Larry Crane’s Firsthand Report from Las Vegas

Tape Op Magazine founder Larry Crane posted about the experience he had during last night’s shootings in Las Vegas.

Larry Crane:

“Music brings us together. Maybe it’s one person listening to a pop star on headphones, but knowing that millions of others have shared a love for this music. Or maybe it’s tens of thousands of people gathered together to celebrate music they enjoy.
I just got back from Las Vegas. I went down there with my wife to see Depeche Mode Saturday night, as we won’t be in Portland when they come there here in October. The show was fantastic, and we had such a great time, as did thousands of music fans of all types that gathered to enjoy the band on their new tour.

“The next day, yesterday, we sat by the pool at The Tropicana, and we heard a festival next door start up around 3 pm. Many people that had been hanging at the pool had wristbands for the 3-day concert, and we soon found out it was for an event called Route 91 Harvest, featuring a lot of popular country artists. I was digging that people had travelled from all over to this event, even if we had other plans for our visit to Las Vegas.

“Bands were still playing as we headed up the Strip to The Mirage resort for dinner. After dinner, we were walking towards the door when we spotted a huge crowd looking at a television, with the news of a breaking story that there had been massive gunfire into the crowd at Route 91 Harvest. We retreated into the casino to get away from entrances, not sure if this was some sort of roving pack of killers or a single incident. As we got near the back of the casino people began running and screaming towards us in a panic. We fled into a bathroom with others, and hid in a stall for a while. Eventually we peered out, finding the casino empty, and ending up in a group of folks sequestered in the shop area of the casino, finding out there had not been any shooting and that the crowd had panicked. We slipped into an elevator, and ended up taking refuge in a room provided by a nice Austrian couple, along with a Brazilian family that was escaping the crowd (and the open floor) with us.

“We were eventually told it was okay to wander the casino, but for hours we were unable to leave, and as our hotel was adjacent to the festival site we weren’t sure about even getting a ride back to our resort, let alone getting to our room. We rented a cheap room off strip, so we could regroup somewhere and feel safer; not exposed. When the lockdown was over we grabbed a Lyft and got over to our hideout. We rebooked flights to leave in the morning, and as I type this I am back in Portland, and quite shaken up.

“A lone gunman used automatic weapons to spray bullets across a crowd. A crowd of people that was just there to enjoy music and share in the experience of a fun festival in an accommodating resort-based city. Over 50 people are dead, and 500 suffered injuries. He apparently took his own life after doing so, and we don’t know his motives at this time.

“Make sure we retain the joy of music. That we are not afraid. I cannot imagine the fear and feeling that Jason Aldean and his band felt as this unfurled while they were on stage, and I hope he continues to play live music fearlessly for his fans. I hope that festival organizers are not afraid to gather people to enjoy music. I hope that fans will follow the music they love to enjoy it live.

And I hope something like this never happens again.”