For those that don’t know me personally, I’m an avid concert junkie; I’m in love with 9237834 different musicians, I’ll wait 10 hours just to get a good spot in the mosh pit, and nothing makes me happier than hearing the crowd around me scream the lyrics to my favourite song. I remember going to my first concert – Taylor Swift’s Fearless Tour in 2010 – when I was in Year 7, and since then I’ve been fortunate enough to see so many different singers and bands perform live.
In the last 6 years I’ve attended dozens of concerts, meet and greets and small acoustic sets. Not once have I been disappointed from the many talented performers I’ve seen (only disappointed in my poor quality camera, or a pushy person next to me). In no particular order, here are just a few of my all-time favourite live musicians.
This was such an excellent tour, that when he brought it back to Australia for a second time in the same year, I attended again! Unlike many concerts these days, Ed relies purely on his voice, his guitar and his loop track (which are all completely live). With no backing tracks, band or elaborate sets, the audience could focus on his raw talent, and this mash-up of ‘Feelin’ Good’ and ‘I See Fire’ is a clear example:
Nobody does extravagant like Katy Perry does – she did no less than 15 costume changes! The unique part about this show was that it actually told a story; a girl named Katy, who lives in a colourless world, is wasting her life cutting meat for a mean old butcher. One night, Katy escapes her dreadful reality by falling asleep, and visits a vibrant candy land in search for her pet cat, Kitty Purry, and also for her love interest, the Baker’s Boy. Video introductions, costumes, sets and dancers all contributed to how this story is told, not to mention her incredible vocals! Watch her moving performance of ‘Not Like The Movies’ below:
What a queen! Demi had such a powerful, dominating voice and she was very good at connecting with the crowd. She sung her incredible version of ‘Let It Go’ from the Disney movie Frozen, which sent every person in the arena absolutely crazy. I’d been waiting to see Demi in concert since I was about 12 and I was watching her on Disney Channel, so you can imagine my excitement when she did, in fact, play some of her old songs from that era. Check out her amazing vocals in her performance of ‘Get Back’:
If you mixed Magic Mike with your personal trainer’s routine at the gym, and add a bit of singing and synchronised dancing, you’d end up with a Jason Derulo concert. I didn’t realise just how many chart-toppers he’s had over the years until he sung them all in a show. It was definitely a girls’ night out: not once during the entire concert there was a lack in shirtless, sweaty men (including Jason himself, who ripped his singlet in half and threw it into the crowd, ultimately starting a punch up between two girls). However, he did cater to the males in the audience – the female dancers were absolutely phenonmenal! He included some lucky ladies from the mosh pit, too:
The Madden Brothers
Joel and Benji Madden almost didn’t even have to sing to have the audience’s attention – their stories from touring and life in California mixed with their humour and charismatic charms were enough to have the audience in stitches. Of course, I am glad they did sing, because it was such a groovy night. Being judges on The Voice Australia, the boys brought on a couple of their contestants to sing with, and also played some songs from their Good Charlotte days. My favourite had to be this acoustic version of ‘Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous’:
I have been an obsessed fan of Short Stack since stumbling across ‘Sway Sway Baby’ in my early high school years, and I’ve seen them live about 10 times since then. The special thing about Short Stack is that their fan-base has roughly been the same individuals for many years, so going to their shows is like catching up with old friends. The atmosphere is unlike no other – we’ve all met each other online and in person, we’ve grown together, we’ve got Short Stack tattoos, and we all know the words better than the back of our hands. Here are the boys from Budgewoi doing what they do best:
Since seeing him place second on American Idol in 2009, I think we can all agree he should have won – I mean, just listen to him! His god-like voice can either make you cry or make you feel empowered, and he brought all of those emotions to his tour. One minute it was a dance party, the next we were holding back tears as he sung ‘Mad World’. The fact his talent attracts such a broad audience – from teenage girls to drag queens to couples on date night – just proves he can make anyone and everyone feel included during his concerts. The crowd went wild when he performed ‘Ghost Town’:
I’ve never been to a One Direction concert, but I imagine it to be somewhat similar to The Vamps’ concert. Very funny, good-looking boys who captured the hearts of every girl in the crowd, not to mention their catchy, feel-good songs made the entire night euphoric, and I felt like a wild 13 year old. I happened to attend their meet and greet event the day before the concert, where they also performed a couple of hits, including ‘Wake Up’:
One of best things to come out of Sydney, Tonight Alive put on some of the craziest, most intense shows – I can recall seeing them years ago, and I was lucky enough to get front row in the mosh, and by the end of the show I ended up at the back of the crowd from being pushed around so much. It’s not outrageous to expect circle pits at one of their shows. As for the band themselves, frontwoman Jenna McDougall performs powerful ballads with such ease. Have a listen to this amazing acoustic version of ‘Let It Land’ from a meet and greet event:
Unfortunately, I didn’t have access to my camera the night of this concert, but luckily Youtuber DSELEKTR did. The set list was really good; she played not only her singles, but some of her older, lesser known songs. Her costumes and sets were outrageously satisfying, and she brought up fans from the mosh pit to dance with her on stage. The best part of the whole night was when she sang ‘Starships’ – the crowd went absolutely beserk! I loved her performance of ‘Right By My Side’ too, check it out:
One of the things I remember about this show was the number of girls that got pulled out of the crowd due to dehydration or exhaustion – perhaps jumping just a little too hard? Paramore themselves were brilliant. Hayley was very down-to-earth and charismatic, and even took a phone from someone in the front row so she could film the concert from her perspective on stage. I did take my camera to this one, but, to my dismay, the end results were almost inaudible, so I’ve attached Youtuber paramoreneverends‘s video of Hayley Williams singing her heart out in one of my favourite jams, ‘Fences’:
Not only was her concert my first one ever, I’ve seen her live another 3 times and each show has been more spectacular than the last. Now, I may be bias – so much so that I have a Taylor Swift inspired tattoo on my hand – but she never fails to put on a show that leaves me with the biggest smile on my face. She has a way with words that so many people can relate to, and the inclusive, intimate atmosphere she can create in an arena of 60,000 people is something I never get tired of witnessing. Her performance of ‘New Romantics’ still gives me goosebumps:
Oh, I could relive all of these moments a thousand times over…
What are your most memorable concerts? Comment below!