Going to a live music show is one of life's greatest pleasures.
This year, I've enjoyed gigs by big names such Neil Young and Crazy Horse, Eels, Steve Earle and Lucinda Williams as well as those involving lesser known but still hugely talented acts.
These include Ron Sexsmith, The Handsome Family, John Murry and Glasgow's own Jim Dead.
I've another 15 or so lined up between now and the end of the year, too, including Bob Dylan, Queens of the Stone Age and Nick Cave.
From the best of venues, in my view Glasgow Barrowland, to the intimate, downstairs space of The State Bar, a gig offers so many pleasures. At the bigger venues that buzz when the stage lights dim and an eerie, mysterious humming sound emerges from who knows where, is like no other. Then, bang, the stars are plugging in and raring to go at the microphone.
Over many years of concert-going I've discovered that audiences are made up of all sorts: groups of young men and women, lovers, loners (I've gone to loads of gigs on my own, I must admit) and those who tag along with a mate because there was a spare ticket available. All types. At a Neil Young gig at The Playhouse in Edinburgh a few years back, I heard a baby cry - I kid you not.
You meet interesting, like-minded people and, at smaller venues, you get the chance to speak to the artistes themselves, post-performance.
So, despite the unfathomably expensive booking fees and postage costs on tickets, high beer prices, shocking toilets, annoying punters talking too loudly, the odd idiot lighting up, the iPhone scourge, and difficulty seeing when being only 5ft 7in tall in a big crowd, live music is great entertainment.
But I do have one bugbear which is the biggest I have encountered over the years.
It is this. Far too often venues do not have a clue in regards to a basic piece of information that would be extremely helpful if provided, especially if you have far to travel to a gig or need to make childcare arrangements (as I do) when a show clashes with a night when a spouse is out, too.
This information is: when does the support act go on stage and, more importantly, at what time can we expect the main act? The number of times this is not available is countless.
I realised how bad it was when one venue, the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre on the banks of the River Clyde in Glasgow, got it absolutely right for June's concert by Neil Young and Crazy Horse.
Those who bought tickets for this memorable event had a pre-show text detailing when the support act would be on, and for how long, and also when Neil Young would take to the stage. Brilliant.
Arrangements could be made with family from out of town, a departure time from the pub could be agreed, and a slot could be allocated for browsing the merchandise before entering the arena place for the show. What a breakthrough. And it all worked perfectly.
Some venues, occasionally, give indications of show times but most are mainly hopeless, in my experience.
When we go to a sporting event or a cultural one such as the ballet or the theatre, we know when the show will start. Handy, that.
As we all head indoors to listen to music in the comfort of our homes because the festival season has ended for another year, it is surely time for music venues and promoters to get their acts together on this issue.
With ticket prices creeping ever upwards, there is a compelling case for putting the concert-goer's interests in the spotlight. It is called customer service.
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