By: Jessica McWhirt
Surrounded by “Creation,” “Ship” and “Stage” – all rocks, amplifying Mumford & Sons. My sister, Vanessa, bought us tickets to Mumford & Sons at Red Rocks. Tickets sold out in a matter of minutes and we had two. Our seats were nowhere near the stage. People would call it the “nosebleed” section. We started hiking our way up to our designated seats. Halfway up, we decided we had gone far enough and picked a random spot. I was worried we had taken other people’s seats. Vanessa told me to get over it. People started filling up the seats near us. I anxiously waited for a confrontation.
The first band came on. Row by row the crowd started rising. We stood for the band and danced a little. The sky started to grow darker and the music grew louder. I had forgotten we weren’t in our seats. Two men and a woman looked at our seat numbers and stood next to Vanessa and I. We befriended these people: two were husband and wife, and the other was the wife’s brother. They offered us a beer then asked how old we were. Of course, they thought my younger sister was older than me. It happens every time. We all talked about college and our dreams for the future. I told them I was leaving to Ireland in a month and this was my last concert with my sister. Just before I started to worry when the next time I’d be back at Red Rocks, Mumford & Sons walked on stage. As they set up, strangers confronted us about the seats we were in. Our new friends told the strangers we’d all just share the spot. They agreed and we all squished together as Mumford started singing “I Will Wait.”
There’s no better place to listen and watch your favorite band than at Red Rocks. “Creation Rock” and “Ship Rock” surrounded the stands and framing the stage. Lights illuminated the sandy red, spotlighting all the cracks; sometimes even finding a head popping out. The rocks formed a tunnel of air that dried the sweat from our foreheads. The crowd grew louder as the band wailed on their instruments. We could feel their emotions behind the music and through the vibrations in the ground from the bass. The crowd swayed and danced and held their arms in the fresh air sending some kind of wave of energy that shook the light strung across our heads. I had no idea Mumford & Sons were filming the show, but I saw the cameras flying over everyone. I found out later it was for their “I Will Wait” video. Vanessa and I danced with our concert friends, the wind keeping us cool, and our friends keeping us laughing. At the climax of their last song cannons shot out coloured bits of paper, or maybe it was just confetti. The lights and colour fell on top of the crowd like some kind of blanket. Mumford & Sons said it was their dream to play at Red Rocks. They told us how amazing the crowd was and we felt the same way about the band.
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