Millions of Britons aged 18 and over have never been to a gig, finds study

Many claim high prices discourage them from attending, as well as overwhelming crowds and living too far from suitable venues 

Jack Peat
Thursday 03 May 2018 16:46
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Research shows that attending concerts regularly can have a variety of health benefits
Research shows that attending concerts regularly can have a variety of health benefits

More than eight million Britons aged 18 and over have never been to a gig, while more than 16 million haven’t experienced live music in the past ten years, according to a new study.

Despite more than two thirds of Britons agreeing that live music is better than playing the tracks at home, new research has revealed many struggle to get out to concerts.

Londoners are the biggest live music fans, with one in six attending a gig at least once a month.

But, almost one in five people aged 55 and over have never been to a gig before, while people in Yorkshire and the Humber are the least likely to have gone to a gig.

According to the O2 research, many people who have never been to a gig claim the price puts them off, while 23 per cent said they find crowds overwhelming and 15 per cent say they lived too far from a venue.

One in seven Britons even believes they are too old to go to a concert.

But these fears only apply to those who have never been to gigs, the research revealed, as those who go regularly love the experience.

Half cited the atmosphere as one of the best things about seeing live music, while 41 per cent said making memories was one of the key parts of gig-going.

Nina Bibby, CMO at O2, said: “Our research has revealed that many people are missing out on the incredible experience of seeing live music.

“But that doesn’t have to be the case.

“O2 has 19 O2 Academy venues in 13 cities across the UK and through Priority Tickets, we give our customers access to over 5,000 live shows in more than 350 venues across every year.”

The news comes after a recent study showed that regular gig-going can be actually good for you.

Just 20 minutes of gig time was shown to increase people’s feelings of self-worth, closeness to others, mental stimulation and general feelings of well-being.

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When it comes to artists that Britons wish they’d seen live, Queen, The Beatles and Abba topped the list.

In the survey, respondents were also asked which genres they listen to in order to make themselves feel happy.

The results encompassed a broad musical spectrum, with pop emerging as the victor. Here is the full top ten:

The top ten genres of music people listen to when they want to feel happy:

  1. Pop – 41 per cent
  2. Rock – 32 per cent
  3. Pop Rock – 27 per cent
  4. Classical – 20 per cent
  5. Dance – 19 per cent
  6. Country – 18 per cent
  7. Disco – 18 per cent
  8. Ballads – 16 per cent
  9. Musicals – 15 per cent
  10. Indie – 15 per cent

Eleven UK cities’ favourite music genre (according to O2 customers)

  1. Birmingham – hip-hop
  2. Bristol – music festivals/rock/hip-hop
  3. Glasgow – rock/pop/hip-hop
  4. Leicester – urban
  5. Leeds – music festivals/rock
  6. Liverpool – pop
  7. London – urban/Dance
  8. Newcastle – rock/pop
  9. Sheffield – rock
  10. Oxford – dance
  11. Southampton – rock/pop

SWNS

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