Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

It’s hard to take promoters’ moaning seriously

It’s the time of year when thoughts turn to those who are less fortunate than ourselves. And, believe it or not, there are live music promoters who see themselves in this light. Last week, the chief operating officer of Live …

Fri, Dec 7, 2012, 10:00

   

It’s the time of year when thoughts turn to those who are less fortunate than ourselves. And, believe it or not, there are live music promoters who see themselves in this light.

Last week, the chief operating officer of Live Nation UK gave us his sob story and violins swelled dramatically in the background.


It’s the way they tell ‘em

According to John Probyn, it was another tough year and the business is getting tougher. The reason for all of this? Pesky live music fans with a sense of entitlement.

“The public are much pickier than they used to be”, said Probyn. “Fans now expect spectacular shows, with good quality sound and great entertainment – they are looking for that wow factor. But, you know, this is a customer-driven industry and the customer is always right.”

Given the money that Probyn and his peers are demanding for tickets, you should hope so. While we know that the promoters are not the ones solely responsible for the high ticket prices, they are the ones who have contributed hugely to the inflation in artist fees and the knock-on effect on ticket prices over the last decade.

It’s hard to take this bout of the beal bocht seriously given Live Nation’s dominant position in the industry. The firm have their fingers in every pie going, from festivals to venues to Ticketmaster. If the company who became the biggest name in the game by buying up everyone else is giving out, maybe they should rethink their strangehold on live music?

It’s again worth noting that the live music business remains so resistant to disruption and change. As we noted recently on the blog, when discussing terrible venues like Dublin’s Academy 2, can the industry really continue to do things like they’ve always been done without some outsiders sticking their oar in?

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