If You're Too Broke For A Music Festival, These 7 Things Will Speak To Your Soul
Stay wild, flower child. You want to go to a music festival so bad one day, but for now, your budget is making it difficult to check anything off your bucket list. The tickets are expensive, and then once you throw in airfare and maybe a cute Airbnb, too — well, suddenly you're breaking the bank. You're just so over hearing your favorite songs just through your headphones, and want to have an experience. Music already creates such an atmosphere, and you can't imagine what it would be like live. If you're too broke for a music festival, don't be too sad. There's still so much you can do that will speak to your flower child soul.
Anytime you put new music on your playlists, you're instantly in a better mood. Road trips, or even just the drive to school, wouldn't be the same without a little Beyoncé, or one of those alternative groups like The Lumineers. Of course, there are the throwbacks that'll forever have a place in your heart. For me, that's basically anything by Akon, or some really old Rihanna songs. They just never seem to get old, and you remember all the lyrics every time.
You could sit at home and scroll through all of the pictures on social media of people in their best festival style, posing against ferris wheel backdrops and all the bright lights. But, these seven things will be a whole lot better if you're a flower child who's just a bit broke.
1. Do Some Karaoke
All the cool kids do karaoke. Any of the best bars you've ever been to probably had a stage where you could belt out "Party in the U.S.A." or "Bennie and the Jets" with your besties. Sure, you're not quite as talented as the performers you'd probably be seeing at a music festival. But, you get the job done, and don't mind dropping the mic to make your point.
Maybe you have your own karaoke machine, or you'll find a spot to check out and snag a spot in line. You're bound to have made some memories by the end of the night, when you and your friends have channeled your inner rockstars. Now, go accept your Grammy in the shower like everybody else.
2. Seek Out A Smaller Show
You might not be able to see all of your favorite artists, but there are always a thousand other smaller shows going on in venues closer to home. Check out your local listings to become some of the first fans of indie musicians, or book a seat to see just one of the acts you would've if you'd gone to Coachella and the like.
Sure, you'll see the stars posting all over social media crowd shots from their much larger shows. But, you'll get to experience basically the same atmosphere at this show just the same. Honestly, sometimes these more intimate concerts are even cooler because you can get more up-close and personal with what you're passionate about.
3. Stay At A Hotel For Music Lovers
Your usual sleepover just got an amazing upgrade. If you're looking for something really rad to do, but can't seem to make it to a music festival, then you'll want to spend a night at a one-of-a-kind hotel. These places are designed for music lovers, and will make for a seriously memorable stay.
Sunset Marquis in Los Angeles, in particular, is located just steps away from the most iconic venues in Hollywood like the House of Blues. At night, walk along Sunset Strip or see a show at the Staples Center. Wandering amongst the stars (even if they're just the ones on the sidewalk) will have you feeling all of the music festival feels and totally adventurous just the same.
4. Watch A Movie With An Amazing Soundtrack
From Mamma Mia! to Burlesque, and my personal favorite, La La Land — there are so many movies out there with amazing soundtracks. The score is probably one of the most underrated parts of any film, and it takes watching your favorite flicks just a few more times to realize that somebody picked each song for a specific purpose.
Even if you just have a Disney movie marathon, there are so many tracks you'll instantly want to sing along to with your gal pals. Make a whole night of it, and look up the lyrics to the ones you don't know so you don't miss a single beat. Some people will be dancing in the desert for a weekend, but you'll have Meryl Streep on your side.
5. Wander Through A Record Store
One of my favorite movie scenes of all time is the one in the record shop in Pretty in Pink. An Otis Redding song is playing over the speaker, and Molly Ringwald is sitting on the counter rolling her eyes while Jon Cryer spontaneously dances down the aisles. You can't help but get that vintage feeling and fall head over heels for something so old-school.
You don't necessarily need to recreate this scene to get the same effect while wandering through a record store. Some people still have record players and listen to modern day radio hits this way. As a flower child — and someday, a music festival-goer — you'll love seeing all the album covers a bit bigger and picking out those artists that your parents used to play when you were a kid. All so romantic, right?
6. Have A Jam Sesh
Put on your playlists and have yourself a dance party. Music festivals are fun because they can be so social, and the Instagram opportunities are endless. But, just hanging with your besties and being able to create your own setlist is a seriously good substitute. After all, did you really want to deal with all of the crowds?
On any average Friday night, you and you crew crank up the tunes to wash away the stress of the semester. This jam sesh will be a little bit different, because you'll want to be dancing until dawn just the same as you would at a festival. Prep some snacks and take only the best suggestions. It's your turn to play DJ and steal the spotlight.
7. Take A Trip To A Music Capital
Music festivals aren't cheap, mostly because you're buying like a hundred concert tickets all at once. And booking a trip might still not be totally in your budget, but you'll want to make a little bit of room for one of the music capitals of the world.
Think of the energy of Nashville, the stars you could see in Los Angeles, or the culture behind cities like New Orleans. True music fans will love being surrounded by so many people who appreciate the industry just like them. You'll walk pass record studios where your favorite artists got their start and eat at restaurants with live bands that somehow make the food taste so much better.
Who needs a music festival when your flower child soul can get an unreal experience and stay under budget, too? Being broke isn't so bad, after all.