Hop on the Sunbus: The 111 Music Festival

by Michelle Castillo

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(*CIVX playing live on the 111 Music Festival)


When was the last time you rode a bus? I know it’s been awhile.

The 111 Music Festival is the product of CVAS founder Sarah Scheideman and local musicians coming together to share culture with the Coachella Valley. This past Saturday was the 1st annual 111 Music Festival, it encouraged public transportation as a means to get around.

As humans we are all connected more than ever due to technology, but are we truly connecting with our surroundings and the people around us?  There is something about live music that allows us to come together just a little bit closer. This past Saturday, my cousin and I took a ride on the SunBus and was greeted by  beautiful strangers and local musicians. The bus ran the usual route picking and dropping off people. Some people were aware about the festival, while others unbeknownst to them would hop on a 111 Music Festival soundbus. It was truly exciting to see a diverse group of people riding around the Coachella Valley.

First up on our bus, was Gene Evaro Jr. and friends (folk/acoustic) their groovy tunes were definitely a treat. After dropping them off at the 111 Town Center bus stop we picked up Machin‘ (cumbia meets reggae) transporting us to a far  away land where gypsies danced into the night. As we got to the east end of the valley, we grabbed the band Burning Bettie (rock n roll) playing their originals along with a cover of Red Hot Chili Pepper’s, “Under the Bridge.”

The sun began set, as we looped back down to Palm Desert, and CIVX (indie rock) was ready to hop on drumming us into the night.

We had a choice to get off at our original bus stop or  ride into downtown Palm Springs. We didn’t want the night to quite end. While waiting for our next bus, I run into Sarah and get to chat. It was great to see that the original vision for CVAS still remains the same since the inception of the blog back in 2007.  As we party hopped into the last bus of the night everyone was hella bumpin to old skool jams with local DJ Alf Alpha.

Got off at our last bus stop, my teen cousin turns to me and says,

“Wow, that was sooo much fun!”

Growing up as a desert native,  I craved art and culture heavily.  I’d like to think our little Coachella Valley is continuing to blossom into this arts and music mecca, my 16 year old self would have definitely loved.