In 2010, Marcus Haney was your typical college kid with a lust to get closer to the core of any modern music-lover's dream -- the music festival. But unlike most people wanting to go to Coachella, Bonnaroo and the rest, Haney didn't save for weeks to buy his event pass, and then ride out to Indio with his buddies for a weekend of partying to Jay-Z and Muse in the audience. Instead, Haney rode out to Indio, jumped a fence when no one was looking, hid out in a Porta-Potty for 8 hours and used a homemade photo pass to enjoy Coachella not from the audience with everyone else, but rather from behind the lens as a press photographer.
And while there might be quite a few people who successfully sneak into Coachella and other big music festivals for a day or so, Haney made a career out of it. He eventually parlayed his fake photo pass and press credentials to sneak into multiple festivals over a couple of years. At one such event, he met Mumford and Sons, who took such a liking to Haney and his work they invited him to go on tour with them as their press photographer. Haney dropped out of USC film school one term before graduating so he could join one of the world's biggest rock bands on their tour.
Haney has turned his adventures into a documentary film, No Cameras Allowed. The footage he shot at festivals and on the road with Mumford and Sons has been edited into a full-length film premiering July 23 at the Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles.
We sat down with Haney, now 26 and living in Venice Beach when he's not on the road, to talk about what it's like to be the badass who realized his dream one amazing concert at a time.