Ahead of inaugural Palomino Festival in Pasadena, Nikki Lane talks fashion pop-up, new music – San Bernardino Sun

Country music singer-songwriter Nikki Lane has been pulling double duty at the annual Stagecoach Country Music Festival in Indio since 2018. She’s performed at the fest while also curating its Stage Stop Marketplace, which features vendors selling mostly vintage clothing and accessories.

Now, she’s bringing her beloved marketplace to Goldenvoice’s inaugural alt-country Palomino Festival at Brookside at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena on July 9.

Once again, Lane will be carefully selecting the vendors and running her own High Class Hillbilly pop-up shop, as well as performing alongside acts including headliner Kacey Musgraves, Willie Nelson & Family, Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Old Crow Medicine Show, Orville Peck, Zach Bryan, Turnpike Troubadours, Charley Crockett, Morgan Wade, Valerie June and more.

“It’s my dream lineup all the way,” Lane said during a recent phone interview. “I’m motivated by how badass the musicians are going to be out there. I’m trying to learn to dance a little better because of Paul Cauthen; dress a little better because of Orville [Peck]; sing a little better because of Sierra [Ferrell]; and get high enough to hang out with Willie Nelson.”

Lane’s also a regular at the Rose Bowl’s famous monthly flea market.

“My wallet hates me for it, but I’m proud of that,” she admits with a laugh.

The Pasadena version of her marketplace will be a bit smaller than in Indio since it’s the first year and a single-day event, but Lane said she’s chosen a stellar crop of vendors.

“The vintage community is a great community and a group of people who support each other and stick together,” she said. “Unless we’re competing for an item we all want.”

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She doesn’t just put her name on the marketplace, either: Lane is actually on-site in her shop helping fans try on clothes, ensuring the cowboy hats fit and offering suggestions for accessories to match specific outfits.

“I’ve had a long history in retail and being an entry indie musician – instead of like a Carrie Underwood, who could never safely enter that environment – being sort of left of center of all of that, it’s allowed me to be more hands on,” she said. “But these fans I have — I call them ‘frans’ — because they do become friends, we keep finding ways to connect. The music is great and the fashion is integral. When you go to a festival, you go to see more than one artist, but it’s wild to me that there are people who would come out because they like me. That’s inspiring to me and keeps me in an even-keeled headspace.”

The shops do have a little something for everyone, Lane insists, even for those that don’t feel they can pull off a “country” look. At Stagecoach, she had a bunch of western ties styled in little bows, which were created for the drama miniseries “George & Tammy” in which actress Jessica Chastain portrayed country singer-songwriter Tammy Wynette. When Lane saw a mother and her two young daughters browsing the shop, she said she approached them and offered to have them try on the ties.

“They were dressed like in street clothes and I reached out to them and I was like, ‘Come over here,’ but I wasn’t trying to solicit them or anything,” she recalled. “I put a little western tie on each of them in the colors that they were wearing and I took a picture of them and they got so excited. I just took the [price] tags off the ties and sent them on their way because a moment like that isn’t about generating money for me. It was about giving someone a little piece of flare. Like, OK, now you’re a little country.”

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