Things the cameras missed at Coachella 2019

Coachella 2019 kicked off at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, Calif., located in the Inland Empire’s Coachella Valley in the Colorado Desert, on Friday, April 12, 2019. The music festival was founded in 1999 by Paul Tollett, making the 2019 celebration Coachella’s 20th anniversary. While festival organizers certainly had to know that 2018’s BeyChella would be a hard act to follow, they wasted no time in pulling out all the stops for Coachella 2019. 

The mega-popular music fest is infamously expensive to attend, which is why we’re eternally grateful for YouTube’s Coachella livestreams. From Lizzo and Janelle Monae teaching us how twerking is supposed to be done, to Ariana Grande reuniting most of *NSYNC, to Kacey Musgraves trying (and hilariously failing) to bring a little bit of “yee-haw” to Cali — Coachella definitely gifted fans with many a shareable moment. However, Coachella’s cameras couldn’t possibly capture all the fun, feuds, and fires (yes, fires) that went down during the famous fest. Here’s what the cameras missed at Coachella 2019. 

Billie Eilish finally met Justin Bieber

If you don’t know who Billie Eilish is by now — well, you have some homework to do. The singer released her debut album, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?  at the age of 17 in 2019, and she’s been quickly making her rise to becoming a bona fide pop superstar. Of course, becoming a household name at such a young age is equal parts exciting and terrifying. No one knows this feeling better than Justin Bieber, the Canadian pop sensation who started topping charts when he was only 15 years old — and the guy who just so happens to be one of Eilish’s favorite artists. So, when Eilish finally came face-to-face with Bieber at Coachella 2019, as reported by People, it was truly a moment to be celebrated. 

“Thank you, [Justin Bieber] for making this perfect moment for Billie,” Eilish’s mother wrote on Instagram, accompanied by a photo of her daughter and Bieber embracing. “Words will never express how grateful we are to you for all that you have meant to Billie and for being such a huge part of our lives.”

Donald Glover pulled an Oprah

Imagine this: You’re at Coachella with your best pals. You’ve carefully curated your most Instagram-worthy outfits, set up camp, and you’re ready to jam out to your favorite bands. You take a quick glance at your phone to make sure it’s all charged up and ready to go, and that’s when you see it — an AirDrop request from Donald Glover. If you were one of the lucky, randomly selected, iPhone-carrying Coachella attendees on April 12, you don’t have to imagine it. It actually happened — and, if you accepted the mysterious AirDrop request, you’re now the proud owner of some brand spankin’ new kicks. 

According to Complex, the sneaker giveaway was a marketing ploy by Glover and Adidas, who announced their collaboration in 2018. Users who accepted the AirDrop request were told to pick up their shoes from the Vintage Market within the next 60 minutes, and were then given instructions to “wear the shoes,” “come to [Childish Gambino’s] show,” and “keep them on all weekend.” Excuse us while we go make sure our AirDrop feature is enabled. 

The festival was on fire… literally

It’s 2019, and the terms “lit” and “on fire” are thrown around so often that you may actually confuse a genuine emergency for a good time. Coachella 2019 was definitely “on fire,” both figuratively and literally, unfortunately. 

According to Vox, during the early morning hours of Saturday, April 13, 2019, the Riverside County Fire Department responded to reports of a fire burning at the Coachella campgrounds. The fire department released an announcement via Twitter, stating the fire originated in a mobile shower unit, which was “fully involved” upon their arrival. Thankfully, the fire was contained by 2:28 a.m., and no injuries related to the incident were reported. However, the blazes understandably frightened festival-goers, who took to social media to post photos of the flames. One Twitter user reported seeing a terrified camper running out in a towel after hearing calls for everyone to evacuate the mobile shower area. The evening was “lit” — and not in a good way. 

Kendall Jenner had an awkward encounter with Jordyn Woods

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve definitely heard about the drama surrounding Jordyn Woods, Tristan Thompson, and reality TV’s royal family, the Kardashians. However, if you’ve managed to live your life without hearing a peep about the scandal, allow us to catch you up. In February 2019, it was reported that Kylie Jenner’s BFF, Jordyn Woods, made out with Khloé Kardashian’s boyfriend (and the father of her child), Tristan Thompson during a house party. Kardashian broke up with Thompson once the reports surfaced, and the Kardashian-Jenners have made it a point to distance themselves from Woods. 

However, it’s a small world, and the famous sisters couldn’t hide from Woods forever. According to People, Kendall Jenner realized this the hard way when she had an awkward run-in with Woods at Coachella’s Bootsy Bellows Pool Party. 

“It was such an awkward moment. Everyone saw it,” a source told People. “They made eye contact and you could see that they all thought [it was] awkward — they were saying it with their eyes and body language.” The insider added, “It wasn’t hard to see the tension and the awkwardness.”

Justin Bieber seemed better than ever

Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin shocked us all in September 2018 when it was revealed the couple had wed in a secret courthouse ceremony. Since then, the “What Do You Mean?” singer has stayed largely out of the spotlight, and fans were left to believe that the newlywed was simply basking in the glow of married life. However, The Biebs posted a worrying message to his Instagram in March 2019, writing, “Been struggling a lot. Just feeling super disconnected and weird. I always bounce back so I’m not worried just wanted to reach out and ask for your [sic] guys to pray for me.” 

Thankfully, Bieber seemed to be having the time of his life at Coachella 2019, even excitedly prepping for the music festival by posting an adorable throwback picture of himself and Kendall Jenner at Coachella 2015. A few days later, he posted a photo showing Baldwin and Jenner at Coachella modeling his Drew House clothing line, to which Jenner responded, “Gangs back.” Bieber documented more of his Coachella adventures via his Instagram Story, posting supportive shout-outs to Billie Eilish and videos of himself dancing the night away with Baldwin and friends (via Entertainment Tonight). 

Lady Gaga frenzy

If you fancy yourself a “little monster,” you might have been disappointed when Lady Gaga’s name was nowhere to be found on Coachella’s 20th anniversary lineup. Of course, Mother Monster is busier than ever — the hype surrounding A Star Is Born is only now slowing down, and the eclectic songstress is currently in the middle of her Las Vegas residency. Gaga may seem magical at times, but it’s impossible for the star to be everywhere at once. Still, fans held on to hope that the “Born This Way” singer would make an appearance at Coachella 2019, and some festival-goers even said they saw a sign that all but confirmed a Gaga performance. 

According to The Press Enterprise, a mysterious electronic sign that read “SURPRISE GUEST LADY GAG” popped up near the Yuma tent at the California festival, and while “Lady Gag” is no Lady Gaga, Coachella attendees interpreted the message to mean that Gaga would be appearing any moment. Unfortunately, she never showed — and now we’ll be forever wondering who this elusive Lady Gag character is. 

Kanye's church service stampede

One of the most anticipated moments from the 2019 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival was Kanye West’s “Church Service,” which took place on April 21, or Easter Sunday. West had originally been slated to headline the 20th anniversary of the music fest, but reportedly pulled out of the gig in January when Coachella executives refused to build a custom-made dome for his performance stage, saying West’s demands would be impossible to meet within a four-month time period. 

While West didn’t headline the festival, he did draw a giant crowd with his Sunday morning performance. According to The Hollywood Reporter, doors for the event were set to open at six o’clock in the morning, but actually ended up opening closer to seven — at which point hundreds of festival-goers and Kanye fans were already waiting to enter. Though attendees were instructed by Coachella staff members not to run, the crowd reportedly stampeded through security the moment they were allowed inside. Hopefully, no one was injured!

YG's dangerous afterparty

Coachella is as famous for its after-parties as it is for its killer lineup of musical acts. This year, one of the most talked-about after-parties of the 2019 music festival was the 4HUNNID Afterparty with rapper YG. According to party’s ticketing page, Coachella 2019 promised to be a “career-defining weekend for YG,” who recently delayed the release of his new album due to the murder of his friend and collaborator, Nipsey Hussle. YG spoke at Hussle’s memorial service at Staples Center on April 11, 2019 in Los Angeles, and also paid tribute to the late rapper in his Coachella performance. 

However, YG’s April 14 after-party took a dark turn after gunshots were reportedly fired outside the event. As TMZ notes, the sound of open gunfire was especially disconcerting considering Nipsey Hussle’s own cause of death only weeks prior. Though cops investigated the premises and spoke to witnesses following the alleged shooting, TMZ reports they have been unable to find any evidence at the time of this writing. 

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