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Will Going To A Concert Soon Become A Thing Of The Past?


If concert ticket prices continue to increase at this rate, very few will be able to attend a live show. Before the pandemic, ticket prices already quadrupled from 1996 to 2019, but this was nothing in comparison to the current situation. Did you notice that some concerts and festivals now offer payment plans to pay for tickets? Does it mean we have to plan to pay for a concert as we do for a car? It’s ridiculous. It shouldn’t cost me the equivalent of one month’s mortgage to attend 4 concerts. But it is nevertheless the case. How can young people afford it? Do they all have wealthy parents or are they all in debt? Every time I go to a show, it seems packed!

There are a few upcoming shows I would love to go to, but prices are so high, it won’t happen. Willie Nelson’s birthday at the Hollywood Bowl is one of these out-of-control examples. Some of the garden tickets have now reached the incredible price of $15,000 each! Would Willie approve? I know that it is a show in high demand, with an incredible lineup spread over two days, but the prices are laughable. We have all heard of the complaints about the high prices for Bruce Springsteen’s current tour and they are completely justified: there’s nothing below $900 for his upcoming concert at Madison Square Garden. The “ticket prices are so high that his fan site Backstreets is shutting down after 43 years” writes Fortune magazine. According to the publisher of Backstreets, “ticket prices left people there “dispirited, downhearted and yes, disillusioned.”

Whoever is responsible for this monumental increase, whether it is Live Nation, Ticketmaster, the artists, or a combination of the three, we cannot go on like this. Soon, most people will not be able to go see their favorite artists in concert, and venues will only be filled with a rich elite who drinks champagne with foie gras toasts while watching Beyonce. I bet Beyonce has nothing against this idea because she has already collected her $24 M for her one-night show in Dubai, but I am thinking about performers who still care about their fans. It’s hard to make a living as an artist in 2023 and I am gladly paying $200-300 to have a good seat to see one of my favorite musicians but there’s no way I can afford $3,000 a night! And looking at the current inflation on ticket prices, I am not exaggerating even a bit.

I am old enough to remember a time when reselling a ticket in front of a venue was regarded as a fraud or some risky business. Now it’s the entire business. Why are bots allowed? Why are dynamic prices even allowed? Of course, I know the answers, it greatly benefits the big corporations, but this gangster ticket traffic should have never been allowed in the first place. Buying a concert ticket has now become as complicated as dealing with the stock market. Prices go up and down every day, forcing you to check different sites a million times a day with no guarantee at all. It’s frustrating, exhausting, and disappointing.

Solutions are possible but nobody wants to do anything. We need a revolution, and unless dramatic changes in the industry, going to a concert will soon become bitter nostalgia that most of us cannot afford anymore.

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