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Friday, August 19, 2022

Harsh criticism of Bruce Springsteen for tickets costing up to $5,000 and his manager’s weak defense

At 72 years of age, the rocker Bruce Springsteen announced a few weeks ago his new world tour that will begin in 2023. Immediately, the news was received with joy by his fans, but then there was outrage to see the exorbitant prices he was charging, with tickets from 200 to 5000 dollars.

The uproar was so great on social networks that the manager had to come out in defense of his artist. The famous Jon Landau explained that the high price is due to “a dynamic pricing algorithm that has not been fully calibrated.”

Bruce Springsteen this time was silent before the claim of his loyal fans.  He sent his manager to explain.  Photo: AFP

Bruce Springsteen this time was silent before the claim of his loyal fans. He sent his manager to explain. Photo: AFP

The justification

This algorithm that the manager is talking about consists of a code that makes tickets increase in price in relation to the demand of users who enter the web to purchase their ticket.

Thus, the tickets that in theory cost 60 dollars were rising in price when seeing that there was a great demand for not missing the shows. That is why the fans protested that they had been cheated.

Bruce with his manager since the '70s, Jon Landau, a former journalist for Rolling Stone magazine.  Photo: IG

Bruce with his manager since the ’70s, Jon Landau, a former journalist for Rolling Stone magazine. Photo: IG

Bruce Springsteen’s representative ended his statement by criticizing the position of the followers and said that the price is totally in line with the type of artist they are going to see:

“Regardless of comments about a modest number of tickets costing $1,000 or more, our true median ticket price has been around $200. I think that, in the current environment, that’s a fair price to see someone universally regarded as as one of the best artists of his generation”.

More data

As it became known after the complaint of the fans, in reality only 1% of the total tickets sold to see Bruce cost more than a thousand dollars.

Bruce Springsteen live in Argentina, at the GEBA stadium, 2013. Photo: Martín Bonetto.

Bruce Springsteen live in Argentina, at the GEBA stadium, 2013. Photo: Martín Bonetto.

The sale was made under the new Ticketmaster Verified Fan Sale system, a modality that includes the “dynamic pricing” that Landau alluded to. The company’s justification is that this system avoids resale at exorbitant prices… although it ultimately ends up producing exorbitant prices that at least go to the artist and not to intermediaries.

Indeed, an analysis of the sale of Springsteen tickets showed that only 10% went to resale, a very low figure for historical numbers.

In terms of sales, such prices did not intimidate fans and most of the shows are already sold out. It is estimated that Springsteen will earn about 4 million dollars for each concert in the stadium, and a total of 120 million at the end of the US tour.

Years ago, when there was a similar controversy, Springsteen came out to criticize Ticketmaster and the company apologized. This time the same did not happen.

How much does it cost to see an artist like Bruce?

Just as many critics periodically assure that “rock is dead”, the tours of the great artists of the genre have been proving the opposite and each year they set new collection records.

A FinanceBuzz study analyzed 13 styles of music, taking data from Pollstar’s Top 200 rankings of US tours from 2019 to 2021.

The result was that classic rock was the most expensive genre in ticket prices, averaging $119, while pop and Latin music averaged $85, and alternative rock “barely” $63 greenbacks.

The marquee of the famous Bruce Springsteen show in a Broadway theater, where tickets cost about 500 dollars.  Photo: AP

The marquee of the famous Bruce Springsteen show in a Broadway theater, where tickets cost about 500 dollars. Photo: AP

And it was Bruce Springsteen’s acclaimed Broadway show that helped push that average up, with tickets averaging $500. In that study, the other artists with more expensive tickets were Lady Gaga and Metallica.

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Reference from clarin www.clarin.com

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