Entries tagged with: Live Nation
Live Nation recently bought a piece of C3 which added U.S. festivals Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits to their portfolio. Now Live Nation got themselves Bonnaroo too!
Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) and Bonnaroo's founding partners, Superfly and AC Entertainment, announced today the completion of a new partnership, through which Live Nation assumes a controlling interest in the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival.Bonnaroo happens in June and recently announced the 2015 schedule.
"The addition of Bonnaroo builds on Live Nation Entertainment's world leading festival portfolio of over 60 marquee festivals such as: Austin City Limits Music Festival, Lollapalooza, Reading, Leeds, T in the Park, Electric Daisy Carnival, Rock Werchter, and Watershed Music Festival to name a few," said Michael Rapino, Live Nation CEO and president. "We continue to expand the industry's most unparalleled and scalable festival platform all while driving strong revenue and growth for Live Nation on a global basis. Bonnaroo is another crown jewel in this festival channel strategy, one that appeals to both fans and artists in uniqueness and experience."
"We are strengthening our commitment to create the best possible experience at Bonnaroo," said Rick Farman, co-founder, Superfly. "Through this partnership with Live Nation, we're even more empowered to enhance the festival while preserving the integrity of the event that we've thoughtfully built over the past 14 years."
"Partnering with Live Nation is a milestone for Bonnaroo. It opens up tremendous opportunities for us to continue to evolve the Bonnaroo experience in an exciting, powerful way," said Ashley Capps, founder, AC Entertainment.
Additionally, Live Nation now also owns a share of the Bonnaroo property, Great Stage Park, also known as "the Farm." With Live Nation on board, significant investment in the site and enhancements to the festival experience are planned. Superfly and AC Entertainment will continue to plan and execute the day-to-day operations of the festival and signature Bonnaroo initiatives, such as sustainability efforts and involvement with the Manchester community. Bonnaroo's non-profit arm, the Bonnaroo Works Fund, will continue to be a priority.
Founded in 2002 in Manchester, Tennessee, Bonnaroo is globally recognized as an iconic cultural landmark of the festival scene, heralded for its peaceful vibes, flawless operations and once-in-a-lifetime musical collaborations.
Live Nation also recently announced some new Philly venues.
Doesn't look like much from the outside - just the ghostly remains of a century-old smelting and refining facility in Fishtown.This comes in addition to Philly-area venues Wells Fargo Center, Susquehanna Bank Center, Festival Pier, Tower Theater, and Theater of Living Arts, which Live Nation also currently presents shows at. Read more at Philly.com.
But there's lots of lively banging going on inside the former Ajax Metal Co., across Delaware Avenue from the SugarHouse Casino at Frankford Avenue. Give project developers just a half-year more, they will vow at a press unveiling Thursday morning, and this giant block of gentrifying space will be heating up the 'hood with a $32 million entertainment complex sure to jack up Philadelphia's already competitive concert business.
Two state-of-the-art music venues under one roof - a two-level, 2,500-person-capacity concert hall called the Fillmore and the separate 450-patron Foundry club (plus bars and restaurant) - will anchor the project, run by the House of Blues Entertainment (HoBE) division of Live Nation. The complex promises to be "the most beautiful in our entire chain" of 58 venues, said project champion Ron Bension, HoBE's CEO.
The late Bill Graham, who opened the original Fillmore Auditorium, is getting an exhibition in LA soon.
It was rumored before but is now official: Live Nation, the globe's biggest live events promoter (which books shows at Irving Plaza, Gramercy Theatre and other places in NYC) has acquired a controlling stake in independent concert company C3 Presents. The Austin-based C3, who also have a separate artist management division, are behind the Austin City Limits music festival, Lollapalooza and other big festivals around the world (and shows at Emo's and other venues in Austin and around the country).
In a press statement (via Billboard), C3 say "We are excited to join Live Nation and become a part of their global family, while continuing to grow our festivals within a culture of entrepreneurship that will empower our team to keep improving these festivals and the fan experience."
The NY Times reports:
Live Nation Entertainment, the concert and ticketing giant, is in advanced talks to buy a majority stake in C3 Presents, the country's largest independent promoter, with a portfolio that includes the popular Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits festivals.C3, best known for owning those festivals, is also a major force in the Austin rock club scene. They recently bought the Emo's name (and its new location, Emo's East), and book shows at Stubb's, Lambert's, The Parish and other places. They also had a lot to do with Metallica's Orion Festival (which took place in Atlantic City and then Detroit).
The prospective deal, in negotiations for months but still not completed, would give Live Nation a stake of 51 percent in C3 Presents, and value C3 at around $250 million, according to two people with knowledge of the talks.
A spokeswoman for Live Nation declined to comment, and representatives of C3 did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Monday afternoon.
C3, based in Austin, Tex., is run by three friends all named Charles or Charlie -- in the music industry, they are widely known as "the Charlies" -- and the company has grown quickly from its founding in 2007.
"Usher is preparing for his upcoming North America trek, dubbed the The UR Experience Tour, however ticket sales reportedly have been lackluster.August Alsina can't catch a break. The up and coming R&B singer recently collapsed on stage at Irving Plaza in NYC, as you can see in the scary video below. He then spent two weeks in the hospital before being discharged. The exact reasons for the fall and hospital stay are unclear, though TMZ says he later had seizures and ended up in a coma. "August's rep tells us doctors are prescribing lots of rest before he attempts the tour [with Usher]. We're told the seizures were the result of a head injury when he fell -- and August doesn't need medication."
Sources tell the New York Post's Page Six that the crooner's 27-city outing is said to have sold only a small portion of the available seats.
"Usher's sales will be fine in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Toronto, but he's selling so badly in other markets that the good ones can't offset the bad ones," says one source.
In addition, tour promoter Live Nation could potentially lose $5 million due to soft ticket sales, which some insiders attribute to the lack of a strong opening act -- August Alsina and DJ Cassidy are currently on the roster." [ABC]
Usher's NYC show is at Madison Square Garden on 11/7. More dates at his site. Irving Plaza fall video below...
Lowe's Jersey City in 2008 (more by Chris La Putt)
The Loew's Jersey Theatre in Jersey City is one of the last of the grand old movie palaces, having first opened in 1929. Purchased by the city in 1993, it not only shows movies -- an amazing place to see revival fare (they're currently showing The Music Man) -- but also hosts live bands, such as Neutral Milk Hotel recently, Jeff Mangum in 2011, The Magnetic Fields in 2008, and The Decemberists back in 2007 to name a few. Now, according to NJ.com, the Loew's is to undergo a serious renovation, part of an effort by the city's government to revitalize the Journal Square district the theater calls home. Among those vying for the contract are two huge concert promoters -- Live Nation, A.E.G. Live -- and Ace Theatrical Group, which is restoring the Loew's Kings Theater in Brooklyn.
Whichever company gets it, they must meet the city's following conditions:
1) At least thirty (30) community/local performances/events (sponsored and/or produced by local community groups or other City residents), which include but are not limited to school/youth programs, programs for senior citizens, performancesMeanwhile, Friends of Loew's, the nonprofit group that currently handles its booking, is suing for breach of contract.
from local artists, lectures or other academic programs, or cultural celebrations
2) At least twenty (20) musical performances by nationally recognized artists
3) At least ten (10) theatrical or other stage performances
4) At least ten (10) comedy performances
5) At least twenty (20) other performances/events (may include event types listed above)
6) Allowance for twenty (20) events to be sponsored and produced privately by the Friends of the Loew's Inc. community group
7) Allowance for private event booking only during times in which the facility is not reserved for any of the types of events listed above
Ex-Maxwell's and current-Bell House booker Todd Abramson is the man to thank for all the great BV-friendly shows we've seen at Loew's Jersey in recent years, so hopefully he still has a part no matter what happens, or maybe he'll just focus all his energy on new Jersey City venue White Eagle Hall, which we also recently got an update on:
After purchasing White Eagle Hall in November 2012, LoPiccolo began restoration and, together with Levina, started to develop plans for the building's future. They hope to open it in late spring. With Levina serving as artistic director, The Jersey City Theater Center at White Eagle Hall is slated to be an 800-person capacity, flexible-use space for music, dance, theater, and visual arts. Levina is intent on preserving the community-inspired directive of the building's creator. "One big part of our mission is to preserve history in Jersey City," she says. "It's been a golden door for immigrants. For an immigrant coming from another land it's a process. We want to incorporate that history."Read more at the Hudson Reporter, though Todd tells us that no acts are booked yet. They're waiting for a set opening date to start moving things forward. We can't wait to see it!
The ceiling--and the stained glass--will be fully restored, with some necessary modifications.
Inside the building, laid into the magnificent, sky-high ceiling, are stained-glass portraits of two Polish icons--pianist/composer Frederic Chopin (who is also French, Levina offers during our tour) and opera singer and teacher Marcella Sembrich, who performed with the New York Met and taught at Juilliard.
Today's music lovers from Jersey and beyond will rejoice to hear that Todd Abramson, co-owner of and music booker for Hoboken's legendary Maxwell's, will be booking local and national music acts for White Eagle Hall. He and LoPiccolo hired a top-notch sound company to ensure the stained glass can withstand the vibrations and decibels sent upward in its direction.
digital rendering of Pier 97...
As we mentioned in the Robyn / Roykskopp tour announcement post, NYC is getting a new summer venue this year, Pier 97, a 5,000+ capacity venue which will be booked by Live Nation and part of Hudson River Park. It's located on the Hudson River at 57th St. That's a digital version of what it will look like, above.
In addition to the Robyn/Royksopp show on August 20, there's also a Thievery Corporation show on August 15, and others which are listed below, plus more TBA. Tickets for all Pier 97 shows go on sale Friday (4/11) at noon, except the Thievery Corporation show which goes on sale Friday, April 18 at 10 AM.
Hopefully they have more luck than Bowery Presents did with Pier 26 which won't be returning this year due to noise complaints.
Initial list of Pier 97 shows below...
Though the Live Nation booked Gramercy Theatre in NYC does have a few random concerts still scheduled there (like Freddie Gibbs/Madlib and Bun B/Kirko Bangz, you'll notice that most of the upcoming schedule is now taken up by 'A Night With Janis Joplin', which is moving there from Broadway. The press release reads:
A NIGHT WITH JANIS JOPLIN arrives at Gramercy Theatre following an engagement at Broadway's Lyceum Theater where it was hailed by critics and had audiences leaping to their feet and dancing in the aisles. Mary Bridget Davies, who has taken New York by storm with her critically acclaimed performance as Janis Joplin, will reprise her role. On stage, Davies will be joined by many of the production's Broadway cast - a stellar, eight-piece rock band as well as her "Joplinaires" - incredible female singers who provide the iconic voices of the blues and soul singers who influenced Joplin's music, including Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Odetta, Nina Simone and Bessie Smith.Tickets are on sale/presale now.
Janis Joplin fans nationwide will be able to enjoy A NIGHT WITH JANIS JOPLIN when they perform on the TODAY Show Friday, April 4th, LIVE from Rockefeller Center in the heart of New York City. A NIGHT WITH JANIS JOPLIN has partnered with Live Nation to redesign its new, permanent home to host eight one-of-a-kind concerts a week, Tuesday through Thursday at 7 PM, Friday 7pm &10pm, Saturday 2pm & 8pm and Sunday at 3pm. Tickets ($65-$90) are available online at Ticketmaster.com and at the Gramercy Theatre box office. Premium tickets are also available. The historic New York City concert venue has welcomed eclectic and out-of-the-box arts and entertainment for decades and is one of only a handful of NYC concert venues suitable to host a special rock and roll experience of this kind.
"We are ready to rock with Janis at the Gramercy, cut loose and let A Night With Janis Joplin really move," said Michael Joplin, Janis' brother. "Laura and I are stoked about our new theater - we'll really be able to dance!"
Brian Wilson w/ The Beach Boys at Bonnaroo 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Brian Wilson (The Beach Boys) and Jeff Beck (overall classic rock guitar wizard) are touring together this year, and that tour has just been expanded to include another NYC-area date on October 16 at Wellmont Theatre. Tickets for that show go on sale Thursday (8/29) at 10 AM with Live Nation/Mobile App presales starting Wednesday (8/28) at 10 AM.
Brian and Jeff's tour also hits NYC a day earlier at Beacon Theatre (10/15), and tickets for that show are still available (but "not many left"). Updated dates are listed below.
As you may know, Live Nation have replaced Bowery Presents as the new booker for Montclair, NJ's Wellmont Theatre, and the first Live Nation-booked show announced for the venue will happen on September 6 with blink-182, making for a total of six NYC-area shows for that band. Tickets for that show go on sale Thursday (8/22) at 10 AM with a Live Nation presale starting Wednesday (8/21) at 10 AM (password: "SUMMER").
Stay tuned for more Wellmont Theatre show announcements, which are coming soon.
Tickets for blink-182's other NYC-area shows (except the Music Hall of Williamsburg one with DIIV) are still available. Updated dates are listed below...
Live Nation is now (through July 7 at 10pm) running a "4TH OF JULY TICKET BLOWOUT!" for shows at PNC Bank Arts Center in NJ and Jones Beach in Long Island, a really good deal actually. For PNC it's 2 RESERVED TICKETS OR 4 LAWN TICKETS for $40 - NO SERVICE FEES. For Jones Beach it's 2 RESERVED TICKETS OR 4 MEZZANINE TICKETS or $40 - NO SERVICE FEES. Bands you could potentially see using this deal include Descendents, Joey Bada$$, A$AP Rocky, Mastodon, Jane's Addiction.... 311, the Jonas Brothers, 3 Doors Down, and all the fun listed below...
Wellmont Theatre in 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
We recently got the upsetting news that Hoboken, NJ venue Maxwell's is closing (check out the venue's final shows) and the more positive news that another NJ venue, Starland Ballroom is re-opening after damages from Hurricane Sandy.
Now there's even more going on in the NJ venue world. It's just been announced that after MGMT's sold-out Wellmont Theatre show, Bowery Presents will no longer be booking the Montclair venue. According to an article on Baristanet and confirmed by us, Live Nation (who book NYC shows at Irving Plaza, Gramercy Theatre, and more) will now be booking the venue:
Led by Live Nations Club and Theatre Team overseen by Sean Striegel and Jason Stone, Live Nation will be actively looking to present artists. Booked by the New York Team of Sean Striegel, Jason Stone, Jay Belin and Christian McKnight, Live Nation plans to continue to expand on the programming of the venue.David Byrne & St. Vincent just played one of the last Bowery-booked shows at the venue this past Wednesday (6/12). Check out pictures of that show.
going HARD in NYC (more by Zachary Alex Stern)
NY Times reports:
Big money is flowing into electronic dance music. In the latest example of corporate interest in this once-ignored market, Live Nation Entertainment on Tuesday acquired Hard Events, a Los Angeles company that has put on popular festivals and concerts across North America.Deadmau5 also recently posted a note on his Tumblr saying "we all hit play", and maybe his fear of sinking cruise ships is why he is not on the lineup of this year's Holy Ship, which by the way is a highly successful venture (that sold out before the lineup was even announced) co-promoted by Bowery Presents AND HARD EVENTS (and that's just one of many events Bowery Presents does with Hard who are now owned by Bowery's biggest NYC competitor Live Nation).
Yet such investments are fueling fears that a bubble is taking hold in the world of electronic dance music, or E.D.M., jeopardizing the creative and commercial health of the music. The issue has been intensely debated inside the music business, and recently some of the genre's stars have sounded alarms as well.
"E.D.M. has turned into a massively marketed cruise ship, and it's sinking fast," the D.J. and producer Deadmau5 wrote on his Tumblr page on Tuesday. "All I'm trying to do is put on my life jacket and swim as far away from this shipwreck as fast as I can."
photos by Julie Schabel
Odd Future @ Hammerstein Ballroom - 3/20/2012
As you may have noticed when Bowery Presents announced an Odd Future show at Hammerstein Ballroom, the big NYC venue is no longer exclusive to Live Nation. The room also received a technology uprade. Venues today reports...
One of New York's iconic theaters is being retooled into a HD broadcast-capable concert facility, equipped to stream or broadcast any event live in beautiful 1080p.Tickets are on sale now for AEG-presented Tenacious D show at Hammerstein Ballroom which we're also giving away a pair of tickets to.
The iconic Hammerstein Ballroom, built in 1906 and once a popular stop for vaudeville acts, is now home to a new revolution in performing arts -- the complete integration of a state-of-the-art broadcast and recording studio. Since 1997, the Hammerstein has been the anchor of the Manhattan Center, a television and music studio used to record musical performances for television, special concert events and other programming.
In December, the Manhattan Center made two large changes to open the space up to new clients. First, they ended Live Nation's exclusive booking contract for the facility, opening up the 3,500-capacity standing room concert hall to independent promoters and anyone interested in booking the building.
The Manhattan Center management team also completed the installation of TV1, a new fully HD recording studio that allows any content performed at the space to be streamed in HD, or digitally delivered for future distribution. The upgrades come on top of some physical improvements to the building including renovated dressing rooms and a new marquee.
A few more pictures from the Bowery-presented Odd Future show, below...
Mos Def at House of Blues Chicago w/ Black Star on 9/23 (more by Zach Pollack)
Back on 9/28, just five days after Black Star played two shows in Chicago, Talib Kweli tweeted that "Due to irreconcilable differences with Live Nation, Black Star will not be performing in Atlanta tonight." He then said the show WAS happening, and then again that it wasn't. On 9/30 he said, "Regarding Black Star cancellations, I am just as frustrated as I can imagine many are. If it was my decision it would not go down like this. It is not my decision however, and its frustrating especially since I'm the one who gets to break the bad news and deal with the responses. Either way, some dates are cancelled, some arent and we are trying to book shows on our own to replace the cancelled ones." Then yesterday was his birthday. Then he pointed out that "we debuting new Black Star/Madlib on Colbert Report Oct 5th." October 5th is also the day they were scheduled to play Irving Plaza in NYC, which, as you can see from Ticketmaster, is also cancelled. According to a statement someone issued, "Due to unforeseen circumstances, the remainder of the Black Star tour has been cancelled." Bummer.
Both Talib Kweli and Mos Def, though not as Black Star, are still scheduled to play the Restoration Rocks event on October 8th though.
a musician playing Mercury Lounge (more by Chris La Putt)
"The owners of famed New York City nightspot Mercury Lounge on Monday hit concert promotion giant Live Nation Entertainment Inc. and the club's former chief booking agent with unfair competition and contract claims, claiming Live Nation poached the agent." [Law 360]Messy.
Union Transfer rendering
Lots of interesting stuff to report in the world of live concert promotions...
NYC concert promoter Bowery Presents, who already has expanded to NJ, Boston, Maine, and Canandaigua, NY (not to mention MSG, Jones Beach, the Meadowlands, Radio City, etc), is opening a new music venue in Philadelphia this month. In partnership with Philly's one and only Sean Agnew of R5 Productions, and Avram Hornik and Mark Fichera of Four Corners Management, Union Transfer is...
... "named after the original train depot station that occupied the building [and] was developed by the group to meet Philadelphia's need for a mid-sized live music space and will accommodate 600 people. The general admission venue boasts a flexible capacity and can manage up to 1,000 people for larger crowds. Located at 1004-26 Spring Garden St, steps from Center City, Union Transfer is slated to open on September 21, 2011.Clap Your Hands Say Yeah headline the very first show at the new space. Felice Brothers, Shellac, Mogwai, Tune-Yards, RJD2, Langhorne Slim, Little Dragon, CSS, Odd Future, Dum Dum Girls, Friendly Fires, The Black Angels, Boris, SBTRKT and many others are also already on the initial schedule.
In perhaps less exciting news for Bowery Presents, Mercury Lounge talent buyer Jay Belin has reportedly moved on and started booking Irving Plaza, Gramercy Theatre and the new Paramount Theatre in Huntington, Long Island for Live Nation.
The Paramount Theatre is...
...located on New York Avenue a block and a half north of Main Street. The space is the former home of the nonprofit Inter-Media Arts Center (IMAC), which closed its doors in 2009 after 26 years of hosting jazz, folk and blues concerts.Upcoming shows at the Paramount include Rusted Root, Elvis Costello, The B-52's, Weird Al Yankovic, BB King, Willie Nelson, the Pixies, Brand New and Ray Davies.
The 1,500-capacity venue has been undergoing renovations for months. Among the changes, there will be a VIP lounge on the balcony and a member's only "Founder's Room" with a separate entrance in addition to the general admission floor.
"With both the architecture and the vibe of the venue dedicated to quality sound, hospitality, and experience, The Paramount is sure to be a hotspot for all of Long Island, and especially for Huntington," the founders said in a news release." [Long Island Press]
Speaking of moving on, Rock Shop booker Jack McFadden aka Skippy has moved to the music capital of Texas. He is still booking the Brooklyn club (and other NYC rooms) though. You just won't see him there as much.
Speaking of Brooklyn Bowl, and last but not least for this post, the Wetlands is having a Class of '96 reunion at Brooklyn Bowl on Sunday (9/11). Ex-employees of the famed Tribeca club who will probably be in attendance include Rocks Off founder Jake Szufnarowski, Bowery Ballroom (and Union Transfer co-booker) Johnny Beach and of course ex-Wetlands owner and current Brooklyn Bowl owner Peter Shapiro. Brooklyn Bowl hosted a Wetlands get together of sorts in 2010 too, though that one was on a much sadder note, as it was to remember Wetlands' very first employee Dave Nolan who died of a heart attack last year.
"This week a new nonprofit group, the Fans First Coalition, announced itself with a mission of protecting ordinary consumers from predatory ticket scalpers. The group appeared to have broad support from the industry, including prominent artists like R.E.M., the Dixie Chicks, Maroon 5 and Jennifer Hudson.
What fans might not know is that the coalition is financed by Live Nation Entertainment, the parent company of Ticketmaster, and that it has grown out of a lobbying fight between Live Nation and StubHub, the biggest legal online ticket reseller, over control of the multibillion-dollar secondary ticketing market." [NYTimes]
PNC BANK ARTS CENTER AND NIKON AT JONES BEACH THEATER EXTENDSTickets will be HERE (Jones Beach) and HERE (PNC Bank Arts Center), though you probably wouldn't accept $10 to go to most of them. Seriously though, for Lilith Fair, that's less than $1 per lady on the bill (which includes Cat Power) (and Beth Orton) (not counting fees). List below...
$10 TICKET PRICING ON SELECT SHOWS.
SPECIAL $10 TICKET OFFERS AVAILABLE BEGINNING WEDNESDAY, JULY 28!
Purchase tickets beginning Wednesday, July 28th, at 12:01 AM.
$10 ticket offer available while supplies last.
UPDATED LIST OF PARTICIPATING SHOWS:
"...the new name never caught on with fans, and now, bending to what it says has been unrelenting demand, Live Nation is restoring the old name and installing a replica of the old marquee. The first show at the new Irving Plaza will be on June 23, with Taking Back Sunday, a Long Island emo band.Irving Plaza became The Fillmore New York at Irving Plaza back in 2007, but we never stopped calling it just plain old "Irving Plaza" (which makes it really easy to deal with this official change back).
"It's always going to be Irving Plaza in New Yorkers' minds," said Kevin Morrow, president of Live Nation's New York division. "That's where the mistake was made: taking a name and putting it on a building that already had a history and emotional ties with the local music scene."
The change is a rare admission of misjudgment by Live Nation, a giant worldwide promoter. But since the company merged with Ticketmaster this year, its every move has been scrutinized, and Mr. Morrow -- who began running Live Nation's operations in New York a few months after the name change -- said the restoration of the old name was part of a companywide effort to improve its image..." [NY Times]
"It's disgraceful that this situation went on for as long as it did, depriving fans of seeing performers whom they support," said Camille DeSantis, a New Yorker still steaming she was shut out of an online sale of Ringo Starr tickets at Radio City Music Hall.
"Four Nevada men who called themselves the Wiseguys were busted Monday for hacking into online ticket sellers like Ticketmaster and illegally grabbing up prime seats for concerts, ball games and Broadway shows.
The massive conspiracy - which allegedly netted the men $25 million between 2002 and 2009 - blocked ordinary fans from buying tickets, forcing them to turn to scalpers and price-gouging ticket brokers, officials said.
"The public thought it had a fair shot at getting tickets to these events, but what the public didn't know was that the defendants had cheated them out of that opportunity," said U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman, unsealing a 43-count indictment in New Jersey.
Wiseguys Tickets was charged with using a computer program to virtually muscle to the head of the line when an online sale began." [Daily News]
The Boss @ Izod Center in May (more by Tim Griffin)
The Federal Trade Commission has settled with Ticketmaster over complaints that Ticketmaster used deceptive tactics to steer Bruce Springsteen fans to expensive scalped tickets last year. As part of the settlement, the company will pay refunds and, in a move that could have a wide impact on the multibillion-dollar resale business, make disclosures about the availability of the tickets it resells.In other news, Maryland's approximately-20K-capacity Merriweather Post Pavilion (a venue now known for other reasons than just being a venue) has dropped its deal with Ticketmaster/Live Nation for Ticketfly...
The settlement, announced Tuesday by the F.T.C.'s chairman, Jon Leibowitz, concerns 14 Springsteen concerts last May and June. Fans trying to buy tickets through Ticketmaster's Web site were pointed to a subsidiary site, TicketsNow. In what Mr. Leibowitz described as thousands of instances, brokers on TicketsNow -- an eBay-like resale marketplace with no price caps -- advertised tickets they did not have, and fans never got the tickets they paid for.
"TicketsNow.com sold phantom tickets without letting consumers know that the tickets did not exist," Mr. Leibowitz said in a statement. "Then the company held on to consumers' money, sometimes for months, when it knew those fans weren't going to see Springsteen. Clearly consumers deserve better. They deserve to know what they're buying, including the risk that their tickets won't materialize." According to the settlement, Ticketmaster must refund to fans who used TicketsNow the difference in price between the tickets' face value and the final amount. Mr. Lebowitz said those payments could amount to more than $1 million. In addition, brokers on TicketsNow must disclose when they are listing tickets they do not have in hand, and the F.T.C. is sending letters to about 10 large ticket resellers warning them to comply with the law.
Scalped Springsteen tickets have been a focus of news-media and political pressure on the concert industry since early last year, when fans for two Springsteen shows in New Jersey were directed from Ticketmaster to TicketsNow while tickets at face value were still available. Ticketmaster settled with the state of New Jersey over those concerts.
"Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md., has inked an online ticketing and marketing deal with Ticketfly. The deal marks the largest venue contract to date for the upstart ticketing company, which also handles ticketing for 9:30 Club in Washington D.C., among other venues. The 9:30 is owned and operated by independent promoter I.M.P., which also books and operates Merriweather." [Billboard]I.M.P. also co-founded the Virgin Vestival in the USA along with one Andrew Dreskin...
Andrew Dreskin is the co-founder of Ticketfly, Inc., a next-generation ticketing and marketing company. He is the co-founder of the Virgin Mobile Festival, a multi-day music and arts festival. Mr. Dreskin was the co-founder, and president and C.E.O., of TicketWeb, the first company to sell event tickets over the Internet. TicketWeb was acquired by Ticketmaster in 2000. Prior to founding TicketWeb, Mr. Dreskin was the co-founder of Energy Media, an early web design firm. Prior to that, Mr. Dreskin was the executive vice president of Beserkley Records, an influential independent record label. Until its recent acquisition by Knitting Factory Entertainment, Mr. Dreskin was the largest outside shareholder in the Big Easy Concert House, a chain of concert venues in the Pacific Northwest. He holds a B.A. from Tulane University, where he is a member of the Dean's Advisory Council. He is also a member of the board of directors of Headcount, a non-profit voter registration organization.Seth Hurwitz is I.M.P.'s chairman and co-owner...
Independent concert promoter Seth Hurwitz and the Maryland-based companies he co-owns, It's My Party (I.M.P.) and It's My Amphitheatre (IMA), have taken legal action against Live Nation.All connections considered, it's not that surprising how this is all playing out, especially now that Ticketmaster and Live Nation actually decided to merge which forces promoters who compete with Live Nation to decide if they want their competitor to sell their tickets for them.
In an 11-count lawsuit filed shortly after Live Nation and Ticketmaster announced their intentions to merge in February, plaintiffs I.M.P. and IMA allege that Los Angeles-based Live Nation "deliberately" and "unlawfully" acquired monopolistic power over promotion for the national concert market, and has used its influence to "coerce" artists from only appearing at amphitheaters and other venues the company owns, operates or books.
[Billboard - June 12, 2009]
What does it mean for NYC? How long until Bowery Presents (who probably sells more NYC tickets total through Ticketmaster than anyone else in NYC at the moment) moves to Ticketfly too? Ticketfly is already selling tickets for a few NYC venues: Brooklyn Bowl, Littlefield and Knitting Factory / Warsaw. Nothing on that list is as big as Merriweather, but Brooklyn Bowl is a Bowery Presents-booked venue (though important to note: Brooklyn Bowl were using Ticketfly before Bowery was in the picture there). And even before the TM/LN merge we learned that Bowery wasn't 100% committed to Ticketmaster when they started selling tickets to their NJ venue Wellmont Theatre through Tickets.com (though it is of course possible that they use tickets.com there due to some strange contract that came with the venue when they opened it.... regardless, anyone who has tried tickets.com knows that it won't ever be where Bowery moves permanently).
Meanwhile, Live Nation, who used to use Ticketmaster exclusively but then switched to their own LiveNation.com ticketing system, have started using Ticketmaster again. For instance, Crystal Castles' Irving Plaza show went on sale on Ticketmaster today. Shows that have been on sale for a while, like Ted Leo (and Obits and Screaming Females), are listed on Ticketmaster (its a redirect), but actually only on sale on LiveNation.com.
More details of the Baltimore story are below...
Julian Casablancas @ T5 on January 15th (more by Natasha Ryan)
This has already come up in the comments, and has been posted on a few other sites. Just to be clear, Pollstar's venue ranking is measured in ticket sales. Terminal 5 sold the third most concert tickets of any "club venue" in the world in 2009. They were beat only by the 9:30 Club in DC and House of Blues in Boston (clubs who have more shows coming up in February than Terminal 5 has total on its schedule total right now). Pollstar writes...
When a New York City club that didn't exist three years ago showed up as No. 3 on the latest Top 100 Worldwide Club Venues, we had to take notice.Nokia Theatre in Times Square is #16 on the list. Starland Ballroom is 18, Irving Plaza 23, Hammerstein Ballroom 28, Webster Hall 30, Music Hall of Williamsburg 35, and Roseland Ballroom 55. Bowery Ballroom is noticeably absent from the list which is reportedly because they don't report to Pollstar.
That's above names like The Fillmore, The Wiltern and every House of Blues in the country other than the one in Boston. It became a running joke in this office to ask, "What's Terminal 5?"
Of course, plenty of agents, artists and production crews are familiar with the venue by now. The 3,000-capacity facility opened in the New York island of Manhattan in the fall of 2007 and has become the new room for up-and-coming acts.
It is also the "next step" for Bowery Presents, which manages a series of well-known venues in the NYC area - the 250-capacity Mercury Lounge, the 500-capacity Bowery Ballroom, the 600-capacity Music Hall of Williamsburg and the 1,400-capacity Webster Hall.
Speaking of Terminal 5, tickets went on presale today for Sia and The Specials. The full list of 18 upcoming shows is at Ticketmaster (which recently confirmed they'd be merging with Bowery Presents' biggest competitor Live Nation).
The full list of 100 venues (that report to Pollstar), along with some videos, below...
The U.S. Justice Department approved Ticketmaster Entertainment Inc.'s merger with Live Nation Inc., while imposing conditions on their plan to create a new music- industry power.Crazy.
Under terms accepted by both companies, Ticketmaster must license its software to AEG Live, its largest customer. Ticketmaster also must sell its Paciolan unit to a Comcast Corp. joint venture or another suitable buyer. The new company also will be banned for 10 years from retaliating against any concert site that signs a ticket-sales contract with a competitor.
The $889 million merger "will change the landscape of the live entertainment business," said Allen Grubman, a New York- based music industry attorney whose clients include Madonna, Elton John and U2. "Artists are focusing tremendously on live performance because that's an area where there is still a lot of money to be made." [Business Week]