Triple-Digit Heat, Technical Glitches Don’t Stop Thousands From Rocking Out at Desert Trip

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The Desert Trip mega-rock concert got off the ground Friday in Indio before a crowd of 75,000, introducing a new style of music festival targeting veteran concert-goers rather than millennials.

Fans cheer as the Rolling Stones take the stage at Desert Trip in Indio on Friday. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Fans cheer as the Rolling Stones take the stage at Desert Trip in Indio on Friday. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

In place of dozens, or hundreds, of bands performing over multiple stages at most two- and three-day music marathons like the annual Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, Desert Trip served up only six acts: Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, the Who, Neil Young and Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters.

It pulled in tens of thousands of fans who grew up with that music in the 1960s and ’70s. Officials with the concert’s promoter, L.A.-based Goldenvoice, said the average age of ticket buyers is 51. Even that, however, looks relatively spry compared to the average age of Desert Trip’s talent lineup: 72.

“We’ve all been playing for more than 50 years now, and it’s amazing you’re still coming to see us,” Rolling Stones lead singer Mick Jagger told onlookers during that group’s set Friday night, which followed Dylan’s festival-opening performance. “So thank you.”

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