At this point, most musicians have given up the battle against cell phones and accepted the new reality that, at any given live show, a whole lot of people are going to be staring a tiny screens for much of the time. But Jack White is not most musicians. And with a new album coming out and a whole lot of tour dates looming, White is taking extraordinary measures to make sure you won’t be able to post grainy Instagram videos of him playing.
Houston’s Revention Center shared a message on Facebook that “no photos, video or audio recording devices allowed” will be allowed at White’s show there, and NME reports that this policy will be in effect for the entire upcoming US tour. You’ve probably already figured out why he doesn’t want phones there, but the statement goes ahead and makes that clear: “We think you’ll enjoy looking up from your gadgets for a little while and experience music and our shared love of it IN PERSON.”
And this won’t be a simple matter of posting signs asking people not to use your phones. Instead, when you arrive at the show, you’ll be required to stow your phone in a Yondr pouch (a pouch that you’ll be allowed to keep on you, but which someone will have to unlock for you), and you’ll only be allowed to access it if the show’s over or if you’re in a specifically designated zone of the venue:
PLEASE NOTE: this is a PHONE-FREE show. No photos, video or audio recording devices allowed. We think you’ll enjoy looking up from your gadgets for a little while and experience music and our shared love of it IN PERSON. Upon arrival at the venue, all phones and other photo or video-capturing gizmos will be secured in a Yondr pouch that will be unlocked at the end of the show. You keep your pouch-secured phone on you during the show and, if needed, can unlock your phone at any time in a designated Yondr Phone Zone located in the lobby or concourse. For those looking to do some social media postings, let us help you with that. Our official tour photographer will be posting photos and videos after the show at jackwhiteiii.com and the new Jack White Live Instagram account @officialjackwhitelive. Repost our photos & videos as much as you want and enjoy a phone-free, 100% human experience.
Yondr pouches have become more common at concerts in the past year. In July Tame Impala used the service at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester and last week Justin Timberlake used it to prevent attendees of his Man Of The Woods listening parties from recording bits of the album.
But White is playing a whole ton of festivals this summer, so he’s going to have to start getting used to the phone thing pretty soon. No word on whether he’ll allow rotary phones at his shows. Or, like, tin cans attached to each other with strings.