Red Rocks shooting leaves temporary mark

A amphitheatre stage on an uneventful day.

The Thunder Mountain Amphitheatre is one of the largest outdoor venues in Northern Colorado.

Even though the shooting at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Thursday June 19 was shocking, some think it may not have a large impact in how Northern Colorado concerts are handled in the future.

The incident, which happened in one of the parking lots after a concert featuring rappers Nas, Flying Lotus and Schoolboy Q, left three men injured when shots were fired at an SUV they were riding in with Schoolboy Q. All three men are expected to recover, but the event has nonetheless created controversy as the next Colorado-based shooting. The location of the concert, however, may not be as important as the genre of music.

“Music that glamorizes a culture of violence attracts violent behavior,” said Jeremy Grant, the general manager and production manager for the Fort Collins venue Hodi’s Half Note. “I don’t think that anyone who attends such shows is ever all that surprised when violence breaks out, they know it’s a possibility when they buy the ticket.”

And based on the results of various studies, Grant may have a point.

A 2012 survey conducted by the Patron Management Institute reported that, of the 155 people questioned, more people felt unsafe at rap concerts, 43.2 percent, than safe, 38.7 percent. The correlation between rap and hip-hop music and violence is not an emerging trend, though.

According to the Rock Concert Safety Survey published in March 2003, rap concerts were the most violent music events in 2002 with five deaths and eight others shot, stabbed or injured in altercations that year.

Even with a history of violence at concerts, Grant said that his staff prepares for concerts of all genres by regularly attending security classes offered by the Fort Collins Police Department. He also said that he thinks attendance will remain the same even after this event.

” I don’t believe there will be much if any local fallout as a result of this incident,” Grant said.

A guitarist performing under a spotlight

Arthur Stephens, with the band Jet Engines, plays a show at the Art Lab in Fort Collins.

Grant is not the only person with that attitude though. Local musician Arthur Stephens said he thinks the shooting was unfortunate but the past has shown that the anxiety will dissipate.

“When you look back on the history of all concerts, violence isn’t unheard of, it’s very much a recurring theme but concerts keep selling out,” Stephens said. “Festivals have been unpredictable for years, but the music brings people back and hopefully it always will.”

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department has received a few tips related to the shooter but a suspect has not yet been taken into custody.

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