How To Enjoy And Have An Unforgettable Music Concert

Concerts are something special. Whether we’re a regular concert goer or someone who occasionally enjoys live music, there’s always something memorable about each performance that we attend, see and feel.

Over the last few years, I’ve gone to more music concerts than I can count: pop and rock 30,000 stadium capacity shows, intimate independent artist gigs, classical symphony orchestra performances, music festivals, both seated and general-admission standing shows.

Music concerts are where we lose ourselves in the moment. Green Day, 2017.

Music concerts are where we lose ourselves in the moment. Green Day, 2017 | Weekly Photo Challenge: Collage of concerts and that Unusual, out of the ordinary show.

At the time of writing, the last concert I went to was Green Day earlier this year. I’m quite a fan of this punk-pop-rock band and grew up listening to their music since the early 90s. Oddly enough, rock concerts never appealed to me. It wasn’t until the night before the band’s second Melbourne concert a few months ago that I got tickets on a whim.

Every artist and performer has a different kind of approach to the art they create, a different kind of rhythm, a different kind of stage presence, and so a different kind of concert. Often artists evolve their craft over time and so generally each concert is a once in a lifetime experience – each concert is enjoyed differently.

Whether we’re a small or big fan of a well-known or obscure artist or band, there are a few things we can do to have the best time possible at their shows:

1) Know the artist or band

Being familiar with an artist and listening to their music, there’s every chance we’ll connect with them on a deeper level when we see them live. Researchers from the University of Leeds proposed in 2008 that the music we listen to lets us become ourselves and assists in the emergence of a stable self, especially during our younger years. That is, memory is the narrative of our lives. When we hear songs that have spoken to us all these years performed live, there’s every chance we’ll feel the person whom we really are – profoundly feeling the musicians’ stories as ours in the present moment of reality at a live concert. That said, there’s no reason why we can’t go to a concert without having heard about the act – no spoilers, go with the flow of the show, and let the show surprise our emotions.

The night before the Green Day concert, I looked up the band’s setlist for their (current) tour. They were playing songs from their past and present catalogues, all of which I knew. My mind flashed back to the time I saw Taylor Swift live, sang along with the crowd to her past and present upbeat pop songs – and felt like I was the energetic, spirited person that I am and have always been..

Music makes us feel. Taylor Swift, 2015

Music makes us feel. Taylor Swift, 2015

2) Arrive early

Go early, get some merchandise and perhaps enjoy the warm up act. Avoid being late, settle in, soak up the atmosphere of anticipation and once in a lifetime concert moment.

I’m a pretty short person at 1.48m and never expect to see much of the stage at concerts. But I’ve been lucky. For all three electronic violinist Lindsey Stirling’s concerts I’ve been to, I arrived 3 hours beforehand, queued to get in and wandered to the front of the mosh pit. At Florence and the Machine’s Melbourne concert two years ago, the rebel in me arrived as the doors opened, sat in my allocated seat, then stood up, walked past security…without getting stopped, squeezed past other concert goers and reached the front barrier at the stage. At the Green Day concert, when I presented my nosebleed section seat ticket to the usher, she pocketed it and gave me a relocation ticket: the concert didn’t sell out, and I got relocated to a seat at the front section.

3) Sing

Sing the songs played live, feel the rhythm and stories performed together along with the crowd. Psychologist Shira Gabriel argues that going to concerts fill the need for human belonging, that concerts are unconscious collective effervescent experiences. Humans are innate social creatures. It doesn’t matter if you can’t sing in tune: the band and crowd will carry your voice along. Everyone sounds good for one night, part of one voice.

Some have said they’d rather not sing along at concerts, preferring to listen to live music with as little distractions as possible. Fair enough when you want to appreciate a performance as it is performed, think opera or theatrical performances. When I saw American folk singer Kina Grannis a few years ago, I sat through pretty much her entire show entranced by the rhythmic strumming of her acoustic guitar. Seeing Josh Groban perform and wield his baritone voice with such control last year, I was speechless.

Right before the Green Day concert, Bohemian Rhapsody played over the speakers and the crowd sang along to the 1975-released song word-for-word –  thousands coming together at the drop of a hat because of one song, magically chilling.

Feel the music, dance, sing and play. Green Day, 2017.

Feel the music, dance, sing and play. Green Day, 2017.

4) Move and dance

Move to the beat, head bop, jump like a pogo-stick, wave, cheer, do the peace sign. If you’re at a heavy metal show, there’s a chance you might not only be a part of crowdsurfing but also a part of the Wall of Death – the mosh pit splitting into two sides, running and charging at each other (not my kind of thing, though).  Everyone really is there to see the performer, not judge your dance moves or singing. Be part of a collective voice, be a part of a collective body, mind and soul – and hence feel the energy from the stage, be that energy united as one. Your tribe, one tribe for one night with the same moves, same heart.

A few years ago, I attended Handel’s Messiah performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. At the end everyone stood up, swayed to the beat and sang along to the last chorus ‘Hallelujah’. At the Green Day show, after the band played their first song, frontman Billie Joe Armstrong asked the crowd to stand and stand we did for the next three hours, cheering to ‘No Trump!’ chants and the moment when a girl got a free guitar on stage.

Concert are once in a lifetime moments. Florence and the Machine, 2015.

Concert are once in a lifetime moments. Florence and the Machine, 2015.

5) Watch the show. Put the camera and phone down for a bit. No talking.

See and feel a concert as who you are in that body of yours in the present moment. Let go of your inhibitions, see and feel the crowd, energy, enthusiasm and freedom all round. Enjoy every bit of concert with your heart by feeling another’s warmth with your senses as who you are, sharing in the moment together.

That said, some will insist on taking photos and filming concerts, documenting the show from their perspective, creating their own digital concert souvenirs. This can be distracting to other concert goers and arguably one isn’t fully experiencing the show. I’ve been guilty of taking photos during concerts but I don’t do it for the entire show. It’s one thing to try your hardest taking a non-blurry photo and another to hold up your phone haphazardly and losing yourself enjoying the music.

What I actually remember from the concerts I’ve been too is singing along. How the drummer played the drums at a certain part of a song. The moment Florence and the Machine came close, looked me in the eye and sang to me. The moment Lindsey Stirling knelt down arm’s length away from me, looked at me and smiled as she played her violin. Indescribable feelings.

One concert, one party, one voice. Green Day, 2017.

One concert, one party, one voice. Green Day, 2017.

*  *  *

A concert is a social experience as much as an individual one. Often we go to concerts to experience a singer or band that we’ve always loved for our personal gratification. However, it’s fun to share something with someone who feels the same way.

That said, about 90% of the concerts I’ve attended, I’ve attended alone. Not many of my friends share the same taste in music as me. Also, I’d much rather go by myself than with someone who isn’t a fan of the performer: what if my companion gets bored halfway or starts playing with their phone (I’ve seen other concert goers do this at almost every concert I’ve been to, even dead-centre up-front in the mosh-pit…). A fan would be more deserving of their ticket. Moreover, concerts aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, some saying they feel ‘stuck’ when they’re in a crowd or preferring to enjoy music privately at home.

Perhaps our taste in music changes over time, and we have different expectations of concerts at different points in our lives. In Australia, 50,000-crowd big annual music festivals such as Soundwave and Big Day Out have seen their demise due to expensive ticketing. Boutique music festivals and inner-city niche music subculture hubs are more popular these days, with smaller crowds and scenic secluded venues. Watching the confetti rain down on a cheering crowd after Green Day played their final song, I felt a bit sad – I didn’t want the show to end. A concert can very well be a journey that touches upon our innate wildest dreams as we fully connect with the depths of our individual mind, heart and soul through music, and a journey that may also make us realise how all of us can actually be happy together in this world.

Concerts are where our wildest dreams come true. Green Day, 2017.

Concerts are where our wildest dreams come true. Green Day, 2017.

And so live music concerts can have a positive, lingering impact on us, be it alone or with a bunch of friends. A study conducted by the Centre of Performance Science shows attending a live music event reduces a person’s stress hormone cortisol. In 2016, Deakin University surveyed 1,000 Australians and found Australians who attended communal musical experiences such as music festivals reported higher levels of satisfaction and well-being with their lives. It’s not every day we get to go to a concert; it takes time to save up and travel to get to a show – it takes the right timing to be at a concert. Coupled with this, there’s something special, powerful in knowing one is not alone when it comes to sharing something personal, subconsciously connecting with those in the same tribe.

Sometime a great concert experience not the case. The recent concert incident in Manchester that involved explosives and fatalities was a very scary experience for those who attended. According to GirlAtTheRockShows, some might attend a concert and feel disturbed by violent and sexual connotations on stage, feeling the line between theatrics and complete inappropriateness has been crossed.

One concert, one people for a moment. Green Day, 2017.

One concert, one people for a moment. Green Day, 2017.

So far, I’ve enjoyed all the music concerts I’ve been too. This is even despite: not having anything to drink for 5-6 hours because outside food and drink are banned from the venue and I refuse to buy hideously overpriced refreshments at the venue. Being pushed in the back by moshing crowds every thirty seconds while standing up front. Having a tall person stand in front of me…only to have them trade places with me when I asked.

It’s hard to choose which is the ‘best’ concert I’ve been too since each concert is unique in its own way. With the Green Day concert, I’d remember it for bringing out the punk-rocker chick girl in me once again, the girl who sang emo songs many, many years ago. The morning after the show, I woke up feeling very stiff all over, parched throat and heavy eyes. Couldn’t even bend my toes. I spent the rest of the day in bed, dreaming of doing another concert sometime soon. Perhaps my body is telling me to slow down, but music and concerts will always remind me how young I can always be.

What is your most memorable music concert?

238 thoughts on “How To Enjoy And Have An Unforgettable Music Concert

  1. Ha, my husband is right there with you on not buying overpriced concessions.

    I’m not much of a concertgoer myself — I always find it disappointing that the artists almost never sound as good as they do on their albums. Especially pop stars.

    But I could totally get behind screaming, “No Trump!”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post Mabel. The last concert I attended was in the early 1980s and it was probably The Angels and Cold Chisel at the Noosa show grounds.

    I hope if I went to a concert now, I would have my phone in my pocket and just enjoy the atmosphere and maybe a bag of chocolate.

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  3. Mabel, I enjoyed reading about your wonderful experiences of concert mania…going alone is being very brave!! I could never think of that! I can understand how electrifying the atmosphere can be…the excitement and the exhilaration keeps on increasing with each number…we need somebody around us to share the joy and delight.
    Massive crowds have always scared me though I have attended a few sober classical concerts, where the crowd sits calmly and the applause is incessant but disciplined.
    Thanks for sharing your love for concerts. Stay blessed and keep enjoying! 🙂

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    • Love how you describe it as always. ‘Concert mania’ and electrifying atmosphere it is at a concert 😀 I don’t mind going alone at all because I like to go for opportunities.

      Sorry to hear that massive crowds scare you. Sometimes crowds overwhelm me too, but I just focus on the music. Classical concerts are always a treat as they can take you to a meditative, self-reflective state – and for you maybe the kind of state you get in when you write poetry. Thank you for the support my friend 🙂

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  4. What a great post Mabel! I really felt the passion in your writing. Music seems to speak to your soul and that is so special. Maybe it’s people sharing their crafts and talents or the songs themselves but there something euphoric about hearing music played in a big setting. I have not been to a concert in some time as crowds do tend to bother me quite a lot but the ones I have been to I’ll never forget. I’m excited to see which concerts you attend in the future. Your images are always beautiful. Take care my friend xx

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    • Crowds tend to bother me too, and I usually feel very uncomfortable when I’m queuing up or walking with crowd outside the concert hall. I’ve walked away from mosh pits very sore too but usually seeing an artist up close is such an amazing feeling, and for the concert I’ll forget about the world. I remember earlier this year you saw Aladdin – and musicals are also what I think of as concerts ☺ Take care my friend and see you soon x

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  5. RE: “before the Green Day concert, Bohemian Rhapsody played over the speakers and the crowd sang ”
    I was actually at a Queen concert in 1978 when they performed Bohemian Rhapsody. Freddie Mercury then sang a campy version of “Hey Big Spender”.
    Takes me back. I am a veteran of many a rock concert in the 1970s and 1980s. Have a look at my post on Pink Floyd in Cleveland sometime.
    https://dennysinnoh.wordpress.com/2015/08/20/just-another-sad-old-man-all-alone-and-dying-of-cancer/

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    • Very lucky you got to see Queen. Amazing. The appeal of Bohemian Rhapsody is rather universal, and I think that’s why so many of us love it. Ah, Hey Big Spender. Another classic from the past.

      It is interesting to read that when Pink Floyd took to the stage no one was paying attention. Hope you had great concert days.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Sounds like you have had quite the life of experiencing musical concerts. I certainly remember Green Day from my high school days… and I remember that I wasn’t a fan of theirs. :p It is interesting that you only chose to go to their concert on a whim, but sounds like it was a good decision for you! Wonderful that you got to enjoy their music live.

    Me, on the other hand, most of the live concerts I’ve been to relate to video games and anime. I know that sounds like a rather geeky thing for someone to do but I think many people don’t realise that we’re long past the days of game music being made of beeps and boops, and that many game scores fill a breadth and depth of orchestral scope rivalling that of even multi-million dollar film productions. Some of my favourite pieces even blend traditional orchestral instruments with modern guitars and keyboard riffs that would be more at home in rock or metal genres.

    1. For mainstream or popular music concerts, I would find it puzzling why people would go to something they weren’t familiar with, unless it was something their friends invited them to. I would stick to performances of music that I’m familiar with, although I have been to general game music concerts which include pieces I don’t know but have since come to enjoy just from the music itself. One example is the theme or overture to the Metal Gear Solid games – never played any of them, but the music is moving and grand in scope enough to carry my interest beyond the fact that I was unfamiliar with the source material. The composer having worked for film scores as well as games does help, I suppose.

    2. I wish I could have been relocated like that! Most of the stuff I’ve been to are paid for, with fully allocated seats. If I’m on my own, I try to get the best seats – short of VIP tickets which are charged at too much of a premium for me – and that can be quite expensive. With game music concerts being so rare, especially in Australia, they almost always sell out, so there’s no chance of bagging a spare seat closer to the front as you did!

    3. Again, orchestral music is quite a different environment to pop concerts. I wish I could sing along with the few vocal tracks that are performed!

    Bohemian Rhapsody is one of those rare pieces that nearly everyone in western culture is familiar with. I don’t think I’ve met anyone who wouldn’t want to sing along to that!

    4. I’m not one for smashing myself into people either. In high school I remember someone winning a radio competition to have Human Nature perform at our school. Of course, I expect that they were only miming and not performing live, but even so there were many students crowding around, dancing at the front. It was too loud for me to go there, so I just stood atop the balcony to the rear.

    I love Handel’s Messiah. I like the Canadian flash mob rendition of it one Christmas not too long ago. Even the most consumerist of shoppers stopped for a moment to listen to the performance.

    5. This one really bothers me. I like taking the occasional photo, usually after a particular performance when the musicians are standing to accept an applause because I try to be considerate of people around me, but I would never try to take a video recording. I was at the Distant Worlds 30th Anniversary concert in Sydney at the beginning of this month, only the second time the full orchestra tour has been in Sydney, and I was sitting next to people who were recording some of the performances on their phones. I say just enjoy the moment, there’s something special about a live performance that you can’t replicate in digital media, especially with the piddling little cameras that phones are limited to. Listening at home, I’d prefer to listen to the polished studio recordings instead. I don’t know if they were recording for themselves or to share with friends, but it’s definitely an aspect of this current generation’s culture that I’m not fond of (gosh, that makes me sound so old!)

    So what’s my most memorable concert? I don’t really know. As much as I enjoy the scope of a full orchestra and choir, I think I enjoy the smaller ensemble performances for their intimacy. I remember sitting in the front of one and during the huge applause at the end of the night I caught the eye of one of the musicians. I mouthed a ‘thank you’ and he nodded in appreciation. That kind of closeness you don’t really get with a full orchestra… or a pop music band.

    Anyway, thanks for sharing all this and provoking another thoughtful discussion. Something a bit different from Aussie-Asian topics this time. 😉 Wishing you well!

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    • I’ve always heard that you either like Green Day or you don’t, and that usually goes for many alternative or heavier genres of music out there 😀 Their concert was a good gamble and a perfect night.

      Video games and anime concerts might be geeky but if that’s what you like, that’s what you like. A lot of the time, video games and anime are more than just fun and games, and we relate to these works on a much deeper level – be it our personalities or our creativity and really like any form of art.

      1. Speaking of game music concerts, I remember there were some in Melbourne and Sydney over the last few years, many of them presented by a symphony orchestra. Pokemon, Zelda, Final Fantasy, and there were a few acclaimed video game international tours that made it to our shores too, and like you mentioned, Distant Worlds 🙂 I considered going to those but at the time, timing and pricing were just not right. Metal Gear Solid is a game I briefly played a few years ago. While I never got into, I agree that it has quite a moving theme. If I remember correctly, I chanced upon an orchestra recording of Sons of Liberty (I think) and it was on repeat on my music player for a while a few years back.

      2. Me too. I try to get the best seats if I’m not going for general admission. I’ve gone for VIP tickets for quite a few shows to be right up front and also meet the artist. You are right in saying VIP and premium tickets are expensive. For video game concerts, I’m guessing they make it so that everyone has a good view of the stage with clips of the video games playing behind the orchestra or band.

      4. Human Nature! Still remember that band, and they started out as quite a pop band. So cool that they got to perform at your school. Too loud – now that is something that can bother me at a concert. Some concerts I’ve found the warm up act way too loud, or I’d be right in front of a speaker and wish I bought ear plugs.

      5. When it comes to orchestra performances, I’d never take video as well – just something always so…untouchable and heartfelt about watching art at that level of togetherness and passion. There are others who enjoy the performance too, but by taking a photo or video in a sense you are taking a recording of a kind of copyright, and you may infringe on copyright if you post what you recorded online. I don’t many of us have that intention. For me, I’ve always been enthralled when an artist or band is in the zone and perfoming. There’s something so beautiful about being lost in doing what you do, and I do like to share that.

      I am sure that performer you thanked remembers you, and remembers such a good night. You are right. Those kinds of experiences are priceless and it is those kinds of memories that uplifts you when you are down – knowing you’ve supported someone’s craft, knowing they are happy because you are because of what they do.

      No, thank you for supporting and coming back again and again, Simon 🙂

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      • I think there’s still a bit of stigma associated with the geekiness of game music that’s keeping it from being appreciated in the mainstream… though I did see quite a lot of ladies as well as men at the Distant Worlds concert. Whether to just accompany their boyfriends or to enjoy it for themselves, I can’t say. I think it’s fair to say there was a substantial proportion of attendees who were Asian. It’s interesting that games and game culture have been around long enough that the average age of game enthusiasts has increased substantially over the years. A lot of kids enjoy games now simply because their parents do as well.

        But yes, I often appreciate game music because I can attach a narrative to them from the story or a particular scene in the game which just doesn’t happen with pop/mainstream music. Most of it is instrumental as well, which helps when listening during studies. I understand lyrics of pop songs can be a distraction when listening while doing homework or assignments. Even if people claim they don’t consciously listen to the words, I understand there’s a subconscious listening that can detract from your work efficiency.

        1. That sounds like the Play! and/or rePLAY symphony concerts, both of which were at the Opera House when they played in Sydney. If you’re an avid player/listener, I think going to even one would have been worth it, but if not, it’s fine to give it a miss. Yes, I think the MGS performance I heard was an arrangement or medley of the versions in Sons of Liberty and Snake Eater. I also stumbled on to the Snake Eater song itself as well, and thought to myself, ‘that sounds very much like a song from a James Bond movie’. I later found out that it was deliberately composed to be so, so mission accomplished!

        2. I would certainly have liked to have met some composers but not for the VIP ticket prices. I remember Yoko Shimomura and some other guests visiting Sydney at a smaller, independent concert and they were generous enough to meet people generally afterwards. But I was with friends who weren’t interested to stick around so I missed that opportunity. Not sure if she/they understood/spoke that much English anyway. While travelling in the States after one performance, I did briefly meet the conductor on the plane to Chicago, since that was his home.

        At the larger game concerts they certainly have video projections of memorable game scenes to accompany the performance, but as I mentioned, I liked the smaller ensembles where you were just there to listen to the music and nothing else. Enjoying the music itself rather than its ties to a game.

        5. Sometimes the organisers will explicitly ask for no recordings, but even if not, I think it’s generally not a good thing to do. I think photos are fine if they’re not during the performance itself.

        Do you have another concert in mind that you want to go to? I’m a little envious that you manage to get so close to snap such memorable shots.

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        • In today’s day and age, geekiness and nerdiness tends to have negative connotations (gender stereotypes too), associated with being an outcast and perhaps wasting time with ‘games’ and laziness. But playing games is more than just fun and it is an activity that stimulate the mind and maybe heart – same ways that video game orchestras do.

          ‘it’s fair to say there was a substantial proportion of attendees who were Asian’ Not too surprised to hear that. Perhaps I’d wager half the audience was of that demographic – I do think many Asians have an appreciation for classical music given the way some of us were brought up. I was brought up to think that classical music and orchestra performances were something ‘untouchable’ but to be admired – you had to work hard to be a part of an orchestra and perform a symphony. That said, it is not easy at all to be a musician as part of an orchestra but that is another topic altogehter.

          ‘I can attach a narrative to them from the story’ Agreed with video game music performed live in front of you. Even if you can’t attach a narrative, often the music should be powerful enough to make you imagine something.

          Play! does ring a bell very vaguely. I also remember Video Games Lives about a couple of years ago and tickets were sold almost a year in advance. Maybe next time you will get to meet Yoko Shimomura but so cool that you got to meet the conductor on the plane 🙂 With smaller concerts a meet-and-greet is more ilkely, and I guess when you meet the performer, it is like talking to a friend. At least that is my experience.

          After the Green Day concert, I knew I wanted to do another rock concert. Would really love to see Linkin Park; there’s been some sad news surrounding the band today, but I am still hopeful they’ll tour Down Under at some point. Nine Inch Nails, Metallica and Paramore if the timing is right. Also would love to see Lady Gaga too. If Queen were still around, definitey. Was there any concerts you were keen on? 🙂

          To be honest, I was actually quite far back for Green Day even after being relocated…my camera gets the credit for these shots 😀

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          • Once again your kindness and understanding is a rare gem. That more people might think like you do! I maintain that there is a distinction between geeks and nerds – I’ll happily accept the former, but would reject the latter – but even then there are differing opinions on the meaning (http://phdcomics.com/comics/archive.php?comicid=401, for example). The games industry is so diverse, though, that you can’t stereotype people into one box: from casual phone players to people who spend thousands of dollars and train day and night to compete in ‘e-sports’ tournaments, there’s too broad a range of players to lump everyone together.

            For the Distant Worlds concert, with the source material being Japanese, I suppose it makes sense that it would appeal more to Asians than others (even though I call myself a banana). That said, I did see Caucasians and people of other races present, just not as common. While waiting in line to retrieve my bag from the cloakroom, I was chatting to someone I would guess is an Indian or Sri Lankan – with the larger venue and current-day security concerns, we were forced to check our bags before being admitted. Shows the universal appeal of music, I suppose.

            Video Games Live is one that I’ve not been to, and checking their site it looks like they were in Melbourne and Sydney not too long ago, only in July 2015. If I knew that I might have thought to go, but never mind. I think Ms Shimomura was always well-known for Kingdom Hearts but she’ll probably be all the more popular now for her fantastic Final Fantasy XV score. While not music-related, I did get to briefly chat with some celebrities at Sydney Supanova recently – I’d like to think it’s like talking to a friend. It’s nice when performers are kind enough to meet ordinary people. (:

            I did not know that about Linkin Park, that is sad news indeed. I enjoyed their Hybrid Theory, Reanimation, and Meteora albums – and I only stopped buying because I stopped listening to the radio during my university years, not because of their change in musical direction. I never went to any of their performances, but a church friend who was much more a fan of theirs did go when they were touring in Sydney, and I believe it was a great time out. I’m not so keen on live performances of popular music but if I was invited by friends I could imagine joining something like one of U2’s concerts.

            Long zoom in low-light conditions is even more remarkable, but I was actually thinking of your Lindsey Stirling photos. I’ve stuck with large-sensor compacts for now because I feel the greater costs of pro-level gear is too much for me but I admire the greater image quality to be gained from APS and full-frame sensors (and beyond). That said, better to just enjoy the performance itself as much as possible, as we’ve already discussed. (:

            PS Just noticed you were up late. Hope you got enough rest!

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            • Agreed that there’s a distinction between geeks and nerds, though the two can overlap at times. Lovely comic strip you shared 🙂

              I would never leave my bag or belongings in the cloakroom at a concert. Trust issues, and I’m terrified my bag will get mixed up and someone will make off with mine! So I usually bring a small bag. That said, I’m sure some people travel far to get to a concert and understandably they will have more belongings than others and will need to check what they have in.

              You are right. Video Games Live was pretty recent. They seem to be touring again in the States, and maybe they will come to Australia again at some point. Actually I never knew Ms Shimomura was behind some of the music for Kingdom Hearts – great moving music, but for some reason the game never struck a chord with me as much as I wanted to like it 😦 So lucky you got to chat with celebrities at Sydney Supernova – that doesn’t happen every day, and I hope you took away some words of wisdom or some form of inspiration.

              Somehow Supernova has never appealed to me. It certainly is more than cosplays and dressing up, and it’s also about getting to know and meet game and anime creators from what I’ve read. Maybe one day I will go. Just like maybe one day I’ll go to a video game orchestra. There’s a Legend of Zelda Symphony of Goddess coming up later this year which I’ve contemplated going. The score’s based on Skyward Sword, but somehow I just don’t feel up for it :/

              All those Linkin Park albums you’ve listened to (and Minutes to Midnight, and Fort Minor), I also listened to in the early 2000s – the lyrics spoke a lot to me and listening to the songs again over the last few days, the lyrics feel so much more powerful than ever. Very hopeful they will tour again at some point. I don’t mind their newer music, but it’s their older stuff which I connect to very strongly. U2 would be an amazing concert, both for the songs and atmosphere. So would Coldplay – which I decided to give a miss last year.

              I think I just got lucky with the Lindsey Stirling photos (set the camera on manual mode and let it be), and lucky to be upfront 🙂

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              • I think the overlap in some people is where the confusion stems from. 😉

                I had no choice, it was security rules – if I’d known beforehand I wouldn’t have brought it in the first place as I wasted a lot of time lining up to get in, being turned away, lining up for the cloakroom, then lining up to get in again. And then lining up afterwards to pick it up. I’m quite sure the concert started 40+ minutes late because of the long queues… but I suppose everyone’s concerned of the potential for a copy-cat of the concert bombing in Manchester. With that in mind, I suppose a little inconvenience isn’t so bad, however unlikely such an event might be. I could have managed with my camera in my pocket as I had done in the past, and which I had to do anyway.

                Hopefully. Such tours seem most common in the States and then maybe Europe and Asia, less so elsewhere. I actually first knew Ms Shimomura’s work from the Mario RPGs… never touched Kingdom Hearts though it’s certainly a novel idea to mix Disney and Final Fantasy characters together. By her own admission, composing for FFXV was daunting because of its high profile (as opposed to its original incarnation as a spin-off from FFXIII), but I think she did a magnificent job.

                Being introverted, and like with live concerts, I didn’t care much for Supanova either but was introduced to it by a friend – who is more interested in the cosplay part of it that you mentioned. I first went a few years ago to meet and buy something from a fellow deviantART artist, and also met Grant Imahara of MythBusters. I thanked Grant for happily being the ‘geek’ on the show in spite of the (joking) mockery he receives, to which he replied ‘it’s who I am’. For my second visit this year, I had the pleasure of meeting Tom Wilson of Back to the Future fame (though I’m more a fan of his role in Wing Commander), and Jennifer Hale, a famous voice actress. My conversation with Tom led me to quote back his line about how he makes more money than the rest of us, to which he kindly replied that was supposed to be a joke. I tend not to idolise people – we’re all equal before God, after all – but I admit being rather happy at having the chance to chat briefly with even somewhat famous people.

                An American friend mentioned the Symphony of the Goddess concert. The Zelda series is another famous series I haven’t played, though I know of a few of its musical pieces from Smash Bros. It sounds like you haven’t tried any game music concerts before – are you concerned SotG won’t be worth your time and money? Or are you just not that keen for it? I think it’s okay not to be, but maybe like with the Green Day gig you’ll be pleasantly surprised if you gave it a try?

                I remember a school friend disliking Linkin Park because he felt they appealed too much to the angsty teenage crowd (even though we were teenagers ourselves at the time). Remembering the lyrics like those from Crawling, I can see why he thought that way. I think I just enjoyed the music and didn’t worry so much about the words – it was certainly on the more metal end of the spectrum of stuff that I’d listen to at any rate. I think In the End is my favourite song of theirs. I also heard their EP from when they still called themselves Hybrid Theory. I get the feeling a U2 concert would attract too big a crowd for me to feel comfortable in, but I might be okay with friends along.

                I think the upfront bit played a big part in how great they looked, though I’m aware that being too close can be an issue for perspective (which is why selfie portraits often make people’s faces look so bad). Great stuff, regardless. (:

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                • It sounded like quite the experience with Supanova, and that was quite a few artists and creators you managed to check out. I’ve heard there are queues for quite a lot of them, and it must have been lucky of you to meet Grant, Tom and Jennifer – first hand and up-close and personal experiences of such renowned shows.

                  Yeah, there is a part of me that thinks SotG won’t be worth what I’ll pay, and also the fact I didn’t feel like I connected to the last Zelda game I played. I could most certainly be surprised with it like the Green Day concert. Timing is also another matter, though 😀

                  In The End is also my favourite song from Linkin Park. Numb, Somewhere I Belong and Shadow Of The Day (it speaks to the nocturnal in me) are also up there for me too. It is interesting to feel songs in a different way all these years…but they also remind you of who you were back then, and maybe still are today.

                  For me, being as close to the stage is best for me. Just how I like it. I still have yet to touch a performer’s hand as they are performing. Still dreaming of that 😀

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                  • Actually, I found the wait was pretty mild in Sydney. The year Grant was there, Stan Lee was the main star – ridiculous line for him (not that I was interested anyway). Since I was there first thing in the morning, I quite literally just walked up to Grant and said hello. (: I had to wait maybe 15 minutes for my turn to meet Tom (much better than the six hours I heard from someone who saw him at a London convention this month), and I only had to wait for one or two other people in front of me to meet Jennifer. Maybe the lines would be much busier in the afternoon sessions.

                    Only you can know how keen you want to see SotG, and whether you want to take that chance of enjoying it versus being disappointed. I can appreciate the timing issue, though – I was lucky with Distant Worlds as it was right in the middle of Dusty Boots – I only go for one of the two weeks at a time, though, and was able to arrange to be there for the first week, returning to Sydney on the Friday night just before the concert. If it turned out that I had to miss it, well, I would be disappointed but I feel the relationships I have in the Pilbara are more important. You’ll have to work out whether or not your other commitments are more important than the concert.

                    Really? That’s a nice thing we share in common then. I prefer the original Hybrid Theory version to Reanimation, but for some other tracks the reverse is true. I admit it’s been a while since I’ve listened to them, just had a quick listen through just now. I think one thing that stood out to me back when I first heard them was that they generally eschewed profanity, which I appreciated. Resorting to profanity seems pretty weak to me, when it comes to writing lyrics or trying to stand out. Other tracks which stood out for me were Step Up (from the original Hybrid Theory EP) for its humorous bridge (‘reliable audio weapons system’) which I think was sampled in Kyur4 th Ich, while My December and Pushing Me Away I could relate to, gets me down listening to those. I also liked Somewhere I Belong, plus Nobody’s Listening has a unique sound for its use of a shakuhachi as the main riff.

                    Aye, being close to the stage is something I enjoy as well. Might be difficult with speaker amplification (aforementioned volume sensitivity), though. Do musicians still throw personal belongings at the crowd at concerts? I imagine most performers would have their hands full when singing/playing. 😉

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                    • Ah, Stan Lee. I vaguely remember he made a trip down to Australia a few years ago for the convention and heard tickets to attend his panel all sold out very quick. It really is very lucky you got to meet some of your heroes and creators given that in other parts of the world it was hour-long waits. Maybe you were early as you mentioned, or it was a much low-key event in Australia 🙂

                      That is a great point you touched on. Not going to a concert is not the end of the world. I don’t have regrets not going to Coldplay or missing out on the previous video game music symphonies. When the time is right, the time will be right. Glad Distant Worlds worked for you. Never forget the experience 😀

                      Ah, I did mean the original Hybrid Theory, I love that. I also love their next few albums that followed including their collaborations and side projects. True, a lot of their songs eschew profanity, though I do not mind profinaty at all. But I think it went some way to giving them such a broad fanbase. My December – I forgot all about that song and I listend to it all the time. Now I have to check that out again soon 🙂

                      Of all the concerts I’ve been too, the performers love throwing things out at the audience. Green Day fired some shirts out of a canon launcher-thing during their show. At the end of the Lindsey Stirling concert I went to in April, the drummer threw the drumstick towards me after the show. The guy next to me and I caught it at the same time…and I held on and got it. I put a photo of it on my Twitter 😀

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  7. I haven’t been to many concerts lately. There are a couple of small venues in Suzhou where Chinese bands play, but to be honest I don’t really feel like going out at night so I hardly go haha (also because smoking is still allowed in bars here and I hate the smell). There are a couple of festivals in Shanghai at the end of August, I’m still thinking about going to one of them.

    In my “youth” I went to a lot of concerts, hehe. One that I was really looking forward to was Andrew Bird, he played in Beijing in 2010 and I loved it, then a couple of months later St Vincent played there too, that one was also good. I also love Hanggai concerts because they are very energetic (they are a Mongolian-Chinese folk rock band). From many, many years ago when I was in college, Screaming Headless Torsos was an amazing one.

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    • I’ve heard the underground music and band scene is much bigger in China than the rest of the world thinks. I remember when I lived in Asian all those years ago, there wasn’t much support for bands who played in bars and smaller venues. If you do go to a festival in Shanghai, you have to tell us about it! 😀

      Screaming Headless Torsos. What a name for a band. I had to Google them, and looks like they have been around for a while playing jazz and funk rock. Sounds like good music to groove and move to. I feel the more energetic the concerts the better – and usually that’s when the more unpredictable the show will be.

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      • Yes, Screaming Headless Torsos are “old” guys, music professors in American universities and things like that, so they are amazing musicians! And super fun live.

        The thing with the underground scene in China is that people outside seem to think there is no scene at all hahaha. And there is of course, there are a lot of bands. But I think than fewer than such a big population should have (I’m sure this will change in the future. In Suzhou, rock schools for kids are sprouting like mushrooms in the autumn right now!). Also, in a huge city like Shanghai, there are no middle sized venues basically, so a big local band is too big for the small venues, and too small for the stadiums!

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        • Screaming Headless Torsos sounds like a classic name with a youthful energy surrounding it. I’ll have to check them out on YouTube some time 😀

          No scene at all was my impression of China as of a few years ago. I think many people think it’s Japan that has a great underground scene with J-Rock and local alternative music. Haha, rock schools for kids coming up. It must be a popular extra-curricular activity there, to play in a band outside of school 😀 For the second time your comment got eaten up by the Trash folder, lol.

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  8. Great to come across this post Mabel. I think you have to enjoy the moment and atmosphere. That’s really important and that’s what you will cherish forever.

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  9. i’ve been to a few concerts before and i have to say it’s always an exciting experience to see all these artists whose songs you sing along to in the privacy of your own home up close and personal. well, not really that close, but, you know, actually seeing them in the flesh. especially when they happen to be a looker too. lol.

    i love that feeling of being one with the crowd and feeling each other’s vibe and knowing that in that moment, you are all one. although i’m not really the type who’d sing along as i much prefer to see, hear, and feel everything going on in front of me and around me, just listening to everyone else sing the lines of the songs gives me goosebumps. surreal!

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    • So agree with you on seeing an artist in the flesh and feeling that music experience being created in front of you, is just a wow experience. You feel honoured to be in the musician’s presence. Haha, I’ve always never pictured you as the concert type, though 😛

      Hearing the crowd singalong always makes me stop too. There is something very special about hearing one big human voice sing together. I don’t think any word can fully explain that feeling 🙂

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  10. I used to love concerts and live bands, but now they amp the music up so loud that it hurts. I have to wear earplugs even in the cinema. I still go to opera and other simulcasts in cinema, as it may be loud, but it is still not as loud as the live performances. It always tickles me that people treat the cinema experience like live concerts in some ways, applauding even when the performers aren’t there to appreciate it. (no mosh pit though!)

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    • ‘now they amp the music up so loud that it hurts’ This is something I agree with, and I find warm up and opening acts as so, so, so much louder than the main act and tend to not sound that good :/

      Agree with you about cinemas, especially when it comes to an action movie with those fast and loud scenes – louder than can be. I’ve also had cinemas experiences where the audience claps at the end and even stand up as if waiting for an encore 😀

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  11. Those are some awesome photos. They should hire you to take photo at concerts. I would be hestiate to take my camera to a concert, just the fear of losing it or it getting broken within the crazy cattle of people attending the concert. Speaking of concerts, i’ve only been to one and only one. Iron Maiden, I was like 15 and went with my older sister and her boyfriend back then. Going to concerts isn’t really on my to “do list”. I don’t my mind the noise or the crowd, it just not my priority things to do.

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    • You are very kind, Michael. Thank you. It would be an honour to shoot a concert some day, big or small. You bring up a great point about damaging your camera by ‘crazy cattle of people’ (yes!) at a concert or worse, the venue taking it away. For all the concerts I’ve been to, I’ve only taken my point-and-shoot 🙂

      Iron Maiden! That sounds like one brilliant concert go to and lucky you got to see them. Though concerts aren’t your thing, I hope you had a good time at their show 🙂

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  12. Mabel you always come up with fascinating topics. I went to far more concerts in my youth. Perhaps my most memorable when my big brother took me to Blue Oyster Cult. What made it memorable was that he saw me as cool enough to take along. He was likely 20 and I 15. I have to admit that the volume level at some of the big concerts makes it less enjoyable for me. Last week we were at an outdoor concert and the thought of being at the front makes my head hurt. I know I’m sounding very old but just being honest.

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    • Admittedly I wanted to write about this topic for more than a year. Now I have. Wouldn’t have pegged you at all to be a concert-goer, Sue. I googled Blue Oyster Cult – looks like they are a rock band. Big brother must have certainly seen you as a cool person indeed 🙂 I am very sorry to hear that being in front at concerts does not suit you. It is quite action-packed both on-stage and up front in the crowd a lot of the time. Maybe Dave can handle it better than you, I don’t know. Being up-front at concerts is just not for everyone. I remember the first time I was up-front the speakers was right in my face and the crowd was very pushy. Not very pleasant overall physically.

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  13. Wow Mabel, you’ve seen some really great ones. Good on you for being willing to go alone. As for me, I’d love to sing along but I really hate it when the people around me sing because I came to hear the performers, not the audience!! So I don’t sing while there, I sing in the car before and after LOL!!!

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    • Haha, if singing in the car suits you, it suits you! Always great to admire the perfomers singing. Singing is an art. Not everyone can sing in tune all the time and to hear someone that can, it can be so touching and inspirational 🙂

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  14. It has been a very long time since I was in a music concert/ festival. The last one was back in 2010 the Sonisphere Festival in Finland!!
    I would love to go again to some concert but the thing with my music is…well the concerts are extreme and exhausting. By now I also have kids so I do not fathim driving to some concert for a few hours and come back home late at night or even next morning (depending on the location). Probably I just became a really boring person but then again many of my friends with the same music taste don’t really go to concert either any longer

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    • Googling Sonisphere Festival, it looks like a very big heavy metal music fest. Hope you had a great time at the 2010 one, and you got to see your some of your favourite bands 🙂

      ‘the concerts are extreme and exhausting’ – all the moshing, jumping, pushing, and maybe the metal bands also ask the audience to do crazy things perhaps. I’ve yet to go to a concert of your kind of music, and would love to 😀 What you said is true. The older we get, we may be more boring as we become more ‘adult’ and so many little things just take up our time and energy.

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  15. 100% with you on no.5—I can be guilty of wanting to record every moment of the music, because I know I won’t remember it as well. But, over the years I’ve learnt that the memories are more important than trying to record the memories.

    Think the most memorable concert I’ve been to is a toss up between the Foo Fighters at Wembley Stadium about 12 years ago, and Battlestar Galactica concert at San Diego Comic Con a few years back. Both incredible for totally different reasons.

    I’d go to more concerts if there were more here!

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    • Haha! Like you I usually can’t remember much after a few years, but whenever I look at a photo I took at a concert, I feel like I am there once again. But you are right and said it very well – ‘memories are more important than trying to record the memories’.

      Those are two amazing concerts you’ve been too, and must be hard choosing which is the most memorable. Each concert is special in their own way, and we feel each one differently.

      p/s: You have amazing photos on your blog! Just wanted to tell you that here since I wasn’t able to tell you on your blog 🙂

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  16. Wow Mabel you’re a concert enthusiast for sure! Green Day would be awesome ~ Loved seeing your photos of them performing, as well as Florence and the Machine. I remember listening to the Dookie album from Green Day that I had on CD. I’m totally with you though about putting down the camera for most of the concert as we want to experience it live, not through the lens of a camera. I’m hoping you have lots more great experiences! I went to a free outdoor concert earlier in the week and it was fun – even danced a bit by the stage 🙂 Have a great weekend!

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    • Green Day were amazing and I wish I’d gone to their concert the day before too 🙂 Dookie was such an amazing album, and I do remember it on CD. It must have kept you company a lot in the 90s. The free outdoor concert sounded very fun and a great way to spend the day. And I’m sure you danced well 🙂

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  17. Wow Mabel! What an amazing post on concerts. It’s been a year since I “went” to a concert, and I say “went” because I couldn’t afford the ticket but it was an open air Jamie Cullum concert in Germany, so I sat nearby and enjoyed the music with some good beer. And after reading your post it just made me remember how much I miss going to concerts.
    Thanks for this amazing post, I look forward to reading more from you. 🙂

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    • That is great you still got to enjoy the sounds of Jamie Cullum nearby without a ticket! The music must have been very loud and carried over the open-air venue. I often wonder how many people do that – sit out side the concert venue and listen to the music.

      Thank you so much for your kind words, Lily 🙂

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  18. Excellent and interesting post on concerts! It has been years since we attended a live concert actually so this was a fun post for me to indulge in, although am not a fan of huge events as I dont love the large masses of crowds. I do like your helpful tips and good advice for navigating events.

    Peta

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    • Thanks, Peta. Concerts can be intimidating for those who don’t like crowds or are claustrophobic. Maybe intimate shows or even cultural performances are more your kind of shows 🙂 I love these kinds of performances as well. Take care and safe travels.

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  19. My heart stopped when you said you have seen Josh Groban live. OMG! If there is one performer I want to see live it is him. Just covered in goosebumps thinking about it. His voice is totally unbelievable. I’ve not been to many live concerts but have enjoyed the ones I’ve gone to. Your post has got me thinking I need to go more often. Beautifully written, Mabel. Great job! 🌹

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    • I did see Josh Groban live and bought the tickets about a year in advance. Bit of a gamble considering it was so far away but glad I was able to go in the end. He is an amazing singer, every note on point. Also a great comedian in between song. I do hope you get to see Josh Groban one day, and maybe he will throw a lovely red rose your way 🌹 Lots of love to you my friend 🌹🌹 ❤

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  21. Mabel, you seem to be an ardent fan of rock music, going by details of many concerts featured here. Rock does not appeal to me as I find it cacophonous and jarring. I am okay with western classical, folk, country and pop music. Also Indian classical music and the treasure trove of popular music that Indian films are.zz FYI, over 1000 movies are produced in India every year in various Indian languages which will equate to an annual output of around 5000 songs straddling melody, folk, and fast rhythms to enhance the visuals and support the dance scenes. I have watched many concerts of classical, both Indian and western, and popular music in different cities in India and share your feelings about reaching venues a little ahead of time and partaking of the atmospherics in anticipation of virtuoso performances.

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    • You are so right. Rock music is a genre of music I like, apart from commercial pop and alternative music. These days I’m also listening to a bit of metal and electronic music. Okay if these genres not your cup of tea – we all have our different tastes 🙂 It’s amazing to see and hear how music is a big part of the Indian film industry, and the entertainment scene in India. ‘5000 songs straddling melody, folk, and fast rhythms’ That is so many songs and goes to show just how creative your country and its people can be. There is power in music – it inspires creativity, creation and coming together of communities. Good to hear you enjoyed classical Indian and Western performances. You’ve always come across as a deep thinker and artistic person, Raj – and one who would have a great appreciation of live music performances 🙂

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  22. Your tips are all handy and on point. I accompanied a friend to a concert years ago. I only knew one or two songs of the group, so I enjoyed only the part of the concert where the band played those songs. The rest of the time, I spent in a daze, watching the people watch the concert.

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    • Very kind of you to accompany a friend to a concert. Haha, it can be fun watching people watch a concert – and I hope you were entertained by it 😀 At the Green Day concert, I saw so many people crowdsurfing to get out of the pit. It was quite a sight.

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  23. I’ve not been to many either, Mabel, though I always sing along if there’s an Adele concert or Ed Sheeran on the box. Does that count? 🙂 The sound quality is seldom as good at a live performance,but you expect that and it’s the atmosphere that matters, isn’t it?

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  24. This is a fabulous post on concerts, Mabel. Pictures are awesome! You’re spot on here: “…there’s every chance we’ll feel the person whom we really are – profoundly feeling the musicians’ stories as ours in the present moment of reality at a live concert.” I attended a Bryan Adam’s concert in New Delhi years ago. I remember how I’d lost my ‘conditioned’ self to his live rendition of “Summer of ’69” and “Here I am” — it was surreal — the atmosphere was electrifying — really tugged at heartstrings. Your post reminded me of the great time I had then. Thanks 🙂

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  25. I’ve never been to a concert that’s had a packed capacity. When I was younger, I always wanted to go to a concert. Now, I find it hard to enjoy music with crowds. 😦 I used to listen to Green Day (a couple of years back). Thanks for taking me to their concert through your words and pictures! I always get to learn something from your posts, Mabel. 🙂

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  26. Mable, music in the air. The love of being at the live concert is indeed electrifying. Being with the artists whom you have been listening silently over years and many times we have lived a parallel life with them seeing them flesh and blood makes us go bunkers and tapping our feet and matching our voice with the lyrics makes us super excited. Indeed it is a different world and fan club all in unison shouting and yelling, jumping and pumping around with atmosphere, and we make things go wide and wild. All music lovers under one roof, difficult to make the roof or sky go unpunished. It is almost 7-8 hours before and after the show where we have to be on hyperactive zone…I agree the stuff inside are insanely exorbitant and things from outside are not allowed and we have to have the tenacity to hold on and stay put in such packed and powerful setup without letting energy depleted and suddenly dissipated.

    Justin Bieber was there last month in India and the show as usual was fully packed and buzzing with hyperbolas and at the end we end up listing only the track from the pre-recorded stuff and it is all about lip sync. Though we enjoy the music in the air and get overwhelmed seeing the artist live there in front of us, and loss track on the real stuff on stage.

    The way you have narrated the various aspects of preparing and planning a visit to such live concert is ready reckoner for many who are not a regularly visitor to such concerts, it can give them all that they need to go with and cherish the moment there. Rightly said so, first thing first we should be up to date on his or her latest happenings and tracks and if we are fan, we must be then well versed with those aspects of the artists. Going well in advance and trying to occupy the vantage point and place makes it easier and also getting soaked in the atmosphere before the real event takes start and main artist takes center-stage.

    I agree things are changing rather then those big bang shows, it is many times good to go to these smaller and lesser gathering to get a better feel and taste of the song and the singer. Taking photo and videos are not easy and as pointed out in the hassle and humbug of people and the enthusiasts all around good to be careful and be focused on the stage rather than take to lens which is a tough task. But you do it with such finessed. Your photos are always awe inspiring. I can see through the passion you have for music and such concerts and going solo and being able to manage the crowd with all their tantrums and we have to have the temperament to stand tall and stand out…it is ocean of crowd pulling left and pulling right and there is so much swing and we get lost in the song…

    Thanks Mabel for a wonderful insights and analysis on the live concerts and with all stats and facts from the research reports from universities to research bodies, this posts makes it powerfully packed with brilliant ideas and scientific inferences on music and how to make music an integral part of our life. Music is soothing to our nerves and we are more anchored person when we are soaked in music of our taste…

    Hope you are having a truly silent musical Sunday.
    😀

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    • ‘The love of being at the live concert is indeed electrifying.’ You said it indeed and I can feel your exuberent exorbitant energy within this well-thought out comment. You are so right when you describe a concert as a moment where we go ‘wide and wild’ and that it is a different world. When we see our artists perform live, it’s like another part of us come to life. Looking at concerts from the outside, you wonder where all the energy comes from. But when you are actually part of a concert and are a fan of the artist, you don’t question – you realise that the energy comes from within, from others, through sharing, dreaming and believing. That’s the power of art and the power of music.

      Amazing that you got to see Justin Bieber live. It must have been quite the experience from the sounds of it, despite the pre-recorded stuff. Sometimes concerts are more about the personality and maybe the music and singing takes a back seat. Nothing wrong with that and that’s can be someone’s cup of tea. It’s one thing to sing, and another to entertain. Doing both can be challenging.

      I think the more we prepare for a concert, the more we are able to lose ourselves in it. Know the artist, know the songs to enjoy and to actually remember, and walking away remembering the different nuances in how the song sounds live compared to listening to the song on record. Going well in advanceI cannot stress enough. These days the second-hand concert ticket market is rife in Australia, with some tickets unfortunately sold many times over. There have been stories were people turned up to concerts with second-hand tickets only to see someone sitting in their seat…and some people get turned away. So going early is always recommended to ensure you get your seat – provided you bought your ticket legally of course.

      ‘it is ocean of crowd pulling left and pulling right and there is so much swing and we get lost in the song’ This is such a poetic line, and probably every person’s feeling when they are right there in the crowd enjoying a concert 😀 Honestly I got very lucky with my photos – set the camera on manual mode and hoped for the best. Never my intention to take photos at concerts, but I’ll admit I love capturing the moment an artist is lost in their craft.

      Hope it is a sweet symphony start to your week, Nihar. If not, the weekend’s singing just around the corner. You take care, and thank you for the support, my friend.

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      • Indeed Mabel, it is more than just the song, it is about seeing artist live and also the entertainment quotient being there on the ground and with the group of song enthusiasts which makes it more fun and frolic.
        It is the emotions that multiples with the palpable energy all around and the chorus and excitement all add us make it a heady cocktail of song, singer, fun and sheer entertainment. All this needs load of energy and we need to be on our toe and we need keep moving and keep singing and we have to part of the overall atmospheric otherwise we seems to be left and we cannot enjoy the atmosphere full of music and sound.
        Along with all this we need to find the time and get ourselves prepare well to be there and make the maximum out of the event and it is serious effort to be there on time and with all the mind and mood ready to absorb the surrounding…yes, the energy comes from within and collective power of people emotions adds to an explosion of sound and waves that sweep us out of motion and emotion goes for a ride.
        Thanks so much Mabel and you too have a lovely week ahead.
        😀

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        • ‘more fun and frolic…it is serious effor’ Again you have the right words to describe a concert experience. You are right in that concerts needs a lot of energy to keep moving and be part of it all. Which is why before each concert I like to fuel up with a heart meal of usually burgers and fries to keep me going. Also I make sure to sleep early the night before so that I am well rested for a concert.

          The collective energy at a concert is always so powerful. It is something that needs to be experienced in order to feel the magnitude of it. Thank you so much as usual, Nihar. You have a lovely weekend too 🙂

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  27. Great post, Mabel. I have hardly gone to pop-rock concerts, so I found it interesting to read about your experience in concerts and acute insights such as –‘A concert is a social experience as much as an individual one’.
    Universally, such is the power of music that it can charge up the atmosphere with energy, and invoke strong mood uplifting emotions. People live in that moment and automatically become a part of a larger group while connecting with their own self through music.
    It is interesting to know how you reached the venue 2 – 3 hours early to secure a good seat, soak up the atmosphere and gear yourself up for enjoying the concert. There must be a great feel good factor associated with singing along with the band, sounding good for the night, and becoming the part of one voice. When you say that people tend to enjoy more when they know the artist and have listened to their music before, I think that holds good for all music shows. Lastly, I love it when you say that music concerts can make us realise how all of us can actually be happy together in this world. That certainly is a great feeling.
    Hope you enjoyed the Lindt chocolate today. Wishing you a great week ahead.

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    • ‘People live in that moment and automatically become a part of a larger group while connecting with their own self through music’ So perfectly said, much better than me 😀 Also, you are spot on when you say music can charge us up universally. Perfect description, as often when we listen to music we feel a rush of emotions, emotions that we may never be able to explain.

      A lot of people I know like to arrive at concerts just before it starts. For me, arriving before the show I like to take photos of the venue and the crowd – and get to know the concert setup, toilets, exits, the kind of merchandise on sale (I’ve actually never bought a shirt at a concert though…though I want to!)…part of me likes to be prepared and make sure I get a seat (no ticket scalpers stealing my spot) and part of me wants to live every single concert moment to the fullest 🙂

      Hope you get to go a concert at some point, Somali. It could be a big venue one, or even an intimate street side show. No matter how big or small a concert unites us, makes us feel the same and ourselves all at once. My Trash folder seemed to be a bit hungry lately and ate up 3 of your comments. I’ve saved one and here it is. Thank you so much for letting me know and wishing you a good day 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  28. This is a great post that every concert-goer can connect with. I enjoy concerts a lot and have attended many earlier. But, these days, the difficulty to avail a ticket and lack of a suitable companion have together subsided it. A concert of our choice can bring out the ‘real me’ anytime. I miss the eccentricity, the enigma and the enchantment of a live concert. Your post and pictures have rightly caught the essence of the feelings of a concert lover…. 🙂

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  29. You’re a real pro, Mabel. Those are good rules for concert goers. My most recent concert was a Sara Bareilles concert at the San Michelle Winery. It’s a fair-sized venue with bowl-shaped grass. There are some chairs near the stage, but most people sit on the grass. Everyone brings blankets and ice chests full of food and drinks. I went with a group of ladies. It was fun, but not the same vibe you’re talking about.

    I prefer smaller venues, especially in the summer when people join in and dance and sing. Have you heard of Mana? They’re a very popular Mexican group. I found them on Pandora. They record some of their songs live, and I always get a bit of a thrill when the crowd joins in.

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    • The Sara Bareilles concert sounded like a relaxing outdoor concert. No jostling, but lounging around and kicking back soaking up a lovely day with great company and food 🙂 I’ve followed her music many years ago, and from memory her music is light and breezy.

      I’ve never heard of Mana. I’ll keep them in mind and look them up sometimes. It’s always nice to listen to music in another language – and you don’t need to understand the lyrics to enjoy the music.

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  30. I adore your concert photos and experiences. Personally, I think you’d be awesome as a concert reporter.

    I have been huge concert goer most of my life ..initially liking the big shows but more recently liking the more intimate gigs. When I lived in I went to most concerts with a friend 20 years my junior because no one shared our taste in music (Sufjan Stevens, Joanna Newsome, Magnetic Fields, The Decemberists to name a few). Our joke was ‘you don’t want us to be your fan because we don’t want you to get famous.’ I don’t manage to see many concerts under sail but I did see a few in Sydney.

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    • You are very kind, Lisa. I do like taking photos at concerts to be honest. Given the chance to actually officially take photos for a show, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

      Never pegged you for a concert goer at all. Even Mr Wobbles is scratching his head. But so lovely that you ave, and those are quite the concerts you’ve been to, and different genres too. Mr Wobbles is hoping you get to got to more concerts. He is also happy to use a stick and bang on some drums for your entertainment 🙊😊💙

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Wonderful that you got to see Green Day.. though to be honest I had never heard of them.. But lucky you to see Taylor Swift.. and the excellent violinist Lynsey Stirling those I have heard of.. 🙂
    My daughter and her partner are often going to concerts.. They even went over to Paris to see one of their favourite bands.. Arctic Monkeys .
    Loved the photo shares Mabel.. And so happy you enjoyed and got a good view .
    . 🙂 🙂
    Sending Hugs and may you have many more Happy evenings at wonderful music venues of artist you love..

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  32. Amazing images here, Mabel! And you pointed out great tips!! I remember I listened to U2 album many times before the concert because I wanted to sing along with Bono when seeing him alive in the concert 🙂

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    • U2 are such an incredible band that write amazing lyrics that connect so many of us. So lucky you got to see Bono and gang! Must have been a packed gig too. Hope you sang along with him and it was night to remember 🙂

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  33. Good points. concerts are about the entertainment and experience. Rock and pop concerts are less about the music because you might be able to hear it well over the crowd, whilst smaller and classical performances where the audience will be silent let the music take you away.

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    • ‘entertainment and experience.’ You summed up concerts very well. With classical performances, I reckon most of the time you get what you pay for. I’ve had a few friends who’ve gone to rock and pop concerts and come back with mixed reviews – but always blown away by classical experiences.

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  34. Wonderful wonderful post Mabel! Kudos especially because you infected me with your enthusiasm and love for concerts 😀 I have never been to a concert not even when we got live bands to perform during college functions, all that screaming yelling standing (at 1.52m 😉 jostling wasnt just me. But after reading your post I can totally get the high, the feeling of oneness and regret not having experienced it. Surely I am too old now. But you totally rock!!!

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    • So we are pretty short people. I’m 1.48m, not too far behind 😀 It sounded like quite a bit of jostling for a band during a college function. The band must have connected with the audience really well. Haha, no one’s ever too old for a concert! Maybe at some point you will get to go to one, and maybe get a seat and enjoy the show. Maybe the concert venue will give you a good seat at the front too 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • And maybe I will go along with you for my first concert 😉 😀 And I may have said that jokingly but I will not be surprised at all if it does turn out to be true. Sometime ago, while chatting on a blog I drooled over a particular dish and we would chat on and off with her intermittently teasing me that she had cooked the dish etc. She said if she could she would cook it for me. Would you believe it, we actually met a few years later and she came armed with the dish cooked just the way I like it! So – beware, anything can happen and your days of concerting alone are numbered – disconcerting eh 😉 😀 Cheers

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  35. Excellent share Mabel. When I was younger I loved going to concerts. Now I’ve grown an aversion to big crowds, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love music. You offer some very helpful tips here. 🙂 ❤

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  36. “See and feel a concert as who you are in that body of yours in the present moment.” <- I really loved this line, Mabel. So many of us get caught up in our own thoughts, in our photo-taking, or talking to friends, etc. Feeling the concert – or any other experience – in our body is such a great suggestion.

    I'm always surprised by your topic choice. This was wonderful, and a great how-to as well! 🙂

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  37. Wonderfully lovely photos, Mabel. Though I attended these kinds of concerts years ago, I wouldn’t be caught dead in one today. Too. Many. People. ! Small intimate concerts suit me best these days. And we are indeed fortunate to have attended more than a few. Aloha ❤

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    • Good to hear you enjoyed bigger concerts some time ago, Bela. They are quite the experience. But I agree with crowds can be overwhelming. I was so glad I didn’t end up in the mosh pit at Green Day. Was very Happy to be at the back and just be a part of the atmosphere ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  38. What a terrific post Mabel! Such awesome shots at the concerts and it’s amazing how you were able to get up close at so many concerts. I have never attended concerts that big and do not intend to ever but it was very interesting reading your post. 🙂

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  39. Omg I’m so impressed Mable!! From both, by the number of concerts you have attended and your ability to write so effortlessly about it ! I loved the pictures you shared, even though I have not attended a complete rock n roll concert so far but I really wish to one day! But till then your photos were a treat to my eyes 😉

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  40. Looks like I hit the reply limit again in the original thread, so I’ll try to keep this brief.

    I get the feeling conventions are just smaller in Australia compared to the rest of the world (smaller population).

    Really nice that you scored the drumstick, and such a gentleman to let you keep it. 😉 I imagine it’d be pretty hard to prove who it originally belonged to, but it doesn’t matter because it’s in your memories.

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    • You really do write very well in your comments, and I wish it’d not stop you from writing 🙂

      The drumstick is a great reminder that the Lindsey Stirling concert was real – an artefact from a great moment in history 🙂

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    • I like how you are so open when it comes to playing so many instruments. You are definitely an awesome person 😀 Thanks for the compliment…hopefully one day I will enjoy jazz and attend a jazz concert 😀

      Like

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