Music Industry

Opening Acts Are Losers…Money-wise Anyway

Opening Act

Opening acts are supposed to benefit.  Exposure to more people.  Bringing in new fans.  Larger venues.  Generally you would expect something like that to be good for a new band’s career.  Especially financially.

If that opening act is losing money every time they open, is that such a good deal?  Hardly.

The costs of touring have skyrocketed during the last 20 years, cutting into profit margins. Although Eric Mayers, tour manager for My Morning Jacket and other artists, says costs eat up less of an act’s gross as venue size increases, many arena headliners walk away with just $30 pre-tax from every $100 they earn. Jamie Cheek, an entertainment business manager with Nashville-based accounting firm Flood, Bumstead, McCready & McCarthy, says that roughly 40 percent of tour revenue goes to costs, 30 percent to commissions and 30 percent, pretax, to the act. “Pricing tickets is a delicate balance of art and science, says RZO Productions partner Bill Zysblat.

So how does all this money breakdown?  Have a look at this article from Billboard.

Larry Lootsteen

Music is life and I love to write about all things music. Independent music blogger. Writer in general. I am a big fan of alternative and indie music but there's no genre I haven't found something to like.

Larry Lootsteen has 630 posts and counting. See all posts by Larry Lootsteen

2 thoughts on “Opening Acts Are Losers…Money-wise Anyway

  • Pingback: Scherzo TV | Opening Acts Are Losers…Money-wise Anyway

  • First of all, I hate the word “act” – that describes a girl in a tutu on a pony at the circus. How hope “opening ARTISTS” or “opening band”? Next, smart headliners could follow Harry Belafonte’s example, back in the day when he eas a major con cert draw (10 days at the O’Keefe Centre, back then, and at a hefty ticket price). He would open the show, bring out his “opener” after a fulsome introduction and have the artist close the first half of the show. And the last part of the second half the opener came out to join the headliner for the final three or four songs. Of course, it’s harder to do that in a rock setting.
    But why can’t Mick Jagger come out and introduce the opening band at a Stones concert? He’d look like the good guy, and the opener — with the full complement of sound and lights — would really stand a chance of making progress.


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