Concert Etiquette – Treat Others How You Want to be Treated

Going to music festivals can be eye opening how the general public acts.  In short, people can get mean, rude, and pushy when it is a band they like and want to be front and center, but there is a concert etiquette that needs to be followed.

Recently at Coachella, I really wanted to see was AC/DC and so did everyone else who is a music lover.  Knowing this, my brother, my roommate, and I got there two and a half hours early, watch the act before, and then waited.  We were by no means in the front, but we had a decent view of the show.  A few songs in, a group of  four teenagers/ early twenty kids decided to push there way through the crowd, jump around slamming into people, as well as used people as a brace to get up on each other shoulders.  Now, I am not saying that you should stand still in a bubble at a concert or not sing along and dance to the music, but if you are unable to lift people without using strangers as a brace you probably lack the strength to actually have someone on you shoulders. Also, the people standing in front of you don’t enjoy being kicked in the head.  So what’s the lesson?  Dance around, sing along to the music, but don’t push in front of others who have been there for hours and preceded to slam into them, because eventually you will run into someone like me who will tell you off and scare the living sh** out of you to behave like a normal person in society.

Celebrities go to concert too, and they want to enjoy the music not have you screaming at them to take a picture on your phone.  Famous people are just normal people who happen to be well-known.  If you ever want the chance to meet one you need to act normal and not crazy.  Being at Coachella you run into various celebrities.  For example, Paris Hilton was standing in front of my brother and I at the Kaskade concert.  There was a barrier, and this girl next to us preceded to scream at her as well as ask every person in front of her to take a picture of her.  Of course everyone looked at her funny and said no, but that didn’t stop her.  Seriously, if someone can explain to me the obsession with celebrities I am all ears because I just don’t get the spastic emotional frenzy that people become around someone famous.

Finally, be nice to the staff.  At a large music festival I applaud the staff.  Being a person that manages sixty to eighty events a month, I sympathize with the staff and how much the general public can be a pain.  Don’t throw trash on the ground, there are garbage cans all around the festival site.  Those big blue cans are not just there for decoration.  Follow the rules and be respectful to the security team.  There were a bunch girls who continuous were sitting up on the barrier to watch the show even after the various security told them to get down.  Now I am 5’2” so I understand being short and not being able to see but seriously get over it.  I can tell you if I was that security person I would have told you if I tell you a second time I will throw you out.  The security team as well as the staff have a lot of power and they are not the people that you want to push because they can have you ejected no matter how much money you paid to be there.

To all you concerts goers out there follow the concert etiquette, and the bottom line of it all is don’t be a douche.

VIP Packages – Are They Really Worth It?

VIP-ticketWhen I was a kid, I would have died if my parents got me VIP tickets to a concert.  Then again, how many of your are embarrassed of what your first concert was as a kid?  Not me, I got to see the Piano Man (Billy Joel) and Sir Elton John.  I can say my first concert was far from embarrassing and we had killer seats on the floor.  Anyway, I’m not talking about concert tickets, I am talking about those little add on VIP packages that are outrageously expensive and personally every time I have purchased one I have been disappointed.  At a VIP package event, the managers herd you like cattle to get in line and get a picture taken, sometimes there are weird rules like you can’t put your arms around the perform for the picture so basically you all look like stiff dolls posing for a promotional toy commercial, they play one acoustic song for the group, and then you get a t-shirt, a laminated ticket, and possibly some other merchandise.  If I wanted merchandise I would just buy it and not spend $200 on a VIP Package.

So are there any benefits to the VIP package?  Only if the people who bought the VIP tickets are insanely entertaining.  First you have the older ladies that think they are still 20 but they are really 40 and have kids.  These ladies are usually plastered before the acoustic song is even played and they usually don’t follow the rules that are enforced by the manager.  The road manager doesn’t even fight it he just allows them to do what they want because how can you really fight with a drunk person?  Second you have those moms that bought their daughter(s) the VIP tickets as a birthday present, but they have no idea what type of music the group plays.  Then when that really inappropriate song comes on their face usually says everything you have been thinking.

With physical and digital album sales plummeting, 360 contract deals becoming the norm in the business, and streaming becoming the more popular way to experience music, artists are starting to have to become more inventive with how they are connecting with their fans.  In my opinion VIP events are the perfect way to do that, but they aren’t utilized properly.  Of course social media is a great way to keep your fans interested in lull time while the artist is recording a new album or prepping for a large national or international tour, but VIP events are a way to connect to your fans on a more personal level.

When Taylor Swift did listening parties for 1989 for her fans and invited her fans to be apart of her “Shake It Off” music video, it showed that her business team and her as an artist were thinking outside to create personal connections with fans as well as make recording breaking sales for 2014.  Robert Schwartzman just did the California Roll Tour where his venue was a giant party bus and gave fans an intimate solo acoustic show to no more then thirty people in cities all over the country.  What a way to hear his new album, as well as have the opportunity to be able to talk with him about his artistry, music, and inspiration!  The Cab is notorious for connecting with their fans and every VIP event that is held.  They take individual pictures and go around talking to every fan answering questions about their music writing process, some of their favorite memories on tours, and what it has been like touring with their current co-headliners and support artist(s).  Recently they had a random viewing of “Space Jam” at a venue out in the Los Angeles where they invited fans via twitter to come.  To all the music executives and artists out there – think outside the box.  Don’t just connect through the virtual world.  Obviously the more popular the band or the artists is the harder it is to be safe and connect with the fans so do it in a small setting.  Use the VIP packages to not just give away merchandise because as a fan myself the stuff doesn’t matter.  Human connection is what everyone craves in this world.