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You can't beat a live vibe

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27.09.2001 (28.09.2001)

Advantages:
Great atmosphere, see your idols

Disadvantages:
Can be expensive, may get a bum view !

Recommendable Yes:

21 Ciao members have rated this review on average: very helpful See ratings
very helpful by (100%):
  1. Lemonhead563
  2. fabfrog5
  3. a-true-ben
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Ah! Gig-going! Saw this category and thought “umm well, where do I start?” I could give a run down of past gigs I have been to (too many!), I could give a little of my gig-going history as others have done or stick to the “Member Advice” side and give tips and advice on the subject. So what shall I do?! I know! A bit of everything!

I’m the grand old age of 34, pushing 35, now and I started going to gigs at the tender age of 13 when I hit Punkdom. The first band I ever saw live were The Undertones in about 1979/80 – taken to and from the concert by parents, went with best friend and, afterwards, hung around at the stage door and got the bands autographs. It was great! I loved it and have been bitten by the gig bug/buzz ever since!

Next in a long list of gigs came The Damned, The Clash, Hazel O’Connor, more Undertones, Theatre of Hate, and more. Then I left home at 19 years old and starting going out even more to smaller clubs such as the Marquee to see more unknown bands as well as larger gigs at London venues and then came Festivals too!

I’ve been to far too many gigs to count or list and seen a multitude of my favourite bands along the years (and some pretty sorry ones) but among those that remain in my memory (besides those already mentioned) are Blur, Manic Street Preachers, Metallica, Iron Maiden, Bon Jovi, Marilyn Manson, Michael Monroe, Cinderella, AC/DC, Pulp, the Prodigy, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Backyard Babies, Tattooed Love Boys, 3 Colours Red, Whitesnake, Motley Crue, Rolling Stones, Stiff Little Fingers, GBH, Eminem, the Quireboys, Poison and, oh!, so many more! :o)

My favourites, having seen them over 30 times, are The Damned and I also managed to meet them back in 1984 after the “Save the GLC” one day festival in Brixton.

Now to change tack a little – you want tips and advice right? Well, I could be all sensible and responsible or I could give you the average gig-goers view! Of course, to be obvious, if you plan to go and see a currently well known and very popular band – GET TICKETS IN ADVANCE!! There is nothing worse than travelling with the uncertainty of whether you will actually get to see them or not or having to pay through the nose to touts outside, unless you really have no other choice. If you are going to see a lesser known band at a smaller club then often you just pay on the door anyway and you have no need to worry about the ticket issue.

DON’T get too drunk before you even get to the gig! In that case it is more than likely you will either be ill and become a cropper or entirely miss them through passing out or being too damn drunk to remember it!

I have been to many gigs and festivals alone in my time, yes me, a young single female – it has never been an issue as far as I’m concerned but these days we hear more and more horror stories – especially at larger gigs or festivals – so if you are in any doubt or nervous at all make sure you go with some trusted friends so you can look out for each other and make sure you know where to find each other/meet up if you get separated – this is especially important at festivals.

On to merchandise, at most gigs and live events merchandise such as T-shirts and posters are available – Official items are usually sold within the venue, unofficial outside, the prices vary enormously and so does the quality but ultimately it is up to you how much you are prepared to pay and which you prefer – I am happy to spend a fiver on an unofficial T-shirt personally!

OK, on to those of you who may have a desire to hang around and maybe meet the bands and get autographs. Obviously at larger venues and with well known bands this is harder whereas lesser-known bands are often more eager to meet the fans and indeed it is easier to get to them without the masses of security. Either way you will need to make sure you are hanging around in the right place i.e. the stage door/backstage or you don’t stand a chance unless you have contacts!

I think this covers the main obvious points – above all don’t be led into spending more than you have to and have a great time making sure you eventually arrive home with no injuries and in a fit state!

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Comments about this review »

a-true-ben 12.04.2003 12:45

Wow, I envy that list of gigs!

MissDirect 22.04.2002 11:45

I enjoyed your enthusiasm.

Clove 13.10.2001 11:02

You MUST go and see PJ Harvey live :) - that's my deed for the day, tying to covert you into a PJH fan!

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This review of Gig-going has been rated:

"very helpful" by (100%):

  1. Lemonhead563
  2. fabfrog5
  3. a-true-ben

and 57 other members

The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.