Weekly survey: How high will you go for a must-have concert ticket?

When it was announced that Adele was going to appear for two nights at the BST Festival in London’s Hyde Park next summer, people freaked. Within a minute after going on sale, every ticket was gone, from the £90 general admission ticket (that’s about CAD$150) to special VIP packages (£579 or CAD$980).

Now, though, resale prices have gone through the roof. Those GA tickets are now being traded for over CAD$1,250 while the VIP passed have sold for as much as CAD$12,500.

I get it. Adele is one of those ultra-rare stars that can sell concert tickets, CDs, and digital files. Her return is a big, big deal. But those prices are insane. Or are they?

What’s the most you’d spend for that super-special, gotta-be-there-at-all-costs concert?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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4 thoughts on “Weekly survey: How high will you go for a must-have concert ticket?

  • Let’s talk about the RHCP show at the dome. They wanted $500+ for GA during the pre-sale and now with the whole “platinum” tickets they are approaching $1,000. 12 Rows back on the floor is $700+. A seat 5 rows up in the stands is $520. These are festival prices for a show at the dome. I go to (or at least used to) about 30 shows a year. This is by far the most outrageous I have seen yet. They make the Adele prices seem like a bargain. In fact if you look at RHCP prices in NA vs Europe you’ll see that the gouging seems to be a NA specific phenomenon.

  • Honestly it’s like … $80 to me for a local show (which is what I paid for New Order some time ago). I’d love to see NIN again at a “proper” show (not from the lawns at the Ampitheatre, opening for Jane’s), but can’t justify the $200+. I can almost get a better experience watching their blurays on my decent 5.1 system at home.

    That said, I have two bucket-list electro-industrial bands I’m fully planning on flying to Germany to see when they’re on the same bill. And they’re my final bucket-list items. I did fly to London once just to see Ned’s Atomic Dustbin 🙂

  • Sidenote, I am so grateful and feel so lucky to live in Toronto where I get access to so many amazing bands. Also can walk home from the Danforth Music Hall, where I’m happy to just see stuff that maybe I’m not 100% keen on, but just love the venue and vibe.

  • There ate so many variables in this equation that it is almost impossible for me to say.

    artist…and then….
    Have I seen them
    before? Was it a
    perfect moment
    show? If so, stop.
    If not seen or if not
    a perfect moment
    show, see venue.
    Is it a favored
    venue. If not, stop.
    If so, how often
    does the artist
    tour? If artist
    tours yearly and is
    not showing any
    signs of starting
    residencies or
    tours with other
    artists or limited
    tours confined to
    subsets of States,
    stop. If artist
    showing signs of
    doing last ditch
    money grab,
    tour, decide
    whether or not
    artist is worth one
    last tour. If this is l.
    last chance to see,
    are they, top50?
    Considered a band
    to see before I die?
    Otherwise, next
    step would be to
    determine worth.

    These are bands I would like to see before I die (if not multiple times). Some are sheer fantasy. Some are still touring. One is beyond fantasy but I’m including them anyway.

    In no particular order:

    Oingo Boingo w/$$ going to charity >=2500
    Depeche Mode >=500
    The Smiths w/$$ going to charity >=1500
    Doll and The Kicks >=150
    Concrete Blonde>=250
    Social Distortion going rates
    The Pogues >=1000
    The Clashw/$$ going to charity >=1500
    Siouxsie and The Banshees (voice pre-90s)>=1000
    The Toy Dolls>=1000

    *limited to 10 bands. Amounts never thought of before this moment because I usually don’t have this kind of money to throw around and won’t for most bands. These bands and a fair number of others, given an infusion of cash, and no need to spend it elsewhere, would definitely make the list. Whether I could actually justify the expense when it came down to it…that might prove more difficult.


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