Rail Etiquette

And the floor seats are sensing fear

Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, Denver

Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, Denver

I’ve been going to concerts for over 2 decades.

I’ve been to rock shows as an 11 year old (first show, Smashing Pumpkins.) my first Third Eye Blind show was in November’s 1997, as a pre-teen.

I’ve attended shows in seats, on balconies, pregnant and away from the rowdy crowds (3eb, May 2015), but my favorite spot at any show is in the very front, on the rails.

Now, I pride myself on knowing how to behave on the rails and still have a wild raucous. I’ve been at shows, surrounded by the friends that I came with, as well as the friends that I made in the pit. 9 times out 10, Third Eye Blind shows are a happy and loving bonding experience for the fans. Unfortunately, not everyone knows proper rail etiquette.

These buzz killers prompted me to ask some of my fellow experts to share their top 3 tips and tricks for maintaining a joyous experience on the rails. Some of these are funny (but accurate) while others are spot on, invaluable pieces of advice for anyone attending any show with the intent of being in the pit.

Courtesy: Matea Friedal

Brittney Chamberlain:

  • Go with friends, but make new ones before/during the show.

  • Sing your fucking heart out, smile your fucking face off, and dance/rock your fucking feet off.

  • Don’t drink too much (or in my case, stop entirely) so you don’t have to pee and lose your spot. Also, you don’t want to be a drunken asshole.


Maren Chase:

  • Don’t elbow your way in.

  • Don’t expect to get rails if you weren’t waiting (in the rain) all day.

  • Rail selfies all day.

Courtesy Adam Devens

Courtesy Adam Devens

Adam Devens:

  • Go with friends.

  • Sweat and jump your ass off with these friends.

  • Rinse and repeat the next night.

Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, San Jose

Courtesy: Big Mike

Nery Delisse Diaz:

  • Make friends with anyone around you that you don't already know.

  • Help hold a spot for fans next to you that need to buy merch or run to the bathroom.

  • Have a great time, but try to avoid bashing into any non-drunks.

Dannetta Wallis

Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, Summer Gods, Houston

Lorenzo Perez:

  • Make friends with the person next to you - maybe they’ll hold your spot for you or their significant other will grab you some water when they hit the concessions.

  • Let the parents’ little kid behind you up front. Most bands make sure to look at children rocking out with the rest of us and get handed picks.

  • Don’t drink too much lest you pee your pants!

Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, Sac.

Diana Knight Impeartrice:

  • Go with friends for sure and make new ones.

  • Don't let anybody bully there way through when you've been waiting for hours.

  • Live the moment and forget everything except the music and the way you feel.

Photo: Nicole Sams

Courtesy: Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, Summer Gods, Cleveland

CeCe Lee:

Please don't:

  • Bring your drinks in

  • Be all pushy & shovey.

  • Forget to rock the F out!


Liseli Thiele:

  • If someone who will be standing next to you for the next 90 minutes introduces themselves to you, and asks for your name, Smile and introduce yourself. -- Don't be nasty and mean. and ask "What For?"

  • Smile. and don't talk snicker and whisper in your friends ears making it obvious that you are talking shit. Everyone notices those eye rolls.

  • If the band is aiming at someone to throw them a drumstick or hold their hand, don't try to steal their moment. And if you catch something knowing very well that it was not meant for you, give it to the person it was being aimed at. And be a good sport about it.

Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, Seattle

Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, Seattle

Kim Moody:

  • Who gives a shit if you're drenched in sweat! This is your memory in the making.

  • Never give up on trying to get people around you to start a chant "We want more!" (It didn't work for me, but I tried).

  • Who cares if you get glares for jumping up and down while scream singing!

Courtesy: Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, San Jose

Courtesy: Third Eye Blind, Mike Wilson, San Jose

Other tips included:

Making friends with security (Lauren Sebastian), bringing good energy because it brings the band to life (Nichole Sams),and don’t spend so much time on your phone that you distract other fans (Taylor Labrador).

My personal favorite...

Do not rock out ONLY to Jumper and Semi Charmed Life, and then stand there like a dead tree the rest of the show
— Bidnizz B. Wright