Once you hit twenty-one years old, the amount of concerts you can attend increases exponentially. For some, that day is a distant memory; for others, it’s fresher in their minds. But it’s all too easy to forget how disappointing it was to see that your favorite band was coming to town, or a killer local lineup just got booked…only to find out that you weren’t old enough to get in. There are legitimate reasons (alcohol) for such a sharp age divide, but it’s discouraging for young live music fans to have so few outlets to experience what they love. All-ages shows are comparatively scarce, and curfews can be strictly enforced at places that normally serve drinks (such as Cattivo.) In a scene whose growth is starting to accelerate, it’s crucial that younger bands and music lovers have opportunities to play and attend shows, so their passion can fuel future generations of Pittsburgh musicians.
One such opportunity is happening this Sunday, July 30th, when Teenage Takeover comes to the Ballroom of James Street Gastropub. The Takeover is an all-ages concert series spearheaded by local rockers the Nox Boys, whose frontman, Zack Keim, is twenty years old. This month’s iteration features them alongside several other young, high-energy acts: Matt and Paige of Chase the Monkey, Spirit of the Bear, The Summercamp, Pachyderm, and The Incandescents. An all-vinyl DJ set from Scotty Ashbaugh is also on the bill, and indie hip-hop artist SIKES will serve as host.
It’s encouraging to see such a stacked lineup, and to have so many artists come together with the aim of reaching out to a younger crowd. (Of course, you don’t have to be under 21 to attend. Just know that there will be no alcohol served.) It might be worth giving your liver a break, though, and checking out what the future of the Pittsburgh music scene looks like today.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Semi-Supervillains are no longer on the bill; in their place will be the hip-hop artist Juice.