California's biggest music festival is still months away, but Coachella speculation is already in full swing. Many think the Rolling Stones could appear in 2013, based on a hastily removed tour date that was briefly featured on the band's mobile app. And today, Daft Punk, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and Phoenix emerged as potential headliners based on a now retracted email sent by concert listings site Songkick. With no official word from Coachella promoters about the lineup yet, let's take a look at the likelihood of these artists topping the bill.
The Rolling Stones
The band just wrapped up a short 50th-anniversary tour, playing dates in Paris, London, New York, and New Jersey. So far the band has no engagements in April, and Keith Richards says they want to do more shows. "My experience with the Rolling Stones," he told Rolling Stone's Brian Hiatt, "is that once the juggernaut starts rolling, it ain't gonna stop. So without sort of saying definitely yes – yeah. We ain't doing all this for four gigs!" Considering that many fans report seeing an Indio, CA date appear on the band's official app, the chances of the Stones playing Coachella 2013 seem strong.
The last time Daft Punk toured was in 2007, and many think the futuristic French house duo are overdue for some live dates. Word about a possible 2013 tour began spreading earlier this summer, when celebrity photographer Oliver James L’eroe tweeted:
... SHOOTING DAFT PUNK DURING 2013'S EUROPEAN SUMMERTOUR FESTIVALS (ROSKILDE, OYAFESTIVALEN, GLASTONBURY)... UNCONFIRMED...— Oliver James L'EROE (@LEROE24) August 14, 2012
But the band's site and publicity engine have been dark for a long time. And that Songkick email screengrab everyone's passing around seems highly suspicious—if it really went out on December 15th, why did it take until last night for the rumor mill to kick into gear? Plus, Daft Punk already played Coachella in 2006. Coachella message board members are split on the likelihood of Daft Punk headlining, and so are we.
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Even though Yeah Yeah Yeahs also got pegged to Coachella 2013 based on that shady Songkick screengrab, their place in the lineup seems more solid. They just announced a new album coming out in spring 2013, perfectly timed to a Coachella appearance. And after a March 15th gig in Mexico City, they're all freed up from touring. Coachella also loves to have at least one headliner that didn't come out before the attendees were born. Last year, that band was the Black Keys. If an ancient band like the Rolling Stones were tapped to headline, a more contemporary group like the Yeah Yeah Yeahs would balance them out nicely.
Phoenix could also makes sense as a Coachella 2013 act, even if they seem a bit minor as a headlining act. Earlier this month, they announced an album dropping in April 2013—perfectly aligning themselves with the Coachella stars. And they've got no conflicting tour dates keeping them from central California during Coachella 2013. They've also coyly teased some news on their website recently. Odds seem more favorable that this French group will play the next Coachella than for their space-helmeted fellow countrymen. Official announcements from Coachella central typically come in early January, so we won't have to wait long to see how our predictions pan out.