Friday, March 19, 2010

Found this article today. Something I have been thinking about a lot. The last concert I went to was Skinny Puppy at the Rickshaw in Vancouver. I was standing back, off to the side just watching. A few songs in I couldn't take it anymore and I pushed my way to the front of the crowd right up to the security barrier. Suddenly in the throng of dancing, sweaty bodies, I felt the music so much more. My heart rate went up, my face lit up in a huge smile mirroring the smiles of those around me. The communal aspect of being in the pit was so familiar, and oddly comforting. Getting your body into the music is really what the live show should be about. No more shoe gazing. I realize that I am guilty of standing back and just watching a concert, but the best memories I have of shows are the ones where I literally threw myself into the music. - Jon

From GIZMODO, written by Matt Buchanan
"There's something to be said for watching a concert with your own eyes, not mediated by the lens of a camera or the fuzzy screen of a cellphone, compulsively trying to capture it forever.

You'll only remember hazy scraps and snippets, like when the guitarist smashed his Fender into the speaker and you got clipped in the eye by plastic shrapnel because you were right up front, and never moved, never gave an inch to the intruding crowd, even though you had to pee really bad during the last three songs. Those are the moments that matter, the ones you'll hang onto, the ones you'll recount again and again in bars and on roadtrips. Or maybe you're drunk, and you won't remember anything, but the next day, you'll know you had a really amazing time, inversely proportional to the size of your hangover, and by how wispy the images, sounds and smells are that billow through your brain are.

Not that you were pissed off for half an hour while you tried to hold your arm steady against the quaking crowd, clenching your entire body to forever freeze the perfect photo op, or waiting for the most awesome possible time to record a clip, stalking that ephemeral moment like prey, just to upload it for your other friends who were lame and didn't make it.

Those photos might be on Facebook forever, but what are you really recording for posterity? A million smudged pixels that, if I squint, vaguely resembles John Mayer? A blown out recording of a song that sounds kinda like a bad cover of that Grizzly Bear song? Oh, it's really Vampire Weekend. And it is "Two Weeks." Oops.

Just because you can document and share nearly every moment of your life doesn't mean you should. Stop worrying so much about stealing away with an image or a clip that perfectly crystallizes the night, like a trophy to collect, another document to catalog, and just experience it. Enjoy it. There's not a camera on the planet that can capture the way a concert makes you feel. Take one picture. Mark the occasion. Then put your goddamn camera down."

1 comment:

Kev said...

And yet Jon, you are so mild mannered the rest of the time. Do you have to change in a phone booth before you hit the pit? Ha. We've got to go to a show with you some time...