The independent student media site of West Linn High School

wlhsNOW

The independent student media site of West Linn High School

wlhsNOW

The independent student media site of West Linn High School

wlhsNOW

Concert catastrophes

A guide and explanation for the current state of concerts
Fans+attend+a+Mother+Mother+concert+at+a+Portland+venue.
Molly Lundstrom
Fans attend a Mother Mother concert at a Portland venue.

Since the decline of COVID-19 restrictions, concerts and music festivals have been on the rise. Live Nation, the current largest concert promotion company, has made a statement regarding the rise in concert goers post pandemic. 

“2022 is on track to be the biggest year in live music history,” Live Nation said, regarding the transition the music industry underwent during the aftermath of COVID-19.

Concerts are now in higher demand, but that doesn’t mean they don’t come with their set of obstacles. A common problem that comes up when trying to purchase a ticket is that several shows are strictly age 21-and-up. Hellena Lovell, sophomore, has seen 15 concerts in the Portland area this year and plans on seeing more in the summer.

“I understand why artists will want a 21-plus concert, especially for certain types of music, but it also sucks because I want to go to the concert, [but] it’s kind of impossible for me to get in some venues,” Lovell said.

Having a show be for adults only is a decision often made by the venue and not the artist. There are multiple explanations for the venue making a show being 21-and-up even when the artist and music could be for all ages.

“Most of the 21-plus venues are bars, so that’s why [the venues] can’t do it,” Lovell said. “It’s [an] open bar so you don’t have to worry about IDs, you don’t have to worry about [kids] getting beat up and stuff.”

Although major music venues in Oregon have a majority of their shows ages 21-and-up, there are also several all ages shows and venues that will be open this summer. Some popular venues include the Roseland Theater, Hawthorne Theater, and the Wonder Ballroom. In the  summer, these venues will host artists including Ringo Starr, Sir Chloe, and Black Country, New Road.

Another challenge for Oregon concert goers is the declining amount of major artists that play for Oregon venues. Several popular artists on tour this summer will not be playing in Oregon, including Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, and Beyoncé, who are all choosing to leave Portland off of their world tour destination list. There are several reasons for this, one being the fact that Oregon has no major football stadiums, or arenas that would meet the capacity that these artists require.

The decline in major Oregon concerts is a part of a bigger problem: the decline in tourism to Oregon, and more specifically, Portland.

“Portland’s kind of a scary place now. Especially for concerts because stuff can get stolen from bands,” Lovell said. “I was at a concert, and a guy got beaten [up]. I don’t know how he ended up, but he got beat up pretty bad.”

Violence and stealing can occur in any major city, but over the past few years Portland has been viewed as having more extreme problems compared to other cities. This could be a potential explanation for the rise of strictly adult venues.

It can be difficult to find shows that are within a reasonable price range while still being safe and family friendly. A solution to this is music festivals, some of which will be taking place in Oregon during the summer. This includes the Waterfront Blues Festival which will take place July 1—4, and the Pendleton Whisky Music Fest which will be held on July 15.

Although high prices and age requirements can be discouraging, concerts can still give a good excuse to go out with friends and enjoy live music. There is room for optimism.

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About the Contributors
Preston Weller, Arts and Entertainment Editor
Preston Weller, junior, is in his second year of journalism. He enjoys his free time by walking, listening to, and playing music. This year he looks forward to writing reviews, opinions, and features. He also looks forward to gaining experience in journalism and having a better understanding of it.
Molly Lundstrom, Social Media Editor
Outside of school, Molly Lundstrom, junior social media editor, spends most of her time walking or reading. She loves horror movies, making jewelry, cooking, and makeup.  She frequently participates in yoga classes, weight lifting, hiking, and any way she can get in movement.
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