Shoeing Is The Newest Trend At Festivals
Music Festivals have always been always been centers for cultural exploration and artistic expression. They are birthplaces of new trends and in Europe, the most recent festival trend might have you scratching your head at first. This summer has seen the explosion of “shoeing” which is the act of taking off your beaten up sneaker, boot, or rave shoe and raising it in the air in praise of the performing DJ. In some cases, shoes are even thrown onto the stage. What this symbolizes is the festival attendee thinking the music is so good that he/she could care less about their shoe.
This IDGAF attitude is what one wants at a festival. After all isn’t that what music festivals aim to do? – Breaking down boundaries and letting oneself loose while escaping judgement all at the same time?
The origin of shoeing can be traced back to a few sources. In Australia, people have been using the shoe whilst partying for quite some time. A ‘Shoey’ is a popular drinking tradition in Australia where you take a used shoe, pour beer into it, and chug the beer while people cheer you on. Gross, maybe, but is it worth it, YES.
Shoeing has since been evolving from a drinking ritual to becoming a common scene at music festivals. It was first done this year in Wales during a performance of Australia’s Harvey Sutherland and The Bermuda Festival at Gottwood. A four-second video circulated the internet and captured the sea of shoes that were held up by the raging crowd.
Other instances of shoeing were seen in Glastonbury during Peggy Gou’s set and at Dekmantel Festival in Amsterdam.
As this year’s festival season is winding down we’ll see if this new form of festive bonding will continue. Shoeing may be on the rise as a drunken choice of praise but how many people are actually willing to continue giving up their shoes and walking through the all too familiar festival mud? If music continues to make people lose themselves in the moment then shoeing may continue to become a festival pastime.