This 1st annual Rock on the Range concert took place in Columbus, OH on Saturday, May 19, 2007 at the Columbus Crew Stadium. It was a cooler day for May, with sprinkles of rain in the air, but it did not bother anyone as we were all psyched to see a concert which such a great line up. It was advertised as 12 bands, plus more, for 12 hours. The top bands included Puddle of Mudd, Papa Roach, Chevelle, Three Days Grace, Breaking Benjamin, Evanescence, Buck Cherry, Black Stone Cherry, Hinder, ZZ Top, and Velvet Revolver. This was quite an all star line up. The first band was to hit the stage at 12:00, so we got there as close as we could to noon. The parking was great with many, many spots for everyone to fill. The unexpected thing was how long the line was to get in. It took us 45 minutes to get in the gates of the stadium. There were multiple entrances and we never did figure out what the hold up was. Once in, we got a drink, $7.50 for a 12 oz. bottle of beer. Then we headed for the main floor to get close to the stage. To our surprise, we were not allowed on the main floor because we did not have a wristband. We had never even heard anything about the need of a wristband. It was not announced publicized on the festivals website or their MySpace page, nor did I hear about it on the radio. Needless, to say, we were very disappointed about this. So me made the best of it and tried to find a close spot on the metal bench seats.
All the bands came out on stage close to or right at their schedules time. There were two stages. For the first 11 bands, as soon as one bands set was done on one stage, another bands set started on the other stage. In theory, I’m sure this seemed like a good idea so that there was always music being played. But in reality, it took nearly a half hour to fight your way through the crowds to get from one stage to the other, and with some set only lasting 50 minutes, there was plenty of great songs missed because of this. After Hinder hit the stage at 6:00, the second stage was no longer in use. All of the bands put on a great show and performed very well. It’s too bad the sound system couldn’t hold up its end of the deal. The closer you were to the stage, they better of course. But when you were farther away you could really hear how bad the sound system was. The vocals and guitars would fade on and out as if someone was turning the volume button up and down. It was quite annoying and disappointing. I am a big fan of all the bands that were there and to not hear them at them their best was frustrating.
I think in the future, there are some definite improvements that could be done to the Rock on the Range music festival. First of all, I think they should sell tickets designated as ether floor seating or general admission stadium seating. They should also have the band line up scheduled more appropriately so that if you do want to go from one stage to the other, you have enough time so you aren’t missing half of each bands set. I know the prices of the food and drinks will never change, so I won’t even go there. Lastly, have more vendors set up selling stuff.