Over my six odd years of going to concerts regularly, I’ve had the amazing opportunity to see some of my favorite bands in other states and countries! For simplicity sake, I’ve excluded my regular trips from Tucson to Phoenix (or vice versa) (100 miles one way) and from Brighton to London (50 miles one way).
As you will be able to tell, for some of these, the band happened to be playing when I was in the area, but I still counted it!
My experiences are all well and good, but if you’re reading this and travel long distances for concerts regularly, please consider carpooling, taking the train or coach, paying to offset the carbon emissions of flying or make a week of your time in a foreign land. Traveling by air, even short distances, is one of the single most environmentally devastating things you can do.
Rise Against | 08/04/11 | Tucson, Arizona → San Diego, California
- Why?: My 16th birthday present with my best friend, Sydney!
- Transport: My parents drove…
- Distance travelled: 820 miles
- Accommodation: We stayed with my aunt and uncle ten minutes from the venue
- Gig summary: It was so amazing! I don’t remember terrible much as it was so long ago, but I racked my brain for memories in this post.
Foo Fighters and Royal Blood | 09/07/15 | London, Ontario → Toronto, Ontario
- Why?: My (now ex) boyfriend’s birthday present.
- Transport: His parents drove…
- Distance travelled: 120 miles
- Accommodation: I was dropped off at the airport after the concert for a flight early the next morning, so the airport I guess?
- Gig summary: It was epic. Dave Grohl is a prophet. Even though he broke his leg earlier on the tour, he carried on playing the tour while sitting in a throne. They played a long set, we had great views and they still remained humble and relatable even though they’re one of the greatest rock bands of the last 20 years and everyone knows it. You can read more about it here.
Brand New | 16/08/15 | Yonkers, New York → Cooperstown, New York
- Why?: To see one of our (then) favorite bands with my good friend, Nick.
- Transport: We took turns driving.
- Distance travelled: 400 miles
- Accommodation: We drove back right after.
- Gig summary: I don’t want to talk about this too much as the front man, Jesse Lacey, was recently outed for soliciting nudes from a minor, but you can read more about the show here.
Rise Against | 30/09/15 | Brighton, United Kingdom → Milan, Italy
- Why?: Just because.
- Transport: easyJet flight.
- Distance travelled: 1160 miles
- Accommodation: One of the best hostels I’ve stayed in, Ostello Bello.
- Gig summary: So amazing! It was great to meet international fans, meet the band and experience it all with my good friend, Ben! You can read more about it in this post.
Senses Fail | 14/10/15 | Brighton, United Kingdom → Southampton, United Kingdom
- Why?: My long-time friend Alex and I have been dying to see them together!
- Transport: National Rail.
- Distance travelled: 140 miles
- Accommodation: I wasn’t planning on staying the night, but I slept in Alex’s spare room after I missed the last train home.
- Gig summary: A bit disappointing as Senses Fail were opening and hardly anyone knew them, the crowd was rather dead. But it was great to finally see them with Alex. You can read more about it here.
Enter Shikari | 22/03/16 | Brighton, United Kingdom → Venice, Italy
- Why?: They happened to be playing there when I was travelling around Italy!
- Transport: They played a bit outside Venice, so I rented a car and drove half an hour to Roncade, Italy.
- Distance travelled: 1700 miles
- Accommodation: I stayed at Generator Hostel in Venice.
- Gig summary: Incredible! So worth all the trouble to get there and back. It was amazing to go from seeing them play to 10,000 people in the U.K. to several hundred in a night club. I was lucky enough to meet the band briefly and get a signed Polaroid picture! You can read more about it here.
Enter Shikari | 10/03/17 | Phoenix, Arizona → Pomona, California
- Why?: They happened to be playing there when I was doing field work at U.C. Riverside, only 20 miles away!
- Transport: My friend Tim picked me up.
- Distance travelled: 700 miles
- Accommodation: For my field work, I stayed in an AirBNB in Redlands, Califonria (a bit east of Riverside).
- Gig summary: Arguably my favorite Enter Shikari gig! It was amazing to meet and hang out with Tim, give the band a small gift from fans, have a song dedicated to me and share a drink with the handsome bassist afterwards! You can read more about it here.
Rise Against | 26/04/17 | Phoenix, Arizona → Los Angeles, California
- Why?: Very exclusive album release tour in a small venue, I couldn’t resist! I made it my birthday present to myself.
- Transport: I took the Greyhound bus to downtown L.A. and a Lyft to the venue, both of which were an incredible value!
- Distance travelled: 800 miles
- Accommodation: I left Phoenix early in the morning and took the bus back after the gig, so the bus I guess?
- Gig summary: Without a doubt my favorite concert of all time! It was a blast to meet up with Maria, be in the front row, hear songs they never play, meet the band and share a warm, cheesy pizza after the show. You can read more about it here.