1. GUT THE BEER LINES
There is no statistical trick to finding the shortest brew queue. So avoid it altogether with the Beerbelly ($35 at thebeerbelly.com). The fanny-pack-like beverage bladder (disguised as an ample man-gut) holds 80 ounces, saving you about six suds runs. It has a wide mouth for spill-less transfers to plastic cups, too. Tip: Pad it with a freezer pack to keep the beer—and you—cool.
2. WEAR A GROUPIE LIKE A STOLE
The dude under the flashing topless girl is a chump who can’t even see the double-Ds he’s hoisting, right? Wrong. He’s on deck for jilted groupie sex, says Farrah Sinclair, whose midconcert girl-on-girl grind on Rock of Love Bus makes her our ¿favorite concert hookup expert. “Look for a girl getting wasted and offer to put her on your shoulders,” says Sinclair. When she fails to flash her way backstage, “you’re option B.” You could seal the deal behind the food vendors or Port-o-Lets or, in the case of Farrah’s “friend,” between the Dumpsters. “I told her that was trashy.”
3. GET AURAL PLEASURE
The VIP area may have a beef stroganoff buffet, but the sound there sucks. “Stand right in front of the stage and back about one and a half times the distance between the left and right speak-ers,” says Paul Thomas, a sound engineer at Bonnaroo, Lolla-palooza, and other festivals. “If the speakers are 50 feet apart, stand 75 feet back.” It’s where the mixing board tent should be but often isn’t.
4. WALKIE THE WALK, TALKIE THE TALK
Backstage is VIP Valhalla, rife with free beer and clean bathrooms. But bribery won’t get you in, says “Wedge” Branon, who has 25 years’ experience as a roadie at Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, and Coachella. Instead, pass yourself off as a crew guy. “Don’t be a kid at Disneyland. Act like you’re working and it’s another day of hell.” Bring a walkie-talkie and bark on it as you breeze past the guard in the folding chair. “No one will ever get up to disturb you,” Branon says. Once you’re in, don’t bogart Depeche Mode’s Zima.
5. SUMMON A WHiZ-ARD
Gotta pee like a 10-dick dragon? Find the kids’ area. The bathrooms at the Kidzapalooza stage are usually clean, and, “There’s nobody there after 4 p.m.,” says Lollapalooza spokeswoman Lisa Hickey. Simpler still, after you’ve drained your Beerbelly, fill it back up. You don’t even have to leave your spot. Everyone’s watching Neil Young, not your yutz. Tip: Don’t attempt this while crowd-surfing.
6. DON’T BE AN E-M-TEASE
Though it’s full of free Gatorade, A/C, and aspirin, the medical tent (usually by the entrance) is not the poor man’s VIP lounge. But if you’ve foolishly blown your last $7 on beer and the thirst, heat, and the sight of Perry Farrell going down on his wife onstage are making you woozy, the Hippocratic oath is on your side. “Get checked out,” says Ed Castillo of Southern California Fire & EMS. “Of course we’re going to help.” You could also dial 911 from your mobile phone in a pinch, Castillo says. Tell ‘em to look in the mosh pit for the guy in the fetal position.