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Friday, 1 March 2013

Rock and roll aint noise pollution - It's the audience that contribute to it.

I went to the cinema a few nights ago.
Don't ask me what the film was about as there were a few groups of people in their twenties who were loudly shouting over the performances that were playing out on the big screen.
I literally couldn't hear a word.
It wasn't as if they started off attentively watching the film and lost interest because they had started talking from before the titles rolled.
They literally had zero interest in what was going on, and I wasn't sure why they had spent the money for a ticket just to very loudly update each other on who they pulled the previous weekend.

Okay. That's not true.

It was the theatre.

Okay, That's not true either.

It was a gig.

Now this is nothing new.
The chatter at gigs has always been with us and always will be, but what level is acceptable?

If Motorhead are playing then let's be honest it is actually a necessity to raise the decibel level of your voice just to tell a mate that you fancy a pint and it's his round.
Similarly if an act is playing in the corner of a pub then those of us who profess to be music lovers have to accept that there will be people there just popping in for a pint.
It's quite possibly their local and we are intruding on their patch.
So there is a sliding scale of what is acceptable.

What isn't acceptable though is people buying tickets to an event in a music venue and standing in huddles screaming at each other while an artist with an acoustic guitar tries to entertain us all.
Of course the arrogant, ignorant and immature will consider that as they bought a ticket that they can do as they damn well please.
Unfortunately doing what they damn well please has an impact on others who bought tickets to strangely enough listen to the acts who are playing.
I know that for some it's a hard concept to grasp, but for some of us we do actually spend our hard earned cash on being entertained, and we don't really appreciate shelling out for a night of listening to what sounds like someone reading from an Only Way Is Essex script.

On a basic level I suppose the question is why do these people attend gigs?
There's a few reasons.
One is that on the circuit where bands are trying to build up a fan base they are happy to flog their tickets to any mate that they can.
Fan or not.
That their mate is willing to buy a ticket is assuredly appreciated.
The support financially to the band is something that none of us should sniff at, and a good turn out at a gig can equate to a return invite to a venue.
However if they are only going to show support, and aren't listening at all to the support acts, or even their mates band, then why don't they just sit in the upstairs, or downstairs, bar of a venue - if they have one - and chat to their mates there instead of five feet from the band as they compete with the pa?

It's as annoying as fuck.

The other reason people attend the gigs is because it's a social event.
There's absolutely nothing wrong with that.
That's in fact what the gig is, a social event, and more the merrier is usually what I say.
To be honest no one is expecting anyone to sit in reverential silence.
Talking is allowed, having a laugh is allowed, but an awareness of how loud it gets would be greatly appreciated by others in the venue.

Now I'm sure that some reading this will see themselves in it and take some umbrage.
If it is you personally then think about it a bit.
You've been a fud and been called on it.
Maybe, but it doesn't make what has been said any less true.

Show some respect to the artists and the organizers of the events and stop thinking that the world revolves around you and we might all get on a little better.

Oh., and if you want to read some more thoughts on the subject there was some well made points from The Pop Cop site with some equally excellent points made by some artists themselves.

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