Metal fans from Delhi and surrounding areas must have had a tough night. They either ended up in tears or too sloshed to control their anger. Before I go any further – I’m not a huge Metallica fan, I don’t even listen to a lot of heavy metal. Then why was I so keen on attending the concert? I’ll put it down in simple words, I just wanted to have a good time. I’m sure the crowd of 25,000 that showed up at Gurgaon last night wanted the same thing.
There’s a thing about organizing big events in a country likes ours. First there’s this huge hoopla around the event where everyone goes absolutely nuts about how awesome it is going to be. Then somewhere down the line a bunch of people collectively screw things up for the rest of us and in the end we play the blame-game. Be it the Commonwealth Games or Bryan Adams’ concert getting cancelled or last night’s Metallica gig that got cancelled. We just can’t seem to get it right.
Let’s see what went wrong at the Metallica concert last night and who is to ‘blame’
– The Fans: Everyone loves to blame the fans. I’m going to refer anyone out there at the event, with or without a ticket, as a fan. I was standing outside for more than 2 hours and from what I could make out – people were openly drinking and smoking outside, the crowd comprised of a good amount of wannabes – that’s when the next door chunnu-munnus suddenly go into the rawwking mode and decide to become rock stars themselves. So when you tell a crowd that’s high to back off because you didn’t think how you screwed up the barricades, you get what you deserve. I wouldn’t go ahead and blame it on the fans entirely although I do think going up and smashing equipment won’t do anything fruitful. The fans had their right to feel offended, they’ve waited for such a long time and this was supposed to be a big event. Had it been any other country, the fans would have been equally or even more violent. It’s just that everyone likes to push the blame on any other ass-backwards country. Why not? It’s the easy way out.
– The Organizers: DNA and it’s partners have organized plenty of shows around the country. They may not have a great reputation but they do have the balls to pull it off. Well, most of the times. This time they messed up royally. It wasn’t rocket science to make out how big the crowd was going to get, when to actually let people inside, how strong the barricades and security needs to be and everything that you would expect from a professional organizer. I think a local wedding planner could have done a better job last night. I won’t even give them any benefit of doubt on technical glitches, you had your sweet time guys. That’s no excuse.
– The Administration: The cops and the civic authorities were probably hungover too. While the location was just about perfect, with ample parking space and an obvious route, things still went ugly in the end. I fail to understand how the Gurgaon cops couldn’t prevent the whole public drinking scene. My problem isn’t with people drinking, my problem is with people advertising drinking in the public. A few people would show up drunk that’s not a problem but when the entire crowd gets excited to see others do it, they’d follow. You don’t want 25,000 crazy-hormone filled youngsters jumping up and down, bringing down banners and what not. That only helps others blame the fans in the end.
Whatever the exact reason may be, I wouldn’t blame one person or party in particular. It takes a team effort to royal screw things up. As of now the concert stands cancelled, four organizers have been arrested by the local police for cheating the public (that’s just another show-off), the organizers claim they’ll soon release ads in the newspapers on how they will process refunds to everyone who bought the tickets.
I personally don’t want the money back. Let Metallica keep the money in exchange for a lifetime free music download pack to all Indians (yeah that absurd). For they had the chance to win a country’s heart, make new fans and reignite the passion in their current fans. Good luck in Bangalore.