Importance of live shows

It took me awhile to understand the importance of seeing a band live. I went most of my childhood without seeing a single band live, but I can count off the ones that mattered without a second thought. There is nothing more important than the connection between artist and audience, and even with the music industry changing, concerts will never become a thing of the past.

For my first real show, I saw the Loved Ones open for Less than Jake just before Mississippi Nights closed down. I had never seen such energy in my life. Even though I was shy, I still found it in me to dance. Soon after, I saw Time Again play at the Creepy Crawl. There were maybe 50 people in the whole crowd, but the energy made the room seem full.

Big D & the Kids Table filled up the short-lived Two Cents Plain near Olive on a dreary winter night, but everyone was sweating by the end of the show. I saw the Gaslight Anthem open for the Loved Ones right before Two Cents Plain closed down, and right before the Gaslight Anthem hit it big on the music scene. We had about five people moshing like crazy to the Loved Ones, and you could see the band feeding off of our excitement.

I’ve seen Street Dogs at Pops; Reel Big Fish and Streetlight Anthem at the Pageant; Bomb the Music Industry at the Sci Fi lounge; and Andrew Jackson Jihad, Cobra Skulls, Dead to Me, and Chuck Ragan at the Firebird off of Olive. None of these memories are lost. Each one was full of sweat and raspy voices. All the tired mornings at school the next day were well worth it.

Maybe this blog seems like a lot of name-dropping when it comes to venues and bands, but it isn’t. My mind was reeling with some of the best times of my life. If you’ve never been to a show, I encourage you to see your favorite band the next time they come to town. Buy a CD, buy a T-shirt, shake their hand.

They come to your town to see you and to play for you; the best way to support them mentally and financially is to go to a show. Nowhere else will you spend your money in such a worthwhile way, giving directly to the artist as opposed to record labels and music stores.