Dylan’s concert plan

Concert-goers, what would happen if the world adopts the Bob Dylan method of selling concert tickets?

Dylan — and I’m ignoring the Minnesota law that requires me to preface his name with Hibbing native — is appearing Wednesday night at a concert in San Francisco. There are no convenience charges, no handling fees, and no other add-ons to the $60 ticket. There are no tickets. It’s all a cash deal, says Spinner:


The line will officially be allowed to form beginning at noon on the day of the show, with the doors opening at 5:30PM and the show beginning at 8:00PM. It’s going to be a long day for Bay Area Dylan fans but the wait will be worth it for the 2,250 lucky attendees — it’s been 15 years since the iconic folk singer has performed at the legendary theater.

A statement by promoter Goldenvoice’s David Lefkowitz, on the company’s website, reads, “Given the state of touring and how fees have escalated, it was a real breath of fresh air to do something very consumer oriented by eliminating all ticketing charges. It’s almost a throwback to another time.” Almost. The last time Bob Dylan played the Warfield, for a two-night stand in May of 1995, tickets were half that price — including all fees. Guess the times really have been a-changing.

Suffice it to say, the system will be… inconvenient. Who’s got time to wait in a line all day for a concert you may or may not get to see? Oh dear, I’ve just defended Ticketmaster.

  • Tyler

    I can’t wait for the day when someone can refer to music and Minnesota without referencing Prince and/or Dylan.

  • Chuck

    We Minnesotans have a knack for claiming anyone who has ever stepped in the state. We all know Dylan is from Minnesota. He is a legend no matter where he hails from.

  • Steph

    Inconvenient? Maybe. But over the past few months, I’ve found it hard to compete with some of the ticket “re-sellers” and their software.

  • matt

    We have a tendency to get all caught up in the words fee and tax – 10 times more when it comes to concerts. By removing the word fee a $50 can become a $60 ticket and in this case instead of knowing 45 days in advance that you have a seat for a legendary show you have to spend the night in line.

    When you get done checking out at ticketmaster, stubhub or wherever you should be able to look at the price/# of tickets and be happy – if not you were wrong to buy the ticket.

  • http://www.farces.com/ Michael Fraase

    $60 for a Dylan show at the Warfield. That’s an incredible deal.

    With regard to the ticketing fees, Ticketmaster has a monopoly on most venues. It’s going to take the promoters (I’m looking at you, Sue McLean) to stand up to this nonsense.

    Not to pick on McLean, but she promotes just about every really good show in town. Her outfit tries, but it’s got to get better.

    Here’s an example: McLean promotes the Music in the Zoo series. The only outlet without fees was Electric Fetus and the Levon Helm/John Hiatt show was sold out in less than an hour. It’s amazing that Ticketmaster didn’t insist on a complete monopoly for the series.

    I try really hard not to go through Ticketmaster, but when I do I’m appalled. What especially irks me is the fee to print the ticket (when it’s an eticket and I print it myself).

    There are alternatives. Red House recently used Brown Paper Tickets for its Barn Fest. The total fees for two tickets was US$3.98 including first-class postage.

  • http://www.farces.com/ Michael Fraase

    $60 for a Dylan show at the Warfield. That’s an incredible deal.

    With regard to the ticketing fees, Ticketmaster has a monopoly on most venues. It’s going to take the promoters (I’m looking at you, Sue McLean) to stand up to this nonsense.

    Not to pick on McLean, but she promotes just about every really good show in town. Her outfit tries, but it’s got to get better.

    Here’s an example: McLean promotes the Music in the Zoo series. The only outlet without fees was Electric Fetus and the Levon Helm/John Hiatt show was sold out in less than an hour. It’s amazing that Ticketmaster didn’t insist on a complete monopoly for the series.

    I try really hard not to go through Ticketmaster, but when I do I’m appalled. What especially irks me is the fee to print the ticket (when it’s an eticket and I print it myself).

    There are alternatives. Red House recently used Brown Paper Tickets for its Barn Fest. The total fees for two tickets was US$3.98 including first-class postage.

    The best solution, hands down, is the old Grateful Dead model: Mail order. Only fee is postage. Dylan’s organization generally does pre-sales (second-best, but by a mile), except not for the Warfield show. Weird because the Oakland Fox (day before) is about the same capacity and pre-sale tickets were available.