The Wrong Fangirl Decisions

It’s been a while since I’ve written here about anything but in terms of fangirling there’s been little to justify much of a post. So that brings me on to today, what has prompted me to write now?

A lot of it has to do with one artist. In my last post I said that I was saving my concert fund to see this artist and as a consequence made sacrifices when it came to other artists. The thought of a particular show kept me going but once I found out that it wasn’t going to happen, I spent the concert fund on a computer. That I don’t regret however there’s still a part of me that regrets some of the decisions I did make and every so often my head likes to remind me of some of the negativity surrounding them. I still feel from time to time that as far back as my first concert from this artist that I should have chosen an alternative show.

Then this brings me on to the album signing. The last one was in 2012 and thanks to HMV’s over-zealous security guards, I left feeling upset and disappointed that I couldn’t even speak to the artist. I later realised that another disappointment the day prior to this signing could have sub-consciously altered my behaviour. I put it behind me, hoping for a more positive experience in the future but alas that was not to be.

Fast forward to more recent times. The artist announced a signing and later in the details emerged that to be able to go, you’d have to purchase a particular version of this album that did not feature any bonus content that I had decided that I wanted. To some people this wasn’t an issue but for me it was just a little bit too over budget when I had to consider travel costs plus the cost of the album that I was hoping to purchase. I had to say no but now regret it as I find out that it was a better experience than the one I did actually go to.

It now seems to have left me with an even sourer memory of the 2012 signing but I guess I have to look at it this way, at least I had the opportunity and the fact that I blew it is just one of those things.

Choices

I no longer have the same concert fund that I used to have – because I spent it on concerts strangely enough! So that means that I have less money available to spend on them when they do come up and recently all four of the artists I have followed or would like to to see in concert have announced that they are planning shows or have released the tickets for sale already. To cut a long story short, I can’t afford to travel to see the three of them and still have any money left over to be able to see the other one in the very special show that he has planned for next year. One of the three’s tickets are still affordable (under £40) and because she is performing in Bournemouth, I decided several months ago that I’d go and see her and rumour has it that she may not be back on tour here for a while as well. The other two recently released tickets for sale and both were over £60 at the cheapest prices and neither were performing near enough to me that I’d be able to get away with not paying for a hotel room and a rather pricey train fare. It was disappointing but something had to be done and so I decided that the best thing to do would be to concentrate all my efforts on making the most of seeing one artist rather than try to see them all and end up disappointed when my bank balance says no.
How do you choose who that artist should be though? There was only one who was really only a maybe anyway because I don’t think he was as vocally strong as he used to be. The second I’d never seen before but the frontman, who some say made the band what it was died years ago. Could I justify spending that kind of money to hear half the group that they were in their prime. The answer ended up being no.
The third I already had tickets for but she is young enough to still have a career in front of her and thus more opportunities to see her in concert than some of the others. It is for that reason that I decided that for the moment she would not be my primary focus. I will have seen her four times and my focus could very well return to her when my ‘chosen one’ has drawn a close to his live performing days.
That brings me to the ‘chosen one’. What was it about him that led me to choose him in the first place? I have seen him seven times and although his tickets aren’t as cheap as the lady who was my second choice, he gives value for money. He gives everything he has to giving his fans a great show, he has consideration and gratitude for his fans in general. Whilst his tickets may not be the cheapest out there, his VIP ticket packages are one of the cheapest and he is so warm and friendly to those he meets that you just can’t help but like him as a person.

Occasionally I’ll ask myself if I’ve picked the right one, particularly with the advertising for the others and the ‘chosen one’ being quiet in comparison but then I’ll listen to a live album or watch a DVD and I’ll know that I made the right choice.

 

Tour Documentaries

Unless you’ve been living under a rock these past few weeks, you’ll probably be aware of a little film called ‘This Is Us’ which follows British boyband One Direction on tour. There has been advertisements on TV and their premiere, which attracted th0usands of happy fangirls made the news. I’m not a One Direction fan but from the trailers for the film, it looks like a fairly fun and light hearted documentary and I’m sure that One Direction’s fans will enjoy the chance to get a closer look at their idols as they are on tour.
There has been several different tour documentaries in the past and like the One Direction film, they’re a fairly fun and lighthearted film for the fans to watch and enjoy but it is at this point when my attention focuses on another film called ‘In Search of Paradise’. The 2007 film follows American rock singer Meat Loaf as he embarks on a Canadian tour. Unlike how ‘This Is Us’ appears, ‘In Search Of Paradise’ is a realistic but rather depressing watch. Moments of fun are infrequent and brief and Meat Loaf spends much of the film either complaining or worrying.

Is this approach to a tour documentary the realistic approach that fans want to see or do they want to see something that gives them some hope that they are going to be in for a fun and entertaining evening when they themselves are able to go to a concert? The first time I watched this, it actually made me question whether I wanted to go to a show of an artist who clearly wasn’t getting much enjoyment out of giving concert but on the other hand, did I want to see something that over-glamourised the tour process?

I don’t get it

For as long as I’ve been part of fan communities there will always be fans who like to ask the question about their favourite male celebrity’s underwear preference and maybe I’m a bit different to other fans but I couldn’t care less about what kind of underwear my favourite celebrity wears. I think that the only purpose for publishing that kind of information is to fuel the fantasies of some fans because other than that, I can’t see any point in having that information published. Surely a person’s underwear choice is personal to them, after all you don’t go and ask some other random man you don’t know what kind of underwear they prefer. They don’t seem to ask female celebrities whether they prefer thongs or boyshorts, unless I’m just not interested enough in female celebrities to read that kind of information.

Videoing Concerts

If you’ve been to a concert recentely you’re bound to have noticed someone waving their smartphone in the air recording the concert. If you’ve searched under an artist’s name on YouTube, you’ve probably come across the results of this. Now for some unknown reason, some fans think they’re entitled to be doing this and can get quite defensive if the video they have posted to YouTube is removed.  The fact is that fans do not have the right to be videoing concerts and on the reverse of every ticket I’ve ever bought is a notice that says that video recording is prohibited. At some concerts there has also been noticed displayed on the big screens at the start of the show and you’d have to be fairly stupid to miss them. Despite this, people still try to video the shows although it seems daft to pay all that money to go to a show and then spend the majority of it watching it through a smartphone or a camera screen. If you’re happy to watch your favourite artists through a screen then why not stay at home and do that?
I appreciate that some people might want to video a concert so they can have something to look back on in the future but judging by some of the videos I’ve seen on YouTube of the shows I have been to, these recordings do not do the performance justice. In some cases you can barely see the artist because it is recorded from so far back in the arena and in some cases you can barely hear them because of all the distortion or the sounds of the other audience members singing along. Personally, I don’t blame artists for wanting these videos removed from YouTube because after all, what artist doesn’t want their work to be seen at its best?

Dedication to be admired

According to recent news articles Elton John continued to perform a concert despite being in agonising pain with appendicitis. Unfortunately the pain became too much for him and he was forced to leave the stage halfway through the performance but you’ve got to admire him for having the dedication to try to do the show so that fans aren’t disappointed. You compare this sort of thing to the likes of Justin Beiber who left hundreds of his young fans disappointed because he was two hours late on stage, allegedly because he was throwing a tantrum over video games.

 

A new look at appreciation

Once again and less than a couple of days after walking on stage late in London, he has done the same in Nottingham disappointing his fans once again. Not only that but there’s now complaints from people who had purchased the M&G packages saying that they only got about 20 seconds with the star and didn’t even get to speak to him and that’s got me thinking about my own fangirling.
To some, a Meet and Greet package may seem like a waste of money and perhaps for some of Bieber’s fans it was but I’ve attended one of Meat Loaf’s M&Gs before and thought it was worth every penny that I spent on it and I’m thinking that is entirely down to the artist. Meat Loaf is a hard worker who puts everything he can into giving his fans the best that he can and I fully believe that he genuinely cares about us. At the Meet and Greet, I was extremely nervous and I really felt as if Meat was trying his best to put me at ease and make conversation with me and I’m grateful to him for that. So many others would have just posed for the photo and moved on when faced with the fan that has no idea what to say.

It’s strange how reading about another group of fans experiences has made me realise how lucky I am to be a Meat Loaf fan and how much I appreciate him being the kind of artist he is.

That’s how you treat your fans

It’s been in the news that Justin Bieber’s fans are upset with him because he didn’t arrive on stage for his concert until 10:23PM, meaning that some fans didn’t even get to see their idol as they had to leave to make sure they could get the last trains home.
What makes this worse is that up until this afternoon there was no apology from Bieber. If he had any decency and his excuse was as genuine as he says then he should have apologised to the fans that were still at the show and then followed it up with an official apology on his website and social networking sites.
It’s the young fans in particular that I feel sorry for. These tickets could have been their birthday or christmas present or they might have saved their pocket money to buy them and they will have been looking forward to seeing their idol for as long as they’ve known that he was going on tour. To then have to leave before he even makes his appearance on stage must have been so upsetting for them.

Bieber could do well to remember that his fans put him where he is and also have the power to take that away again if he doesn’t respect them.