Following their super-successful 1978 debut album, Van Halen went on in completing their very first world tour. Come early December, just one week after tour, the band made their way back into the studio to begin recording their second album.
With in just a matter of days… recording came to it’s end and Van Halen II was ready to be released. It wasn’t long after that the album made way onto the charts, taking it’s Spot as number 6 on the Billboard 200… along with 2 hit singles that were featured on the Billboard 100.
Where the first album was more of a showcase for Eddie Van Halen’s “flaming fingers”, the sophomore record was the chance for the rest of the band to show that they well deserved that spot on stage, playing alongside “TheSultan of the Six-String.”
We all know “THAT guy”, don’t we? The dude that has too many overpriced beers, hollers “Freebird!!” after every song, and generally does his best to ruin the night for everyone in his immediate proximity? Yeah, THAT guy.
Well, I sat down and thought about some of the things that he should focus on before attending any more shows. In fact, I bet all of us have broken at least ONE of these at some point. So check out this list of rock-show do’s and don’ts, and maybe we’ll all have a little better if a time at the next one.
1. Look Out For Kids!
Now, I believe that if a parent decides to bring their 4-10 year-old to a metal show, they do so with the understanding that there’s probably going to be some grown-up shit being said and done, and they can’t expect the rest of the crowd to sensor themselves. That said, if you see a small child around you, try not to trample them in the pit. They are metal’s next generation, after all!
2. Be a Door, Not a Wall.
Believe me, I’ve been at the back of the crowd before. I know how righteous it feels to set a pick on some yuppie trying to reclaim his spot at the front after a pee break. But guys, yuppies gotta pee, too! Plus you’re more likely to get beer spilled on you if you pull a Snorlax. If you wanna be up front, show up earlier!!
This should go without saying, but no one payed money to hear you call the lead singer a douche-bag. You’re here for the headliner, we get it, now sit down, shut up and pretend to be a normal human being, as hard as that may be!
4. Getting too messed up/fighting
Ok, it’s hot, you’re thirsty, probably have to pee and you’ve been standing in the same spot for 2 hours waiting for your guys to hit the stage. I can see how someone bumping your elbow while passing you could break the camel’s back, I guess. Stop. Think. If you get booted for fighting, you just suffered all that discomfort for nothing. Let it go, man. Let. It. Go…..
5. Crowd surfers
Here’s another one that shouldn’t need to be brought up, but please, PLEASE, if a fellow ranger is being passed forward, do your part and help out. Don’t throw. Don’t drop. Be cool. And if it’s a female, NO GROPING!! C’mon, guys, that’s stage 4 creeper shit, and you deserve more than an ass-whoopin’ for it.
6. Be nice to the staff/security/Respect the Facility
We’re all here to have a good time, right? Well these people make it happen for us. FOR A LIVING! Try to put your authority issues aside for the evening and remember that when we leave, they’re staying back cleaning up after our sloppy asses. So make their job a little easier and throw your trash away, shake the bouncer’s hand and smile at the box office lady. Don’t cost nuthin’, so why not?
Not a lot to say with this one, except READ THE ROOM. There are mosh bands, and there are no-mosh bands. No one at a Dave Matthews show wants a stray fist to the forehead! Use your best judgement, fellas.
8. If You’re in the Front Row, BANG YOUR FUCKING HEAD!!!
Here we are, the entire reason I thought to write this. I can’t stand to see people, chests to the barricade, last song of the set, eyes half shut and jaws on the floor looking like damn zombies. As much as the band is here to perform for you, as the only audience members they can see, you owe it to them to throw that energy back. If you can’t or don’t want to, get out the way! There are literally hundreds of people behind you that would be glad to take your spot. I mean, you paid for the tickets, so get excited for fuck’s sake!!
Look, I’m not trying to be preachy or anything, and please feel free to leave a comment, or an amendment, for that matter, if I’ve left something out or whatever. I just feel like concerts exist to give us a chance to be a community, one mass of like-minded individuals with one goal: to show support and admiration for the music we love. So I’ll leave you with a quote, and take it to heart…
Crack open a cold one (or several), dig out your copy of Cowboys From Hell and send a big “Happy Birthday!!” to the one and only, often imitated, never matched, drummer and founding member of Pantera Mr. Vincent Paul Abbott, born in Abilene, Tx. this day in 1964. Along with brother “Dimebag” Darrell, Vinnie kept time for the Texas groove-metal band from 1981 to 2003, when upon it’s dissolution, the two formed Damageplan(2003-2004). Vinnie went on to play in metal super-group Hellyeah from 2006 until his death in June, 2018. Happy Birthday, Vin. You and Dime are sorely missed, but you’ll always be in our hearts. We’ll see you both at the after-party!!
I thought I’d never get to say it, but we’re less than 6 months away from NEW TOOL MUSIC!! Which means a tour is on the horizon and fast approaching!!! You may all now release your squeals of anticipation and excitement (because I totally am!!).
The new dates only represent 14 days in May, and are coordinated with they’re previously scheduled festival dates, so if you don’t see your hometown on the list, don’t freak out! At least, not yet. I’m 99% sure that more dates will be announced as we get closer to the album drop.
So here is the new list. Tickets are going FAST, so grab them while you can!