Why It's Sometimes Best Not To Digitally Document Every Exciting Life Event

Over the weekend I attended a US concert of the Deftones opening for System of a Down — which I was hell bent on documenting, thoroughly, using my iPhone. All through the Deftone's set, I snapped pictures and took video. Then it started to pour, with thunder and lightning very nearly cancelling the rest of the show, even before SOAD took the stage, and my phone was temporarily borked via water damage, primarily in the camera functionality.

I put my phone away, took cover under a large tent away from the stage (lighting and other misc. electrical equipment deemed a safety hazard till the storm let up). SOAD ending up going on, and playing wonderfully, but I mostly kept my phone concealed for the duration of the event. Not because of the water damage, or the risk of further damage of some sort, but because I realised — despite having outrageous front row seats — I'd spent the majority of Deftones' performance watching them play on my 3.5-inch screen, rather than literally above my head, close enough to have their sweat drip down onto my head. And the whole reason I was there was for the Deftones, really, in the first place.

Looking back on the photos, it's exactly how I remember the concert being — but it shouldn't be that way; I should remember their in-your-face closeness and the hugeness of the event at Jones Beach. I might as well be looking at someone else's pictures posted on Facebook.

More: Why Would You Pay Several Hundred Dollars To Watch A Concert On A 3.7-Inch Screen?

There are plenty of occasions that warrant digital record: babies, birthdays, etc. But the whole point of seeing a band play live is seeing the band play live. I'd rather have no pictures at all.


Comments

    yep I totally agree, saw Jack White the other night and they requested that we enjoy the experience tonight and not behind a 3.5" screen - they said they'd have professional photos available free on their site the next day ...it really is worth savouring the moment while you're there, or you may as well stay home and watch someone else's phone-captured footage

    Yes.......when the program is covered by so many channels with varieties of best angles...why we miss the real excitement of concert trying to film them.....

    Living life through glass and pixels: vicariously.

    During family functions (graduations, birthdays etc). I always get assigned as the cameraman. Someone hands me their video camera and expects me to film because I am "so good at it". Although I appreciate why they want this recorded but I end up worrying about getting the shot and end up missing the event (IE watching a 3.5" version of it). So I try to distance myself from the job but its hard once you are tagged.

    haha yeah, I'm generally in the nosebleed section where photos are pretty much pointless anyway, but it's always a little sad to see the galaxy of little screens just above the heads of those up the very front.

    When I attend a concert I *have* the album with perfectly-tuned and recorded music, far better than I could ever hope to achieve. I'll take a dozen snapshots at the event to remember it by, but that's it.

    people are too obsessed with wanting to capture an event that they fail to experience it first hand. only through a screen

    same with holidays, partys etc.

    quite sad

    Great story Molly, Real eye opener and I couldn't agree more !

    Hope Chino Kicked Ass! :)

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