Here at Front Gate, we are a team filled with a love for music and the community within. We teamed up with a few of our employees and asked them to share their most impactful moments with music and what drove their love for the festival scene.

Share a moment in your life that made you grateful for music.

Quin Adney, Product Manager
Growing up as a gay individual, Quin felt very isolated in his hometown. He shares, “music was my outlet to find other people and opinions outside those I would be exposed to in my physical environments. I listened to every album I could get my hands on, wondering about the people who created each. Were they happy in their lives? Did they find music to be an outlet too? If my local community wouldn’t open the door for new ideas, I was going to do that via music. It has always been my goal to enter the music industry professionally and help other strangers survive tough experiences and loneliness.”

Jon Wilson, Vice President of Business Development
“I’m always grateful for music but I find that I’m often most thankful for its presence in my life when going through large changes or life experiences: a move, a breakup, a road trip (or any kind of travel).  Music helps to process big feelings and put into context experiences that are impossible to put into words.”

Lori Malick, Creative Director
“I think one of the most important moments for me was transitioning from high school to college. I was leaving my family, friends, hometown­—everything I knew—to live on my own for the first time in my life in a new city and go to school at one of the biggest universities in Texas. The one thing that I had that was familiar and comforting and didn’t change initially was my music. And, quite serendipitously, this moment in time marked a transition in my other, probably second biggest, passion in life—technology. My first year of college was the year the first iPod came out. I had had another mp3 player or two prior to getting one, but the iPod made it substantial in your pocket– like having a Sony Discman again, but it didn’t skip! And it gave you more control and ways to listen and organize your music than any other and the software, iTunes, was incredible to me. I can’t imagine how many hours I’ve spent in my life, sitting in front of a computer, organizing my digital music collection, making playlists for EVERY OCCASION, etc. And I had it with me every lonely ride to UT in the mornings and afternoons back from class on the UT shuttle busses those first couple of years. So, I think I’ve always been very grateful for music, but never so much as the first time I could fit it all in my pocket and take it anywhere with me.”

Shira Grife, Sponsorship Development
“I was raised by the best of Deadheads, so my appreciation for music started at a very young age. Instead of lullabies, I got Grateful Dead songs. Instead of attending Disney on Ice, I was front row for Jerry Garcia. To be honest, my appreciation for the music didn’t develop right off the bat. The shows were often long, and I was young and required a lot of bathroom and snack breaks. However, as I continued going to shows, I would recognize the same people over and over again. Whether it was the parking attendant, the ticketing guy, or the guy sitting next to us. I slowly started to realize that music is was brought together this community, and a true community it was. Before I gained an appreciation for the music of the Grateful Dead I gained an appreciation for their community and camaraderie. My dad would say hi to everybody and I would ask him ‘dad, who’s that?’ And he would respond with ‘oh, just a show friend.” At the time I didn’t understand. But now as an adult, with my own musical tastes, I, too, have show friends; the people that love the music just as much as you do that you see at every concert and even forge real friendships with. In addition to the great jams, I am grateful for the people it brought into my life.”

What has been one of your favorite or most impactful live music experiences?

Quin Adney, Product Manager
“Seeing Frank Ocean [at a festival in LA] was my favorite live music experience to date. I tried to see him a couple times before then. The wait was worth it though! It was the best sound I’ve heard at a festival, with stereo speakers fully surrounding the large crowd. It also had the best live visuals I’ve seen at a festival, with live editing by Spike Jones. Using only the movements on stage and clever editing, the background visuals were astounding

Lori Malick, Creative Director
“It’s honestly hard to single out one [show] to call my favorite or most impactful. I thought long and hard about it, though, and the one I want to share is seeing Brian Wilson performing Pet Sounds (for perhaps some of the last times) at ACL Live last summer with my mom. I love that album almost as much as I love to tell people that Brian Wilson was the first, greatest emo musician. And to see it live at the Moody Theatre, with its arguably best sound in Austin, was nothing short of magical. Even after all these years and with age, when he played the songs with Al Jardin, it sounded just as good as on the album. The incredible juxtaposition between those sad lyrics and the tempo and upbeat-ness of the music was amazing to behold live and the whole crowd was feeling it. It was an even better bonus to have been able to take my mom, a huge fan and someone that hasn’t normally accompanied me to many of the shows I’ve seen. She totally cried.”

Jon Wilson, Vice President of Business Development
“Seeing my musical hero, Prince, perform at Madison Square Garden was a life-affirming musical experience.”

Shira Grife, Sponsorship Development
“Seeing Grateful Dead perform for the last time at Soldier Field was so amazing because Deadheads all over the world came together, and the city of Chicago was tie dyed.”

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