First let me start off by saying, this was my first “k-pop” concert, I use quotation marks because I consider them more rock than pop, maybe it’s better off saying: this was my first Korean concert I’ve ever attended. I’ve attended plenty of other concerts, mostly rock concerts. I’ve seen Linkin Park, Rise Against, 30 Seconds to Mars, Incubus, etc. I’ll skip how I got into the Korean wave, but the first Korean group that ever got my attention was CNBLUE. I absolutely love their music! This is the second band that I’ve ever traveled for. I live in Texas so I flew into New York for this show; I knew how rare it would be to see them in the states so I had to go! And let me tell you, I’m 100% glad I did. I’ll be starting this from the very beginning (announcement of the U.S. shows to the very end from my point of view).
CNBLUE is a Korean band that debuted in 2009 in Japan then later made their Korean debut in 2010. The band consists of Jung Yonghwa (lead vocals), Lee Jonghyun (lead guitarist), Kang Minhyuk (drummer), and Lee Jungshin (bassist). While each member can add more to their titles, such as each of them DO sing, Yonghwa also plays guitar and raps, Jonghyun’s vocals are absolutely amazing by the way! Shout out to Minhyuk for playing drums AND singing. If you’ve never heard of them, please check them out! Some of my favorite songs are Hey You, Intuition, You’ve Fallen For Me, Love, I’m a Loner, Love Girl, One More Time, and Blind Love. There’s plenty I could recommend but I’ll stop there before recommending their entire discography! (but if you have time…)
WARNING: Extremely long, I don’t expect people to read this whole thing, if anything I wrote it with a lot of detail so I could look back on it later. ♡ But I separated it into parts, the concert part (when the show is starting) is below, you can skip to that part.
The CNBLUE experience
On December 10th CNBLUE / FNC Entertainment announced two additional tour dates to their Blue Moon World Tour, let me tell you I was ecstatic and also not really surprised they chose New York and Los Angeles as the cities they’d be performing at. I remember telling my parents a long time ago that when CNBLUE come back to the U.S. I have to go! Even if it’s Los Angeles, I admit, I always find it harder to go there because the lack of transportation and I basically know no one there. I can’t even rent a car because I’d be too young (I remember looking into it before). New York would be primary choice, I don’t need a car to get around and I have family there! So, when it was announced I found out via Twitter, fansites posting this information and I think I even screamed out of joy (I was home, thank goodness). So I called my dad, told him the exciting news and at that moment I was really unsure of attending. I’d be basically going by myself, I knew no one else that would be going to the show, and I’m a really quiet/shy person. Putting that aside, I bought tickets the day it went on sale. I was actually still undecided if I would go or not, I had this huge anxiety growing that I’d be going by myself and just enjoying it by myself, while this is for CNBLUE I also wanted to share my enjoyment with someone…concerts are better when you enjoy it with someone else! Eventually, I found some people online who would also be going, plenty going by themselves…then I felt a bit better, at least I wouldn’t be the only one and maybe I would find someone else going alone then we could be friends! Feeling better about that, I set my travel arrangements. Also, my parents didn’t want me to go by myself, so my mom came with me. Even though I’ve traveled a lot of times by myself I’ve always had someone else waiting for me on the other side that I would spending my time with, like a friend. This time, I had no one, so my mom joined me on my trip. Plus, I really wanted her to come anyway, 2013 was a hard year on my family and I, especially my mom. To get her mind off all the worries I wanted her to come with me too and enjoy a little vacation!
Side note: she actually likes CNBLUE too, particularly Jung Yonghwa, lol. She keeps telling me to get his autograph!
January 18th – Arrival in New York
I arrived in New York on Saturday night, January 18th; I intended to arrive early because I had a stressful experience once arriving the same day as a concert and I swore never to do that again. Also, since I was traveling in January, the coldest month for New York, and anyone remember the polar vortex that happened in early January? Yeah, I really didn’t want to experience flight delays or cancellations so if I had to experience some sort of delay at least I would have some cushion to make it to the show, which obviously was my number one priority. While it wasn’t in my plans to greet CNBLUE at the airport, I thought why not? I’ll be in New York already, might as well go all out.
January 20th – John F. Kennedy International Airport
I was one of the lucky few that were able to make it to the airport and greet them, and there weren’t a lot of people at the airport (at least comparing to the other BM stops in Mexico, Peru, and Chile). I left my relative’s place (I was staying with them) at 6:30am because I had to take public transportation it took about 2 hours, I was aiming at arriving at 8-8:30am. Like I mentioned before I’m actually a really quiet, shy person so it was a bit awkward for me joining this group of fans waiting for them plus I don’t have many friends that are k-pop fans but these fans were really nice! They had a bunch of banners, signs, and presents too. They gave me a sign that welcomed them to New York. Some fans tried to get something signed, me too, but well…that was a fail, I’ll explain in a bit. Oh right, since U-Kiss already came and CNBLUE were sort of following the same route as them (Powerhouse, Mnet, etc.) I saw the Mnet Go! U-kiss videos before my trip and found out that fans were waiting for U-Kiss at the wrong terminal when they arrived in NY, and I was a bit worried that would happen to us but THANKFULLY Powerhouse were there and Mnet (which I actually didn’t know it was them at the time) meaning CNBLUE were going to arrive at THIS terminal! They (Mnet/powerhouse) filmed us and took our picture, interviewed a few boice, etc.
Powerhouse explained to us ‘we won’t push you away or anything but please don’t touch them and respect them!’ or something like that but I remember the powerhouse representative saying DON’T TOUCH THEM and fans were like ‘oh yeah of course not, we won’t.’ While we were waiting, everyone else was just talking about this and that. Taking pictures, getting the gifts ready, etc. I didn’t actually talk that much, until we all stood up and waited for them to come out. That’s when my nerves got to me, I guess, and I started talking a bit more saying how nerve wrecking it was because they took SO long! I remember this one girl saying ‘when you see Asians, that’s when you know they’re about to come out’ which made me laugh. I swear it felt like hours waiting for them to come out. Each person that turned the corner I thought “it’s them!” plus each one of us had things we were holding, either presents, signs, or albums we wanted autographed. It was kind of hard to keep track of everything at once. I was holding a welcome sign (8.5×11 sheet), my Present album (to get signed), a sharpie (I had a black one originally, thinking I’d buy a silver one in NY, but I couldn’t find the time, a girl there was nice enough to lend me her extra sharpie, yes silver!), my iPhone, and a present I bought last minute with a congratulatory card for their 4th anniversary. Anyway, to get us more anxious than we already were, people from the flight CNBLUE were on looked at our signs and said ‘Oh CNBLUE’ some even snickered at us, some just passed by but they had luggage that were from ICN to JFK (it had tags). Even a group of people, probably in their early 20s, that spoke perfect English, and from a different flight I think, mocked us a bit. A guy from that group said ‘don’t worry they’re coming!!’ and then a few seconds later would scream, you know, a girlish scream. That was actually really funny, I felt a bit silly because this is the FIRST time I was also waiting for someone at the airport in such a matter…but you know, overall it was a great experience!
Mnet had their camera and originally set-up on the floor (with a stand) waiting for CNBLUE to come, airport security later came and said he couldn’t be there so he moved. When CNBLUE came out (finally) it was calm, no one was like SCREAMING you know, there were a few fans that were like calling out their names but nothing excessive. I had my iPhone out but once they came out, I guess with all the things I was carrying when I went to camera I accidentally pressed the button that switched cameras, so I had the front-facing camera! That was a huge mess up, but I did still manage to get video of them passing by. Yonghwa bowed to us and acknowledged us (seriously that guy ♡), which I caught on camera. After they passed I still needed to get my present to them (and maybe autograph??), so I went with this crowd of people following them out. I followed Minhyuk out of the airport (and Jonghyun was close to him). I honestly think the fans did pretty good in not touching them at that point. To be quite honest, I just did what everyone else did and filmed them, some of us tried to get autographs but the boys were holding presents in their hands and I specifically remember that Minhyuk (I was the closest to Minhyuk) had his passport and other documents, flight info, etc. in his hand. So a fan in front of me asked him if he could sign but he just showed us his hands were completely full (that’s when I gave up trying to get something signed).
So I just filmed them walking to their van, at that point with everything I had in my hands I couldn’t properly deliver my present, when Minhyuk, Jonghyun, and Jungshin (seriously don’t even know where he went, I guess I was too focused on Minhyuk & Jonghyun) got in the van and closed the door, I finally had a chance to put the cap on the sharpie and put away my Present album and just focus on giving Yonghwa my present. Poor Yonghwa was stuck at the crosswalk and fans completely surrounded him (from what I heard, I was at the van), regardless of being exhausted he didn’t give off a bad vibe, like annoyance, he was so nice! At some point, if any of you saw the pictures he was holding a lot of presents but when I saw him at the van Yonghwa wasn’t holding a lot, I guess he gave them to staff or something. Anyway, when Yonghwa arrived and all the fans that followed him that’s when it went CRAZY.
I guess at some point fans completely forgot what Powerhouse told us (don’t touch them) because when Yonghwa appeared people started touching him (at least from what I saw, people may have touched him earlier, probably did actually) and screaming! Fans started screaming at that point (I swear poor Yonghwa lol, he’s bringing chaos everywhere with him!), when he arrived at the van. My main goal at this point was to get my present to Yonghwa! So while he greeted fans in front of the van I reached out my arm holding my present in my hand and…I FINALLY GOT MY PRESENT TO HIM, SERIOUSLY THAT WAS THE MAIN THING I WANTED. SO GRATEFUL HE GRABBED IT! (I still get excited about this! Sorry lol) I thought he would pass it up! But nope, the connection I made with Yonghwa at that very moment was too great and I won’t forget it! Thank you, Yonghwa!!
So, then Yonghwa got in the van, staff were blocking the van making sure fans wouldn’t completely surround their entrance. But fans kept pushing! The only thing separating me from CNBLUE’s van was the Powerhouse staff, so when fans were pushing I was getting completely shoved into a staff member’s back. It was seriously insane! I couldn’t even properly record video because I kept getting pushed into staff (that were also taller than me) so most of my video recording is a lot of movement and the floor. I did get some clean shots of the boys though. When fans kept pushing, there was one moment where a group of fans had a huge banner and tried to show CNBLUE, and I understand that they wanted to show them the banner but while they were trying to do that, it went over my head and other fan’s head and completely covered us…like right in front of our faces preventing us from seeing CNBLUE! But it was just temporary…
Anyway, once in the van, Yonghwa said “New York!” really loudly and some of us (me included) said ‘WELCOME TO NEW YORK!’ a lot of other fans kept screaming (yes just screaming) and others were saying stuff like “you’re so cute!” “You’re so handsome!” Jungshin waved at us, Jonghyun was just staring at us from what I saw and I couldn’t see Minhyuk 😦 he was behind Jungshin I think and I was just focusing on Yonghwa at that point. Yonghwa blew us some kisses, waved, and then finally when the door closed we all kept waving even though we couldn’t see much inside but they probably were still watching us. I’m praying that Mnet got some footage of them talking when they were in the van and their thoughts on NY. Yeah some fans were a bit crazy but we were mostly okay! After they closed the door and the van started departing, I’m not really sure why but I took pictures of the van leaving LOL I was completely out of it at that point! Fans started crying too, I was really happy but I didn’t cry. After all the excitement happened, I went back in the airport and tried to make myself believe that what just happened, ACTUALLY HAPPENED! I had to take the AirTrain back but I couldn’t manage to get myself to get directions back, so I was basically just sitting at the airport looking over my video/pictures I got. Sharing them on Twitter/Instagram. Eventually, got directions back but decided to detour to Manhattan (might as well sightsee a bit!) and visit Korea Town, which I’ve never been to. I went to NY so many times before but never went to Korea Town, partly because I never knew it existed and also I wasn’t affected by the Korean wave yet! I spent a while there, I won’t talk about everything I did but I did buy a CNBLUE wristband from a Korean bookstore! There were so many CDs, posters, books, etc. but I went for the wristband. I had to conserve my money, lol. Around 4pm or so is when I got back to my relative’s house; I was so very exhausted from everything I just wanted to sleep. But I didn’t, I knew if I took a nap now it’d be hell waking up tomorrow. I really just wanted to fall asleep fast that night because I knew it’d be a long day for me the next day!
VIDEO THAT MNET TOOK:
January 21st – Concert Day, part 1: Heading to Times Square
When it comes to concerts, I usually get too excited and can’t sleep well the night before. I’m a really heavy sleeper, but when concerts are involved or anything exciting, I suppose (since this also happened the day before) I wake up without any problem! And sometimes wake up every hour to check the time… On January 21st I woke up at 5:30am before my alarm went off, but didn’t get out of bed until around 5:45am. I know many fans went to wait in line earlier but I couldn’t, my mom wouldn’t allow me. I had set everything the night before. I knew the weather would be awful, I’ve been checking the weather forecast probably every day 10 days prior the day I would arrive in NY. It wasn’t bad at first…but slowly the weather forecast just got worse. On Tuesday, of course, the day of the concert…it would snow! And not just 30% or 50% the forecast was 100% chance of snow! And a lot of it! 1-2 inches I heard at first, then 3-4 inches, in the end I’m not sure how much accumulated. Anyway, I had everything set for the day of the concert: my clothes I would wear, ticket, camera, extra camera battery, phone, portable charger w/ USB cable, metro card, cash, credit & debit card, and license. All the previous concerts I went to prepared me quite well, I don’t bring bags to concerts. So I basically had everything in my pockets (I also had pants with a side pocket so I could carry some of the bulkier stuff). The only thing I was concerned about was the jackets, hoodies, and blankets I would be carrying…where would I put that once I get in?! I talked to a few other fans and many suggested just buying a cheap blanket you can get rid of later and check-in the coat (there was a coat check). After talking about it with my mom, she didn’t want me to go with just a hoodie (which I was seriously considering before I saw it would snow 1-2 inches in the afternoon) she told me to go with whatever I needed to stay warm and not freeze to death (which I think she was putting quite literally) and she said she would take everything (blanket, extra hoodie, jacket, etc.) before I entered the venue. So I was basically wearing a long sleeved shirt (this was thin though), a t-shirt, my black DC hoodie (really warm!), my gray Aeropostale hoodie, and my huge jacket! I think it was a ski-jacket to be honest, lol. I went with two pants on and two pairs of socks on, a scarf, two pairs of mittens (well, one pair of mittens and then I think the other could be considered gloves), and I carried around two blankets in a plastic bag, like I said I didn’t want to bring a bag that I had to be responsible for, I could just throw away the plastic bag later. My mom was worried of letting me leave so early, but my cousin assured my mom that lots of people commute to Manhattan so if anything, it’s safer! I left without eating breakfast though, I said I would buy it along the way but never did. I walked to the subway station and added $5 to my metro card and waited for the subway #2 line, got on and went straight to Manhattan! I stood the entire time–it was super crowded, lots of commuters! I got off at the Times Square 42nd street stop, and walked to the rest of the way to the Best Buy Theater. I’ve been there once before so I knew it’s whereabouts.
January 21st – Concert Day, part 2: Arriving at the Best Buy Theater and the wait
I got to the Best Buy Theater at like 7:45am, the covered part (where the marquee is) was already full and Best Buy Theater staff was already putting up the barricades, so I couldn’t line up there. I ended up lining up parallel to 7th avenue, which wasn’t bad, I was the 6th in line at 7th avenue! At this time it was not snowing. After waiting there for a while, I talked to a few people around me. We started talking about, of course CNBLUE, then k-dramas, music, etc., we would occasionally hold spots for each other to take breaks. My mom would call and ask how I was doing every now and then, she would be worried because where she was it was snowing (and yes around 8-9am it started snowing in Times Square too) and asked me if I was really okay. To not endure it if I can’t, to take care of myself, I promised her once I really couldn’t handle it I would go in somewhere. I didn’t take a break until it was near 11am, that’s when honestly I couldn’t hold on anymore. Never experiencing snow like this and being insane enough to wait for hours in this weather (it was still morning), I was pretty scared, to be quite honest. It was 18F (-7.8 Centigrade) and not knowing what to expect, I would make sure I didn’t feel numbness in my feet nor hands. Once I started shivering and I knew that even with all those layers on (and blanket) I had to go inside somewhere to warm up. Also, just to mention: it was extremely hard to get out your phone (I didn’t have mittens that worked with touch screens) my hands would freeze every time I tried to tweet/text/call or just check on updates!
I won’t write about the entire time I was in line, just a few highlights. I made some friends in line; we got to talk about everything, shared blankets together, and went to eat together. I knew I needed energy for the concert (I only had hot chocolate from earlier that day) and I didn’t want to pass out or anything during the concert. That would just be the worst! I ate a cheeseburger and a few fries, didn’t drink anything though. The last thing I need is to leave in the middle of the concert to go to the restroom lol. The line where I was at was eventually moved to where it was covered from snow, which by the way, standing in the snow was awful! My shoes and socks got soaked and so much snow accumulated on top of me, as if I was a statue! Early entry got moved near the box office (I didn’t have early entry tickets…wish I did but next time! I had regular GA) I heard around 1pm, which was actually 10 or so minutes before I came back from a break, CNBLUE arrived at the venue for rehearsals. Didn’t hear if they talked to fans or signed anything, I don’t think so though. I think they just entered the venue.
2 hours before NY concert:
Side note: I also want to mention Powerhouse a bit; I’m actually quite disappointed that we didn’t receive any benefits like U-Kiss fans were offered. I heard they got a group picture (the early entry people) and not sure what else, but there was an extreme lack of promotion. Literally days before the first USA show we finally got the CNBLUE video greeting! As soon as they were done promoting U-Kiss they released that video…couldn’t they release it before?! Now, I know this part may not be Powerhouse’s fault but South America got press conferences and meet and greets! Although I think Powerhouse could have at least given us some meet & greet opportunity. It upset me that we didn’t have any other special event, but I try not to think about it much. I’m grateful that I got to see CNBLUE live in New York!
The weather got even worse as they day progressed, as opposed to getting warmer (like at 1-2pm) the wind and snow were really too much. While in line, Mnet would film us waiting, they also interviewed a few boice. The people in front of me got interviewed as well, I was just next to them standing lol. I made some friends in line (we exchanged Twitter usernames and phone numbers ^^) and we just got to talking about anything and everything! Shout out to all the fan clubs (CNBLUE USA, CNBYonghwa, and SGboices4CNBLUE) that were handing out goodies, despite the awful weather! I got banners, packaged candy, a cup, and a wristband! I guess this is how Korean concerts are? My first time experiencing this!
Fast forward to 6pm, I assume early entry went in at schedule time. ONE HOUR LEFT BEFORE EVERYONE ELSE ENTERED! Seriously with everything we’ve been through the last hour was the absolute hardest. Remember earlier when I said my mom would come to get all the extra bulk I had so I wouldn’t have to bring it in? Well, thank you weather for screwing that up! She called me from my cousin’s cell phone (of all days she forgets her cell phone) telling me my cousin’s daughter did not arrive home yet from school! (it’s 6pm and she did not arrive YET?!) The reason was the traffic and weather was so bad the bus couldn’t proceed! They stopped somewhere so the snow would calm down, but this is what we heard later, not immediately. There were no updates on where the bus was so my cousin was on the verge of crying because her daughter did not arrive and she could not communicate with her (she’s like 7-8 years old, no cell phone!) My cousin, her name is Luisa, was supposed to accompany my mom to Times Square to see me. But the weather screwed up everyone’s plans. My mom told me she would try to be there but it was very unlikely, I understood the situation. With Luisa on the verge of breaking down, there’s no way my mom could just leave her! So my mom said, just throw the blankets somewhere, if you lose it, doesn’t matter.
January 21st – Concert Day, part 3: Entering the venue, FINALLY!
Best Buy Theater staff let everyone enter early (6:50pm or so) they didn’t even check our bags really like, they separated us into two lines, those who had bags and those that didn’t. I didn’t have a bag (I just had blankets lol) so I had my ticket out, they scanned it, and I rushed in. To be honest, security didn’t even properly check us lol like other concerts I went to they usually say to everyone ‘take everything out of your pockets, get your tickets ready!’ and then use a metal detector and pat us down…but I guess CNBLUE don’t attract those type of people? Anyway, once inside the venue everyone was directed to go downstairs (that’s where the stage was), we were handed wrapped Asiana Airlines bandanas, and before entering where the stage was, we made another line inside (hey at least it isn’t 18F weather or whatever the current temperature was at that point!) and that’s where everything I had (blankets, tickets, goodies from the fan clubs), I dropped on the floor and started to organize everything I brought. I had too much stuff! But thankfully we weren’t let inside immediately so I organized everything with a friend I made in line. I decided to keep one hoodie on; I put my extra hoodie, huge jacket, scarf, mittens, etc. INSIDE one of my blankets (I had two: a red plaid pattern and a navy blanket!) after thinking about it, I put it all of it (including my red plaid blanket) inside the navy blanket. So it was all bundled up, my idea was I would just drop it somewhere in a corner and hopefully security wouldn’t notice and throw it all way! (Hence the wrapping it all in my navy blanket so it didn’t stand out) But even if they did, I was prepared to lose all of it. I had the most important things with me. Actually, before we entered there was one girl who left her jacket and something else (blanket? other jacket?) OUTSIDE and said she would pick it up later…that sort of surprised me! Would it still be there? Well, anyway, back inside…I mentioned that there was a coat check, but honestly, you would have to LEAVE the line you were in for hours to make another line, thus losing your spot. Nope, I wasn’t going to do it. If I had to lose my coat, so be it. At least I had my one hoodie right? (Yes, I realize this sounds crazy–no, insane) I also think there was a bag check-in, but that’s the same thing as the coat check-in! Losing your spot! That’s why I didn’t bring a bag. Too much I’d have to be responsible for, the less the better!
Anyway, I got all my stuff wrapped up, went down a few steps, got my ticket scanned again (I think, or checked at least) and went in. Once I entered I saw seats on the left, and the rest is GA. There were two places for GA–there’s a first floor and a second floor (probably like 4-5 steps of difference, so not much) if you were a GA ticketholder you could choose either one. The second floor probably had the best view because you were a bit higher than the first floor but the first floor was the closest to the stage. I chose the first floor, went down a few steps and that’s when I dropped everything I had in my hands (near the stairs) if I lost it; I was prepared to lose it. I could always buy it again, the only thing I could do though, was hope it was still there after the show. I rushed in to a group of people already waiting in line, and looked behind me to see all my stuff on the floor, but you know what? What I saw was people started to leave their stuff on the floor where my pile was too, ha!
It’s now 7pm-ish and we have to wait an hour for CNBLUE to come out and start the show! The stage wasn’t very far from me, I was just a few rows back, maybe 3-4 rows back. On stage I could see the huge screen that said “CNBLUE” in front of it was Minhyuk’s drums! I immediately took a picture of the stage from my position and uploaded it on instagram (heh). While we were waiting though, songs would play from the speakers, a bunch of pop songs. I clearly remember Maroon 5 being played though. They played that for a while. Every time a song would end though, it was quiet and all you could hear was the crowd talking…even thought it wasn’t 8pm yet, I couldn’t help but feel anxious that they would come out and start the show. The venue filled up, it was now crowded with people. Then the screen changed from its “CNBLUE” sign to a black screen? What? IS IT STARTING?! Scream! Everyone screamed! Oh, wait. It’s an ad. Asiana Airlines would play their ads before the show, the screen at front changed and fans thought the show was starting and we’d all SCREAM but then we saw it was an ad and everyone expressed their disappointment, that happened twice and I was like WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO ME! Haha. Seriously, that was annoying, but anyway closer to 8pm or maybe exactly at 8pm they announced that the show would be delayed a bit to let the fans in who are arriving in late a chance. By the way, LOTS of fans could not attend…I saw plenty of people say they couldn’t attend because their flights were canceled / delayed or there was no transportation (before and after the show, I saw this). Believe me, the weather was AWFUL. It was snowing a lot, my cousin told me that the subways were delayed and at 8pm they would be closed, buses worked but the traffic was too much. There was a big issue on how to get to the concert on time; I even saw that people wanted to get refunds (day after the show and everything) because they couldn’t attend. Lots of people couldn’t make it, and I’m sorry for those that couldn’t. But for those that did wait hours in the snow…I’m relieved the show happened, we were really worried it would get canceled. Lots of us flew in / traveled from other states just for this show. The show was a bit delayed at the start, but it happened…so before the show started they showed the CNBLUE School Project video (schools being built in Africa and Philippines as of recently but from what I could barely see, only showed the Africa one) there was subtitles but I guess they didn’t really think this through because the drums and stuff on stage were blocking the subtitles lol. So even if I was tall and could see over people’s head I wouldn’t be able to read it clearly because of their instruments. I mean, I know they just showed the video they have from their YouTube but I couldn’t read the subtitles and I know this was to bring awareness to others that didn’t see it. I hope people did research about it though.
January 21st – Concert Day, part 4: TIME TO ROCK AND ROLL!
THE SHOW FINALLY STARTS. Everyone was screaming–it was crazy! The opening was first and on the screen they had the boys show up and everyone went wild, and since I couldn’t see properly (curse my height) I was like “DID SOMETHING HAPPEN DID THEY ARRIVE?” I had my camera out that entire time (ow–my arm hurt, from holding my arm up for so long) so I caught all of that, but that’s when I noticed it was them on the screen and that’s why fans went crazy! The thing I noticed was, most of the people, around me at least, were like of the same height so I couldn’t see well and everyone else too, I guess! And fans that were holding signs up–it was even worse for people behind them…I had to really get on my toes to see or like stretch my neck to see above them, it really hurt lol. I was so sore afterward.
Anyway, they came out! SCREAM. I was diagonal from Yonghwa, not the center, so just a few steps from the center, on the right side. They kick off the show with Where You Are I had previously searched what the setlists were for other Blue Moon World Tour stops, so this wasn’t a surprise to me. But I was jumping up and down, screaming my lungs out, singing when I could. Since I don’t know Korean, there were parts where I would just start singing gibberish, but I did know a few words in Korean, and yelled those words out. And of course, sang the English bits of the song!
Warning: not really going in order, I could just remember the beginning well and the ending, so everything else is jumbled up from what I could remember. Also I apologize for no Minhyuk pictures, I simply could not get a good picture of him! But I’m glad I was close to him at the airport, at least.
After two songs, I think, there was a talk session, Minhyuk had said next time they’ll go to a bigger ‘home’ I remember laughing silently because his English was so adorable! Yonghwa talked to us a lot, so did Jungshin. During the introductions part and after each one of them introduced themselves everyone screamed! I understood almost all of them…I remember Jonghyun’s introduction LOL…seriously so adorable, he said “Hi I am my name is Jonghyun” and to be honest, I got that from someone else, I couldn’t even hear it / understand (sorry) seriously after his intro I asked a friend what he said and she was like I have no idea, lol. When Yonghwa talked to us though ♡ I understood him 100%, they spoke in English a lot–no translators, they did speak in Korean a bit, but not a lot. I remember him saying dae~bak and the crowd’s reaction: KYAAA LOL
Side note: there were some VIPs, not sure who though, they were up on the balcony, if anyone knows, share please? ;-; I saw them taking pics of us though (crowd)
Yonghwa kept saying “we’re going to rock this place” and seriously he was soooo happy to be performing this show. Seriously, you tell me he wasn’t:
After the intro, he said ‘New York City! Finally, CNBLUE is in New York City!’ —crowd goes crazy— and he talked about the snow storm, he said he saw it and thanked us for coming in this bad weather (his accent seriously is the cutest thing ever) he then talked about always wanting to do a concert in NYC. He said NYC was the center of the world and EVERYONE screamed their heads off. Then Jungshin said ‘this is REAL?’ and fans saying ‘it’s REAL!’ haha ♡
Side note: By the way, the whole thing about the venue being small…I try not to look at it negatively, did anyone see fancams of the show? I mean, boice close to the stage? THEY WERE SO CLOSE TO CNBLUE, the venue was small but it was INTIMATE like really that’s what you hope for when you go see bands that now perform in huge stadiums.
SO I don’t complain at all, I really hope they achieve their dreams in performing in a huge venue like Madison Square Garden but seeing them in an intimate show was something I will never regret and will always remember.
Yonghwa’s vocals were incredible, like those high pitch screams he would do, seeing it in person, I honestly could not believe I was experiencing this! AND Yonghwa was DANCING SOOOO MUCH I was completely shocked that he was kept dancing here and there when he claims he can’t dance lol that liar 😛 I caught videos of him dancing and uploaded clips on my instagram already, just two, three if you count him dancing with Jungshin too ha (keep reading, you’ll see the video clips). Oh right, there was also a camera filming them and us, I think it was Mnet, I’m not 100% sure but I think it was them, they filmed us A LOT. I would always see them at front, with the security guards.
Yonghwa sang the chorus from Empire State of Mind–that was too epic!!! I screamed along with everyone! Really should have predicted he’d do something like that, but I recorded it with my phone! I’m not even sure why I got so excited; I’m not even from New York! Ha! After singing that they performed Love Light, when he asked if we knew it, fans screamed YES then some said “Sarang Bit” and then he said “yes Sarang Bit!” He asked us to sing with him and we tried lol he also started singing and paused before he finished ‘bit’ and fans were screaming ‘bit!’ but then he sang it again and fans were laughing at him and that’s when he laughed too, you could see it in the fancams!
DURING FEELING THOUGH, I caught this on camera too but I mean who couldn’t remember when he was at the piano ready to sing and was playing the piano then as it got really quiet someone screamed YOU’RE SO SEXY, the crowd laughed and Yonghwa smiled, like I guess it was a bit embarrassing, his smile was like an embarrassed smile. But even after that fans kept screaming during the song and saying random things, it was crazier at the beginning and the noise died eventually. I wish they didn’t say so much, but that’s how most rock concerts are. Every single one I went to, when it’s a soft song the fans start yelling something to get noticed, as much as it’s awful and people hate it (I didn’t like it myself either) that’s how US rock concerts are. So even though lots of other boice criticize US boice about being disrespectful, CNBLUE truly experienced a US concert, with all its flaws and everything. That’s what makes it special. In LA though I heard the fans say ‘you’re so fucking sexy’ during Feeling? US concerts, lol. What can you do?
Yonghwa was moving ALL around the stage, he almost tripped he was also embarrassed a few times and would hide his face! He would stutter a few times on his English, they kept asking us if we had fun and at one point Yonghwa tried to make the crowd scream by saying ‘are you guys having fun?’ fans: ‘yes!’ YH: ‘I don’t believe it!’ *this is where he would try to say something else but stuttered and hid his face xD so cute haha* ‘I don’t believe it! Are you guys having fun?!’ and we all screamed yeahhh
During the DSM part I screamed so much and jumped up and down, wow. It’s actually pretty amazing to think I was still full of energy going through that snowstorm! My fancams are a big mess though! They’re shaky and unfocused. I uploaded some of the better ones! I sang what I could in Korean.
Side note: IDK if it’s just heavier rock concerts or the fact that people were treating this CNBLUE concert as a k-pop concert but people around me barely moved! Except the one friend that was with me till the end, as much as people consider THEM as k-pop they consider themselves as rock!! And for rock concerts, it’s common to, you know, MOVE AROUND, JUMP UP AND DOWN, AND DANCE. Even Yonghwa was dancing on stage, how could you not with that beat and music, now for my area I couldn’t even move properly so I couldn’t dance lol but I did jump every now and then! I did have my glow stick up once in a while, but eventually opted for throwing a ‘rock on’ hand sign and head banging a lot, the dude in front of me seriously…I swear, didn’t move, nor did the girl in front of me. Also this girl diagonal from me recorded video of Yonghwa (only him, all the time lol) with her camcorder (idek how she got that inside) and was JUST focusing on that! What annoyed me the most though, this girl at the barricade had her butt out and took a huge portion of the barricade and she didn’t move at all, THAT WAS THE WORST. When one of the boys would get near our area EVERYONE pushed forward trying to say hi (that made me laugh, fans were just waving lol), or reach their hands out to maybe get a touch. So as everyone pushed forward we’d all get squished in the most uncomfortable position because this girl had her body out. People behind her couldn’t even stand up straight! Attending my fair share of concerts, I know the consequence of being near the front. I’ve been pushed, hit, punched, kicked (on the head…crowd surfers) at concerts before but never have I seen people stick their butt out? I’m guessing it’s so she wouldn’t get pushed against the barricade? I don’t know, but the first time I saw that. Next time I’m getting early entry, I cannot stand people who just stand at rock concerts, not moving an inch. Because, hello, yes this was a ROCK concert, during the heavy rock songs (DSM) you move around jump up and down, even if it’s your lightstick you don’t just stand there. Sorry, end rant.
During Y, Why was amazing, the I Love You part! Everyone around me said it and Yonghwa’s expression was seriously so, hmm, how to say it…proud? Happy? A bit of shock too? Because it was so loud! I really felt like everyone in the crowd was with them on this, it’s like we all became one? I don’t know how to explain; it’s a bit cheesy isn’t it? Well, I really enjoyed that moment and the expression on Yonghwa’s face. ♡
Yonghwa also did a Drop It Like It’s Hot (short clip above) and Jungshin and Jonghyun were just laughing their heads off. The one I freaked out the most over was that he did a In The End reference by Linkin Park (love them!) where he said “in the end, do you know this song?” and we all sang “it doesn’t even matter!” and a Jay-Z bit (which you could say is either from Encore or Numb/Encore) ‘Now can I get an encore, do you want more. So for one last time I need y’all to roar!’ after that part I just screamed and then yelled “Linkin Park!” did they only did this for BMNYC? I’m not sure, but if they did…HOW DID I GET SO LUCKY? Anyone that knows me knows I’m a huge Linkin Park fan too! I wonder if they did this on purpose? Hehe. Blessed!
When they played Intuition I completely lost it. Screamed, jumped up and down, everything. My fancam for that was a mess (short clip above). I almost fell down at that point too (see the following side note). But I love that song! I tried to sing to the best of my ability. Seriously, need to just learn Korean so I can get these lyrics 100% correct. After Intuition they performed I’m a Loner and of course, who doesn’t love that song? I luckily had my camera still out from the prior song and caught Yonghwa dancing! I was so lucky to capture that on camera, after the concert I uploaded that one first because it was the first one I could remember, lol.
Jonghyun focus of I’m a Loner (he looked at me right?!)
Side note: The goodies we received, I had carried around with me (except the cup, I left that with a friend) I managed to keep most of them but some of them got lost. There were lots of signs on the floor it was sort of slippery (a laminate material I think) and there were light sticks on the floor too (I had mine though), I kept slipping when I tried to keep still and accidentally slipping into other people and almost fell down at one point. The thing was that we were all so close to each other that one small movement and you were already pushed up against someone’s back. There were people that went in with their jackets and beanies, I don’t know how people survived because it was REALLY HOT. Freezing outside but burning inside, during the show I had to take off my hoodie halfway through because I started sweating, lol. There were fans that had hoodies with fur, forgot the word but like a mane sort of, and this girl in front of me had one on and it kept going in my mouth lol, because I was like RIGHT behind her! I didn’t mean to! Man, the first time I experienced that at a concert! During the first confetti drop, the confetti would also go in my mouth LOL took a while to get it out of my mouth (because I was holding my camera too!) and confetti landed right in front of my camera lens and just stayed there, like what are the odds that it would land on my tiny camera lol. I didn’t notice for a long time because I wasn’t really focusing on the camera, I would mostly just keep my arm up high with my camera and aim towards on direction, sometimes I would zoom and stuff, especially if I couldn’t see over someone’s head I would especially focus more on the camera.
I’m Sorry was the last song before the encore! Everyone sang along for that! I completely freaked out at the encore songs (even though I knew it would be these). I just love Hey You so much haha, and You’ve Fallen For Me, that song seriously ♡♡♡
When they came back wearing their Blue Moon world tour shirts they started Hey You, but it took me a second to realize it was that song because it sounded as if they started in the middle, lol. The crowd, went crazy with You’ve Fallen For Me, Yonghwa asked Jungshin if he was ready and he was like “yeah I’m readyyyy” I cannot get Yonghwa saying Jungshiiiiiiin out of my head! Haha. Then Jungshin started singing. My feelings were everywhere at this point. I really love this song, totally love the guitar solo too (I’m a sucker for guitar solos lol), fell in love with the vocals, guitar, bass, drums, everything!
Side note: Even my dad likes this song, lol. And he’s hard to convince when it comes to Korean songs!
So hearing it live was a dream come true. It won’t be my last time hearing it live though. I promise! Next song was, Love, Yonghwa made us chant words like LOVE and CLAP and then tried to make us beatbox, which was you know…a disaster!! XD At this point he would just look at us like what are you doing? His face was so adorable; he would just shake his head at us, expressing his disagreement! Haha. But yeah impressed again by his beat boxing skills!
When Yonghwa said it would be the last song “really last song,” I was like nooo! It can’t be the end!!! Minhyuk talked to us saying it was such a great time, he thanked us, he said he wouldn’t ever forget us. Jungshin also thanked us “thank you very muuuuch” and Yonghwa said he couldn’t forget us, he promised he would come back in the near future (I’M HOLDING HIM TO THAT PROMISE. IDK how near is the near future to him, but I’ll be waiting and forever supporting CNBLUE), and he loved us. He actually said he loved us lots of times and I really felt the love, he would always be smiling at us, dancing, he was having FUN playing!
Last song was Try Again, Smile Again, I caught this on camera too he was right in front of my area and did a little dance. To this moment, every time I hear that song now all I can do is imagine him waving his arms, and I start smiling again like an idiot. That song is not the same anymore! It holds too many precious memories!
“We love you. We love you, New York City!” Check this clip I edited! ^^
During the song they would accept roses and gifts (taxi plush toy, he also had Bart Simpson toy with him, idk how that got there I just saw it on stage already lol), they also threw their guitar picks, drumsticks, banners, etc. Then they bowed together, three times. The left side first, then they walked over to the right side, and finally the center where they did their final bow. I noticed Jonghyun bowed the longest here. ♡
Blue Moon World Tour in New York:
January 21st – Concert Day, part 5: The show is over…(thoughts)
The show was, I think, shorter than what the others had, I don’t know why maybe the venues regulations or that’s how it was planned? I heard LA was also the same. BUT it was all good times. I won’t ever forget this show!!! They can really perform, not just like k-pop perform like really ROCK out! And I’m saying this with experience watching other bands like Linkin Park, Incubus, 30 Seconds to Mars, Rise Against, Korn, Evanescence, etc. So comparing them with other American rock bands they did amazing! They interacted with fans, hyped us up, made us laugh (despite being a Korean band and English not being their primary language) and performed beautifully! Seriously, their live show is exactly like the studio version of songs! This band can really perform. With that, they’ll go far places!
Please CNBLUE come to Texas next time, too! With both US performances succeeding I’m PRAYING that they do a more extensive world tour next time (more cities in the US!) or hey come back during Blue Moon World Tour, as well haha. Like, after Europe or something! 😛 I expect them to become even bigger after their shows in the US, they’re already pretty big in Latin America, I even bought a CNBLUE poster there once lol. BUT! With their comeback that will be released soon, I think they gained even more fans after venturing to the Americas, and will break records with their comeback!
January 21st – Concert Day, part 6: After the show…
AFTER the show, people ran out to the merch booth, it was chaos I heard, and stuff sold out fast, I was actually upset I missed it. Sigh. They had shirts, posters, fan banners, etc. Anyway after that there was a huge group of fans waiting outside and I was confused, why are people waiting lol, apparently CNBLUE were supposed to exit there. So we waited and waited but security was like ‘YOU CAN’T BLOCK THE SIDEWALK’ kept pushing us to clear the sidewalk, I heard this one girl be like ‘STOP TOUCHING ME!’ which, I mean the security guard was only doing his job lol. But anyway, after waiting in the freezing cold (again, ;-; yes certified insane), we heard screams coming from the other side and we saw that CNBLUE exited the same place they entered (like dur, idk why that wouldn’t be obvious that was a fail on our part xD) I didn’t really get a chance to see them enter their van, by the time I got there CNBLUE was in their van so they were just getting ready to depart (idk what they were doing tbh, lots of staff were there controlling the fans waiting, and talking to the driver, other people getting in, not the boys, but staff) took them a while though, and since it was the same car they got in when they arrived at JFK (all black, couldn’t see through the windows) I couldn’t see much but I filmed it lol, I just don’t know what I caught lol, I probably would need to edit that video and make it brighter to see something. But I saw them departing and then everyone spread out after that. According to my cousin the subway back to where I was staying wasn’t in service. So my mom already being with my cousin, Luisa, in Manhattan, I took a taxi to her apartment, and stayed in Manhattan an extra night. That’s where I updated most of my videos/pictures to instagram. And I tweeted to CNBLUE when they tweeted! Upsetting that CNBLUE didn’t take a group picture! I assume they forgot…as bad as we feel, I would think they feel pretty bad too. First show of 2014, first solo US show, umm NEW YORK CITY–it’s a lot. I guess they got too excited and forgot? Sigh. Oh well.
January 22nd – CNBLUE’s stay in New York
Some fans got to see them at their hotel, I didn’t, and not sure I would if I had the chance. I think waiting at their hotel was already going a bit overboard…just my opinion though, if I casually saw them that’d be a different story! Some fans got to them when they were at Starbucks or something, and said they saw CNBLUE filming something. Either a MV or a photoshoot, and if something were to be filmed I would think it would be a MV since their comeback is soon, HOWEVER these fans could have easily mistaken the Mnet staff filming CNBLUE…not sure, I guess we’ll find out later! You know the pictures that CNBLUE shared on facebook? The ones where they’d be shopping, posing, eating at Shake Shack?
That same day, a few blocks away in the morning leaving Luisa’s apartment I took a subway with my mom on Lexington Street! Obviously they weren’t there in the morning…but in the afternoon! Sigh. Also they were at Shake Shack! I’m not from NY either and we don’t have it in TX and I wanted to go that day but…sigh. I guess it wasn’t mean to be, could have encountered them accidentally! How great would that be? Not even trying to run into them and then all of the sudden, BAM they appear.
Well that’s it! That’s my entire CNBLUE experience that I will forever cherish!
Gallery (it’s not even very good but I thought I’d share):
Credit lpfmfan, no editing, no cropping without permission. DO NOT REMOVE LOGO!