Ups and Downs On the Hands of a Crowd

On August 22, I attended a concert at the Music Farm. The bands playing that night were Less Than Jake, Badfish, and Shipwrecked Losers.

I didn’t know what to expect from the show because I’d been to the Music Farm for a show before and it was not as rough as I was expecting. I knew that the headliner, Less Than Jake, usually invites a more rowdy crowd, but after my last experience at the Music Farm, I didn’t know what to expect.

As it turns out, the crowd was very lively and a bit rough at some points. The opener, Shipwrecked Losers, was a very young band and local. They played well and put on a great show; their crowd interaction was superb. The second band, Badfish, played well, but their set was very long and a little monotonous. They lacked adequate crowd interaction for a truly good show, in my opinion, but the crowd loved them anyways. I did find it very impressive that when one of the guitarist’s guitar strings snapped, he kept playing anyways and simultaneously put on a new string and tuned it. When Less Than Jake come out, I was beyond excited. I’ve been listening to them since I was a kid, and I’ve seen them once before a couple years ago. They did not disappoint, and the crowd was great (just rough enough not to be boring, but not so rough that it took away from the show). I would definitely go again.

After discussions in class, I noticed a lack of organization that could have been avoided had the management been more aware. There was only one security guard in front of the stage behind the barricade. Not only was he young and alone, but he was not prepared for crowd surfers. When the first one came down during Less Than Jake’s set, no one was there to catch the crowd surfer and he hit the front of the barricade and then the floor. When the security guard came back to the middle to investigate what happened, another crowd surfer came up. Instead of allowing the crowd surfer to come off of the crowd and help him down to the ground, the security guard looked confused and pushed him back onto the crowd. Eventually, another security guard came up and explained to the first security guard that he was supposed to help the crowd surfers down. This was a big mistake on the Music Farm’s part. Someone could have gotten seriously hurt, all because they did not properly prepare for the kind of show they were hosting.

Even with it’s hiccups, I would recommend attending a show such as this to anyone, well, to anyone who enjoys ska music and getting jostled around.

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