How to prepare for the best concert experience

The night before a concert is always so exhilarating, especially when you’ve been waiting months and counting down for this day to come. Instantly, the trail of questions map themselves out: What should I wear? Which songs will the band play? How early should I arrive? Will I meet the band after the show? Do I look hardcore?

While you freak out about the infinite possibilities for your evening, it’s always important to go in prepared.

All jokes aside about Scar’s classic rendition about proper preparation in “The Lion King,” I am totally serious. Wearing heels is always a good idea in theory so you tower above everyone and look cute simultaneously. But when you’re caught off guard by a mosh pit at a pop-punk show, you’ll wish you had thought that one out.

Know what you’re getting yourself into before you get in there. There’s nothing worse than being in a crowd and not knowing any of the words to the songs. I mean, most people wouldn’t pay money to go see an artist they are unfamiliar with anyway, but even knowing singles by the openers helps.

One time I was smack dab in the middle of an outdoor crowd for The Black Keys. I figured they were more likely to play their newer songs so I made sure I knew a few of their latest hits. To my dismay, the majority of their set consisted of older songs. While everyone around me was jumping around and drunkenly shouting all the lyrics, I nodded my head, grateful that my shorter stature concealed my clueless expression that was also hidden in the darkness of the night. Not only did I feel embarrassed for my lack of familiarity; due to my unpreparedness, I could not enjoy The Black Keys nearly as much as I should have.

Being prepared for a concert is like being prepared for a test: if you don’t practice and study enough beforehand, you’re going to fail. If you don’t go in with full effort, you won’t earn the grade you think you deserve. It’s bad enough when you meet members of a band and you don’t know their names. It is far worse when you can’t recall the name of their band or any of the songs that they played.

Preparation is a day-to-day necessity. You should be prepared for the weather, the apocalypse or for the lead singer of a band to pull you up on stage and sing the chorus of your favorite song. But as my high school chemistry teacher once said, “fail with dignity and grace.” The choice is yours.


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