Warped Tour, Home Depot Center, LA, 8-25-07
Posted Oct 9, 2007, by I Shot Chad.
This day just started out bad. I was tired from shooting the Sleeping Giant Live video shoot show the night before, plus, I had been sick all week after my trip to Mexico the previous weekend. I wasn’t exactly looking forward to spending all day at a concert. But, I went. My friend, Scott, from Maylene and the Sons of Disaster arranged to get me into Warped Tour, so I was going to make it a point to shoot their set. Scott sent me a text around 9:45 or 10am letting me know that they were playing at 11:15am. I live at least half an hour from the Home Depot Center and I figured that if it was going to be anything like the Pomona date, it would take about an hour just to get into the concert area. I told Scott I would do my best to get there for them, but I made no promises. I believe I got off the freeway about 10:30/10:40am, so I had about half an hour to get my pass and find the stage Maylene was playing at.
The security guards wouldn’t let me park in the press/band parking because I didn’t have my pass yet. Plus, I don’t believe they even had a clue where that parking lot was. They looked pretty dumbfounded when I asked them. So they sent me to the general parking area which was probably close to a ½ to 1 mile away from the front entrance and on top of that, cost $15! I was broke before I even made it into the show. Having gone to the Pomona date as well, I have come to learn that no true punk could ever afford to go to Warped Tour. You pretty much need to have a house you can mortgage in order to get enough money to enjoy yourself there. Everything is expensive and you are left with no money to support the bands you went to see. All your money goes to tickets, parking and eating. Lame. Anyway, I finally made it to the line to get my pass at about 11am. I moved about 5 feet when I heard the opening notes of Maylene’s set wafting through the air. As if it wasn’t bad enough that I was missing the set of the band that got me into the show, I had to listen them as I stood helplessly in line. Talk about insult to injury. After at least 30 minutes standing in line, I finally got my pass. I had to finagle a photo pass because Maylene forgot to put me down for that. I missed Maylene’s entire set by a good 15 minutes. I was already over Warped Tour as I walked though the gates.
I was upset for missing Maylene’s set, so I didn’t really care what else I did. At that point I had already decided that I was going to leave early. My church friends were having a bonfire at the beach, so that sounded more appealing than staying at Warped Tour all evening. So I decided I was going to take off by about 5pm. Until then, I roamed around catching a few amazing bands like Pennywise, Poison the Well, Tiger Army, Agent Orange and Circa Survive, but for the most part I was pretty disappointed. Every band was sounding the same to me. I walked from one stage to next and could have sworn I had already heard that band play. I decided I didn’t care so much about capturing every single band I could. Instead I wanted to hangout with my friends. I walked around with Scott from Maylene a lot, ran into my friends from The Actual and No One Goes Home and my friend Dylan was there cutting hair. Seeing those people were more fun than watching the bands play. And that’s what I decided Warped Tour was all about. It is about having fun with your friends, hearing a sampling of lots of bands, have the opportunity to meet the bands and just enjoy the freedom that this style of music offers. Too bad it comes with a hefty price tag.
I decided to hang around long enough to watch the Real McKenzies. I went to where they were supposed to play only to find out they got bumped up and that I had missed them. I have wanted to see that band ever since a friend of mine gave me a CD of theirs 4 years ago. Missing them and then Flogging Molly were my only regrets of the day. But at 5pm, I was ready to wash my hands of Warped Tour and head to the beach.
-Chad "the Flash" Sengstock