There are some artists who have no qualms selling tickets to their shows for whatever the market will bear. Yet, there are a select few who do their best to keep prices under control, regardless of whether they could make an extra few million dollars by charging an extra $10 or $20. This week’s B List looks at eight major bands that could charge more for ducats but don’t.
While none of these bands are “pulling a Fugazi” – a group who famously did their best to keep prices to $5 per show – these acts are clearly leaving money on the table and should be applauded for doing so.
8. Ben Harper – Average Ticket Price = $33.82
When Ben Harper put together his latest band – Relentless7 – he played a number of shows at intimate venues as a warm up before the group tackled more high-profile gigs. Ben’s fanbase is extremely loyal and passionate. If he wanted to charge $50 a ticket for these smaller shows, no one would’ve batted an eye. Yet most ticket prices for these shows were under $20. A classy move by a classy artist.
7. Vampire Weekend – Average Ticket Price = $26.97
Over the past two years Vampire Weekend has blown up beyond anybody’s expectations. Despite ridiculous demand for tickets to their shows, VW has kept average ticket prices under $30 leading to sell outs across the country.
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6. Them Crooked Vultures – Average Ticket Price = $45.16
Even though Them Crooked Vultures have been selling out shows coast to coast, this supergroup has kept prices under $50.
5. Radiohead – Average Ticket Price = $48.08 (From 2008)
Back in January, Radiohead played a show to benefit the relief efforts in Haiti for which the group sold tickets by auction. In the end, the minimum price you could pay for one ticket was $475. Now, we know this show was a benefit and at a smaller venue than the group usually performs at, but it does show what a major discount the band is giving on fair market value by selling tickets at an average of under $50 per.
4. Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band – Average Ticket Price = $87.86
Okay, Bruce Springsteen’s average ticket price of $87.86 is nearly $20 more than any of the other artists on this list, but The Boss has also accomplished way more than any of the other artists. Despite the fact that he could easily charge over $100 a ticket for the worst seats in the house at each of his shows and still them out, Springsteen doesn’t gouge his fans.
3. Pearl Jam – Average Ticket Price = $59.34
Pearl Jam has been all about their fans since forming and even fought a losing battle against the extremely powerful Ticketmaster in the mid ’90s. While tickets to Pearl Jam shows aren’t exactly cheap, they still sell out nearly every show and generally keep prices the same for the best seats in the house and the worst.
2. Phish – Average Ticket Price = $48.23
When Phish reunited last year demand for tickets to their shows was at an all-time high. If the group wanted to charge $75 for tickets to Hampton, they certainly could have and gotten away with it. But Phish continues to keep ticket prices under $50, a rarity for shows in arenas and amphitheaters. Take a look at DaveO’s editorial from last year to see just how much money the group could have made if they set the price to equal the demand.
1. Wilco = Average Ticket Price = $34.81
If you look at the list of US tour dates on Wilco’s website, you’ll see that every show has sold out. Despite the band’s ever-increasing popularity, they have still kept average ticket prices below $35, a miraculous feat. No one leaves more money on the table than Wilco and their fans appreciate it.
All average ticket prices were compiled by Pollstar.com.