One photographer reveals the magic of Stagecoach’s country legends

Saturday headliner Carrie Underwood performs on the Mane Stage.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
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After two years of cancellations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the three-day fest Stagecoach, produced by Goldenvoice, made its highly anticipated return on Friday after two weekends of Coachella. Staff photographer Allen J. Schaben has been photographing Stagecoach since the second-ever festival in 2008. This weekend, he takes readers into the festival, one music star at a time.

As the venue opens, country music fans make a run across the field to secure good concert-viewing positions.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Walker County drummer and harmony singer Sophie Dawn performs a duet with her sister, Ivy Dene, seen reflected in her sunglasses.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
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(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
John Osborne of Brothers Osborne.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Fans play drinking games.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Friday night headliner Thomas Rhett.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
A fan is hoisted on another’s shoulders to get a better view.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
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Shenandoah’s Marty Raybon performs on the Palomino Stage.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Mark Wystrach, lead singer of Midland, performs at sunset.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
People on the dance floor at the K-FROG radio camping resort.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
A man takes a break from the heat under a tree.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Guy Fieri, chef and host of Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” watches Midland perform.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Country music fans arrive at the Empire Polo grounds for the Stagecoach Country Music Festival in Indio, Calif.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Guns n’ Roses lead singer Axl Rose makes a surprise appearance with Saturday’s headliner Carrie Underwood.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Spencer Crandall kicks off the first day by performing on the SiriusXM Stage.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
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Amythyst Kiah performs on the Palomino Stage.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
T.J. Osborne, of Brothers Osborne, performs on the Mane Stage.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Brandi and Brandon Showalter and their daughter Rocki, 8, of Newport Beach, take photos in front of the Stagecoach sign.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Carrie Underwood holds her microphone to the crowd.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Maren Morris performs.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
A fan relaxes in a hammock.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
The crowd cheers as Midland performs.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Margo Price on the Palomino Stage.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Neal McCoy performs on the Palomino Stage.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
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Fans cheer while watching Maren Morris.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Stage lights glow as Friday night headliner Thomas Rhett performs.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)