance of “Let The Rain Come Down” from his critically praised major label debut album, Shine On Rainy Day, which is now available on Low Country Sound/Elektra Records.

Other Saturday highlights included Brett Eldredge on the Mane Stage before Shania Twain’s set, and Willie Nelson and Family closing out the night’s performances on the Palomino Stage.

Brett Eldredge Stagecoach Thrills 75,000 Music Fans With A-List Country Acts
Photography: Michael Drummond ©Stagecoach 2017
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