I am not that familiar with Bowling For Soup. I first heard of them through Jess. She has played a couple of their songs for me. Though I like the couple of the songs I really went to this show for Jess. This was a band she really wanted to see live and I was happy to go with her. When we looked at tickets we saw VIP tickets for $60 and thought that isn’t a bad price at all. In fact we thought that is about the price you would normally pay for a ticket to some shows. So we decided to buy them. It wasn’t until after we bought them that we realized VIP didn’t include a ticket into the show, that had to be bought separately. Since we already bought the VIP we went ahead and bought our GA tickets as well. Those were almost another $50 each but it was what it was and we were now set to go with VIP meet and greet. When we got to the show there was another guy who did the same thing but didn’t know until that moment he needed to buy his GA ticket. That made me feel better at least we figured that out right away and not the day of the show. He had to buy a resale ticket for even more then the face value of the ticket.
The day of the show as usual we left around our normal time even though we had VIP. We still wanted to make sure we were first in line for the VIP line, which we were. When we got there, there was only 1 girl who was already there in line for the general admission line. We had actually met her at the Sum 41 and Simple Plan show the month before. We ended up hanging out with her until more people started showing up. Once more people got there Jess and I started the VIP line. While we were in line they allowed you to do your merch shopping and said you could pick it up at the merch table when it was ready, so we did that. Shortly after we ordered the merch guy came out and asked if we (everyone outside who ordered) wanted their merch before they came in, in case we wanted to run stuff back to our cars. Everyone agreed that we wanted our merch so we didn’t have to deal with it once we got in. Plus Jess was hoping during the meet and greet we might be able to get her shirt signed (which we didn’t) but we wanted that option in case the opportunity arose.
When they let us in for the VIP meet and greet Jess and I managed to stand right in front of the 2 band members (the singer and bass player). They played 2 acoustic songs for all of us. I asked them both for a pick at the end which they both gave me one. Then we did a socially distance picture with them. After that we were handed a signed poster. Unfortunately we didn’t get a lanyard instead we got a little wrist band and that’s how they knew we were VIP. After that we got our spots on the rail right where we wanted to be. Jess held our spots while I ran back to the car to put the posters there so we didn’t have to deal with them all night inside. When I came back I was joking around with the security guys who had said it was ok to leave. They were really friendly and helpful. After I made my way back to the rail they let the GA people in and the girl who we were talking to outside came and stood next to us. On the other side of us we the guy who only had a VIP ticket and had to buy his GA ticket when he got there. I asked one of the security guys if he would take a picture of all of us. He told me wasn’t allowed. I told that was ok and thanked him anyway. I’ll talk more about him later on though.
The first band came out and I didn’t catch their name. They were a band I had never heard of before but they were good. They had some brass (Sax and trombone) which was cool. You don’t see that every often but it was good. The band themselves had a lot of energy and really pumped the crowd up. I managed to get a drum stick from that band when they were done with their set. The drummer actually handed it directly to me which was cool.
The second band I didn’t catch their name either but it was fronted by a transgender (a girl who is becoming a guy). I didn’t know any of their music either but they were good. They had a heavy sound to their music and it was good to keep the crowd nice and pumped up. At the end of their set I managed to get another drum stick from their drummer. That stick was also handed directly to me.
The third band was Less Than Jake. I had heard the name before but again I was unfamiliar with any of their music. It seemed like a lot of people there knew and and were certainly into their music. It was when they were playing the crowd started getting a little rowdier and pushing a little harder. I didn’t mind the pushing as I know that’s part of being up on the rail or near the pit. The band was pretty good and also had a lot of energy. The singer was engaged nicely with the crowd. During their set I hinted that I wanted a pick and the singer said something about not giving picks away and to stop asking but then threw one right at me. He threw several other picks out during his set and I managed to get a few of them. The trombone player handed Jess a pick. At the end of their set I also managed to get one of their drum sticks as well. That one again was tossed directly to me. I also got one of the many balloons they had floating around with their name on it.
When Bowling For Soup came out the place was pumped and ready. The crowd started pushing and moshing more and harder than they were for Less Than Jake. I honestly didn’t know they had the kind of music you would see people moshing to. People were not only moshing but they were also crowd surfing. The band did a great job of keep that energy up. The singer engaged a few times with the crowd. He talked about mental health and told people there is no shame in getting help if you need it. The entire band was throwing out picks throughout their set. I managed to get a couple and had a couple bounce off my hand, that were tossed directly to me. Some of the picks fell on the other side of the rail. I asked that one security guy once if he would grab a pick that was on the floor and he just ignored me. I figured he wouldn’t but I figured it didn’t hurt to ask either. I did get one of the photographers to hand it to me at one point, he also gave one to Jess that he found. At one point Jess and I swapped spots as a pick fell in front of her on the other side of the rail. When we traded spots this guy behind us started trying to push my hand off the rail. We had a short hand battle before I told him he better cool it. He said something back to me. I told Jess the guy was causing trouble and there was a chance he might try to fight me. My exact words to Jess was I might have to put this guy sleep. I don’t know if he heard that or what but next thing he leans over and says he didn’t want any trouble with me and lets just have a good time. We shook hands and that was the end of that. There were no more issues with that guy for the rest of the night. At the end of the show I tried to lean over the rail and grab that pick that was thrown in front of Jess. The minute I leaned over the security guy, the one who earlier told me he couldn’t take our pic grabs me very aggressively and pushes me back over the rail. He then tells me “no way, you have gotten enough shit tonight”. I was a little surprised as I didn’t know there was a limit to what you can get nor did I know he was the one regulating that. I made some comments to him about that and he just gave me a dirty look and didn’t say anything back. Then this girl who worked there walks up to me and says they have to make sure they are keeping the bands safe and they can’t have people trying to come over the barrier. That was not the reason he was doing that, he was doing it to be a dick! That’s what I told her too. I didn’t say this to her because I didn’t think of it in that moment but, it was clear I was just trying to lean over the rail to grab a pick, I wasn’t trying to get over the barrier to rush the stage. Not to mention all night they had crowd surfers going over that barrier and no one was concerned with them rushing the band. I didn’t cause any trouble all night with anyone and I wasn’t doing anything wrong. I didn’t even smoke my bowl inside so he again was just being a dick. I told him before I left I was sorry I hurt his feeling and I hope he didn’t cry then I made a cry baby face at him. I probably didn’t need to do that but I was pissed how aggressive he was with me. I wasn’t looking to fight him but I was looking to use my words to pick at him and show him how stupid he was. Again I probably didn’t need to do that. I usually get along with all the security staff at shows so I was really shocked this guy acted the way he did and for no reason. Despite the drama that went down, I had a great time. And again I think all the bands were great! I am glad I went and got to hang out with Jess for a band that was on her bucket list.
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