Desert Generator

Click the ticket link below
to buy your tickets



Fu Manchu

Brant Bjork w/ Special Guest Sean Wheeler

Yawning Man



Brant Bjork


The Shrine

Black Rainbows

Location: Pappy + Harriet’s

53688 Pioneertown Road, Pioneertown, CA, United States


\\\\V//// DESERT GENERATOR \\\\V////

A Custom Van Show & Heavy, Psychedelic, Rock & Roll Happening.
Rolling Heavy Magazine; Allnight, Allnight; and Brant Bjork present:


Custom Van Show & Rock Concert
Saturday, April 8th, 2017
Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Saloon,  The Pioneertown Corrals

What is Desert Generator you ask? Custom vans, killer bands, hanging and camping out all weekend with new and old buddies, tipping a couple cold ones and generally having a totally bitchin time in the Southern California desert.  The Rolling Heavy Van Show which takes place from Noon to 4 is a free event to attend and have your 60’s & 70’s Custom Van in, however Concert Tickets are on sale and must be purchased to attend the concert that night.  If you were there in 2016, you know you gotta be there again. If you missed it, well, you know you can’t make that mistake again. We are so stoked about this band lineup!


Saturday, April 8th, 2017, 12 Noon to 4:00 PM.

Rolling Heavy Magazine presents “The Rolling Heavy  Van Show”

The Rolling Heavy Van Show will feature a trophy and prizes for the winner of each class.

Trophy’s for best 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Gens, Best Interior, Best Paint, Best Van Club Participation & 805 Beer Best Pick.

The Rolling Heavy Van Show is 60’s, 70’s & early 80’s vans only. Sorry, No Conversion Vans, Sprinters, late model vans or mini vans.

There will be shopping for van parts & goodies, vintage clothing & handmade goods vendors and awesome brands! Just a Van Damn Good Time!!!

Small print… If you want to park together, arrive together. No in­-and-­outs, no leaving early. Must have auto insurance, there will be a waiver when you arrive. Each van owner is responsible for themselves and their van. Please respect each other as you’d have them respect you.

April is high time for tourism in Joshua Tree. This park is very popular and you should reserve your accommodations as soon as you are done buying a ticket to the concert.

WE SEARCHED and SEARCHED! Here are some nearby lodging and camping options we found on the internet.  Please contact them individually for reservations any and all questions you may have.

Camping in Joshua Tree National Park.

Joshua Tree Lake RV & Campground has availability and is not too, too far away (21 miles). All of their tent sites are “first come, first served” and once the sites with fire barrels and tables are taken, it is only open camping.  Tent sites are $10/person. They have restrooms and showers available to all of their campers.  $20 for up to two people to sleep in your RV (Rad Van?!?) “without hook-up.” RV campers can make reservations through their website at

Yucca Valley, CA is only five (5) miles away and has multiple, affordable, available motel accommodations. Try these:

Travelodge Inn Yucca Valley.

Super 8 Yucca Valley.

Best Western Joshua Tree Hotel & Suites.

Oasis of Eden Inn. Check out the really crazy/awesome theme rooms -all with hot tubs.

There are still lot’s of good options at AirBnB, VRBO and Homeaway. There are super cool desert hangs that are nearby and driveable. Start your search in Pioneertown, Yucca Valley and Landers, CA.

Custom Vans for the Rolling Heavy Van Show get priority placement, but limited GA (General Admission) camping in Pioneertown Corrals is available.

If you’re lucky, you’ll find a place to stay on

Kate’s Lazy Desert in Landers, CA has a collection of fun and funky-themed Airstream trailers.

Joshua Desert Retreats has a good selection of tastefully appointed desert rentals a little further from Pappy’s in the town of Joshua Tree.

The Joshua Tree Inn is pretty well booked.

The Pioneertown Motel is booked. Come back and stay another time because they are on a mission of tasteful cool and it’s getting better every day.

Desert Hot Springs, CA is a bit further out (23 miles from P&H), a bit pricier, but hotels there have hot springs fed pools and hot tubs. Try these:

Desert Hot Springs Spa Hotel. Mid century resort with three night minimum.

El Morocco Inn & Spa. Moroccan retreat style.

The Sandpiper.

Good luck!

Q: What is the general timeline for the weekend?


Saturday April 8  Rolling Heavy Van Show – Noon to 4:00 PM.

Saturday April 8  Desert Generator Concert – 5:00 PM to 11:00 PM.

Q: Will I be fenced in for the event like Coachella or other big music festivals?

A: No. There is a lot to do at the Desert Generator, but no one is fencing you in. Sleep late at your hotel, soak in the hot tub at your Air BnB, hike in Joshua Tree or get brunch at the Crossroads Cafe. But don’t make the mistake of missing the Rolling Heavy Van Show at the Pioneertown Corrals, walking distance to Pappy & Harriet’s. It’s the coolest hang. Shop with super stylish vendors, have a cold one in the beer corral, play cornhole, and check out the badass 1970’s vans. Plus you can explore the wild west on Mane Street in Pioneertown or have lunch at Pappy’s.

Q: Does my Desert Generator ticket include camping?

A: No. Book your lodging separately. The area is packed with desert AirBnBs, motels and camping options, but act soon. The Pioneertown Corrals offers on-site camping, but campsites are limited, and priority is given for custom vanners. Reserve early directly through Pioneertown Corrals (see Where to Stay).


Q: Once I’m at Desert Generator, can I drink beer anywhere I want? What about Fireball?

A: Please no drinking in the Pappy & Harriet’s parking lot or Mane Street, Pioneertown. These are public spaces, and an open container will get you 86’d.

Q: Is this BYOB or are you selling beer?

A: Beer will be available for sale in the beer corral at the Rolling Heavy Van Show. Age 21+ please no outside alcohol. Beer and a full bar are available at Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Saloon. Please don’t carry drinks between the two.

Q: Will it be hot at Desert Generator?

A: Probably not. The California desert can be very hot at times, but that’s usually in the summer. In April, it’s cooler and Pioneertown is at 4,000 feet elevation so it’s considered the high desert and not the extreme heat you may associate with the (low) desert. Averages are 80 F (27 C) in the day, 45 F (7 C) at night. We recommend you wear boots and dress in layers. It gets windy and cool at night.

Q: What should I bring?

A: If you’re camping or even if you’re just rolling up for the day, probably a good idea to pack a snack or other food to have on back up if Pappy’s has a long wait. Cash for vendor and event merchandise shopping. It’s always a good idea to bring the following to the desert: Sunscreen, at least a gallon of drinking water per person per day.

Q: Is there Wifi?

A: No WiFi and the cell phone service is spotty or non-existent. Don’t count on the modern conveniences. That’s why we suggest you bring cash. Yucca Valley has full cell phone service and other amenities of civilization and is only a fifteen minute drive away.

Q: Is there cell phone service?

A: Not very much. You may be able to send a text or post an Instagram, but I wouldn’t count on a phone call.

Q: What food is available?

A: Pappy’s has a full service lunch and dinner menu and the food is amazing. They also have an outside grill where you can order take out BBQ, sandwiches and light fare. You should call now and make a dinner reservation if you still can because they are slammed on a normal night, let alone a night with all you vanners, stoners and rockers hanging out. Be prepared and bring something extra to eat just in case.

Q: Is it Safe to Drink and Drive?

A: No. Uber is not really available in Pioneertown due to the weak phone signal, but Yucca Valley has a taxi company who will be doing rounds at Pappy’s and the bar will be happy to call a taxi for you. Put this number in your phone just in case: Lucky 777 Cab (760) 660-9115

Q: I’m coming from out of town and have never been to the desert. Where can I get more good info on Joshua Tree and the surrounding areas of the Mojave desert?

A: Order this great guide book, Moon Palm Springs & Joshua Tree; extensively researched and written by one of our own. And if you’re looking for other desert adventures, check out

First and Always – THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT. We are excited to share this event with you, but want to set some expectations about respecting property, people, litter and keeping the desert clean. This is our second year at Pappy & Harriet’s and our first official year at Pioneertown Corrals; we hope to be invited back so we can all enjoy the radness for years to come. While we hate “rules” we simply ask you to please treat the desert and the grounds, buildings, bar, furniture and other patrons with respect. Here are some expectations…

The fire danger is HIGH. All of the old buildings you see in Pioneertown are made from century-old wood. And while the desert may look sparse, there is shrubbery and the brush will light up. That means you should put your cigarettes out completely and dispose of them in trash cans or ash trays.

Be mindful of how you treat this beautiful, desert landscape. Don’t drop or litter any trash on the ground because someone else will have to chase it down and pick it up. It’s generally windy in the desert and any trash you drop will blow away and become litter for years and years in the wild. We intend to leave this place as we found it and we need everyone to do their part.

This is an all ages event. There will be children present, please don’t be a drunken idiot. Please don’t be a drunken idiot even if there aren’t children present. Many think from our Instagram, etc. that vanners are major party animals, but we actually prefer a “Take it Easy” approach to partying. This is not a rager, it’s a laid back desert hang with rad rock bands and cool friends.

We will all be having fun, but Pioneertown has neighbors so please keep it respectful and please don’t yell, burn out on your motorcycle or do anything lame. We want to have a good time for a long time.

Only well behaved pets allowed in the Rolling Heavy Van Show. No Pets allowed inside Pappy + Harriet’s.

Most of this is common sense so not tryin’ to sound like a bummer. Looking forward to seeing you all and having a blast together!

Thanks for your interest in volunteering, we have lots of opportunities to volunteer in 2017! Volunteers will get a ticket to Desert Generator and an event tee shirt. Please get in touch and let us know what interests you!

Trash & Recycling (We really need help sorting recyclables to be a greener event)

Set Up / Tear Down (Pop-up tents, tables, chairs)


Email with VOLUNTEER in the subject.

Thanks for your interest, vendor submissions are now closed.

Pappy + Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace is a full service restaurant and bar with the best staff, best barbecue and the best chili you’re likely to taste anywhere. They have full bar, good beer selection, outdoor BBQ pit, and indoor & outdoor seating. This dusty desert roadhouse is your one stop shop for amazing and, lucky for you, the bands are playing here too. Make reservations now for dinner or expect to wait.

More About P&H…

Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace is set in a wild west ghost town near Joshua Tree National Park in Pioneertown, California. In 1946, at the site where Pappy & Harriet’s stands today, filmmakers built a cantina set that was used in numerous Westerns during the 1950s. In 1972 the building was purchased opened as The Cantina, an outlaw biker burrito bar. The Cantina rollicked for 10 years before its closing. In 1982 Harriet and her husband, Claude “Pappy” Allen, bought The Cantina and renamed it Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace. With its family style Tex-Mex cuisine and live music, the cantina became a local haunt for bikers as well as people from all walks of life. Rich in history and atmosphere, Pappy and Harriet’s is now owned by Robyn Celia and Linda Krantz. Billboard Magazine named Pappy & Harriet’s one of the “Top Ten Hidden Gems” in 2012 and the venue continues to attract music fans from nearby markets Los Angeles (2.5 hours drive) and San Diego (2.5 hours drive) as well as tourists, artists & musicians from all over the world.

Dirty Donny made the poster for Desert Generator 2017.  Yes, it’s rad and yes we are as excited as you are.




You bought up most of last year’s, but there is some left. Pick up a tee (mens and womens available) or 2016 poster by Jason Cruz, click here:

“Setting the scene for Desert Generator…11:30am showed up to Pappy and Harriets, walked onto the lot and there was already over 100 vans there.  People barbecuing, DJ playing Judas Priest on loud P.A. speaker, 60s and 70s vans all in line.  The smell of pot, tobacco, with the sounds of cans opening was looking like this is the worlds greatest parking lot party, but in the Desert!”  – Riding Easy Records blog

“The first ever edition of Desert Generator took over Pappy & Harriet’s in Pioneertown, California, earlier this month, bringing some major vibes to the already vibe-heavy desert outpost.”Frank 151

Take a look around with Macho Beard Company.

Dig this. Brant Bjork breaks it all down in an interview with  The Obelisk.

‘Speaking by phone from his home in L.A., Bjork explains that while Desert Generator is definitely meant to be “a nod of the hat to the scene that I was a part of,” the one-day festival will also “stand alone as its own thing. It will represent what rock culture in Southern California is today, and we’re really excited about that.”‘LA Weekly

“PLAN A: Desert Genertor Festival: Who’s up for a road trip? Take a trek out to the desert if you want to catch a roundup of great psych, metal and stoner rock bands who capture the desert vibes with maximum volume.San Diego CityBeat

“Desert Generator Festival will feature a custom van show and performances by stoner rock outfits Red Fang, Brant Bjork and the Low Desert Punk Band, Acid King, Golden Void and Ecstatic Vision. There will be stalls for vintage clothing, vinyl records, handmade goods vendors, along with a billing of special guest DJ sets.” OC Weekly

“50 AMAZING THINGS HAPPENING IN LA THIS APRIL:  As a throwback to the gasoline generator-fueled desert parties in the early ’90s, Pappy & Harriet’s is hosting a drive-in campout to celebrate today’s desert music scene. Brant Bjork, co-founder of seminal stoner rock band Kyuss, is bringing his Low Desert Punk Band to complement a lineup that includes Red Fang, Acid King, Golden Void and Ecstatic Vision.” TimeOut Los Angeles

“An amalgam of psychedelia, blues, alternative rock, heavy metal and hardcore punk, this golden era will be celebrated at a one-day concert at Pappy + Harriet’s Pioneertown Saloon in Yucca Valley” – Travel Mag from National Geographic Traveler

“Desert rock live: It seems weird to write this, but, there have been a lot of movies lately about the underground desert rock scene of the 1980s and ’90s. Now you have an opportunity to hear the music in person in a much more inviting setting than the Nude Bowl or some tumbleweeds arcade in the middle of nowhere.” – The Desert Sun

“What do you get when you combine custom vans, psychedelic rock ’n’ roll and desert scenery? A kick-ass music festival, of course. Desert-rock icon Brant Bjork and Rolling Heavy magazine have teamed up to produce “Desert Generator,” an event featuring all of that stuff on Saturday, April 9, at Pappy and Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace.”CV Independent

“A throwback to the notorious desert generator parties of Bjork’s Palm Desert youth, the festival promises to be a rocking good time with the formidable stoner rock lineup of Red Fang, Acid King, Golden Void, Ecstatic Vision, and Brant Bjork and his band. CONCERT GUIDE LIVE caught up with Bjork to talk about the festival, custom vans, and what the hell desert rock actually means.”ConcertGuideLive

A heavy, psychedelic, rock n’ roll adventure will be taking place at the Desert Generator Festival at Pappy’s and Harriet’s on April 9, just as the sun sets on the desert. The event kicks off with the Rolling Heavy Van Show during the day featuring 1960s and 1970s custom vans with a trophy and prizes for each class, bringing back memories of the campouts of the historic custom van craze from decades past.”

Big thanks to Austin Griswold with Secret Service Publicity and Don Sticksel.
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