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'Why Concerts Stopped Being Fun'

Posted by: Jason Tate (07/08/14)
Ryan Bort, writing for Esquire:
Summer festivals are the perfect analogy for how consumers interact with music in 2014. Our relationship with the industry is more fragmented and there are more pipelines for consumption than ever before. We have access to and are familiar with more artists than we can keep up with. They're on our friends' social media feeds, covered by the blogs we read, and we can listen, pass judgment, and move on to the next thing in an instant. We stream rather than buy. We listen to individual songs, not entire albums. We don't want to commit. Even if you claim to be a listen-to-the-whole-album purist, I've seen you bouncing around from one or two War on Drugs songs to Iggy Azalea on Spotify. We're all a product of the times. Summer festivals embrace this reality. They lay it all out for us at once and let us customize our experience.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 54
02:15 PM on 07/08/14
#2
OpenIntro
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While I do agree with the arguments that access and coverage is so much greater than it used to be, I don't see it as a bad thing. It's like your grandpa saying "back in the day, I used to walk 4 miles in the snow."

We know grandpa, but times have changed.
02:16 PM on 07/08/14
#3
Lightbulb
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Youth is wasted on the youth.
02:19 PM on 07/08/14
#4
theherox
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Youth is wasted on the youth.
this
02:21 PM on 07/08/14
#5
theherox
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This article doesn't explain me at all, but I like to swim against the current :P

#listentothewholealbumpuristforlife !!!!
02:22 PM on 07/08/14
#6
red8ge
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"Bort"
02:22 PM on 07/08/14
#7
Jake Denning
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I thought the ending paragraph was right on the money - DANCE. Go see a band like Terror and circle pit till you fall down; go see Every Time I Die and bang your fucking head; go see The Word Alive and crowd surf.

It blows my mind that people will stand in line for an hour over at Warped Tour to get an autographed poster for 20 seconds when they could be watching a band like Every Time I Die and then sprinting to go see a band like Yellowcard on the mainstage. It was flat out exhilarating getting to see the Warped schedule at 10am every morning and building a rough schedule for the day - "Oh shit, I can see The Ghost Inside, Yellowcard, and The Story So Far back to back to back? Then I can run to see Every Time I Die right after? AWESOME!"
02:32 PM on 07/08/14
#8
fbrrocks
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i do a mix of seeing bands and meeting bands at warped
02:38 PM on 07/08/14
#9
TylerHartman
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If we don't take ourselves too seriously, none of these problems exist. Just go enjoy yourself and stop worrying about what is "right" and "cool" for being a concert-goer.
02:39 PM on 07/08/14
caraballo
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I thought the ending paragraph was right on the money - DANCE. Go see a band like Terror and circle pit till you fall down; go see Every Time I Die and bang your fucking head; go see The Word Alive and crowd surf.

It blows my mind that people will stand in line for an hour over at Warped Tour to get an autographed poster for 20 seconds when they could be watching a band like Every Time I Die and then sprinting to go see a band like Yellowcard on the mainstage. It was flat out exhilarating getting to see the Warped schedule at 10am every morning and building a rough schedule for the day - "Oh shit, I can see The Ghost Inside, Yellowcard, and The Story So Far back to back to back? Then I can run to see Every Time I Die right after? AWESOME!"
This. I refuse to stand in line just to shake hands and have an awkward 20 second conversation when I could be watching bands.
02:43 PM on 07/08/14
Steve_JustAGuy
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Quote:
but more often than not a lack of engagement with what's transpiring onstage seems to define the tone in venues where live music is happening.

I have a problem with sweeping generalizations like this.

And as one of those (more often than not) stoic guys watching shows, I don't need feel the need to dance, and to a larger point, I don't want someone to tell me how to enjoy my evening. How about we let everyone enjoy the experience how they want to enjoy it?
02:48 PM on 07/08/14
Jake Jenkins
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I don't need feel the need to dance, and to a larger point, I don't want someone to tell me how to enjoy my evening. How about we let everyone enjoy the experience how they want to enjoy it?

this is how i feel. i mean, i move around and go crazy at shows every now and then, but sometimes i just wanna sit there and take it all in. everyone can enjoy the show how they want to, as long as it doesn't hinder the experience of others imo.



people who try holding a conversation while a band is playing (especially the headlining band) need to stay the fuck home though
02:55 PM on 07/08/14
billcom6
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If concerts aren't fun, you are going to the wrong concerts.

It just seems like this article was written with concerts and festivals featuring larger pop acts in mind, and those kinds of concerts never really seemed that fun in the first place.
02:57 PM on 07/08/14
Tony
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If you're not having fun, you're not doing it right. Put your fucking phone away, don't get shitfaced, and actually pay attention to the bands playing, whether you know them or not.

Festivals and gigantic package tours are the worst, because they're designed for people who know only a fraction of the bands playing (inevitably the most popular ones), and they only know a fraction of those bands' songs. These festivals and tours must pay well enough for the bands, or else they wouldn't play them. But unfortunately the real fans are stuck having to justify the cost/benefit ratio of most of these tours. So fans miss out on seeing lots of bands they care about, and lots of bands end up playing shows where the attendees don't give a fuck about them.

Case in point: I skipped Warped Tour this year (I skip it most years these days, but I'm making a point here). I'm cool with that. Last time I went, it was a lot of garbage screamo and indie rock bullshit, idiot kids looking exclusively at their phones, and teenage girls having their pictures taken for creepy-ass old dudes' "websites." If I never heard the term "no homo" again in my life, I'd die happy. But as a result of skipping Warped, I don't get to see Less Than Jake this summer. I don't get to see Teenage Bottlerocket this summer. I'm not entitled to see these bands wherever and whenever, but I bet both could have done their own tour(s) and played to WAY more people that would have actually cared about them.

I guess my point is, if you actually care about music, skip these big dumb tours and festivals. Because they just cater to our ADD-addled brains.

Also, get off my lawn.
03:01 PM on 07/08/14
marsvoltamcr
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I listen to tons of artists every day and there's nothing weird about that. There's no wrong or right way to connect with music.
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