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Weekly gripe- unprofessional musicians

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kristinanew.jpgFor most people the thought of meeting a famous musician or musical group is thrilling and exciting, and for most, the experience turns out to be just so.

However, sometimes a person’s perception of how these famous people should be and how they should act gets jolted into reality quickly. These musicians that we look up to and admire for their music and their success suddenly slap us in the face with the harsh reality that even though we hold them to higher standards than the average person, sometimes they can still disappoint us.

This slap in the face is exactly what I experienced when I interviewed The Used after Thursday night’s spring concert held at the event center at the fairgrounds.

I had conducted a phone interview with the band the Tuesday prior to the concert, and while I was a little disappointed at the lack of enthusiasm in their voices when I talked to them, I gave the band the benefit of the doubt and decided that it is hard to tell what people are like over the phone. With that thought, I brushed the disappointing interview off and geared up for the concert night.

Needless to say, I shouldn’t have had such high expectations for a positive post-concert interview.

Arriving to the concert Thursday evening set the tone for the rest of the night.

As a representative of this campus I felt disrespected and unwelcome as I attempted to get my pass to go backstage to meet the bands.

Not only did I have to explain myself to the people responsible for running the concert, but I had to explain myself to fellow students and faculty of the university.

Knowing who I was and that I was representing the university’s official newspaper, I was basically told that I was not welcome. While the misunderstanding stemmed from a mix-up of communication earlier in the day, I felt disrespected and unwelcome.

As a result, I was unable to get a backstage pass until the concert ended, forcing me to be front row, crushed against the barrier placed to keep students off stage. I was punched and pushed by rowdy fans, nearly vomited on by a girl who partied a little too hard before the concert and hit by various objects thrown at the different bands by disrespectful people in the audience.

By the time the concert had ended I was ready to call it a night, but hopeful thought of a great interview with the headlining band kept me positive.

When I finally got backstage, I was immediately disappointed.

After being introduced to the band as a reporter from the campus paper, the band continued talking amongst them, without even stopping to shake my hand.

After waiting a few minutes for them to finish their conversation, I began my interview with congratulations to them for putting on a good concert. My remark was met with silence.

To break the awkwardness, I began my interview, asking them questions about how they felt the concert went, if they had a good time and their overall thoughts and experiences in Pueblo. Most of my questions were met with one word answers.

In the background, the lead singer of the band, Bert McCracken, laid sprawled across a couch loudly sighing with every question I asked.

I quickly made the obvious observation that this band was not in the mood for an interview and assured them I was nearly done with my questions and would be out of the way shortly. To this I was met with Bert’s feet in my face.

He asked me if his feet smelt after they had been performing, I responded by saying, “Do you always put your feet in people’s faces that you’ve just met?”

This comment only further encouraged the disrespectful behavior of the band as one member threw a dirty sweaty shirt near me, and a man, who I assumed was their manager, but I’m not completely sure, criticized my interviewing style.

I felt defeated, disrespected, disgusted and angry. I thanked the band for their time, shook their hands and left.

What amazes me more than anything is the fact that this band was so disrespectful and rude, especially to a person who has the opportunity to give them either a good or bad review to their fans.

First of all, this band is not Aerosmith or the Beatles, or any other band that has at least earned their right to be snotty.

The Used is still trying to make a name for them, and therefore, they should treat people respectfully if they want their name to stay positive.

Second, even if The Used did have the status of big names like Aerosmith, it does not give them the right to disrespect anyone. If the band did not feel like talking, they should have denied the interview. They should not have welcomed me in only to make me feel stupid and uncomfortable.

Needless to say, my first experience in meeting a “famous” band was not a good one, and I will definitely think twice before I agree to do another interview of the same nature. I realize that not all bands disrespect their fans or the media, but bands like The Used definitely make it difficult to trust the other ones.