Because when the band is great but you’re a turd, you ruin the experience for everyone else. So uh, stop that.
I spend a lot of time giving advice to musicians on how to present and conduct themselves; I feel it’s time to turn my focus to the audience for a moment. Now, I have seen UNSPEAKABLE things both during and after shows, so narrowing this list down to five things was super difficult [as shown by the bonus nugget of infinite wisdom at the end]. Please internalize this, because the first of you to complain that the scene is dying are the very last of you to admit that it’s mostly because you’re a bunch of assholes.
You needed to hear that. You’re welcome.
SHOW YOUR SUPPORT IN A NON-DESTRUCTIVE WAY. We understand you’re stoked and rowdy but breaking things that don’t belong to you and putting holes in the walls of an otherwise nice and accommodating venue is a fucking dick move. Also if for some reason you still think it’s 2005 and acceptable to beat the shit out of anyone who comes in contact with your dangerously flailing limbs, no, wrong, false. What you’re looking for is a martial arts dojo, not a show setting. It’s okay to dance. But be mindful and respectful. It’s not hard. And I’m sure it’d be appreciated by the bands, since I’m sure they want people feeling, like, comfortable enough to like, come…to…their shows…
STOP GETTING BELLIGERENT WHEN THINGS BEYOND CONTROL GO WRONG. Aw shit dude, this insane storm knocked out the power, I’m gonna flip a table or rip the doors off all the bathroom stalls and yell a lot because I can’t hold my PBR, ugh, they’re so cheap and I’ve had like seven of these. No. Stop. Please stay the hell home. You are annoying and literally everyone hates you.
DON’T MESS WITH ANYONE’S STUFF. I feel like I say “I can’t believe this even has to be said” a lot in regards to the advice I give, but seriously. Gear that’s not yours? No touchie. A purse or coat stashed in a merch bin for safekeeping that’s not yours? Also no touchie. A cash box or tip jar that’s not yours? Still no touchie. Drinks that aren’t being paid close attention to? Never, ever fucking touchie. Got it? Good.
STOP GROPING MUSICIANS. Stop grabbing at his crotch, if he wants your hands there I’m sure he’ll tell you after the set when you chat him up with no intention of actually buying a t-shirt. More often than not though, it’s the female musicians who get disrespected in this way and it’s sickening. Think she’s pretty? She really doesn’t need to hear it from you but if you really, really must tell her, do it politely in a way that does not involve running on stage and forcing your tongue on her face or grabbing a boob. You’re gross, and that is assault. Call me a feminist bitch, whatever—bottom line is, if you spent as much time practicing as you do undermining women in the music scene and trying to teach them ‘their place,’ you might actually one day play better than us.
DO NOT TOLERATE OR PERPETUATE SHITTY, PROBLEMATIC BEHAVIOR BY SUPPORTING SHITTY, PROBLEMATIC PEOPLE. I know it can be really hard to see people you admire for the flawed humans they are, but it happens. It sucks, but you need to remain objective. Don’t support a band that publicly humiliates, objectifies, assaults, or makes racist/homophobic/transphobic [etc.] remarks. Don’t support the sound guy who is an outed rapist. Don’t support the venue that did so much for the local scene but did nothing in defense of the queer kid who got beat up in their parking lot. Problems don’t just go away until they’re fucking eradicated. Lose respect when you deserve to, it’s okay. I promise.
BONUS: PLEASE STOP PEEING ON THINGS. Fucking seriously. A bathroom is still a bathroom even if some dudebro rips the doors off all the stalls.
As always, I’ve tried to shed light on some things by saying some words, blah blah blah, but this all means nothing without outside contribution and dialogue. I love hearing from you, so send me questions and concerns and get in touch if you have a message that you think needs to be shared and would like an interview. Find me at facebook.com/medioxcore.