Why it’s Okay to Go to a Concert Alone

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By John Walaszek

When I first moved to Chicago, I didn’t go see Bone Thugs-n-Harmony at Double Door because I couldn’t find anyone to go with. It was a Monday, but I guess nobody else wanted to unwind and go see Bizzy. So I didn’t go to the show, two blocks away from my apartment, because I didn’t want to go by myself.

There’s a weird stigma with doing something by yourself in public. There are certain things we accept doing alone, and other things that we do not. Instead of going to the show I probably just got high and watched Chappelle's Show, by myself. Watching shows and movies on your own in your own home is okay, but when other people can actually see you watching Life of Pi by yourself, it becomes extremely uncomfortable.

So when I couldn't find anyone to come and see The Orwells a few months ago, I bit the bullet and went alone. It was weird at first, but then kind of great. Complete freedom. Like sleeping naked for the first time. But when I tell people about that show, I get mixed reactions. A lot of people have told me that they admire my courage, like I overcame some tragedy, and that they could never go to a show alone. Others express jealousy, saying they wish they could do something like that.

Life happens, but you shouldn’t miss out on something because you’re too scared to walk to another building and stand there alone for two hours. Not to mention a building that is packed with music, people, and liquor. It’s impossible to end up spending the whole time alone.

However, I know that a lot of people can’t even fathom doing this, and that’s why I put together a list of things to remember just in case Bone Thugs-n-Harmony are playing down the street from your apartment and nobody else wants to go.

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  • John Walaszek

    Thanks for reading! And yes, exactly. It doesn’t have to be an all night event with drinks and dinner when you’re by yourself… you can just slip in for an hour and watch some great music. That beats watching ancient aliens re runs… even tho I love that show

  • Julian Andres

    Got mixed feelings about going on solo but im gonna try harder!

  • Mark Ralph
  • Random dude

    I saw Santigold alone a while back when she came to AZ post Coachella. I convinced myself it was probably going to suck due to just generally feeling lonely. When she came on the place blew up and I quickly realized I had no idea what the fuck I was crying about. I manuevered my way up to the front row, got some rad photos and left as happy as a high schooler that just got his first blowjob behind the gym bleachers.

  • Mike Ghent

    I would have given this comment a thumbs up if you had written ”I was petrified” after you wrote ”at first i waz affraid”.

  • Megan Cortes

    Hey there! I’m going to see CHVRCHES on the 26th and I’m going alone, which is why I’m reading this article. Haha After reading you’re comment I felt better about it, and I’m so excited to see them!

  • Domonique Baul

    Thank you so much for this article! I was about to miss seeing Erykah Badu at the Fox in Detroit because all my friends are being cheap. I feel 100 times better about buying the last single ticket near the stage

  • Nat

    This is just what I needed to read…I’ve missed out on many concerts just because none of my friends are as into music as I am and can’t justify the $$ to see live music.. I on the other hand couldn’t think of anything better! I’ve been to many concerts but always with some. Then DRAKE just announced his first Australian tour and no one I know really cared that much…that’s when I decided stuff that I’m living my life and I don’t want to miss out on something I’ve been waiting a long time simply coz no one wanted to go….so $300 later I’m going to see Drake in Feb 15 -I decided if I’m going to do it I’ll do it in style so I got a VIP ticket!…I couldn’t feel more excited and strangely liberated!

    I was always the type of person that admired the others that traveled and did cool stuff by themselves…I think I’m now on my way to becoming that person :)

  • Sholz

    I’m deciding whether or not to go to a concert at the moment because i have no one to go with. I’ve never been to a concert before and im terrified i’ll get lost or not be able to find the right entrance or something. Reading this article makes me feel a bit better but im still so nervous :/ I wish there was a page or blog i could find and chat to people hoping to meet up with people as well

  • thewho

    I may just go to The Who alone!

  • Jess

    I completely get what you mean. If I go to the movies with a friend, it’s not because I actually want to watch the movie because THEY ARE THE WORST PEOPLE TO GO TO MOVIES WITH. Talkative, obnoxious, blech. Lovely people but worst moviegoers.

  • Nicole M

    This helped so much! LoL thank you, I plan on going to two concerts alone this year, already bought tickets, and I was nervous but what you said was exactly what I was hoping to hear. Nobody cares about you, just the music. And I’ll get there right at show time to avoid any awkwardness lol

  • Jim Pryde

    I ran into this discussion after asking the almighty Google oracle if it was alright to go to a concert alone. Rush, a band that’s an acquired taste, is going on their 40th (and likely final tour) and tickets are $100 or $150. No one wants to pay that much to go, so I’m doing it myself. I figure it’ll get me a better seat, since I’m only searching for one, and it will leave just me to enjoy seeing one of my favorite bands of all time. Good write-up!

  • why_not

    hmmm….i might just go to a concert on 3/14…thanks!

  • natalie

    how was your experience????

  • Nat

    I’m so glad you asked! It turned out to be one of the best concert experiences I’ve had! I actually ended up meeting another girl who was also by her self – this being my first solo experience I wasn’t looking to draw attention to myself but she came up to me and asked if I was by myself. It helped coz she held my spot when I needed it haha…but really there were so many others there that I saw were by themselves too…to anyone reading this…We’re not alone at all!

    Everyone’s there for the music and once it starts there’s nothing else that matters. Yeah you might feel slightly awkward standing around while it seems like everyone around you has someone to talk to, but seriously you’re likely to forget all about it when the act you’ve been dying to see comes on.

    Thanks to me taking the risk I was right up the front at the rails singing at the top of my lungs…I’d gladly do it again regardless if I did end up making a temporary friend or not!

    Also I got some amazing photos to look back on. You can have a look on my tumblr if you like :)…
    http://ndotmuzic.tumblr.com/post/112295217840/the-boy

    If you’re thinking about doing it go for it…You’re gonna have way more fun at the concert than sitting at home regretting not going!

  • natalie

    Sounds awesome! Definitely gonna try it. Im also a huge Drake fan. Thanks for sharing!

  • longview82

    Thank you for this. I was feeling a little nervous about going to a show alone…. I LOVE the band… just didn’t want to go along. LOL Now I feel silly feeling that way after reading this… Thank you for reiterating the fact that my happiness is most important – Forget the others that don’t want to go because it’s on weekday… I’m going to go and have fun!!! :)

  • longview82

    OK, I just saw that I put ‘along’ when I should have put ‘alone’. Autocorrect! lol whoopps.. thank you

  • Guest

    This story and everyone’s comments have made me feels heaps better about seeing RL Grime by myself in a few weeks!!! Thank you!

    Haven’t been to a show solo before but am not at all prepared to sacrifice seeing this set due to not having friends with the same music tastes as me. I’m actually really excited to do this alone now!

    The only thing I’m still worried about is departing the venue at the end of the show in an urban area with 1000 people off their heads… Any tips?

  • alana_aussie_83

    Excellent post and comments, thank you! Am going to see RL Grime in a few weeks on my own and it’ll be my first time flying solo, now I’m heaps keen!

    Only thing I’m still worried about is departing the venue at the end of the set in an urban area with 1000 odd off chops peeps. Any tips/suggestions?

  • alana_aussie_83

    Or quite the opposite. I saw MUSE on their Absolution tour having never heard of them.
    A M A Z I N G!!! Way more amazing than their records :)