The first concert I ever attended was Avril Lavigne and Swollen Members at Rogers Arena with my brother and parents at the age of 10 years old. Yes that’s right, Avril Lavigne… but before you make any judgement, remember that at the time every prepubescent skater boy was raging over this young blond skater chick. She had a certain edge about her before she started putting pink and green streaks in her hair.
On the actual show night, I remember enjoying the concert but being taken aback by how huge and loud it was inside the stadium. In fact, I specifically remember my mum commenting on it and sticking bits of tissue paper in our ears to try and reduce the volume. Of course this is all laughable to look back on now, considering the shows I attended later on in life.
My worst concert experience was the Bassnectar dubstep show I went to with a couple friends at the beginning of 2012. It was much worse than Avril Lavigne. I can’t reiterate enough how horrible it was. There was a time when dubstep could be fun and clubbing during my Montreal days made it appealing for a little while. It was party music. However, this raging Bassnectar show was nothing but the first four letters of his name; bass. Illegal decibel levels pummelled your entire body over and over again with no other audible sound or melody, just vibration after vibration. Front row ravers literally left the concert with bleeding eardrums. I woke up the next day with an awful hang over and my eardrums still vibrating at a low pitch that made it disorientating to walk and talk. It was not fun.
On a brighter note, I have attended many spectacular concerts ranging from classics such as The Rolling Stones to indie folk artists such as Ben Howard. One of my greatest experiences was the 2011 Sasquatch Music Festival. Only 18 at the time, I went with one other friend and we were blown away by the amount of amazing live music! It was my first festival experience and I loved every part of it including the camping, lack of showering, and hot weather. I’m stoked to go back at the end of this month!
If I really had to pick my best concert experience, I suppose I would have to choose Dispatch, my favourite band from high school. It was the first time Dispatch had ever played in Vancouver and they performed at the great Commodore Ballroom. My friends and I arrived two hours early to secure the best spot in the crowd, front and centre of the stage, and we waited in unbearable anticipation for the band. The crowd and myself went absolutely ecstatic when they came on stage and the energy level in that room was like nothing I had experienced before. We knew every song and all sang along.
Live music has made up some of the best experiences of my life. It has a power like no other to bring people together. Who knows what inspiring concerts will await me in the future, including my own performances.
What are your first, best, and worst
concert experiences? Please leave your answer in the comments below.