In the four months following the tragedy at Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival, Houston has been left to rethink the future of live music. The calamity struck a chord for many concert attendees — with many left to wonder if danger awaits during large-scale festivals.
While we’ll never forget the lives lost from the horrific tragedy, things have begun to look up for live music in the city. Just last week, Bun B united Houston’s finest for his H-Town takeover and performed for a crowd of more than 70,000 attendees.
This Saturday, the Texas Smoke Break Festival returns to Houston’s White Oak Music Hall. The show will be bigger and better from its inaugural effort in 2021, featuring acts like Slim Thug, Larry June and Marcus Clae. Last year, the festival was hosted outdoors with prorated sections to meet COVID-19 safety protocols.
The smoker-friendly show marks the first rap music festival returning to the Bayou City since Astroworld in November 2021. This year though, the festival has moved indoors, to the downstairs stage at the concert venue.
The lineup includes super producer DJ Drama and Dom Kennedy, with Atlanta rapper 2 Chainz headlining the show. Local acts Le$, Monaleo, OTB Fastlane and DJ Chose will also perform sets during the festival. Appropriately titled Texas Smoke Break, the concert will be much more laid back than most music festivals, but safety precautions should still be taken before you head out to the show.
Below, we’ve compiled a checklist to ensure that you have the best time at Texas Smoke Break.
Keep your distance
If you find yourself getting claustrophobic, try to find a place on the outside of the crowd. Standing on the outskirts will reduce your chances of getting caught in an aggressive crush.
Use a buddy system
Attending the festival with a group of friends will make it easier to navigate. Communicate with friends ahead of time to come up with a game plan and try to solidify a designated meeting spot.
Wear comfortable shoes
In a festival setting, long hours to see all of your favorite acts take time and patience. Comfortable tennis shoes are the best way to last throughout the entire day. Plus, wearing shoes that reduce your chances of slipping or falling can better help you navigate through crowds.
A long day on your feet, especially in Houston’s heat, can lead to a need for more than usual hydration. Make sure to hydrate ahead of the festival, have some handy or purchase from concessions.
Locate your nearest exits, first aid tent
Although we’re never anticipating an emergency, it’s important to get a lay of the land before the show begins. Find your nearest exits and locate a first aid tent if need be.
Leave your valuables at home
Any items you deem valuable should be left at home to avoid getting lost or stolen. You’ll be able to stay hands-free, plus you won’t have to search if you lose any important items.
Carry your ID and any prescription medications you need.
If you have any preexisting health conditions, be sure to bring your driver’s license and any medications that you may need throughout the evening in case of an emergency.
White Oak Music Hall, 2915 N.Main St. Saturday, March 19. Doors open at 3 p.m. Tickets start at $79. For more information and tickets, visit White Oak Music Hall’s website.