I’ve spent 20 years following Bruce Springsteen around the world – people think I’m crazy

by 24britishtvMay 9, 2024, 10:01 p.m. 25
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It can be easier and cheaper

Believe it or not, sometimes getting to the likes of Barcelona feels easier than getting to Wembley. Dublin, for example, made the headlines for all the wrong reasons last summer, with hotel prices soaring when Springsteen was in town. The result? Irish fans were reportedly hopping on Ryanair flights to Rome, enjoying an Italian city break instead of travelling the few hours to Dublin and paying £1,000 a night for a hotel. Tickets are often cheaper in Europe too – particularly compared to the US, where dynamic pricing has seen ticket prices commonly rocket into the thousands. And although flights to the likes of South Africa are expensive, costs on the ground are typically low. Plan and price it all out, and you’ll often find that seeing an artist abroad is easier, cheaper and – if you’re swapping the NEC for an amphitheatre – often rather more scenic, too.

The atmosphere is different in every country

This is a big one. Every concert you go to is a totally different experience, based entirely on the nationality of the crowd. Italy is my favourite – if you get to see your favourite artist in the country, make sure it’s the San Siro Stadium in Milan (or the Circus Maximus in Rome). The Italian fans are also some of the most spirited, closely followed by the Catalans. I’ll never forget my dad, a devoted seat lover, giddily jumping on a trampoline to Badlands, swept away by the euphoria of the fans in the standing pit section of Camp Nou. Consider the venue too: arenas, which are inside, have a very different atmosphere to stadiums, where concerts often start in daylight, and move through sunset to darkness.

How to improve a gig? An afterparty, of course. When you leave a concert you’re on a high – and you never want that unifying experience of witnessing something alongside 80,000 other fans to end. Whether in an old-school coffee shop in Florence or a basement bar in Gothenburg, everyone is at their happiest after several hours of watching their favourite artist. Afterparties give fans from across the world the chance to come together in (much) smaller-than-stadium venues to debrief about the gigs, meet fellow fanatics and shout-sing until the early hours.

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