Pioneertown, July 2007 - Clean Air, Clear Stars Festival

Lisa and I drove out to the desert and stayed at the Pioneertown Motel for the Clean Air, Clear Stars Festival, , a concert for global cooling to benefit Global Inheritance and

Winter Flowers performing at Pappy and Harriet's during the Clean Air, Clear Stars Festival.


Pioneertown, located a few miles outside Yucca Valley near Joshua Tree National Park, was originally built as a movie set for Western movies.  Many buildings have been converted into homes.

Winter Flowers at Pappy and Harriet's in Pioneertown, out in the desert near Joshua Tree National Park.  This Los Angeles-based group creates beautiful, delicate Misty Mountain folk music with ancient three-part harmonies reminiscent of Pentangle or Fairport Convention. 

I first saw them with Lavender Diamond (who have also played with Crooked Cowboy at Redcat - a shame Lavender Diamond wasn't out here for this festival!).  We'ree lucky that there is so much good music coming out of Los Angeles right now, including Lavender Diamond, Crooked Cowboy, Winter Flowers, and I See Hawks in L.A.

Lisa hanging out at Pappy and Harriet's between sets.

The Southern sounds of Ocha la Rocha underneath the big desert sky.

Watching Ocha la Rocha on stage during the setting sun outside in Pioneertown.

There's some bands that virtually defy description...often, my favorite kind of music.

Los Angeles-based Crooked Cowboy plays music with eerie unison female vocals (shown here), propulsive psychedelic rhythms, Moog synthesizers, and projections.

Crooked Cowboy under the desert stars.

Jesika von Rabbit of Joshua Tree-based Gram Rabbit.

Richard Cromelin of the Los Angeles Times has gushed: “[Gram Rabbit] appear ready to claim a place in the line of self-reliant, independent-minded artists who germinated in Southern California’s deserts, from Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart in the 1960’s to Queens of the Stone Age in the ‘90s.

The band mixes up an odd bit of psychedelic disco cowboy twang with deadpan torch-song vocals, creating a sound completely their own.

We've seen Gram Rabbit numerous times, including last year at Pappy and Harriet's for their record release party for "Cultivation"

Gram Rabbit at Pappy and Harriet's, playing underneath the night sky of the desert near Joshua Tree.

See two pages of photos of Gram Rabbit from 2006.

Jesika von Rabbit of Gram Rabbit.

The trippy dance-electronica of Gram Rabbit is one of their endearing traits.

Jesika von Rabbit has a nachos dish served at Pappy and Harriet's now.  Perhaps it's the blue cheese that separates it from other nachos.

See two pages of photos of Gram Rabbit from 2006.

Pappy and Harriet's Pioneertown Palace and Saloon at night.

The festival took place almost exactly one year from the devastating Sawtooth Fire, where a year later, charred circles of earth and blackened remains of Joshua Trees remain.  The fire came dangerously close to obliterating Pioneertown, burning 61,000 acres and destroying 60 homes and 170 businesses.

The festival will also raise awareness for Joshua Tree National Park, which scientists call "the world's most endangered national park."  Joshua Tree is the only place on the planet where the large fragile Yucca plants grow.  The slightest disruption of this fragile eco-system could wreak havoc on all its inhabitants.

Pioneertown July 2007

Eleven Shadows Travel Page
Contact photographer/musician Ken Lee

Photos of Pioneertown:
Joshua Tree 2001
Leonid Meteor Shower 2001
Pioneertown-knee deep in desert snow!
Pioneertown 2005-Daniel Lanois, Victoria Williams, The Donnas
Pioneertown 2006-Gram Rabbit, Ralph Stanley, Cholla Cactus Garden
Pioneertown 2007 Clean Air, Clear Stars Festival with Gram Rabbit and Winter Flowers
Pioneertown 2008 Manimal Festival with Xu Xu Fang and Winter Flowers
Joshua Tree 2009 Falling Planes, Joshua Trees, Wonder Valley
Pioneertown and Joshua Tree 2010 Desert Willow & Gram Rabbit, April


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