In September of 2021, on a complete whim, I bought a $40 pit ticket to what would be the best night of my entire life. It has been quite a few years since I’ve been to a concert. A mix of being in college and COVID-19 has made it hard to find locations close to me that also worked with my schedule. The pandemic has made live music incredibly hard to achieve, as you all know.
My partner and I made our way to Raleigh’s Red Hat Amphitheater to see Phoebe Bridgers in concert, with MUNA opening. As we waited in line, we saw our fair share of skeleton onesies and all black outfits. We had our vaccine cards checked and then the line started to move. I was a bit apprehensive about this experience because of COVID, but everybody kept their mask on around me in the pit and the vaccination screening eased my nerves.
MUNA, who I had learned about not long before seeing them, brought so much enthusiasm. Such a fun and eclectic group, and I’ve become quite a fan of theirs since seeing them. Phoebe came out to sing Silk Chiffon and left MUNA to finish their set. They played “Number One Fan,” “I Know A Place,” “Crying On The Bathroom Floor,” and other songs from their albums About U and Saves The World. Their music was more upbeat than Phoebe, so I was curious if the energy would continue once MUNA left the stage.
When I say that the production value of Phoebe’s concert was insane, I mean it. With all of her songs, there was a storybook projected behind her and the band that related to whichever song she was singing. Most of the songs came from Punisher, but she also played “Funeral,” “Motion Sickness,” and “Scott Street” off of Stranger in the Alps. We were also lucky enough to hear “Me & My Dog” and “That Funny Feeling”. The images on the storybook pages would change as the songs went on. My favorite was the house that gradually burned during “I Know The End.” As former band kids (both my boyfriend and I), the trumpet player absolutely amazed us.
The way she interacted with her fans was so laid back yet so engaging. My boyfriend and I laughed and cried, and mostly I was in awe that I was watching my favorite artist on stage. Now for my movie moment – it started to lightly drizzle at one point, and I was dancing and singing to Phoebe with my best friend. I felt like nobody else there was watching or judging, and I let myself have so much fun. It couldn’t have been a more perfect first-pit experience or first concert since the pandemic really started. I’ve soaked this in for 5 months, and this concert is still one of the best experiences I’ve ever had.