Photographer reveals magic of Stagecoach’s country legends

After two years of cancellations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the three-day fest Stagecoach, produced by Goldenvoice, made its highly anticipated return on Friday after two weekends of Coachella. Staff photographer Allen J. Schaben has been photographing Stagecoach since the second-ever festival in 2008. This weekend, he takes readers into the festival, one music star at a time.

As the venue opens, country music fans make a run across the field to secure good concert-viewing positions.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A woman sings wearing a hat and holding a microphone.

Walker County drummer and harmony singer Sophie Dawn performs a duet with her sister, Ivy Dene, seen reflected in her sunglasses.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

John Osborne looks up as he raises his arms while performing onstage

John Osborne of Brothers Osborne.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

People stand around tables on a dirt field

Fans play drinking games.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A blue light surrounds Thomas Rhett as he stands onstage

Friday night headliner Thomas Rhett.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A woman smiles as she lifts her arms up

A fan is hoisted on another’s shoulders to get a better view.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Marty Raybon points with one hand as he sings into a microphone onstage

Shenandoah’s Marty Raybon performs on the Palomino Stage.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Mark Wystrach gestures to the crowd while singing onstage

Mark Wystrach, lead singer of Midland, performs at sunset.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A group of people dancing

People on the dance floor at the K-FROG radio camping resort.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A man sits down underneath a tree

A man takes a break from the heat under a tree.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Guy Fieri smokes a cigar while watching Midland perform

Guy Fieri, chef and host of Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” watches Midland perform.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

People walk around a campground.

Country music fans arrive at the Empire Polo grounds for the Stagecoach Country Music Festival in Indio, Calif.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Axl Rose and Carrie Underwood sing a duet onstage

Guns n’ Roses lead singer Axl Rose makes a surprise appearance with Saturday’s headliner Carrie Underwood.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Fans wave their hands in the air.

Fans wave their hands in the air.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Spencer Crandall signs onstage

Spencer Crandall kicks off the first day by performing on the SiriusXM Stage.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Amythyst Kiah plays the guitar and sings onstage

Amythyst Kiah performs on the Palomino Stage.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

TJ Osborne dances and sings onstage

TJ Osborne, of Brothers Osborne, performs on the Mane Stage.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Three family members lift up their arms and smile in front of the Stagecoach sign

Brandi and Brandon Showalter and their daughter Rocki, 8, of Newport Beach, take photos in front of the Stagecoach sign.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Carrie Underwood points her microphone toward the crowd as she performs onstage

Carrie Underwood holds her microphone to the crowd.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Maren Morris sings into a microphone

Maren Morris performs.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A person rests on a hammock

A fan relaxes in a hammock.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

People smile and cheer while watching Midland perform

The crowd cheers as Midland performs.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Margo Price plays the guitar and sings onstage

Margo Price on the Palomino Stage.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Neal McCoy lifts his arm and sings onstage

Neal McCoy performs on the Palomino Stage.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A woman sits on the shoulders of a friend as a crowd cheers and sings while watching Maren Morris perform

Fans cheer while watching Maren Morris.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A person in a cowboy hat looks toward the brightly lit stage

Stage lights glow as Friday night headliner Thomas Rhett performs.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

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