Tag Archives: concert

Hey! Got A Spare House Payment? Great! Let’s Go To A Concert!

I am a big Pink Floyd/The Wall/Roger Waters fan. My husband? Even bigger.

So when I saw on 60 Minutes the scope and scale of the Roger Waters show that is touring the country, I was intrigued.

Three years to plan and create this rock opera extravaganza. With 42 high-definition projectors. The screen, flashing images throughout the concert, is 3 stories tall and as long as a football field. Choirs. Orchestras. And Roger Waters, of course.

My husband’s birthday is this summer and I thought, what a treat! I’ll take him to see this amazing concert. And since I get to go, too, it’s a win-win!

Fifty bucks for tickets in the nosebleeds. Hmmmm. Let’s see what it is a little closer to the action. The tickets jump to $199 and $250. And we’re still not even near the floor yet. We’re still waaaaayyyy up there. It’s a pretty huge venue.

(Cue cynical smirk.)

Wonder what the prices are for tickets on the floor?

They start at $575. Or you can pay $1250 to be right on top of the action.

One thousand, two hundred, fifty dollars.

For one ticket.

Just one.

That’s a house payment. Or college tuition payment. Or a monthly paycheck for a teacher.

Twelve hundred dollars and change for the opportunity to be entertained for a few hours.

I’m appalled.

And then I stumble upon this piece about Roger Waters being thrilled that he was able to see Jimi Hendrix and Cream back in the 60’s for about 2 bucks. Recounted as the “deal of his life” Waters said, “It might have been the best purchase I ever made.”

Where is our deal, Mr. Waters?

I am so sick of celebrities: wearing their armbands of support, wearing t-shirts and hats screaming their favorite charity, lending their name and face to a philanthropic endeavor, pleading with us to give all we can and then turning around and agreeing with the venue to charge us a thousand bucks to see them play. I realize the star doesn’t receive all of the profit. But c’mon. A thousand dollars? You’re kidding me, right?

So, I’m curious. What charities does Roger Waters want me to support?

I go to looktothestars.org and search his name.

And this is what I find:

“Charities & foundations supported

None known – if you know of one, please drop us an email”

Not surprising.

Sigh.

We’re not going. Even to sit in the nosebleeds.

I still love the music.

But I am no longer a fan.

(I know there are artists out there that refuse to deal with certain venues or ticket sellers because of outrageous pricing. If you know of any, please list them in the comments section below. Those are the artists I want to support.)

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Filed under Music, Soapbox

Elevatin’ To Another Level – Not Higher, Just Different

I always wanted to be the party girl.

No. Scratch that.

I always wanted to be included.

But I wasn’t.

In high school, the guy I had a major crush on, and who I thought had a major crush on me, went to see Rush perform at the local university without me. I was disappointed and I asked him about it. He said, “I didn’t think you were the type.”

What type is that? Sure, I didn’t smoke pot. Yes, I was the one nursing a beer all night long, pouring sips down the sink when no one was looking so it would look like I was finishing my drink at an appropriate pace. I suppose he and his friends didn’t want me tagging along, judging their smoking and drinking and having a good time. But I didn’t judge. Not really. It just wasn’t for me. I still enjoyed their company. I still wanted to be included. And while we did a lot of things together, I still didn’t feel like I belonged.

That group I so desperately wanted to feel a part of was brilliant. I mean it. All were in Advanced Placement classes. One (my crush) went to MIT on full scholarship (but then got kicked out for dealing drugs.) One went to Berklee and his girlfriend went to Juilliard (she dropped out to become a psychologist.)  Another was in med school when he died of a brain aneurysm. His dad was a surgeon who demanded an explanation and rumor has it, a full autopsy revealed that it was from prior drug use. How they determined this, I don’t know – it is rumor, after all. Maybe it was to scare us straight. Maybe the family wanted to cling to something because Tony had been clean for years.

They were bright. They were funny. They were wild.

And I wasn’t.

Enter college, and I was married by the time I was 21. Still finishing college. But now I was an old married lady. Fellow students wanted to go out and celebrate after a big test but I had a husband to get home to. Pull an all-nighter with a co-ed study group? Too awkward with my husband at home who had work in the morning. With all the detours in my life – changing majors, schools, getting married – it took a little longer for me to finish college. My peers were only a little younger than me but they looked up to me, like some wise sage. Oh, the difference a few years makes when you’re young.

They were bright. They were fun. They were free.

And I wasn’t.

I had my first child when I was 29. Two more when I turned 40. That ten-year span puts me at odds again. The parents of my daughter’s friends are exploring new hobbies, going on more vacations, spending more time out with friends, experiencing freedom again. But we still have two small boys at home. Having a blast with them (with less energy than their friend’s parents) we’re a little more tied to the home front, still acutely aware of how much raising children costs, getting to bed early even on the weekends. The parents of our boys’ friends are the ages of my former high school students. Not that there’s anything wrong with that – but there is something to be said for those 10 years of life experiences.

They’re still interesting. They share in parenting joys and frustrations. But every once in a while, a comment will reveal that they’re still green.

And I’m not.

The paths I have chosen have always kept me out of the loop. I’ve never quite felt as if I belonged anywhere, really. And those choices have kept me from being included in things. Parties. Concerts. Study sessions. Play groups.

The odd one out.

Most of the time, I’m OK with that. Most of the time.

But some days, it’s lonely.

I’d like to think that, all my life, I’ve just been on a different plane, a different level.

Not higher, just different.

And some days, it sure would be nice to be dancing with everyone else – at the same concert, at the same party, on the same level.

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Filed under Music, Ponderings

Sharpen Your Pencils, Kids. It’s Time For A Quiz On Concert Etiquette!

 

Today’s music lesson involves concert etiquette. I have just attended my daughter’s Spring Choral Concert and I was appalled by the behavior of…..

…the parents!

Stunned.

Shocked.

Embarrassed, even.

I arrived about 10 minutes early. I silenced my cell phone. I read through the program. I scouted out my daughter. A group of high school students sat in front of me. They pulled out their cell phones and started sharing text messages and pictures with each other.

I anticipated a problem once the performance began so I found another seat.

I sat behind an audience member who is a principal at another school. His daughter was performing that evening. But not in the first group. So he proceeded to have a conversation with his guest the entire 4 songs. All four.

I moved again.

My last seat was in the back. Just as my daughter’s group started their first song a mother and daughter stood behind me. (I was seated in the last row) They proceeded to discuss who was wearing what, who was sitting with whom,  in not so very hushed tones. During the song. All during the song. I kept turning around, trying to get their attention so that I could ask them to take their conversation outside.

My neck is sore this morning.

The following quiz is suggested by The National Association for Music Education to hand out to concert goers as a polite reminder. I’ve adjusted the quiz so that all of the correct answers are all the same letter. See if you can guess know the correct answers. My extraneous additions (things that I actually witnessed last night) are in italics.

1. You should enter the auditorium: a) quietly b) as loudly as possible c) walking backwards shakin’ your groove thang!

2. It is always a good idea to arrive: a) a little bit early b) just as the performance is beginning c) only in time to catch your child’s performance and then dash out as soon as they finish

3. If you must arrive late, it is best to enter: a) between musical selections b) whenever you arrive c) during your child’s performance, making sure they see you by waving as you walk in

4. During the concert, it is a good idea to: a) sit quietly and listen – what a novel idea! b) discuss the performance c) eat dinner

5. For mobile phone usage during a performance it is best to: a) turn the phone off, or better yet, leave it in the car b) answer your phone quickly and speak quietly c)  leave the room to use the phone (hello, most important doctor, dressed in scrubs, talkin’ to your colleague!)

6. Applause should be given when: a) the performance is completed and the conductor faces the audience b) your child has completed his or her part c) any time something is done well like at a Bon Jovi concert.

7. After the performance is over: a) sit and wait until all the children have cleared the stage b) you should leave your seat and rush up to the stage to find your child c) exclaim loudly how tired you are and bored. I actually witnessed this. From a dad. Pathetic.

8. On the way home it’s a good idea to: a) offer your praise b) critique the performance c) offer your sympathy

How’d you score? I honestly thought all of correct answers to these questions were common sense. Or at least something everyone learns in grammar school.

Apparently, I’m wrong.

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Filed under Be-Causes, Lessons Learned, Music