Red Rocks, Riot Fest, Chive Fest and The Whatever, USA party in Crested Butte have all had a dreary, cantankerous cloud cast over them by one group or another complaining that they’re too loud, draw too many drunk people or didn’t ask politely enough. All of their arguments have merit, we all pay taxes after all and all deserve to live comfortably, but really is one night, or weekend, of music going to kill you?

Everyone is entitled to be a cranky asshole once in a while, but this summer festival season proved to us that some of our neighbors should move to Duluth or something.

Red Rocks, Riot Fest, Chive Fest and The Whatever, USA party in Crested Butte have all had a dreary, cantankerous cloud cast over them by one group or another complaining that they’re too loud, draw too many drunk people or didn’t ask politely enough. All of their arguments have merit, we all pay taxes after all and all deserve to live comfortably, but really is one night, or weekend, of music going to kill you? Don’t you remember when you were bare breasted, wrestling with a stranger in the mud to the soothing melodies of Peter Frampton? Your parents probably didn’t approve of that either.

So it's time to complain about the complainers. Here are four times this year they've tried, almost successfully, to take all the fun out of summer music festivals. But no matter how much they bellyache, the show has always gone on … even if there are less nude bellydancers peeing in their roses.  

1. Red Rocks

Official Complaint: "Turn that noise down!"

Red Rocks is a staple of the world’s music scene. Bands have been jamming there since 1906 and when they officially opened as an amphitheater in 1941, it became the only place you could play to prove you’ve made it. Now, because a bunch of cry babies who decided to build their houses next to the world’s only naturally-occurring amphitheater don’t like dance music, Red Rocks has to tone it down. 

We get it EDM isn’t for everyone, but was Led Zeppelin for everyone when they first came on the scene? We understand that you’re hearing thumping bass when you’re trying to get to bed at 9 o’clock on a Saturday night, we can see how it’s persistence could tear you from a Kenny G wet dream at 1 a.m., but you decided to build your million-dollar house within earshot. Did you think they’d suddenly only let Jack Johnson and Mumford and Sons play? Music changes and evolves, just like your ageing ears, and if you’re too cranky to embrace that maybe you shouldn’t have moved to Morrison.

The bass drops started to beat the ears of the City and County of Denver, who own Red Rocks. They hired some consultants to see if the sound was really window and ear plug proof. Sure enough, those concerts were loud. To placate the whining homeowners, Red Rocks now has sound ordinances that state performances may not exceed 105 decibels for more than one minute on average after midnight on weekdays, and after 1 am on holidays and weekends. Also, bass levels may not exceed 105 decibels, which include low frequency bass levels that can't exceed 25-80 hertz, for one minute averages after midnight on weekdays and 1 a.m. on weekends and holidays as well. Artists will be fined $10,000 if they break the minute rule five times, and $5,000 if they break curfew. Bummer.

You’d think that turning the music down would make them happy, but nope, they’re still bitching. Move to Nederland, the only music you’ll have to hear is bongos and maybe a didgeridoo every once in a while.

2. Riot Fest

Official Complaint: "Don’t pollute our town with rock’n’roll!"

When the town of Byers rejected Riot Fest’s permits, 1,700 people were not happy; however, Byers residents were. Last year’s Riot Fest scared the small town like walking in on your parents getting freaky. They complained of unimaginable traffic for three days, and strung-out, shit-faced people littering like the world wasn’t going to end. Who could blame them for not wanting that debacle to go down again?

Everyone. Of course people are going to get dip-shit drunk at a concert, they’re going to pee outside when they’re on a farm. Is it rude? Duh, but when there’s an open field, why stuff yourself in a hot, smelly port-o-potty? Anyway, the prospect of hosting another three-day shit show scared Arapahoe County enough to banish the festival to the parking lot of Sports Authority Field.

But even that ruffled some feathers. Fifty-eight noise complaints were filed during the three- day festival. People lamented that the 11 p.m. cut-off time was too late for a Sunday evening, as if their kids weren’t already awake, zoning out on Spongebob Squarepants or True Detective anyway. Noise levels were checked time and time again and the concert was in compliance with city noise ordinances, but still the crank pots keep cranking.

Apparently, the city of Denver should be a silent sanctuary void of any joy, even during rock concerts, like the TV with the sound muted.

3. Chive Fest

Official Complaint: "Don't turn my park into a venue, I walk there sometimes!"

When Chive Fest set up shop in Denver’s City Park, they did so a tad surreptitiously. There wasn't much notice given to neighbors. Organizers got all the right permits, all the right permissions and licenses. But, shortly before the festivities were to slated commence people started freaking out. They were bummed that nobody told them what was going to happen to their beloved park. Mad that they would have to re-route their afternoon speed walk, they worried about the noise affecting the neighborhood and animals at the zoo as well as all the trash and traffic the event would accumulate. 

Sure Chive Fest should have screamed from the mountain tops what they were doing, but they followed all the rules. Right down to hiring extra security and ordering port-o-potties and trash cans so they’d leave without a trace. 

There were, of course, drunks pissing in the streets, but this is City Park we’re talking about and we've seen a lot worse than urination go down over there, with children present mind you. The decibel levels were measured and remained well within the boundaries, but still people complained so much that the city of  is now looking into amending noise ordinances because of all the caterwauling.

For a one-day festival you think the curmudgeons could have gone to the mountains, Water World or their grandma's house instead of staying holed up in their houses blaring Breaking Bad only to complain about the vulgar language wafting through the windows. 

4. Crested Butte

Official Complaint: "No outsiders EVER."

When Bud Light decided Crested Butte was "Up for Whatever," some residents almost shit their pants because 1,000 contest winners were being carted in, the main street was being painted blue and there was going to be hot tubs and a statue of a gorilla in the center of it all.

The biggest gripe was that the town was “selling out,” letting Bud Light buy it for $500,000 just for a weekend. Whiners bitched and moaned that they had not been consulted or asked if they’d like to have this festival in their town, and poo-pooed the ½ million dollars as bribe money that would turn Crested Butte into the next Aspen.

Never mind that Anheuser-Busch employs thousands of in Fort Collins. Dismiss that they brought everything in, cleaned everything up and brought thousands of people (read: hundreds of thousands of dollars) to local shops, restaurants and hotels, on a weekend where it would have been a ghost town otherwise. And, certainly just forget about the $500,000 that the town gets to use for literally, whatever they want.

Sure it blows that they didn’t have months and months of town hall meetings where fussy residents could voice their concerns, but really if Bud Light wants to turn my street into a party, we'll paint the damn thing ourselves. It’s one weekend, everything is going to be OK. 

The end

Maybe us young people should start bitching about events that these complainers like to go to. Start crying to city council that the Parade of Homes clogs up traffic and how the unruly, middle-aged yuppies, who carelessly stamp down grass, have loud conversations about property values and crown moldings that harsh our mellows so much we can’t sleep in 'till noon. Maybe pointing out how much of an annoyance they are to our lives will get them to see that a weekend of music isn’t something you need to get your panties in a twist for.

Or maybe not, maybe it’s just a vicious cycle and before we know it, we’ll be the ones shaking our canes at lawmakers demanding decibel levels be lowered to 30 because we don't like that new dance music at all. 

Either way, it's time Colorado's 40-somethings realized how beneficial music festivals are for Colorado's culture. They bring in cash flow for local businesses, expose residents to new music, art and food, and put the state on the map as a cultural hot spot. Colorado is changing, and it's people should too. Or just put cement in their eardrums.