I have two favorite musical artists:
- Taylor Swift
- Lana Del Rey
I can now say I’ve had the honor of seeing them both in the same year.
Back in August, my friend texted me about Lana Del Rey going on tour. After that knowledge, I no longer regretted my decision to hold off on booking a flight to Chicago to see her at Lollapalooza. I knew this moment was my opportunity.
The closest show to me was Charlotte, NC. Unlike shows for Taylor Swift and Olivia Rodrigo, there were no presale codes. Instead, there was just a general public sale. Knowing the popularity of Lana, especially after her second wave of fame this year, I knew getting tickets would be a war. So, the day tickets went on sale, I went to my favorite local coffee shop (for good luck ofc) and tried my hand at getting tickets. I sat there with my iced matcha and credit card in hand and logged onto the site at 9:45 (15 minutes before the sale started). I really think the ticket gods were on my side because by 10:30 I had purchased two tickets for seats with an amazing view.
It was official — I was going to see my second favorite artist.
Flash forward to the day of the show, September 29th. The morning of, I went on a Target run in need of two important essentials: glittery tights and funky sunglasses. I acquired the important essentials, picked up my sister, and we were off.
I had seen some videos of the show when scrolling through TikTok, so I knew some of the songs she would play. Although I didn’t completely spoil it for myself, the majority of the show was a surprise, which I preferred and recommend. My sister and I mostly listened to Lana during the 3 and a half hours on our way to Charlotte.
After finally getting there, we took our happy selves up the elevator to meet my friend and her mom to get ready for the concert. The vibes and energy were high, and we couldn’t wait to get there. The mood was further helped by the amazing weather that wasn’t too hot or too cold. To further show off the good vibes, we all wore our stylish shades, even though the sun was setting.
Parking at the venue was easy and free, which surprised me to be honest. We walked the short walk to get in the line – which looked massive. Although, I think we either got in the wrong line or something because our line was significantly shorter than the main one. Even so, we kept our mouths shut and stayed in line. We made it into the venue super quick. When we got to the merch tent, there were only a few people in front of us. So, I guess from the parking to entry, luck just kept following us.
Of course we took way too many pictures in our cute dresses, bows, boots, sunglasses, and sparkly tights. The amphitheater made a great background, and I usually hate outdoor venues. It was so free-spirited (aka Lana) to have this show in an outdoor venue.
After getting some food and drinks, my sister and I made our way to our seats. A girl sitting nearby handed out friendship bracelets that said ‘cherry wine’ and were decorated with star and flower beads. I thought this was so sweet and gave me flashbacks from the Eras Tour, where bracelets like these were the norm. To further my reminder of the Eras Tour, many people I saw were wearing Taylor merch. This was no surprise to me as both Lana and Taylor have talked about their love for eachother. They also both work with the infamous producer, Jack Antonoff.
After an opening act from Nikki Lane and some waiting, Lana hit the stage. She opened with the title track from one of my favorite albums, Norman f***ing Rockwell. She then transitioned into A&W singing the infamous “Jimmy, Jimmy, cocoa puff” which made the crowd go WILD and I mean WILD.
Something I love about Lana and her performances is how they are not the norm. By saying this I mean that her songs aren’t songs you’d usually envision people screaming and jamming out to while they are being performed. Her songs mention deep and dark themes accompanied by slow beats. Despite this, Lana’s dedicated fans make these slow and dark songs easy to sing along to and scream out. Her lyrics are so poetic, making you almost ‘feel the music in your soul’.
She continued by singing popular hits like “Video Games”, “Summertime Sadness”, “Young And Beautiful”, and others. Although, she also sang deeper cuts in her discography like “hope is a dangerous thing…”, “Arcadia”, “Bartender”, etc. She really made sure to cater to the people who had been fans for a long time.
Something else I love about the show (and Lana is general) is that she is infamously unhinged or unpredictable. This is shown by her outfit, which was obviously beautiful, but not a ‘conventional performance outfit’. Her outfit was a white-lace dress, and, in my opinion, it coincided with the melody of her songs: soft and old-schooled. She also showed her ‘unconventional nature’ by some of her set designs and through her dancers. This is shown by her dancers dragging her out in a sheet at the end of her show while she sings “hope is a dangerous thing…”. Despite the weirdness of this to non-fans, it was iconic to the fans and so “Lana Del Rey vinyl”, as the TikTok trend would say.
Unlike most of the other concerts I’ve been to, the screens showed what was going on in the crowds as well as what was happening on stage. This added to the show as it got her fans involved as well as added to this unconventional uniqueness Lana Del Rey and her shows have. For example, I saw many old men jamming out in the crowd which would not be seen at other young women’s concerts.
I would HIGHLY recommend seeing Lana Del Rey if you get the chance. Even if you aren’t a huge fan or don’t know a majority of the songs, you will have a blast being in the environment. Plus, her voice sounds so angelic live. Trust me, you will leave impressed.