Gig demographics: a thread of potential stat geekery or just fear of impending middle age

Continuing the discussion from Set times:

Anyone else noticed this? Is this just an inevitable result of rampant capitalism and middle class-pandering shitting on ‘the kids’? Do you reckon live music is fucked when we all die?

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Reckon we’re all just probably going to see the wrong music.


My gig-going is pretty varied. I’d say the only genre in which I’ve seen ages of attendees fall is, weirdly, folk music. Although that’s probably because all the oldies are dying and there’s been a mass increase in young folk musicians in Scotland.

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I was at a gig two weeks ago where the average was around twenty. I was probably the oldest person in the room at thirty-one.

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Yeah there’s no mystery here. What are some of the gigs you’ve been to recently @AtTheBorderGuy?

Going to go out on a limb and say that there aren’t many people on DiS are going to see acts you hear on 1xtra.

Can categorically say that all the crowd at the last gig I attended (Sleeper in Tunbridge Wells) were old like me. And I wouldn’t expect anything different.

At the same time, I am on the lookout for tickets to take my daughter to see Billie Eilish (who!?!?) in Shepherds Bush next month and if I’m successful, I fully expect to be the oldest person there.

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It’s an inevitable result of getting older and being more conscious of there being other people your own age.

When your sixteen at a gig with your mates you can’t believe there’s one guy there who’s the same age as your dad. When your forty at a gig you’re surprised at one group of youths banging into you and spilling your pint.

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Yep. When I was sixteen I wasn’t propped up at the bar… I was down at the front coming home soaked in sweat :confused:


the BMQ is a lot higher at gigs I go to now (bald man quotient)

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depends on the gig, how long the band has been around etc. but most of the time i do feel like one of the younger audience members at 29, instead the band themselves are much younger than me.

often feel like the only non-middle aged person at folky gigs.

Crowd age for the last few gigs I (a man recently turned 27) have been to;
Kero Kero Bonito - mostly early/mid twenties, lot of students I think.
Young Fathers - talking mid twenties to early thirties here, some olds here and there
The Twilight Sad - older than you’d think but I suppose they’ve been around a while now
Sigrid - the full gamut here, I stood next to a group of about 6 people all in there 50s, quite a few kids there who had to be accompanied by their mams
Car Seat Headrest - bit studenty, fair few 18 and 19 year olds absolutely going for it, only one where I felt old

Looking forward to Piroshka at Rough Trade East on Friday. I definitely won’t be the oldest there. I’ll just look the oldest.

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I think when I saw Helen Money last year it was mostly people in their 30s I’m imagining a similar crowd for Cave In. Would agree with the above that I haven’t seen many new\debuting bands live, which is probably why the demographics of gigs I go to are roughly around my age or older.

Just remembered seeing them at Primavera last year and being surrounded by people younger than me. Was class, the crowd was full of energy and fucking going for it!

I got scared! That’s what made me feel old, they all started charging around my instinctive reaction was to clutch my half a pint close and think “good heavens, what’s happening!?” I used to crowdsurf, I used to wear very skinny jeans with all rips in them, I never wore a coat, what happened to me?


I first properly noticed when Parquet Courts played Gorilla in 2013 that crowds were getting older and it has only got worse and the crowds got less friendly full of rude middle ages men who have been allowed out and are getting on it while learing at your girlfriend. 2 examples both at the Albert Hall.

Father John Misty there were 2 idiots stood next to us that would not stop talking to their dealer and about where they were going after. Towards the end of the gig one of them wanted to leave but, the other said ”We can’t mate this is about to go next level!”

Avalanches 2 big fat gammon bouncing near the sound desk who then proceeded to keep bashing into this lad in full Avalanches merchandise who after asking them politely to stop standing on his feet got told to fuck off.

We saw Jay-Z in Brooklyn in 2012 that was a well diverse crowd there was a woman in her 60’s knitting thoughout

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this is the correct answer

If I go to a gig my 19 year old daughter is also going to there tend to be a way lot more youngsters

With age I’ve never noticed there being a prevalent demographic. I can’t remember the last time a crowd felt old/young. Always been mixed or I’ve been ignorant of it.

Gender however, I notice at most gigs. The ratio being so heavily weighted towards men is something I find kind of depressing/upsetting.

feel like one of the youngest at nearly everything i go to
stuff that isn’t white guys with guitars tends to be more diverse generally though & a better gender distribution. saw Fatoumata Diawara the other day and there were more women than men there

A lot more young people go to festivals these days than previously which might go a decent way towards explaining a chunk of it. I think previously a certain type of person went to festivals as a teenager/young adult whereas now there’s something to cater for most people