10 Reasons you should experience a music festival
There’s a reason that the talk of summer festivals sends a thrilling buzz of excitement into veteran festival goers, from the atmosphere to the line-up and new friendships - they know it’s an experience not to be missed!
Most people who have never been to one argue that they either; don’t enjoy crowd’s, it’s too loud, uncomfortable, filthy or all of the above, and they may be right, but it's also something unlike anything else you’ll ever do.
From seeing your favourite bands play live while experiencing the awesome sway of being in a thousand strong crowd of happy revellers, to ambling through a variety of markets, theatres, circus and comedy shows, you’re witnessing some of the most talented artists at work, in one place.
For a first time festival goer, an event as big as Glastonbury or Coachella can understandably, be a little overwhelming and unnecessarily messy.
Which is why it’s important to keep in mind that it’s about experiencing life in that moment, putting the real world on pause and immersing yourself into a temporary new world, a micro-culture populated by people happily gathered for the same reason; to have, as Patrick Swayze would put it, the time of their lives!
The atmosphere is like an electrically charged stadium full of supporters. Everyone is a friend and the sense of community and camaraderie in the thousands of people you’re sharing the festival bubble with is a brilliant display of humanity at its best. Suddenly, for a few days, this mass of people is one big family.
If you’re at a rainy festival, it’ll be proven to you soon enough as you’re likely to get stuck in the mud, rescued quickly by random strangers, who’ll lock arms with you to pull you out and help you get through it, together.
There are a million reasons to prove that music festivals are a life changing, eye opening experience and definitely one that needs to be on your bucket list, but we’ve summed them up in this top 10 reasons you need to experience a music festival:
Unless it's genre specific, the variety is music to everyone's ears. From bands on the main stages featuring
the Rolling Stones, Beyoncé, BB King to Jazz, acoustic, dance and DJ specific areas.
Unlike a concert, front row access to festival shows are only limited by your ability to walk there a few hours ahead of time, so you're far more likely to have an up close and personal experience with your favorite band!
The Instagram fodder
As early as the queue waiting to get in you'll find anything from people in Gorilla masks to the elaborate flags they carry sporting the emblem of the group they came with, an array of super heroes and countless people struggling to carry enormous backpacks while managing to leave a hand free for their drink, and they'll all be more than happy to pose for your Instagram fodder.
The new friendships
Some people go it alone, others with a group of friends and the rest as a family but however you experience a festival, you're always guaranteed to meet new people.
The atmosphere and culture of team spirit is so strong that making friends is inevitable and after a few rounds of the festival circuit you'll be able to experience the joy of an unexpected festival friend reunion.
If you thought a tearful girl at a Justin Bieber concert was fan passion, it's nothing compared to the dedicated crowds you'll find at festivals who'll joyfully obey almost any request from their entertainer! Including massive Mexican waves, synchronized singing on request, peace signs and a sea of waving hands.
So the infamous facilities may be your main reason for wanting to avoid a festival, but learning to accept them as part of the experience is a must.
Once you realise that this is definitely not glamping, that you're likely to be sleeping under the stars if your tent assembly skills are not up to scratch, learning the art of going to the toilet before it gets desperate because you will be standing in a queue and that you're unlikely to have a decent shower for a number of days, you can relax and enjoy yourself in spite of it.
Just think, you'll go home with stories like: "Then the guy in the porta potty queue turned to his girlfriend, went down on one knee and said; “In case we're stuck in this line forever, will you marry me?"
The zen zone
If you’re looking for a more mellow experience, head over to the healing fields at Glastonbury or the chill spots at Coachella to get a massage, take a refreshing nap next to the trickling sounds of a water feature, take a yoga class or spend some time meditating.
The innovations and the talent
The onstage talent is always something to behold but besides the entertainment you paid for, you'll always get more than your money's worth in crowd pleasing performances from the arbitrary festival goer.
Anything from spectacular impromptu dance shows to incredibly talented artists taking advantage of the many creative outlets.
Festivals have been drawing artists, hippies and the alternative crowd since the beginning of time.
With the ‘creatives’, come the creative inventions. At Glastonbury Festival, there is a giant tablet with stylus available to anyone interested in creating a piece of public art. For those who are less inclined to create, but are interested in checking out the creations, all artwork is displayed in an ever changing gallery on site.
As well the gallery there are so many workshops to check out from; pottery, woodwork and massage therapies running constantly.
The priceless moments
You can imagine how thousands of people in a communally celebratory mood, facing extreme weather and living conditions, surrounded by creativity and constant entertainment, can produce some the best priceless moments that even Youtube would be hard pressed to top.
The team spirit
Everyone at a festival understands that they're all there for the same reason. There's a team spirit that you can feel
In the buzz of excitement with strangers pulling each other out of mud traps, helpful hands volunteering to put up tents and the courtesy of a hundred people moving
There's a festival for everyone
Don’t forget to pack:
- A torch
- Wet Wipes (the essential festival shower)
- Wellington Boots
- An extra pair of socks
- An open mind
If the start of every summer sees you staring stubbornly into the distance refusing to take part in the conversation, mind made up, waiting for a subject change while your friends excitedly discuss which festivals they’re going to this year, you may want to think about reconsidering. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, expect the unexpected and embrace the experience!