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Updated by Kendra Brea Cooper on Jun 22, 2014
Headline for Collective Experience: 5 Music Festival Documentaries
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Collective Experience: 5 Music Festival Documentaries

Music has a way of capturing a moment and carrying history like no other art form. A music festival is about more than just the music, it’s about creating a collective experience with thousands of other people. That experience has the ability to make room for paradigm shifts. Here are 5 documentaries about the music festival experience:

Woodstock

Woodstock wasn’t just a music festival, it was a cultural phenomenon. It was an event that took hold of the collective consciousness and eventually became the point of reference for all other music festivals that followed. 1969 held a generation under the weight of social change, a feeling of responsibility, and the brutal reality of a very visible war in Vietnam. The music in this festival was frozen in time along with the hearts and minds of the 60s.

Electric Daisy Carnival Experience

The Electric Daisy Carnival is like a kingdom built for the EDM gods. It’s another world in the city of L.A. Here is where you can escape the Beverly Hills sentiment and level social relations in a quick beat. Festivals like this one take us out of the traditional individualist leisure time (like drinking in a bar), and place us in socially connected energy. While this festival might not change the world, the shift in the way we spend our free time might.

Burning Man Festival

In the middle of the Black Rock Desert in Nevada lives a practice utopia called “Burning Man”. With radical undertones and a gift exchange economy, this festival proves that another world is possible and functioning. Burning Man is a love-built city that runs for a week to confirm that there exists a network of idealists who will gather not only to party, but to show us that there’s more to life than just work, consumption, and capitalism.

Shambhala

In the mountains of the Kootenay region in British Columbia, another city constructed by music is built each year. The seclusion and reliance upon the festival community around you offers the chance to create new cultural narratives. These narratives come from the ability to challenge norms that are dominant outside the gates, but are up for debate in a space like a music festival. Like Burning Man, Shambhala is an example of how another world could work.

Ultra Music Festival

Ultra Music Festival is a place where you can celebrate EDM under the hot Miami sun. It’s more of the same for the typical city EDM festival. Tanning on the beach around a bunch of people doesn’t create any sort of connection, but dancing in a large group seems to bring everyone together.