Posted in industry | music on February 10, 2009

Britney Spears

FORBES: Then what are the challenges for the next five to 10 years?

AEG's Randy Phillips: In 2009 and 2010, our biggest challenge is the economy. I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. I put two tours on this year--Britney Spears and Taylor Swift--and they both blew out. However, at some point this massive unemployment is going to bite us. I think it's going to happen around June or July, when we start to put tickets on sale for the summer. We're trying to determine what level of staffing and overhead we need for a decreased business model. That's the biggest short-term challenge.

FORBES: What about long term?

Randy Phillips: My biggest concern honestly past the economy is where the headliners of tomorrow are going to come from. That's scary. The record industry has so many of its own problems in terms of sales of music and how to make money on it, so they're not really breaking acts at the rate we're used to. At some point, supply and demand is going to catch up to us. The sweet spot in touring going forward is going to be the 5,000- to 7,000-seat theaters. I think the consumer would rather spend more money on something that means something to them in a more intimate setting.

The interview, done by Forbes in light of the Ticketmaster/Live Nation deal, goes on to discuss Radiohead, U2, festivals, ticket prices, Coldplay, The Jonas Brothers, and Katy Perry.



Comments (4)

i've thought about this how as a result of major labels not producing good new bands with mainstream appeal anymore (a la pearl jam, radiohead, ect) there are no new bands that headline arenas anymore. besides the white stripes i can't think of one american band that got big this decade who headlines basketball stadium size venues. even the stripes probably couldnt do it in every market.

Posted by Anonymous | February 10, 2009 10:55 PM

well, anon 10:55, as you can read above Randy Phillips said their Taylor Swift arena tour blew out and she's a new artist. She might not be the kind of artist you like but she's a new artist that a major label was able to develop into an arena sized act.

secondly, I heard Randy Phillips left AEG Live to get back into management with Irving Azoff. Can anyone confirm or deny this?

Posted by Anonymous | February 11, 2009 11:25 AM

The interview is brief but informative. Worth a read. Phillips points out that the major labels are not breaking enough arena-worthy new artists, and Taylor Swift is an exception, not the rule.

Posted by Aaron | February 11, 2009 2:16 PM

^^^exactly. think about the 90s. how many big bands played arenas during the grunge era....and then during nu-metal you still had all these big bands like incubus and korn and all those others headlining arenas. that has essentially stopped. maybe if the arcade fire got huge radio airplay then they could get to that point but it's unlikely b/c most indie rock fans aren't going to pay $50 to watch an arena show by a band they saw a few years ago in a club. there lies the's so counterintuitive how arena shows are more expensive than club shows.

Posted by Anonymous | February 11, 2009 3:12 PM

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