The Scourge Of Concert Ticket Prices

The Scourge Of Concert Ticket Prices
Ever wonder why the price of concert tickets is so high? Any of you who are older than the kids or young adults of today probably remember prices in decades past that were fractions of what they are today. Is this just a symptom of inflation? That answer is no. Ticket prices are higher for two reasons:
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Back when I was much younger you could go to a venue’s box office and get a ticket and that money would go to two places: The venue and the artist performing. Nowadays there is a third party: The ticket selling middlemen. Similar to the situation plaguing healthcare, these people do not entertain you, nor do they provide a venue for the entertainment. They simply sell the tickets, and thus create jobs for an entire independent industry that should never have been created. The result is a whole bunch of unnecessary fees tacked onto the ticket price that has nothing to do with the actual show. Basically the concert goers are forced to provide welfare for an industry that otherwise has little need or value just so they can get a ticket. Of course many people may remember when Pearl Jam tried to fight this scam long ago and pretty much lost, but that in no way discredited their original position. Today the fees have become so ridiculous that they often turn out to be as expensive as the price of admission.  An argument could be made that the ticket broker industry only exists and must exist because of demand. All I can say to that is somehow it worked before, and any increasing demand should have been absorbed by the venues and artists (the entertainment industry) so all the broker profits would have gone directly back into the industry, thus keeping prices reasonable. (Reminds me of the fossil fuel industry who should have been the leaders in alternative energy long ago and made their polluting, dying industry not such a damn issue.)
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The second problem that exists today is apparently “no one buys CDs anymore.” Of course this is not entirely true, but there certainly has been a substantial drop in album sales over the last couple of decades. Recording music and manufacturing albums is still an expensive game, so with the significant decrease in album sales revenue (despite an ever increasing demand for music), thanks to piracy, and streaming services that are not an adequate revenue replacement for the artists or labels, the only place to generate the kind of income required to survive as a musician is playing live. Artists literally need more money from ticket sales to afford to keep making music. In the past it wasn’t always necessary to even play live (as some artists don’t really enjoy) as long as album sales were strong enough. Now they aren’t strong enough except for the top sellers in the industry. However, many of those top sellers came from the album buying generations of past decades and literally built a complex business around them that today, despite decreased album sales, is still expensive to run and keep those people in support of the particular artist employed and making a decent living. Making music for the masses is still an expensive operation, and a lot of people just don’t understand that anymore. What exists now is a generation of music fans that have gotten lazy and just expect music to be there for them on the cheap. They don’t know what it takes to create and produce product, just like a lot of people have no idea where their food comes from (the answer is not the grocery store).