Outdoor Music: Rain Or Shine
Did you ever see Woodstock, remember all those hippie boys and girls rolling around in the mud after a virulent rainstorm? On Friday, June 27th, 50 years later, the threat of a thunderstorm closed down Panorama at Randall’s Island around 430pm: Dua Lipa. Migos, The Weeknd, all washed up. Six days later, Beyonce and Jay Z brought their OTR II to MetLife -the open air Arena, and a thunderstorm cause their set to start at a mind boggling 1130pm, on a Thursday evening. I had tickets to both. Panorama caused a three hour trek out off the Island, but at least they gave refunds, no such luck at MetLife. The chances of me going to that were non-existent and I ate $400.
The latter was a true nightmare, 60,000 attendees were herded out of their seats and under cover, a crowded, sweaty, smelly, hell on earth waiting for the Carters to honor us with their presence.
As a constant concert goer (The Carters would have been my 50th concert of the year, it breaks down to around two a week), I can see no solution. About two years I got drenched at the Paul Simon concert at Forest Hills, and I’ve been chased out of Governors Ball twice due to inclement weather. From Vampire Weekend at Summerstage to TV On The Radio at Summerstage, and beyond, the weather in New York City can turn in any direction at all and with the onslaught of extreme whether in the 10s amy decision for an outdoor concert is a risk.
If the weather is good, an outdoor gig is a joy forever. I’ve seen both Bob Dylan and Prince on magical nights at Jones Beach, Young Fathers and the Metropolitan Opera at Summerstage, Guns N Roses at MetLife, where the glorious weather improved the evening. But, way too many shows are ruined in nyc due to inclement weather. I often disagree with rock nyc writer Alyson Camus as to where is a better place to live… but for sure, Best Coast’s violent “This fucking sucks” was on the money at one such rainstorm. When it comes to outdoor music on the East Coast only one truth remains: it sucks when it rains.
Don’t ask me why weather projections are so hit and miss in 2018, but you can’t trust even day off, so given the situation the answer is simple. Only buy outdoor shows on the day off. Since nothing sells out anymore, and since even if they do there is always stubhub, there is no reason to take $400 and burn it.