Does anyone else get really wound up by other people at gigs? I’ve been to 3 gigs in the last month and left 2 of them understanding how ordinary people become serial killers.

Why does anyone part with the thick end of 40 quid to go to a gig and then talk loudly to anyone within 50 metres (interested or not) about how they managed to get away with travelling first class on the train journey in to work on a standard class ticket while the band are playing. Or braying about how much money they’ve made that week through the quietest, most emotional song in the set.

A word of advice. If you hear someone leaving a gig displaying a total lack of understanding of the technical aspects of the performance, don’t tell them how much of an idiot they are; it’s not generally appreciated as constructive criticism, trust me. The problem with opinions is that everybody’s got one, like certain bodily orifices as the saying goes.

Corporate sponsorship; now there’s an interesting concept. Let’s reward the highest achievers in the sales force by giving them tickets for a Beverley Knight gig, whether they like her or not (and let’s throw in a free bar). Unfortunately, those over-achieving alpha males (they’re always male) have to be near people who actually paid for tickets and want to watch and listen to the show, not this year’s sales figures. If sponsorship helps to keep live music afloat, great, but keep the freeloaders away from the real music fans.

I nearly forgot; filming gigs on mobile phones. There’s a reason why venues don’t stop you from doing that; the sound quality’s crap and the video quality’s even worse. Still, you can upload it to YouTube and disappoint dozens of other punters as well. Just remember that a professional wouldn’t film a gig using a lens that they kept in a pocket with their loose change and a microphone that came out of a kid’s toy, so why should you do it?

Did someone mention nostalgia shows, or revival shows, or whatever you want you want to call them? There’s only 1 thing worse and that’s tribute bands. I’m sick of the Bogus Beatles, the Fat Four, Alehouse Lizzy, the Stoned Rollers (2 for the price of 1) and the Traffic Jam (another twofer). Don’t go to those gigs, whatever you do. They’re full of people who haven’t gone to a gig since the early 70s and think that Yes and Wishbone Ash are the twin peaks of musical achievement. Even the NME is full of ads for reunion and tribute band tours every week, so don’t rely on that to help you have a decent live music experience.

And a last word of advice; if you go to a gig where the queue for the toilets is longer than the queue for the bar, you’re in the wrong place.


2 Responses to “Is it just me…”
  1. Aidan says:

    Totally agree with you. People talking at gigs does my head in. I found your page from the Squeeze review, I saw them earlier this year in Denver, Colorado and I couldn’t believe the amount of people talking / calling friends on their mobiles. It’s a gig for fcuk’s sake!!

    Did you know that “Thin Lizzy” are gigging again? In this case I would recommend going to see the excellent Limehouse Lizzy as they’ve got as many origianl members as the “Thin Lizzy” currently threading the boards.

    Peace, love and understanding.

  2. Isitjustme says:

    Thanks for your comment Aidan. I read in a Phil Lynott biography that Limehouse Lizzy invited Brian Robertson on stage to play and he said that they were doing a better job than he could do. There’s a Dr Feelgood “original” on the circuit with no first or even second generation members.
    Let me know if you find a gig where punters actually go to listen to the music.

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