Keith Urban at Highline Ballroom, via Getty

One month ago, EDM star Avicii played a show at Boston’s TD Garden arena, and upwards of 80 people at the show needed medical attention for intoxication-related issues. When that story broke, it was easy to pin the blame on big-time festival rave music and the culture surrounding it. But then, getting fucked up at shows isn’t something specific to any genre. And in retrospect, maybe the problem was Boston? On Saturday night, the Australian country star Keith Urban, never known for having the world’s rowdiest fans, played the Xfinity Center in Mansfield, Massachusetts, 40 minutes outside of Boston. At this show, the Boston Herald reports that 22 people were sent to the hospital for “alcohol-related issues,” and upwards of 50 more were put into protective custody. There was also an unspecified number of alcohol-related arrests. On Twitter, Urban posted a video of himself talking about how great the show was, and here it is:

“Gosh, up on the lawn tonight, that was nutso.” I don’t know why, but this is sort of an adorable thing to say about a dangerously, rabidly drunk crowd.

[Photo by Johnny Nunez/Getty Images.]

Comments (12)
  1. Thousands of Keith Urban’s fans all over the world get fucked up every day. Evidence is that they listen to Keith Urban.

  2. Hey let them let off stream , it is better than what is going on in this world !!!!!!!!!!!

  3. This is timely, as my friend just told me that there were multiple fights at a Kooks concert in Boston the other night. I grew up in Boston and went to many shows there thinking that fights and obnoxious drunks were the norm. After being in Chicago for 3 years and seeing crowds here I can say that Boston crowds are pretty terrible. I once went to a Sigur Ros show where a girl howled like a wolf through half the songs. I went to a Franz Ferdinand show where a kid tried to start a mosh pit, he was only half successful. The traditional “Yankees suck” chant happens every time, even for bands that have nothing to do with New York. It’s ridiculous.

    • I live in Boston and go to lots of shows, and have never had that experience.

    • I agree with cash. I’ve been going to shows in boston for 20 years, all types of music. crowds are always great, and i’ve Never heard the yankees suck chant. quit going to faggy shows on landsdown st maybe? stay in chicago.

      • I love that you say you’ve never experienced this yet use the word “faggy” in the most typical Boston bro style.

        I will admit that shows at the Middle East/TT’s usually didn’t have this problem. It was mostly old Landsdown and the Paradise or any larger venue (Sigur Ros was at the Pavilion).

        As much as you answered in a rude fashion, I’m glad you haven’t experienced terrible Boston shows.

  4. Golly, Boston is nutso. OWWWOOOOOOOOO!

  5. Hmmm. Drunk people appear in Boston. Next up on the Stereogum update: fire is hot, and water is wet.

  6. boston just keeps celebrating the tea party from the revolution. except instead of tea they use beer and instead of the atlantic ocean they use their mouths.

  7. People get drunk at country shows? Holy shit.

  8. “The Lawn” at Xfinity Center might have something to do with it. This outdoor arena has been around for years – it used to be called Great Woods. One of the cool things about Great Woods was that you could get cheap tickets on “the lawn” – an open seating area behind all of the regular seating. It was sometimes tough to hear from the lawn, impossible to see, but fun and social. Last time I went to Xfinity Center, I noticed some changes. My expensive paid seats were in a field of concrete where the old “lawn” used to begin. We could only see the stage on the big screen, or with binoculars, and the sound was terrible. But the lawn was still there – now reduced to a measly, narrow strip at the far back of the arena. Imagine sitting in the highest bleecher seat at a major league baseball stadium, then take 100 steps backwards. And these unbeleiveable lousy lawn seats still go for decent money. If I paid good money for those seats, and couldn’t even hear the crappy country Keith Urban music, I might get drunk and beligerant too.

    The other thing I wonder about it crackdowns. If you send a mob of cops to a big concert and tell them to arrest drunk people, you’re going to get lots of arrests. This Xfinity arena is 45 minutes outside of Boston and not remotely accessible by public transportation, so maybe they were trying to crack down on drunk drivers…? I don’t know. Back in the early 90s I attended an infamous Grateful Dead concert at Giants Stadium, where the cops beat people up, arrest tons of kids, and actually killed a kid by throwing him off one of the elevated walkways. It was crazy, because I saw the same band at that same stadium the year previous, and it was a free for all, with one whole section of the parking lot set aside for the Dead’s travelling circus, deadheads selling bottled beer, and no troubles from security or police anywhere to be seen.

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