To my friends, I’ve always been known as the one that attends too many concerts. I always know when an artist is coming to town, who they are touring with, what venue they are going to be at, what merchandise they’re selling, how much it costs, and the set-lists of the artists coming (if I choose to look that up; sometimes I want to be surprised!). My friends always tell me that I’m obsessed over bands like All Time Low, twenty one pilots, and Fall Out Boy. Something that they always bring up in these conversations is how much money is spent on the tickets to attend these concerts. I always tell them how much I spend on each particular one, and they look at me like I have twelve heads. There are a few very special reasons as to why I love attending concerts of my favorite artists and why I could never put a price on seeing them live.
1. The Pre-Concert Excitement
- For most artists, the tour is usually announced a few months in advance. Tickets also usually go on sale shortly after the tour is announced. Nothing beats the amount of excitement that you feel after you buy your ticket; you spend months counting down the days until the event, planning your outfit, imagining a perfect set-list, and planning out how your day is going to go.
- In my personal experience, the concert atmosphere is one of the top reasons as to why I love going to concerts so much. From the moment you arrive to the venue, to waiting in line, taking your seats, during, and even after the concert, there is so much energy and excitement going around. It makes it even more exciting when you know that everyone is there for the same reason you are. Hearing hundreds, or thousands, of voices screaming and singing along with you to every song and seeing the glow of thousands of cell phone flashlights light up the venue are sights and sounds that will send chills down your spine and give you goosebumps. The overall atmosphere of a concert leaves no room for any other emotions other than excitement and happiness.
3. People You Meet
- Some artists have fan-bases. For example, All Time Low fans are called Hustlers, and twenty one pilots fans are a part of what they like to call the Skeleton Clique. Some of these fan bases have websites and online platforms on social media, so this makes it very easy to meet people that like the same music as you. You can meet up with the people you meet at the venues and make your concert experience much more enjoyable. If you aren’t a part of the online fan-bases, you can still meet other people while waiting in line for the doors to open. Finding someone who has the same music taste as you makes it easy to have a lot of things to talk about, so it’ll be very easy to make friends. I have made tons of friends and have strengthened other friendships just by the mutual liking of artists.
4. Being Up Close and Personal
- Most venues will have “standing room only” or “general admission” tickets for shows, and this typically means that people will rush in when doors open to be as close to the barricade as possible, or even in the first few rows. Being so close to the stage means you will have a perfect view of the artists. It also means more pictures and videos, and even having a chance to catch the set-list that is tapped to the floor, drumsticks, guitar picks, water bottles, or anything else that the artists throw into the crowd after the show. It is truly an incredible experience to be close to your favorite artist for a few hours.
5. The Anticipation Leading Up to the Concert
- Finally, the day of the concert has arrived, and you could not be more excited. The feeling you get when the doors to the venue finally open and the line starts moving is an amazing one. When you finally get to your seats, or snag a place in the pit after using the restroom, getting merchandise, or something to drink, time until the show starts seems to go by so slow, but there is no time to be bored when you have your friends or the people you met in line surrounding you; you can find many things to talk about and even talk about how you think the concert will go. This usually helps calm the feeling of anticipation and helps time go by tremendously!
6. (Possibly) Getting to Meet the Artist
- Depending on the artist, the tour promotor or record label will likely be selling VIP Meet and Greet packages. Usually, these packages can be expensive and have to be bought in addition to the ticket, and this can sometimes bum you out. But, the good news is you can still meet the artist you paid to see! This is rare, but sometimes if you get to the venue really early in the day, you might catch them around town, which is a really cool experience. After a show ends, most people usually head to the back of the venue by the buses, and this is where you will most likely meet the artist after the show. You might not always get the chance to buy a Meet and Greet package, or meet them after the show is over, but when you do get that chance, it is a truly beautiful and incredible feeling that you often have trouble putting into words.
7. The Memories that You Make
- When you’re not dancing, singing and screaming along to your favorite songs being played live, you get the chance to take some pictures and videos. Taking pictures and videos of the songs that mean the most to you means that you can have them forever. It means that you can bombard your friends on your Facebook and Instagram with memories of the night you had, and it also means that you can have them to look back on whenever you’re feeling down, need inspiration, or just want to watch again.
8. Finally Getting to See Them After Listening to Them for a Long Time
- I first discovered All Time Low when I was in eighth grade 7 years ago in 2009, and I didn’t get to see them in concert until 4 years later in 2013. Whether you’ve been listening to a band for years, months, or even weeks, when the day that you get to see them live finally comes, you feel overwhelmed with so many emotions. You can’t believe that it’s finally happening and that you’re finally listening to all those songs you’ve danced around in your room to live on stage. Most importantly, you can’t believe that they’re real, and that they’re standing feet from you, performing the songs that you’ve loved for so long.
9. Having an Open Mind to Other Artists
- Artists that are already really popular who are going on tour usually bring other artists that either aren’t as popular, or just starting out altogether. Since the tour is usually announced months in advance and you usually know who is opening for the main act, you can check out the opening act’s music on places like YouTube, Spotify, and iTunes (if their music is available for purchase). Checking out the opening artists’ music can enhance your concert experience and make it more enjoyable, and it can even get you more excited for the main act. While it makes the experience more exciting, it can also expand your horizons when it comes to music; you may become a fan of the opening act and other artists in their genre!
10. The After-Concert Reflection
- Although this is commonly known as “post-concert depression,” it doesn’t have to be depressing at all! You may feel sad and miss that night while looking back on your pictures and videos for a while, but that feeling of sadness will go away when you remember all the good memories that were made. As soon as the concert ends and you are sitting in the parking lot trying to get through the traffic, you and your friends are excitedly reminiscing on the events of the day and night, and you are already planning out what will happen the next time the artist comes to town!
I could go on forever about all the reasons why I love going to concerts so much because there are just so many things to talk about when that subject is brought up. Going to my favorite artists’ concert with my friends, crying, dancing, screaming and singing along to all my favorite songs, trying to process that they’re standing on a stage that is feet in front of me and gushing over pictures, videos, and anything that has to do with the artists over social media are things that come with the excitement of attending a live show. I am at my happiest when I’m attending a concert for an artist that I am in love with or have been following for a long time, and the emotions you feel and memories you make while attending them; you just can’t put a price tag on that.