Home » Halifax Metro Centre – Welcome to the 1980s

Halifax Metro Centre – Welcome to the 1980s

My wife and I looked forward to a great concert on the weekend. City & Colour (Dallas Green) was in town and we caught the show at the Halifax Metro Centre. Sitting about 3 rows up from the main floor, our row was roughly 25 rows from the top.

As the concert got underway, many – including ourselves – pulled out the phone to snap some pictures. Sometimes at a concert or dark place when you want to focus, it is not as simple with a smart phone as a real camera to focus. So you have the phone up for a minute or two.

Yes I am also a bit annoyed by others with the camera’s out and the resulting distraction, but no more than the held lighters of yesterday (more about this later). In any case, I try to be cognizant of those near me and get it in camera mode before bringing up the screen with full light on.

It was during one of the 3 or so odd moments that my wife was taking a photo that a rather large and older (I mean older than us who are in our late 40s) leaned right over my isle seat and spoke loudly to my wife to shut off her phone as she was not allowed to take pictures. What necessitated that? What made this man come down all those rows and skip by countless others (I noticed he spoke to no one else during his trip back up the stairs) and target her? Was it because she had it up and was trying to focus?

Dallas Green asking everyone to hold up their smart phones and turn them off for 3 minutes to hear the next song, not being busy trying to capture it.

Dallas Green asking everyone to hold up their smart phones and turn them off for 3 minutes to hear the next song, not being busy trying to capture it.

Since there were many in the audience throughout the night taking video and photos, I can only surmise that this fellow was overwhelmed by all those gadgets and thought he would target one of the kids (most of the audience was in the 20s, with a large proportion in the teens) and let them know. Little did he realize he would be running into us. See today, it is common for one to take those snaps. Even the artist Dallas Green asked everyone who had a phone (“C’mon you all have one, I know you do” he quipped) to shine it. Then he asked for the next song that everyone put it away. It was not because he was afraid of loosing some copyrighted image, but that he wanted this song to resonate and so to do that the audience should listen, not capture. (Sidebar: Why do so many Japanese take photos? So they can revisit the vacation throughout the year as they have limited time, or take limited time, on vacations).

Back to the concierge with the ‘tude. Yep he was a jerk. See he did just not get what it was about at a concert. These days you really are in a bind trying to keep all cameras out. What if I had on Google Glasses? We certainly did not have a professional camera, or set up a HD video station. There was just no need for the dressing down.

And the staff at the Metro Centre ruined part of our experience.

Just a damn shame.

Artists need crowd generated content to help spread the word about them. Just like your products. Its getting the foot soldiers to help market and spread the word. I had at least two people on Facebook inquire about City & Colour as they had never heard about the artist. Now they have. And Dallas Green can thank me for giving him two more fans. That is called digital marketing.

Oh and the note about the lighter? I saw Gordon Lightfoot earlier in the week. The same thing with many smart phones out was in play, but with an older audience. The thing that made me smile at that event was the lone woman. Sitting in the middle of the main floor audience. Waving her lighter to a slow song. Old school. The only lighter of the event.

Wonder if that fellow came over and told her to put it out, lest she start the sprinklers 100 ft above her.


One Response to “Halifax Metro Centre – Welcome to the 1980s”

  1. Grant says:

    It certainly sounded like your wife was singled out to make a point! It was rude and does not help anything except his ego.

    Off topic a bit:
    The days of hiding a SLR in your boot or purse are gone when attending concerts, now that almost everyone carries a smartphone/camera. However, smartphones take pretty awful and indistinguishable images anyway, so why bother. I’ve stopped. Unless you’re a keener in the front row, the image quality is just not worth keeping or even sharing for that matter. If it’s about sharing an image on a social site, I would rather post a few complimentary words of praise about the artist rather than upload a crappy picture.

    My advice: Take binoculars for the up close ‘memory’ shots. (Memory in your head, not memory in your phone) Not enough people take binoculars. By doing this and listening to the music, it will be more enjoyable with a sharper visual memory. It’s more effective, than trying to convince your smartphone to create Rolling Stone quality images.

    And yes, I walked out of the Gordon Lightfoot concert. Different reason and topic. ;-P