Nearly 30 years ago, Gary Tovar ran one of California's biggest marijuana smuggling operations -- distributing strains and seeds from around the world to jumpstart California's homegrown weed scene. Ever since 1999, Tovar's focus has been on another major project that stemmed from one of his other passions: music. Yet, over a decade later, his two worlds are still seamlessly intertwined.
Tovar started Goldenvoice, a concert production company (named for one of a strain of herb users said gave them a feeling of being spoken to by angels), that has operated the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival since its earliest days.
"When I was doing both my things -- smuggling and concerts -- I considered them crusades. Now I think we won on both ends. Our music won – you can hear a Ramones song in an elevator – and we won on the marijuana front."