I am Mike Jones AKA Sublive presents...
Published 27 Jul 2012 11:30 0 Comments
At the moment, wherever you turn the Olympics are being well and truly force fed to you from every angle. Media coverage is huge and every minute detail is being openly scrutinized for all to see. Because of this there's been a lot of talk about the huge amounts of un-sold event tickets right across the board and that begs the question are tickets for public events overpriced?
Gig ticket prices have risen year on year for the last decade or so now as a result of the demise of the once-booming CD revenue stream for bands, and with that we've seen a distinct change in the way in which gigs are both financed and attended. What was once known as the 'mid-range toilet venue' circuit is now all but extinct whilst the very top-end arena-band sector flourishes along with the bottom end 'breaking bands' sector in cool, often inner-city small venues. The same sentiment is mirrored right across the music industry. Record labels will no longer take on bands a few albums into their career that were slugging it out at mid-range venues. They want to work nearly exclusively with acts that have either already got to arena level or are brand new and show the potential to get there.
What was once a tour to promote the album is now an album to promote the tour and what was once a cheap ticket to see a band off the back of a good review or well received single is now an expensive night out that needs to be planned well in advance as purse strings tighten across the country. Traditionally the comparison between sporting event tickets and gig tickets has always been one to try and justify the steep increase in gig ticket prices. On one hand you can argue that a football match lasts for 90 minutes, often involves many hours of travelling and other associated costs whilst popping down to your local venue to watch a full few hours of bands still represents great value. On the other hand however is the argument that sporting teams and particularly football ones seem to demand a much greater degree of loyalty, often life-long whereas the current throwaway, X-factor induced culture for bands and artists alike is encouraging anything but. It's now evident that you can put a price on loyalty, and a very significant one at that.
What do the lack of Olympic ticket sales say for live music ticket sales? It's difficult to say but in times where money is tight and loyalty is slim, I'd predict it to be a very bad omen for even more venues across the country.
Visit www.sub89.com for gig listings.
This article appeared in Bracknell News 26 Jul 12