Let's Talk About: Bands Overcharging For Shows

I went out last night with my flat mates and had a lot of fun. They played some classic pop punk jams, I got told by some poser slag that having Snorlax as my favourite Pokémon is 'unoriginal' and on the way home I suddenly felt rather spurred on to have a rant about something. Remembering my rant this morning made me realise that I had unconsciously inspired myself to write a new Alt:Mag article. Even though my rant was unstructured, I realised I could easily structure it and make something of it in writing. This makes me happy, as anyone who read my last post will know that I was suffering from what people tend to call 'writer's block'.

So what is it I want to talk about today, then? Well, you've probably read the title of the post, so you already know, but I basically want to formulate a rant about bands overcharging fans for shows. This urge to rant all came from really wanting to go see Green Day perform live.

In the foreseeable future Green Day are only playing one show in the UK, and that is at the Emirates Stadium in London on the 1st of June. Ticket prices? 60 quid for standing tickets. Now I don't know about you, but to go see a band perform, that is really taking the piss. Sure, maybe if it was Kurt Cobain's ghost, then we'd happily pay a higher price. But it isn't. It is Green Day. A band that aren't going to split up or die any time soon (Fingers crossed!). It's not just Green Day who are overcharging their fans either, another band is guilty of the same thing, Muse. They just announced their tour, with standing tickets being 50 quid. Sure, that may be cheaper, but there seems to be a recurring theme here. Just because you have a mass of loyal fans who would consider jumping off a cliff just for a chance to see you live, doesn't mean you should take advantage of them. No one wants to have to pay that much money to go see a band live, even if they do love their music a whole lot.

Green Day will most likely fill out that stadium, so why do they need to charge so much for ticket prices? The Emirates Stadium seats about 60,000. They could still charge everyone a tenner and make 600 grand just for playing a few songs and going home. Obviously there are extra costs and other bands to pay, but really Green Day? 60 fucking quid? For that kind of money they better have a machine at the door where I can choose their set list. If they played Armatage Shanks and Babs Uvula Who?, I'd consider paying a bit more money for that. Also, for that price I should be allowed to play god with the support acts. Kaiser Chiefs can stay but All Time Low would need to be replaced with someone ten million times better, like New Found Glory. I wouldn't pay 50p to see All Time Low, let alone 60 quid, thank you very much. 

At least Muse are doing a tour. That means that although they are still being greedy toe rags with their ticket prices, they can at least lower it a little. If Green Day played more shows up and down the UK instead of doing a 'world tour', where they just play one UK show, then they could lower the ticket prices considerably and make more fans happy. Fans are probably frustrated to know that the only choice they have to see their favourite band is at the Emirates Stadium show, and they will have to pay a stupid price just to stand. Another thing they forget to consider is that some fans who don't reside in London will have to travel ridiculous distances to get a look in. This is going to impact on their wallet even more. It costs almost as much as the price of the show just to get from Manchester to London on the train. If Green Day played different shows more local to their different fans, a punter wouldn't have to deny themselves of food for a month just to see their favourite band.

I've seen plenty of great bands on the cheap. Me and Josh went to see Owl City recently. It was not much more than 20 quid and the show was great. No matter how much I moan about Owl City's album, he has had two number one hits, yet he still plays in a large amount of small-ish UK venues for decent prices. If I'm honest, smaller venues are always better, as it gives you a more personal experience with the artist you are seeing perform live.  

In conclusion, the message of this rant is, please bands, don't overcharge your fans, don't become greedy and alienate the people who give you that privilege of playing shows, something that you love to do. Give them more choice of venues and give more of your fans a chance to see a show of yours. Pull your heads out of your backsides and make your fans happy!

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