Naturally, when Rob learned that Bruce was coming to Philly for two performances in March, he and his friend bought tickets for both nights. At the last minute, however, Rob decided one performance would be enough, and he graciously offered me his seat. My interest in going was of the "take it or leave it" variety, but ultimately I decided I had to see the man so many Philadelphians worship. So last night I saw Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band at the Wells Fargo Center.
I can now officially state that I am not a fan of concerts. Stadium concerts specifically.
Here are five reasons why:
|Just the view from the nosebleed section.|
- The wait. Seriously? The guy's been performing live for decades. He should know how long it takes to get ready to go on stage. Assuming you know the starting time printed on the ticket, you work backward from there. Not rocket science. It irritates the crap out of me to wait 45 minutes for some diva performer to grace us with his or her presence.
- Unless you're in the first few rows on the floor in front of the stage, stadium seating sucks. I was in the third row from the top with the common folk. (This is new territory given my connections for seating at the ballpark.) The air is thinner and the seats are smaller up there. And the floors are sticky.
- I like the polished version of an artist's song better than the live music. All you musicians are aghast right now. Sorry. But in the studio version, I can usually understand the lyrics because the instrumental isn't overwhelming the vocal. Also, in the studio version they don't go off on these guitar riffs or extended drum solos. They annoy me.
- They're boring. I need to do something when I listen to music. Like yard work or house work. Or at least dance. There's no room to dance at a stadium concert.
- They're loud. I can't hear myself sing. And when I can't hear myself sing there's an excellent possibility that I'm out of tune. Rob says I sound abysmal when singing with headphones on.
From now on I will restrict my concert going to small venues like Tower Theater, the Mann Center, Scottish Rite Auditorium, or Longwood Gardens. In those settings, there's a sense of intimacy with the performers, the seats are all the same size, and I can hear myself sing. Of course, those venues are also where I'm most likely to find my favorites, the Indigo Girls, and others like Paul Simon, David Gray, and Elvis Costello.
So let's have a conversation about concerts. Where is your favorite spot to catch a show? Who's your favorite performer? Who will you see every time they're in town? Any pet peeves about the concert experience?