So, You’re Going to the Show: 6 Tips for Live Shows

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The next two weeks are filled with live shows for me. This Friday I’ll be going to Lorna Shore at The Champ in Lemoyne then swinging over to Stage on Herr at HMAC to see JT and The Mild Heat the same night.


I’ll finally be going to see Mac Miller at The Fillmore in Philly (one of my favorite indoor venues ever) and then a few days later going to The Chameleon Club for the August Burns Red Annual Christmas Show.

So that’s 4 shows in the matter of a week. If you haven’t figured it out by now, I love live music.

Over decades of going to hundreds of shows from local bar bands to some of the biggest festivals ever held, I have picked up a few tips for maximum concert enjoyment:

Minimize Everything

Leave your coat in your car, leave your wallet if you can, and guys, always ask to carry what you can for a lady (I see a lot of cargo shorts at shows) so she doesn’t have to carry her purse around the entire time if she doesn’t want to. I typically only go in with my ticket, phone, keys, ID and cash. The less you have, the better!

Be On Time

This seems like a no-brainer for me but there have been a few occasions where I let other people drive to shows and have missed great supporting acts and a handful of times where we even missed a few songs from the headliner. So make sure you are on time so you can lock down a good spot for the show or even for the tailgate! I like to get my money’s worth at shows and experience as much of it as I can.

Know Your Venue

Know what to expect if you’ve never been to the venue before. I remember going to see Nine Inch Nails a few years ago at Bryce Jordan Center in State College and after a few hours of tailgating, finding out they didn’t serve beer inside was, at the time, devastating. Some venues have dress codes that do not allow for hoodies or more commonly, hats. It’s always a good idea to check the venue website to get the details of how they run their shows and you can also find out about the best places to park from the venue as well.

Get Fresh N’ Clean

This tip is a bit more targeted towards the guys here because ladies will spend time to make sure their outfits are on point for the show but guys … come on guys. You’re going to be surrounded by a lot of people so let’s make sure we are at least doing the basics like showering, putting on deodorant, and if you have long hair (guys or gals), please tie it up or at least be respectful enough not to slap me in the face with it every few minutes.

Post-Concert Kit

I do this for almost every show except for the super local ones. I bring a change of shirt because I cannot stand driving home in a sweat-soaked shirt. Seems pretty basic but I take it a step further and bring a change of socks, deodorant, hand sanitizer, a towel to dry off with and maybe even some wet wipes depending on how sweaty I got during the show. Also important is to have a big bottle of water waiting for me when I get back. Hydrating before and after the show is clutch, and I’ve seen too many times concert-goers succumb to heat exhaustion.

FaceTime, Another Time

Has anyone seen this growing trend at any shows they have gone to? As if someone filming the entire concert right in front of you wasn’t bad enough, now they are holding up their phones to FaceTime with their friends who didn’t go to the concert. Its extremely distracting to those around you. Put the phone down after you snap a few pics or even get a short clip of your favorite song and enjoy the show!

Going to concerts is always about having fun and having a great experience so make sure you prepare yourself to have the best time possible! Do you have any tips or tricks when you go to concerts? Let’s hear about it below.

Micah Jacobs
Author: Micah Jacobs

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