Last weekend, Colleen and I hung out at a VW fest that was going on near our home in Crystal Lake, IL. And as we strolled through and looked at all the vintage VW cars, I noticed a lot of Grateful Dead stickers on the windows and other concert-related artifacts in the buses. And then something popped into my head.
As I looked closer at the individual character of each VW Bus, I saw that many of them had other unique and custom-made additions built into them that got my curiosity revved up.
And I began to realize what I was looking at were actually portals into the past that told me these VW buses had likely been the hangouts and homes-on-wheels helping concert fans and families get to and from shows over the years.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get the chance to talk with the owners, so I can’t tell you that every VW Bus we saw had a concert road trip story behind it.
But I’m sure most of them did.
What I’ve been reading lately also spurred me to think about the concert roadtrip stories behind these VW buses.
This summer I read David Meerman Scott and Brian Halligan‘s new book “Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead”. Besides telling the revolutionary, fan-centric and influential business savvy of the Grateful Dead, the book also includes several life-changing stories and classic photography, both of which capture the memories of many concert road trips that Meerman Scott and Halligan shared as they traveled to Dead shows together.
Besides what I’ve read in books lately and experienced myself at summer music festivals — where the festival grounds have been covered with a quilt of VW Buses of all shapes, sizes and colors — I know that many of my family members and friends who are Dead Heads have traveled in VW buses to shows, too.
So, what exactly was missing from our adventures last weekend at the VW Fest?
The road trip stories, of course.
And that’s where you come in.
Because it’s time once again to think about your favorite road trips.
And if you have a concert story that involves a VW Bus, then now’s the time to share it.
I’d love to hear how the VW Bus played a role in your concert experiences.
And after you’re done scoping out the rest of the VW Fest photos, you can tell your story and share your favorite VW Bus concert experiences in the comments below, or send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. And we’ll feature them in a future Live Fix series.
To get a feel for how other fans have shared their concert stories check out more Live Fix fan interviews here.