Photo Credit: Galen Oakes

This November, we headed out to the dusty forest to celebrate the unbelievable accomplishments the Desert Hearts boys have achieved in the past two years. From throwing successful City Hearts events in Los Angeles and San Francisco to starting their own record label, this San Diego born lovefest has gained so much momentum that esteemed publications like The Wall Street Journal are recognizing just how special they are.

We had the best time celebrating- the music was superb and the production value matures with each event, inspiring us to outline some significant components that narrate their incredible story…

Photo Credit: Galen Oakes


“The world is but a canvas to our imagination.” -Henry David Thoreau

First thing’s first: Desert Hearts is a beacon of creative expression, and each gathering the collective energy blooms with more vibrancy than the last. In the light of day, aerial dancers dazzled with their poetic movement, live painters translated surrounding inspiration on canvas and a slew of boutique vendors sold glass art, bohemian attire, skull and feather clad head pieces and gorgeous jewelry to intrigued wanderers. By nightfall, twinkling lights led pathways through the grounds to the now iconic stage, enveloped by customized light installations, comically printed signs, LED/fire flow artists and of course epic dance moves. This ever-evolving constant of creative motivation is only gaining momentum through each event and the possibilities are infinite.

Photo Credit: Emma Trim


“Follow your inner moonlight, don’t hide the madness.” -Alan Ginsberg

Heart and soulfire, without which this blissful, beautiful entity would not exist. The amount of detail put into each dynamic activity was incredible; from the spiritually driven yoga dome and healing tea space to relaxation sanctuaries like Pile Palace and Shangri-Lawless, it was apparent how much energy was necessary to make each facet so special and unique. This passion did not only encompass those involved in organization but every musical guest as well. Whether it was a local friend of the family or an internationally renowned legend, each artist threw down their finest selections with spirit and professionalism, sensing the perceptive audience who traveled for a valuable experience.  When everyone cares, everyone wins.

Photo Credit: Emma Trim


“All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost.” -J.R.R. Tolken

Driving off the beaten path through the dry California landscape on the way to the festival alleviates the stress of reality even before reaching the grounds, but this sense of liberation is taken to new heights throughout the weekend. Feel like lounging? Painting? Stretching? Having a deep conversation with a stranger? Dancing on stage with the DJ? How about on the speaker? There is something about the Desert Hearts environment that allows countless ventures accessibility at any time. It’s possible that this freedom is reinforced by the persistent musical thread whose reliability is comforting and acts as an avenue to connect back to the community…food for thought.

Photo Credit: Emma Trim


“Learn what you are and be such.” -Pindar

One of the most sensational aspects of the festival is experiencing everyone’s wild, unique characters released through their personal style. Each individual brings an element of their steeziest selves with furs, face paint, crazy hats & ears, kimonos, leotards, tutus, wigs, hilarious props and truly anything under the sun that makes them feel happy and expressive! It is so entertaining and pleasant to wander amongst decorative, attractive beings, all seemingly at ease and elated to be dressed exactly how they feel as compliments and freak flags fly.

Photo Credit: Galen Oakes


“Tell me and I’ll forget. Show me, and I may not remember. Involve me, and I’ll understand” -Native American Proverb

The component that animates this Desert Hearts BEAST is the community-the conscious, generous, beautiful souls who contribute their energy to this collective. THANK YOU- To those who are on site days before building stages and pillow palaces and those who are on point throughout the weekend making sure the sound is crisp and the lights are enticing.  To those serving food and drink to anyone in need, and those along for the ride, exchanging smiles on the dancefloor and soaking it all in. It is a truly collaborative effort that makes this movement so special…and YES, what started as a renegade desert party two years ago is now a movement that exists not only 8 days a year but through fringe events, a promising new record label and a slew of memories that leave us all wanting more.  The community is blossoming, the music is evolving and new opportunities are presenting themselves, but the essence of a fun-loving family letting loose in the dust to bumping house & techno will always remain.