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What Life is Beautiful can learn from Coachella

Audience members at Coachella (PHOTO: AP)
Audience members at Coachella (PHOTO: AP)

Booking: A lackluster lineup for the inaugural Life is Beautiful festival — scheduled to take over multiple indoor and outdoor stages around Fremont East during the last weekend in October — will sink it.

Organizers must find the sort of viral acts people are genuinely excited about, not who’s being pimped on FM radio. Most people don’t hound Stubhub for Coachella passes to see The Lumineers or the Chili Peppers — they’re going because heavily downloaded acts like The XX, Tame Impala, Major Lazer and Grimes are all on the same bill, and cult faves like The Postal Service, Nick Cave, Wu Tang Clan and Puscifer draw loyal fans to festivals. Which also means: LiB ought to avoid the sorts of acts that come here regularly, and pony up for “gets” — the ones that rarely, if ever, play here.

Parking: Thousands of people driving their vehicles in and out of Fremont East for a music festival? It’ll make First Friday look like a tumbleweed wasteland. Meanwhile, after years of strategizing to avoid a snail-crawl exodus, I can now enter and exit Coachella grounds in mere minutes, no matter where I park. Those Inland Empire cops sure know how to route a whole lot of drivers in speedy fashion, and LiB (and Metro) would be wise to consult with Indio’s finest to ensure some acceptable level of vehicular motility — once it actually finds these mythical high-capacity downtown parking lots. Which brings to mind a recent Coachella improvement: shuttle service.

Comfort: Coachella appeals to people beyond the music festival regulars because cheap and free water is easily attainable; its admission wristbands allow for relatively painless in and outs; there’s enough food options to keep lines short; and the restroom facilities are regularly cleaned. LiB should learn from years of Coachella infrastructure fine-tuning.

Locals: Coachella discounts admission for the residents of its host city, and Vegas music lovers are gouged enough on the Strip. And, by the way: Hopefully LiB won’t relegate the participating local bands to a corner of the festival like kids at the card table during Thanksgiving dinner.