Why you and your kids should be enjoying LIVE music
We’re lucky indeed to be living in the live music capital of Australia. Every night of the week, all across the city, you’ll find people enjoying live music in one of Melbourne’s many venues. Not only that, but there are loads of other musical events to check out – lots of it free.
We just thought we’d write a couple of articles – firstly about why you should go and see live music (if you’re not already), and also some resources to help you browse the multitude of musicians playing around Melbourne at the moment.
Firstly then, let’s talk a bit about why you should close YouTube, iTunes or Spotify (dare I say turn the CD off?), and get out to see something live.
To pick an arbitrary number, here are six good reasons to go and see live music.
“That’s it mum, I’m going to be a pop star!”
Starting from the perspective of a music school, a great reason to go and see live music is inspiration. For the younger students, it really is unimaginably awe-inspiring to see their favourite pop star playing a show at Rod Laver Arena or Etihad, in the flesh (!), and with such high levels of production (stage show, lighting, sound quality etc) it can be an out-of-this-world experience. This will do wonders for motivation for months/years to come.
For the older students, maybe your guitar teacher is hounding you to get down to Cherry Bar for some wailing blues guitar, or your singing teacher insists on you seeing your favourite act when they come through Hamer Hall.
Being able to play the sounds you love probably brought you to a music school in the first place. Seeing it live gives that sense or perspective – it is possible, and not just by the ‘greats’.
In any case, being astounded by a musician is a great source of motivation.
“The greatest thing I’ve ever experienced”
The spectacle alone is enough of a reason to attend live music. Whether it’s a stadium concert with full blown light show, speaker stacks bigger than trucks and 80 000 people; or perhaps an opera singer belting out a classic, backed by the MSO and framed by a magical sunset at the Sidney Myer Bowl; it could even be a live Wiggles show with crowd interaction, fun and dancing. The combination of the visual spectacle, the all encompassing sound, and crowd alongside you can really be unparalleled.
“The crowd went wild”
Talking of the crowd, there something special about sharing the experience with other people. People tend to bond, even strangers, through shared experience whether it be good or bad. Although this bond is unspoken, it can magnify your experience as you feed off of the crowd. Whether dancing along to a beat with thousands of other people (quite a sight!), or sitting in silent awe with a few other patrons similarly hypnotised by a stunning performance, the experience is somehow multiplied. It’s as if the combined emotional output of everyone there saturates the crowd. Hard to pinpoint with words, but particular to the live setting.
There is also the aspect, perhaps unique to music, that you can be surrounded by people at a concert, all experiencing the same sights and sounds, yet each person having an entirely unique emotional response. Perhaps being transported back to your younger days, or a different circle of friends or simply your initial response to the first time hearing the music. This is the nuanced counterpoint to the above, where the crowd seems to gel together.
“They played that song for 10 minutes!!”
Another bonus of a live performance is variations to the recorded sound. This difference might be something that might apply to the fans, but can be a pleasant surprise and provides a kind of authenticity. While it is both amazing and kind of satisfying to hear a song perfectly executed live, sounding exactly as the recorded version, there’s also definitely something to be said for versions that perhaps start familiarly, and proceed to twist and turn while maintaining the core aspects of the song. It’s like hearing it again for the first time but with a new energy, played live and perhaps never to be repeated.
“The first band were great!”
Most concerts will have a support act or two, usually curated to fit in well alongside the main act. The idea being if you like the main act, you’ll probably like the supports. Going out to a live gig is surefire way to discover new music – most bands start out this way.
I wasn’t going to go into studies, but…
Apparently going to see live music reduces stress levels, according to this study. A nice benefit to going to live music, if none of the above convinced you!
So there you have it, six great reasons to go and see live music as often as you can. Some of them are kind of obvious, others harder to pinpoint, but there really is a kind of magic and excitement that you won’t find anywhere else.
You can check out a bunch of helpful links here, now go find some music!