Can Garth Brooks Help Bring Down Ticket Prices?

Class of 2022 Medallion Ceremony

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Garth Brooks is one of the artists leading the charge against high concert ticket prices. He'll be part of a panel at the Pollstar Live conference next week in Los Angeles that will discuss scalpers, resale sellers and other entities that have made tickets difficult for fans to purchase. Congress is already on the case, calling Ticketmaster and other corporations onto the carpet for their part in allowing resellers to buy tickets and jacking up the prices for fans. (TMZ)

I've been going to concerts since the late 70's. "Back in my day..." (said in my grumpy old man voice) you could sit on the lawn at Blossom Music Center for just a few bucks, with Pavillion seats at around $8 for a major act. (see ancient artifact below) The worst seat in the venue was about equal to one hour's pay at minimum wage at the time.

Compare that to today. The worst seat might be had for five times minimum wage. That's not including exorbitant fees (processing, printing, venue tax, etc) on top of admission. One example is tickets to see Bruce Springsteen at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse in Cleveland where the tickets START at $123.00. That's probably at the very back in the last row. So much for being the "working man's rock star"! The working man might spend a week's take home pay to take a date to that one once you add in parking and a couple of cold ones. Here's another example. Last November Joe Walsh put on a veteran's fundraiser in Columbus but with the worst seats in the $400.00 range I had to say no. I would have loved to be in the front row for an all-star show like that, but I'd need around $1,400.00 per seat.

This is not a new problem but it's not getting any easier for the fans. The bottom line is the fan is getting gouged at every turn and it's become very easy , for me at least, to say "Nah, I'll wait for the DVD to come out or the YouTube videos to get posted to watch the concert from the comfort of my living room. Maybe Garth Brooks, with all his power, might and influence can change things back to the old days. Like when his tour landed at the Richland County Fairgrounds in 1990 and tickets were $5.00.

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