#5428 – Step into my concert hall, baby

I bought a ticket today for a Belle and Sebastian concert in June. I wouldn’t have known they were going to be in town if it weren’t for a tweet I happened to see where someone was wondering why they were scheduled to perform at Echostage and not somewhere like the 9:30 Club that might be a better venue for them. I’ve never been to Echostage so I wouldn’t know.

I’ve listened to their music for years but never have seen them perform live. They’re coming out with a new album, hence the tour, I suppose.

At first I was thinking that the last concert I attended was Pizza Underground at the Black Cat last March, but there was also a Neko Case concert that I almost forgot that I went to a few months after that when my friend Dave had a spare ticket. I probably go to only one or two concerts a year now so it’s pretty easy for me to keep track of them – then again, it wasn’t like I went to many more concerts per year than that at any time in my past – but while I’d like to go to more concerts I find that most of the time I only go when I know who the band is. Some people I know make a point of seeing lots of live performances, but I can’t really say that I have any interest nowadays in heading out to a venue on my own to stand around and see a band perform that I may or may not enjoy.

I just remembered: Neko Case wasn’t my last concert. I went to see a Last Waltz tribute concert with my family for my Mom’s birthday a few months ago.

Anyway, that goes back to my point. While the Last Waltz performance was good and I enjoyed it I wouldn’t have seen that concert date on a marquee and thought to myself “that looks like fun, I think I’ll go see that.”1

I don’t buy as much new music as I used to, either. I remember when I’d buy a CD simply based on the cover art, not knowing anything at all except for the name of the band and the title of the album. I actually bought several pretty good albums that way. You’d think that I’d be more likely to go to a concert where if I didn’t enjoy myself at least it only cost me a few dollars and a few hours of my time than to buy a CD that would cost me a few dollars and that I’d have to find a way to get rid of if I didn’t like it. Then again, there’s not really much of a chance of being rudely interrupted by someone obnoxious if I’m sitting at home listening a CD I bought at random, and if that did happen then I’ve got bigger issues than a waste of a few dollars and a CD to dispose of: issues such as “Who are you?” and “How did you get in my apartment??”

  1. While I was writing this I was thinking that maybe I’d be more interested in seeing concerts if they were at sit-down venues, but the Last Waltz tribute was at a dinner theater and even in that type of venue I still can’t see myself picking a performance at random and deciding to go. It also didn’t help that for much of the performance there were other patrons sitting by me who kept talking, which I found distracting. At least in a general-admission venue you can walk away and try to find somewhere else to listen.