Springsteen's Fans Feel Like They're Being 'Sucker Punched' by Price of Tickets to See 'The Boss'
That’s not very boss of “The Boss.”
Bruce Springsteen, the living music legend, has come under fire after some fans were forced to make a tough choice:
“Do I pay my mortgage, utilities, and grocery bills this month? Or do I go catch Springsteen and the E Street Band?”
While that choice may seem rather obvious, Team Springsteen insists that there’s nothing wrong shelling out thousands of dollars (seriously, a cursory search of Springsteen tickets for a November concert in Phoenix shows tickets ranging from $90 to… $10,000) to see Springsteen perform.
Springsteen’s longtime manager Jon Landau said as much when some of these complaints about ticket prices first began dogging Springsteen in 2022, when those fans complained about tickets reaching prices up to $5,000.
“Regardless of the commentary about a modest number of tickets costing $1,000 or more, our true average ticket price has been in the mid-$200 range,” Landau told The New York Times in July.
Landau added that Springsteen was merely wanting to emulate his peers when it came to obscene ticket pricing.
“I believe that in today’s environment, that is a fair price to see someone universally regarded as among the very greatest artists of his generation.”
Perhaps that sentiment was a little more acceptable in 2022, but a year later and in this economy, Springsteen fans aren’t buying Landau’s line of reasoning.
“It felt like a sucker punch,” one Connecticut-based Springsteen fan told The New York Post.
It’s hard to blame any fans of Springsteen for feeling betrayed. “The Boss” has long portrayed himself as a working-class hero, the kind of blue-collar entertainer who would never ask his fans to choose between making rent or seeing him in person.
After the first batch of unfavorable coverage regarding ticket prices, Springsteen spoke out about the issues in an interview.
“What I do is a very simple thing,” Springsteen told Rolling Stone in November 2022, regarding how he typically priced his tickets. “I tell my guys, ‘Go out and see what everybody else is doing. Let’s charge a little less.’ That’s generally the directions. They go out and set it up. For the past 49 years or however long we’ve been playing, we’ve pretty much been out there under market value. I’ve enjoyed that. It’s been great for the fans.”
“This time I told them, ‘Hey, we’re 73 years old. The guys are there. I want to do what everybody else is doing, my peers.’ So that’s what happened. That’s what they did,” Springsteen added, with a laugh.
Springsteen then claimed that he, along with other artists, can be just as confused as fans when it comes to ticket pricing.
“I know it was unpopular with some fans. But if there’s any complaints on the way out, you can have your money back,” Springsteen said.
Unpopular may be an understatement. Backstreets Magazine, which literally exists to primarily cover all things Springsteen, has referred to the budding crisis between Springsteen and his fans as a “crisis of faith.”
So this is what a crisis of faith feels like.
— Backstreets Magazine (@backstreetsmag) July 23, 2022
“So this is what a crisis of faith feels like.”
It is worth noting that, per Rolling Stone, this is Springsteen’s first tour in six years and there are rampant, unfounded rumors circulating that it’s a de facto farewell tour. Those two factors likely played a big role in the ticket pricing, as well.
Regardless, mega-stars like Springsteen and Taylor Swift appear to be on a collision course with their very own fans if they keep charging the GDP of Sri Lanka to see them perform.
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