Miranda Lambert Shouldn’t Have Lashed Out At Fans, But We Need To Talk About Cell Phones At Concerts

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If you go to a Miranda Lambert concert, you better shut up and listen. And don’t you dare take a picture.

The country music star stopped in the middle of a show this weekend to scold a group of fans who were attempting to take a selfie during an emotional heartbreak ballad.

Lambert was just a couple bars into “Tin Man” when some concert goers pulled out their phones for a picture.

“I’m gonna stop right here for a second, I’m sorry,” Lambert said to her pianist. “These girls are worried about their selfie and not listening to the song.”

I’m sorry, what?

“It’s pissing me off a little bit,” she said. “Sorry, I don’t like it. At all. We’re here to hear some country music tonight. I’m singing some country damn music.”

OK, full disclosure: I like Miranda. She’s one of my favorite country damn music artists. Plus, she gives millions of dollars to help rescue dogs, and I’m a sucker for a furry face.

That said, this is a disastrous look.

Reportedly, dozens of fans got up and left the concert, and Lambert is being ripped all over social media for being a cranky diva.

Was Miranda Lambert right to chastise her fans?

I have some conflicting thoughts on this one.

I live in Nashville, where we have lots of little bars that host writers’ rounds. That’s where songwriters get on stage with an acoustic guitar and take turns playing original tunes. Locals know the etiquette at writers’ rounds is to be quiet and respectful. You listen, appreciate and clap.

Every once in a while, a bunch of tourists in pink cowboy hats wander off Broadway and stumble into a writers’ round. They laugh, chug White Claws, yell amongst themselves and completely drown out the struggling artist pouring his or her heart out on stage.

It’s obnoxious.

Miranda Lambert Shouldn't Have Lashed Out At Fans, But We Need To Talk About Cell Phones At Concerts
(Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for Miranda Lambert)

But the “Velvet Rodeo” Las Vegas residency is not an intimate writers’ round, and Miranda Lambert is not a struggling artist.

Seriously, have you seen the price of concert tickets lately? Those fans probably gave a month’s rent to Ticketmaster. They’ve earned the right to take a selfie.

And they certainly don’t deserve to be reprimanded like schoolchildren.

Miranda was out of line.

But she isn’t completely wrong.

We need to have a serious come-to-Jesus about the pervasiveness of cell phones at concerts.

And I don’t mean fans who take the occasional selfie. I mean the people who watch the entire show through their iPhone screen.

We’ve all been at a concert where our view looks like this:

Miranda Lambert Shouldn't Have Lashed Out At Fans, But We Need To Talk About Cell Phones At Concerts
Why are you like this?

Why pay money for a ticket to a live show if you’re going to view it through a screen anyway?

Are you really going to watch back that shaky video with the artist drowned out by your out-of-tune drunk voice screaming along in the background?

And do you understand that your grainy, 20x zoom shot from the middle of the upper deck is not anything anyone needs to see on Instagram?

Imagine going to a movie theater just to watch the entire film through your phone. And holding it above your head so the person behind you also has to watch it through your phone.

Stop it.

Lord knows we spend enough time staring at our screens. Let’s all agree to enjoy live music the old fashioned way — live and without TikTok.

Oh, for what it’s worth, I still love Miranda. And “Tin Man” is a great song.

Follow Amber Harding on Twitter: @TheAmberHarding

Written by Amber Harding

Amber is a Midwestern transplant living in Murfreesboro, TN. She spends most of her time taking pictures of her dog, explaining why real-life situations are exactly like "this one time on South Park," and being disappointed by the Tennessee Volunteers.


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