4 Simple Ways Missoula Musicians and DJs Can Save Lives.
As a musician, DJ, or MC our goal is to create a good vibe wherever we perform, and of course build a loyal following. But what is one surefire way to kill the vibe? By killing our followers.
Read that last sentence again, we are literally setting the stage for the possibility of someone in our audience dying whenever we set foot on stage.
Pardon me if I seem a bit dramatic, but frankly I've grown weary of losing my audience to fatal accidents or emergency room visits. These scenarios happen far too often in my line of work, and no, it's not our music that is hurting them..
It never fails, each weekend reports pour in from local media sources of tragic drinking and driving accidents. People are knocking back one too many, often times during our performances, then getting in their car and making our roads unsafe. But what if we have the ability of being able to change that? Or at least minimize it?
We musicians have to realize that when we are performing we usually have the audiences attention. Why not use that to our advantage and offer assistance to the ones that have had too much alcohol? After all, we are the ones with the microphone more often than most. How many times have you made special announcements on the mic? Just think about how much respect you might get if you made the occasional mention of safe rides home!
Lately I've been making that part of my routine whenever I perform, occasionally shouting out the phone numbers of taxi services or asking people in the audience if they'd like to step up and be a designated driver that evening. Here's a few ways you too can help:
1. Memorize these phone numbers, mention them at last call
Yellow Cab Taxi- (406) 543-6644
Green Taxi- (406) 728-8294
UCallus- (406) 880-1673
2. Watch for over served patrons
Often times we are on stage with a great vantage point to see the entire bar. Use that view to your advantage and be an extra pair of eyes for the security staff. If you see someone who's had too much to drink, quietly go over to the bartenders or bouncers and inform them that they might need to be cut off.
3. Ask to see if anyone can help be a designated driver
It never hurts to request the help of some people in the audience to step up and offer a ride home to someone who is too drunk to drive. You'd be surprised how many people would offer their vehicle as a safe alternative.
4. Offer rides to your fans
This scenario should obviously be handled on a case-by-case basis, but giving the occasional familiar follower a ride home is something that may not be too difficult to assist with. I've done this many times and you can't believe how appreciative they are. Something as simple as this may earn you a fan for life.
All I'm trying to say is that we as performers in Missoula might very well be one of the last lines of defense when it comes to keeping our roads safe. Some performers reading this might think that this is not your responsibility or that it's just it's just too corny or uncool, but I promise that when one of your most loyal fans is injured or dies due to drinking and driving you'll wish you could have done something to help.