NEW COLUMN LAUNCH: Candidly Concerting

Music simply uncovers what is there, makes you feel emotions that you didn’t necessarily know you had inside you, and runs around waking them all up. A rebirth of sorts.

How To Stop Time, Matt Haig

If there is one thing I refuse to shortchange out of my expenses, it is my indulgence in viewing live music. My attendance has skyrocketed since 2017, when I started attending gigs solo in Dublin, to April 2019 where I have attended four to date this year with tickets to four more already in pocket. The growth year of 2018 saw 11 concerts total. (Full listings at the bottom of the article)

I could easily YouTube concerts, pirating the experience for free online. This route would doubtlessly save money on the ticket itself, plus the inevitable vodka soda I sip during the opening act. But there is an ineffable, priceless element to a live show that comes from the connection between the performer and the audience in that moment. Sure, the performer is doing the show numerous times, but the audience lives the experience once. It’s an hour or three of their lives that they will never duplicate, replicate or even be able to closely imitate. And that, in turn, creates something incredibly special for the performer, separating it from the rest of the shows in the tour (or so says Hugh Jackman. YouTube it). And so I indulge.

As eagerly as I consume these experiences, I’m equally anxious to find ways to process them and, for lack of a better phrase, memorialize them. Content in the 21st century involves an active participatory element, and so I have decided to launch this column. It won’t be frequent, but it will be quality over quantity. The themes will revert often back to what I talk about on this blog — Millennial life, mental health, romance, fledgling careers, the works — but it will center around the performances gifted by the talents that rock my world, quite literally. And I can’t tell you how excited I am to share these experiences with you from here on out.

I also assume my Instagram followers will appreciate me no longer clogging up their newsfeeds with sub-par videos with low-grade audio. But their loss is definitely your gain, if this is your interest too.

There’s some important info you need to know if you’re going to follow this column: who do I go to see? Here’s a listing of everyone I’ve seen in the last two years, followed by a little teaser of who’s to come in the upcoming months.

2017: Hudson Taylor, Us the Duo, Bear’s Den, blackbear, Oh Wonder

2018: Musae, James Bay feat. RuthAnne, X Ambassadors feat. Morgxn, The Aces, Anderson East, Demi Lovato, Jessie Reyez, Us the Duo (again, don’t hate me), Lewis Capaldi, Jacob Banks

2019: Nina Nesbitt feat. Sophie Rose and Plested, Gavin James, Kelly Clarkson feat. Kelsea Ballerini and Brynn Cartelli, LEON feat. Morgan Saint

Upcoming 2019: lovelytheband, Zara Larsson feat. Astrid S, Maggie Rogers, Sara Bareilles

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