What to wear to a concert? 5 tips for concert outfits: wear your best punk jacket with the right patches!

No matter who you are, where you come from or what you do in life; when you put on your battle jacket a mechanism triggers something in your head. That's the moment you reunite with your true self; because you finally wear what you are. The concert jacket is not a simple garment, but a projection of yourselves in a piece of clothing.

In my long career as a punk rocker, I have seen heaps of people wearing their punk jacket and I’ve seen all kinds of them: nails, bomber, denim jackets…

I’ve seen fashions come, become obsolete and then come back.

That’s why the most important thing to have a great concert outfit is to “Stay DIY or DIE”, and always wear a D.I.Y. T-Shirt, homemade or bought from independent bands, so you can support your local scene!

Concert Outfits

Are you wondering what to wear to a concert? Here are 5 tips for concert outfits!

Some jackets have struck me particularly, I remember when I was a kid at a NOFX concert in Jesolo, Italy, a very sick punk was there with large letters inscription behind his nail jacket:

It is you who make me sick!” and at that moment I realised it was the essence of punk summed up in one sentence… in one word: a masterpiece.

concert outfits - bomber jackets

First of all: wear your best punk jacket with the right patches and you will be totally kick-ass!

From that moment my passion started to grow and I started making my own jacket (with my mother’s invaluable help), and I have to say, I was so good at that job that some friends of mine began to wonder if I could do a jacket for them too…

From there I started producing a series of punk jackets, but it revealed one big mistake!

I made lots of jackets similar to each other, but that’s the reason why they were deprived of their own personality: the most important feature in that type of jacket.

Most of them were bought by local jocks who wanted to look ROCKER and that was my divine punishment, to see my punk jackets – made with so much love – worn by these fucking cock faces all over different fucking clubs… my only comfort was that many of those assholes paid me with drugs.

classic sleeveless denim jackets

That said, I will give you some advice, friends, those of you who are planning to make your first battle jacket or create your newest one and wondering what to wear to a punk concert to feel cool and confident.

Descendents and Minor Threat Punk Jackets

1- Punk Patches DIY or DIE

Talking about concert outfits, I’m not the only one who had the idea of making some jackets in a series (unfortunately) and I know some brands offer you a ready-made battle jacket, available with loan sharks prices.

Remember that your punk jacket is your flag and a way to express your personality… If you buy an already-made-battle-jacket, you show everybody that you don’t have personality.

Remember that one of the best parts of having a cool jacket is looking for punk patches/studs/written stuff and how you mix that shit together.

Swans, love and sleeveless denim jackets

2- Select the right punk jacket patches

If you make a uniform carpet of punk patches stuck one to the other the only result will be that none of them will stand out.

I’m not saying that’s a wrong choice, the first rule is that there are no rules, but I would recommend putting fewer patches and more detailed in some strategic points: the back, above the left breast pocket, right shoulder and so on…

Black metal pubk rock jacket

3- Quality matters

One of the hardest steps is choosing the jacket, you should get one of good quality and it’s okay. I recommend you try it before you put it on.

Don’t get a jacket that you’ll wear badly.

Before I found my black jean jacket I had to wait months before buying it in a market at Caden Town, London.

To say buy it, is a big word actually, because a salesman stole it and then sold it back to me in a bar, but let it be… that’s another story.

Cannibal Holocaust Jacket

4- Try not to offend anyone (a.k.a. don’t mess with 1% Bike Gangs)

When you chose what kind of jacket to wear to a concert, there are unwritten rules in the world of concert outfits, and you can put only certain group or gang logos on your jacket.

For example, I have a Tumbledown patch on the back of my jacket. One time I had some trouble with a gang of bikers who thought it was the logo of a rival gang (actually they showed me and it’s really similar).

soa jack outlaw cabron

That time I was very close to being hit by them, but in the end, I turned around & they saw that they had mistaken the patch and fortunately it ended well cause they offered to buy me a drink.

So be careful about what you’re going to put on your jacket because the responsibility is yours.

soa jacks last episode chased by the cops

5- Do not make shitty colour mix

Before you stick a new patch, always do a test if it’s fine with the others and I recommend you not to do chromatic nonsenses, trust to your good taste to get your own personal concert outfit and if you don’t have good taste… you’re probably fucked up anyway! 🙂

metalheads sitting on a wall

Said that now you are ready to have a great concert outfit: make your own punk leather jacket, sticking out the right punk back patches, unleash your creativity, good luck and above all have fun.

Oh, and thanks a lot to LiveTrigger.com for hosting me and to all the friends who sent me photos of their jackets to enrich this post.leather black american punk jacket

Welcome to the Vintage Industrial Bar in Zagreb

Vintage Industrial Bar is the best bar in Zagreb. We chat with Matija, their promoter, about organizing exceptional concerts

Hi Matija. Tell our readers something about your activity as a promoter of the Vintage Industrial Bar in Zagreb.

Hi everybody! I’ve been working at Vintage Industrial Bar as a promoter for three years. Immediately as I started the idea was – let’s get bands people like and don’t have an opportunity to see live in their town or country. I think we did a good job for Zagreb. The first band I booked was the Madball and after that there were bunch of them, bands of different genres and style, so I’ll just write some of them: Cannibal Corpse, Sick Of It All, The Exploited, Crowbar, Yob, Black Cobra, Pentagram, John Garcia (who actually recorded two of their songs live last year at our venue and published them on his new album – The Coyote Who Spoke in Tongues), Elder, Egypt, Yawning Man, The Cosmic Dead, Ecstatic Vision, Tinariwen, Agnostic Front, Mad Sin, Ignite, Pro-Pain… some regional bands, smaller and bigger…

What kind of band do you usually work with?

It depends, I listen to all kind of music, but when you organize concerts in Croatia you have to try to be sure that people will recognize it. The formatted radio station with 100 same songs that play over and over, TV with bad content are not really educating younger people that there are so many great bands that they could listen. But, there is always a part of the audience that will come so there is still a chance to make things better. We book stoner, metal, rock, world music, blues… really the only thing that matters is that our Vintage team says – this is really good, let’s do it.

When you get in touch a band for the first time, which are the criteria that drive your decision to book them or not?

As I wrote in previous questions, there are a bunch of mindsets and laws in Croatia that make this job harder. Croatia has one of the highest taxes in the EU and this is just one of many things. Government isn’t paying enough attention and giving even less financial help to build up local, national and international cultural scene. So when I book the bands at the Vintage Industrial Bar, the best option is when the band is on tour with its backline cause the costs are lower in the start. Croatian price standards are lower so we have to find a solution that would be okay both for the band and for us. But as you can see in the first answer, we try to do everything to support the bands we book and give them good treatment. It is why a bunch of bands and agents are contacting us after a good word is spread. That’s the healthy way of doing this job.

So, I play in a band, I’m booking a tour and I’d like to play in your venue. Give me your three most important recommendations.

Wrote it few rows up. 🙂 The most important thing is to contact a music promoter early enough! We have a club with excellent sound tech Tomislav Zubak who really puts every atom of power when it comes to upgrading the sound. Really hard working and well-respected engineer.

Tell us something about the three best bands you have worked with at the Vintage Industrial Bar… one sentence each!

Cannibal Corpse – a bunch of gentleman/professionals that I first heard in 5th grade and loved them ever since.
John Garcia – he fell in love with Vintage Industrial and we fell in love with the coolness of the stoner rock prince.
Cojones – a Croatian rock band that kicks ass and they are really nice people to know.

Being a promoter in Croazia is an easy or a hard job?

Everything is hard in Croatia but every job like every coin has its two sides. I think the most important thing is to be fair with people you work with (like the guys from Boogaloo Zagreb, Bikers Beer Factory, GBH vintage industrial bar) – both with the musicians and other promoters and clubs in your city and country. Just try to do the best you can and don’t shit in neighbour’s yard if you know what I mean and I know you do. 🙂 

What’s the coolest live act in your city?

I already mentioned Cojones, and we have a really internationally respected Seven That Spells, Chui… and bands mostly known in Croatia like M.O.R.T. that started their label Juda Records to put similar bands under one roof.

What’s the best live music show you’ve seen recently?

Helmet in Ljubljana (Slovenia) at the beginning of March.

Tell us something about your best and your worst memory on the road.

I don’t travel a lot. Besides being a promoter on my so-called nightshifts, I also work at Radio Student – 20-year-old local radio station in Zagreb on a daily basis. First Croatian student radio and still we’re playing music you really can’t hear on any media in Croatia. So gods bless us! 🙂 Check it out – www.radiostudent.hr/

What do you think about LiveTrigger?

Nice site with information a guy like me likes and needs. Keep it going!

Pic by Roberto Pavic