I was almost 19 when I saw Frank Zappa in Rotterdam (4th of May 1988). I felt really young at the time. Waiting for the venue to open I was surrounded by old men with long hair and big beards, looking like they just escaped from Easy Rider. There was nothing dangerous about them, just a friendly bunch of hippies, some smoked pot, they just made me feel so incredibly young. Inside we were guided to our seats, only reserved seats that evening, and we watched Frank play in admiration, not moving, not dancing, just applauding and yelling a bit (maybe). It all felt so surreal.
Concerts are for the young, pop music in a way is for the young. Decades later I went to see Solomon Burke in Utrecht. No seats this time, everyone pushing around a bit to find the best place in the audience. Halfway the concert an older man left his spot to get himself a beer. Of course that spot was taken when he returned, much to his amazement and dismay. It made me grin at the time. Silly old man, so unfamiliar with going to a pop concert, so out-of-place.
Not only age can make you feel out-of-place. When Kraftwerk played Amsterdam in 2004 I remember being perplexed by the number of nerdy men in the audience. All were wearing thick square glasses. It was the most nerdy, male dominated concert I ever visited. I guess I would have had the opposite experience at a Coldplay concert, minus the glasses. If only I liked Coldplay.Tweet