With the obsession in today’s culture to be unique and artsy, many members of society have been successful in exploiting that lust. Whether it’s buying that flower crown to make you seem like a hippie or buying combat boots because you want to seem edgy, going to a big name music festival will definitely make you the token hipster of your friend group.
Not all festivals are like this, but many of the more prominent ones like Coachella or Bonnaroo are definitely a cesspool of people who just want to craft an image for themselves. The integrity of going to actually see a bunch of artists present awesome concerts has diluted. Many websites offer tutorials on “festival looks” as if you have to maintain a certain aesthetic in order to go to these huge events. This makes the initial concept of going and having a fun time null and void.
Going to Bonnaroo or Coachella has essentially become a fashion statement.
Contrary to their own slogans (including “Be Yourself,” “Radiate Positivity” and banter of the same degree), if you’re wearing something different, don’t know a certain underground artist or don’t partake in psychedelic drugs, you’re an outcast. The same people wearing tie-dyed shirts emblazoned with those slogans are in fact not practicing what they preach.
Many of these festivals also promote the usage of intoxicating agents or substances. With a college student mindset, you might be up for experimenting anything and everything, despite the fact that this could ruin an experience that you probably spent over $300 to attend. Not only do they promote unhealthy choices in order to enhance the experience for their younger fans, it also widely effects other members of our society.
While I was watching the set of Of Monsters and Men at Bonnaroo 2013, my friends and I were awestruck when overhearing a conversation. Two intoxicated parents lost their young child somewhere on “The Farm” — but didn’t want to look for him because they were going to miss the set.
Another annoying aspect of large festivals that isn’t taken into consideration is the heat. Dehydration is a serious thing at these events. Who wants to be cramped in a claustrophobic stage that you can easily get trampled on? Or even worse, seriously injured?
Is going to a huge concert festival worth it? If you want to prove to your friends that you’re cool, then go for it, but remember this isn’t high school anymore. I’m not saying that any of these events have bad music, but the experience as a whole has a dark side to it.