I have fun at concerts, and I ‘ve got the scars to prove it.
Through my many music adventures, I’ve learned the ropes of concerts. To pit fans everywhere, I am now going to share with you the prime techniques required for the optimum concert experience.
The Thing about General Admission…
Personally, I am all for general admission shows despite knowing I’m coming out of the shows with more bruises than going into it.
I made the mistake of purchasing general admission tickets for a Green Day concert that I attended with my mom and aunt in 2009. I don’t think I’ll ever hear the end of it from my mom.
“I am not going to a concert unless I have a place to sit!” is what she now says anytime I offer to go to a show with her.
My aunt wasn’t thrilled with general admission, but she also didn’t let that stop her from having fun. As lame as it sounds, seeing Green Day with her was such a good time.
Can’t blame me though, mom. The general admission tickets were cheaper!
I was first introduced to the amazing haven that is the mosh pit while at Fall Out Boy’s last headlining tour in 2009. Of course, most of the moshing took place because I had to be upfront for one of the opening bands, All Time Low.
I didn’t care what I had to do; I had to be up front. I made many rookie mistakes — one of the worst was trying to fight against the waves of aggressive fangirls.
Go With the Flow!
When trying to get up front, the rowdy crowd is like an ocean; you’ll get where you want to be faster if you go with it rather than fight it.
Having been rookies at the time, my friends didn’t want to risk us getting hurt, so we watched the rest of the show from the back.
As we stood in the back, I missed the rush of being in the action.
The next concert I went to, Warped Tour, was primetime for some hardcore mosh pit action. This is where I learned the go with the flow method.
Since then, in most cases, I’ve been pushed hard enough to land me a prime spot in the front row.
But the pit isn’t the only place where injuries can occur.
The Front Row — the Bone Crunching Promised Land
I’ve gotten hurt the most while being in the front row. (I admit that I’m not the biggest person out there so there isn’t a lot of room between the barricade and my ribs.)
It’s also harder to see the crowd surfers coming from the front row. (Helpful tip- if the security guards stand up, duck and cover, or put your hands up and help out a fellow concertgoer.)
During a show in 2009, before I really knew the tips and tricks of concerting, I ducked when the security guard stood up. I knew a crowd surfer was coming for me. Well, that crowd surfer was dropped on my head, and I could feel my nose crack against the barricade. It didn’t break, but I had a healthy bruise on my face for a while.
Sea of Madness
The first time I crowd surfed, Oct. 25, 2010, it went flawlessly and I felt like I was flying.
The next time I crowd surfed at a Good Charlotte show, it went well and I convinced my best friend Ashley Owens to give it a try.
This is where we learned that boots are a no-go if you plan to crowd surf, as it really hurts to get kicked in the head with a boot.
It wasn’t until a crowd surfing incident where I was dropped that I decided to take a break.
The mistake I made was crowd surfing in an area that wasn’t packed, so people had to really pay attention. Can’t blame the crowd, they were there to see the show, not help me crowd surf.
(Shout out to the security guard who helped me out that day!)
Aside from scratches and bruises, I didn’t get another major injury until October 27, 2011.
In attempts to catch one of Rian Dawson’s drumsticks, I ended up spraining my hand. Long story short, another girl tried to grab it off of me and bent my hand backward. It started swelling immediately.
My best friend Owens, saw the struggle and the aftermath and said “Dude, do you want to go to the hospital?”
My response — “No, we have to go and meet Jack!”
For those who read my first blog, which was dedicated to All Time Low, you know it’s no surprise that I would put meeting the band before my physical well-being.
We still had a five-hour drive home, and I didn’t even get to the hospital until 12 hours after the incident. I was bound to an arm brace for the day and an ACE bandage for a few weeks.
Looking back, fighting for the drumstick wasn’t worth it. But had I won the battle over it, it would have been.
I guess the lesson here is know your limits. The only good thing to come of that injury was a cool story and Jack Barakat holding my hand.
The Aftermath is Secondary
Now, after getting hurt time after time, you would think I would take the same stance as my mom and go for shows with a seat. But no matter how many bruises I get (or bones I break), having an equal chance to get up front for concerts is worth it.
I know I sound crazy, but nothing beats getting sweated on by people you don’t know and having your favorite band look you in the eye while playing your favorite song.
Concert going isn’t survival of the fittest or natural selection. Everyone paid the same to be there, and everyone has a chance to get a prime spot. So rock on my friends, and let these words of wisdom help you survive (and enjoy) the pit.