Live Concert Review: Vans Warped Tour, Comcast Center, Mansfield, MA, July 13, 2011

My journey started with a carload of teenagers who were very excited to see the bands on the current leg of the Vans Warped tour. Though I did not know many of the bands, I decided to go and have a look for myself. I have been going to concerts for 30 plus years and this was the first time I had gone to see bands that I knew little or nothing about.

My first impression was how diverse the crowd was. There were goth kids, punk kids, emo kids, and everyone in between. I only got a good look at a couple of the bands and was impressed with the musical talent and many different styles that represented. I think there were around 30 or more bands playing on several different stages at the same and it made it a bit difficult to decide who to watch. The first band I really got a chance to watch was "Less Than Jake," a ska type band that has been around for a while.

I am not a huge fan so I had to ask a kid near by who they were. He was more than happy to help this old timer out with some information. As I walked around the crowd I found myself really enjoying it! I was dancing and bouncing my head to the very infectious beat. The horn section sounded great, as I am a fan of a good horn section! The crowd was having a real good time and so was I.

After a few minutes, one of the guys in the band noticed me standing in the back of the crowd. Maybe it was because I was much older than the rest of the crowd or the fact that I have white hair and a white beard. The guy yells out, "There is a guy in the back with white hair and white beard. Lets get him up here to have a beer with us!" After all the shows I have been to this was a first for me! The crowd tried to lift me up and make me crowd surf, but I had to say no, not that they didn't try!

Everyone made way for me to get to the stage. They helped me up and handed me a cold beer. I did my best to ska dance in my flip flops while the crowd cheered. I swilled down the beer and got a high five from the band members. It was a moment I won't soon forget! Unfortunatly, my kids were off watching some other band as this was all happening! After I got down from the stage I called them and told them what had just happened and they were just as excited about it as I was.

After that it was hard to focus on what else was going on. I went to watch a band called "Simple Plan," I knew a couple of songs from my kids playing them around the house and it was a lot of fun. I also saw "A Day To Remember." They were just as much fun as LJT! As the crowd bounced up and down and sang together, I felt a great sense of camaraderie and suddenly didn't feel like the old guy in the crowd.

Well, my kids had a lot more fun than I did, I was so wiped out I had to go out to the car and relax before the journey home. My kids talked about all the bands they saw like "3Oh!3" and many others. As an older music fan I must say that I am glad I took the time to give the new bands a chance. It turned into a fun day, not only for the kids but also for this old timer. I hope to go again next year and would recommend the show to both young and old music fans. I hope to see you all next time at the Vans Warped Tour. Stay tuned for more music reviews!

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