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Bring Back Weekend Afternoon Concerts

Back in 1971, Ravi Schenker and George Harrison curated the benefit concert for Bangladesh. There were two performances on August 1st, a Sunday. One at 230pm and one at 8pm. Both were immediate sellouts. And why not? When Elvis Presley performed at MSG in 1972 he performed once a day for two of the days, and twice on the Saturday, one of them in the afternoon.

Fifty years later, the afternoon weekend concert is dead. Ph, yeah, maybe Summerstage, or an all day festival. But none of the big arenas, nor the theatres include weekend afternoon concerts and it is an insane waste of resources – the last time I saw a weekend afternoon show was Hillsong at the Beacon Theatre – a one off. Could Dylan not sell out a Beacon? Could Olivia Rodrigo -at nineteen years of age, not have the stamina to perform two sets in one day.

If the only way to make real money is to tour, why are popstars of every stripe leaving billions on the table? From Jones Beach to Metlife money is being squandered. Paul McCartney is performing one night in MetLife, why not add a weekend afternoon performance? Elton John? The Weeknd?

With the exception of Hillsong I have to go back to January 1997 and Beck at 5pm at Roseland for a weekend show. I tend to go to every Broadway matinee I can (and the Met has opera on weekend afternoons as well), it is a perfect time to see concerts and there are none.

Is it unions? I don’t see why? Are modern day popstars too lazy?

Which leads me to CBGBs hardcore Sunday afternoon performances? If Jesse Malin can stop sucking off his famous friends long enough to concentrate, his Bowery Electric clubs have a great opportunity. Speaking of which, City Winery is tailor made for proper weekend afternoon shows and not the useless Strawberry Fields Beatle tributes they lumber us with.

With money too tight to mention ignoring weekend matinees is self defeating in the extreme.

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