Coldplay Wants You to Power Their Shows By Riding a Bike


By Molly Hurford |

  • Coldplay is using energy produced by stationary bikes to help power concerts, as reported by AP News.
  • Stationary bikes placed around the stage allow concertgoers to charge batteries by pedalling.

Get your workout in and enjoy a live concert, in person, at the same time? If you’re a fan of Coldplay, that’s now a possibility, thanks to the band’s greener touring initiative that in part utilises bike-produced energy. Featured in the band’s ongoing Music of the Spheres world tour, concertgoers can use kinetic dance floors and stationary bikes set up around the stage to quite literally power the show.

According to AP News, Coldplay has pledged to be as sustainable and low-carbon as possible, hoping to cut their CO2 emissions by 50 percent. Part of this initiative includes the setup of energy-storing stationary bikes for concertgoers to pedal as the band plays. While the energy generated obviously is far from enough to power an entire stadium, the band says that it’s less about the exact number of watts produced and more about raising awareness.

Determined by venue size, there will be at least 15 bikes on the floor at each concert, but more if space allows. Each bike can generate an average of 200 watts of energy, which is then stored in recycled electric car batteries.

Coldplay has demonstrated a love of cycling in the past. Their 2016 music video for “A Head Full of Dreams” featured the band riding around Mexico City on bikes:

And their chart-topping “Paradise” leant heavily on Woodstock Cycleworks and the scenery of the Western Cape:

The band’s frontman, Chris Martin, can also occasionally be spotted pedalling around town on a bike. “Being green is not a charitable sort of self-flagellating, holier-than-thou exercise. It’s a good business model. That’s what we’d like to show,” Martin told AP News. Bassist Guy Berryman echoed Martin’s sentiments, adding that the bikes and kinetic dance floor are a way of having fun that helps the environment.

In case you were concerned that adding a few bikes and calling it “green” was all the band was doing, AP News also notes that Coldplay is using biodegradable confetti, compostable wristbands for concertgoers, sustainably-sourced merchandise, solar panels, and a generator powered by vegetable oil. Of course, there are still plenty of people who are calling the band out for “green-washing”—claiming that their efforts are more environmentally beneficial than they really are.

Still, anything that gets an audience pedalling during a show is exciting, and certainly puts a new spin on concert going.

And while their bike setup isn’t nearly enough to power the concert, there are some musicians who utilise the power of the bike to power their amps. On the West Coast, Bike Works hosts Biketopia Music Festivals, where all of the sound amplification is powered by stationary bicycles. The series has been running for over a decade and has toured around North America and Europe featuring different environmentally-conscious musicians.

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