Music and Crowds

If you have visited my blog before, you might think that photography is my creative passion. Well, it is a recently re-discovered passion, my other creative activity is singing. Jazz mostly. And I love listening to good singers as much as I love looking at beautiful photos. The young lady on the stage is one of my inspirations, great voice and great sense of humour.

Last weekend I spontaneously decided to pay a short visit to the annual jazz festival in town. Visits to the festival can’t be planned in advance, it justly has a reputation for horrible weather. There were weekends when people ended up grilled and dehydrated, but there were also weekends, when the tarps were blown off stages, the scene illuminated by lightnings (no, I didn’t watch the scene myself, I watched the thunderstorm through a window and saw photos later). Getting soaked is a common experience. I have taken to checking the weather forecast regularly before the festival and deciding last minute, if I will attend or not.

On Sunday, the forecast predicted rain in the evening and the sky looked like it, but my favourite local musicians (see above) were schedule to perform in the late afternoon. So I grabbed my robust little camera and blended in the crowd.

It wasn’t the musicians’ luckiest day. A guitar string tore just when they got on the stage, the sound tech needed patient and careful instructions, the crowd was noisy and restless. This isn’t the nicest festival stage. People have to walk directly past the stage on their way around the festival which has about a dozen stages in the area. The music was good, the atmosphere was not.

It started dripping a bit during the concert. I would have loved to listen to one other musician after this concert, but a quick look at the sky told me, that would become a very wet experience. So I hurriedly left when they got off the stage. It started raining for real when I was almost home.

After the experience this year, I have made decisions on future visits. I feel the festival is the perfect opportunity to check out bands I don’t know yet. So, weather permitting, I’ll be back next year. It is not always an opportunity to fully enjoy good music. There have been magic moments during previous years, but a lot of things have to happen at the same time to create one: good musicians, friendly, attentive audience, decent weather.

As one other lady in the audience put it: it pays to pay for a concert ticket. So that’s what I’ll do more often from now on.

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