Yes, Concerts Were More Expensive in 2014–Especially If You Waited to Buy Them

When tickets for a show go on sale, you have two choices: (1) Go through the hassle of trying to buy them the moment they go on sale, thereby assuring that you’ll pay face value for the tickets; or (2) wait and buy your seats through what’s known as the “secondary market.”

Secondary market is a nicer term for “scalping,” although those who engage in this business say that they’re just meeting a need in the marketplace. These companies resell tickets for events to people willing to cough up whatever it takes to be in the building that night. Where do these source these tickets? The people buying don’t care.

Fleetwood Mac fans are among that gotta-see-the-show-at-any-price crowd. According to Forbes, the average price paid on the secondary market for a Fleetwood Mac ticket was #358.91, the highest of any tour this year.  That’s not surprising, though, given that this roadtrip featured all five members of the classic lineup for the first time in forever.

Justin Timberlake came second with secondhand tickets for the 20/20 Experience World Tour going for an average of $293.64 each. He was followed by the Eagles, Paul McCartney and Billy Joel. Then came Jay Z, Katy Perry, Tom Petty, Bruno Mars and Dave Matthews.

Here’s my question: do the artists who create this demand get a piece of the action?

  1. Fleetwood Mac – $358.91
  2. Justin Timberlake – $293.64
  3. Eagles – $272.29
  4. Paul McCartney – $242.25
  5. Billy Joel – $232.21
  6. Jay-Z/Beyonce – $221.14
  7. Katy Perry – $221.81
  8. Tom Petty – $216.34
  9. Bruno Mars – $209.61
  10. Dave Matthews Band – $194.98

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ 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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