Going to concerts is one of my favorite things to do of all time. I have attended tons of concerts in all kinds of venues for all kinds of bands. And although every gig is different, you begin to understand the dos and don’ts. So here are some tips for a first-time concert goer that will hopefully help you have the best time possible.
What to wear
In my experience, there are a few things to keep in mind. First of all: it is almost always warmer in the room than outside. And the more the concert is loaded, the hotter it is. I go out of big concerts as if I had jumped into a swimming pool with all my clothes on. So my advice is to dress lightly. Even if it’s cold outside, you won’t be cold for long once there, so dress lightly and just pull on a jacket or sweater over your outfit. The second thing to remember is to dress comfortably. You will be in this outfit all night long! And this is especially true for shoes. You might like these new pumps with the 3 inch heels you just bought, but stick with the comfy pair of flats. You will be glad you did. Finally, don’t be afraid to get noticed! I’ve had bands before that remember me just because of my hair, so if you’re planning on speaking to the band it’s not a bad idea to stand out from the crowd a bit. And if you take photos, you’ll want to look good. If you know the style of music being played, you’ll usually know what kind of fashion to expect, whether it’s cowboy boots, neon mohawks, or hipster glasses. But you have your own style. You don’t need to overdo it, just dress your best and be confident in your look.
Rule of thumb: Dress like you’re going to rock and roll all night and party every day.
What to bring
The short answer: not a lot. You will need to take some things with you, but you want your hands to be as free as possible. Bring a small bag if you need it so you can carry your stuff without being limited. One thing I really recommend bringing is a camera, even if it’s just the one that’s built into your phone. You’ll want to document your first concert experience! The second thing to bring is cash – there may be a cover charge on the site and not all merchandising tables accept credit cards, so having cash on hand is a good idea. good idea. Some sites may require ID, so if you’re not already driving, be sure to bring that as well. And finally, a Sharpie. If you want an autograph, you’ll be sorry if the artist has nothing to sign on hand. I’ve been in this situation before, and it’s a bummer, so throw one in your bag before you go.
Rule of thumb: Keep your hands free to pump your fist and wave your cell phone back and forth.
What to do
All that you want! You are at the concert to have fun, so have fun. That being said, get there early if you can so you know what to expect (knowing what type of band is playing and where they are will help, too). everyone could just be leaning against the wall with a drink, nodding at the music. But if this is a big group with crazy, dedicated fans, expect to be packed, bumping into everyone, jumping and singing really loud. I recommend doing all you can to be in the front row. You’ll have to get there early and it can be difficult to do, but it’s worth it. It has the best view, it’s easier to take photos, you’re closest to the group and it gives you some stability when the crowd is pushing. Plus you can tell all your friends how you got to the front row and the leader held your hand for four full seconds and was totally sing for you.
Rule of Thumb: The bigger the group and the crazier the fans, the sooner you should get there.
What to do if you meet the group
Be confident and be yourself. It’s hard not to be nervous sometimes, and I admit there are a few bands that I still have a hard time not being a fan-girl on (* cough * Family Force 5 * cough). But these are just people! And you’ll keep better memories if you relax and talk to them like normal people. Compliment them on the show, get an autograph and photo if you like, ask a question or two, and chat a bit. Getting to know the band after watching them perform is one of my favorite parts of concerts, whether it’s a small local band or a big name performer at a sold-out show. It’s easier in smaller venues, but it can happen anywhere, and waiting for an autograph can be worth it. So don’t be nervous and know that you are an interesting person. I have befriended a few artists over the years just by hanging out a bit longer after the gig. If you make a good impression, maybe the band will remember you next time!
Rule of thumb: don’t yell, faint, or propose.
If you keep some of these things in mind, your concert experience should be a success. At the end of the day, all shows are unique and you never really know what might happen. And really, that’s what makes it so fun! So go see your favorite band live and enjoy your first gig!
Image courtesy of Martin Fisch
TDQ Tags TDQblogger011