Let’s Take 20% from Ticketmaster, Not the Artists

Live Nation strikes again.

Per a Live Nation memo, obtained by Rolling Stone (and provided at the bottom of this piece): “Artist guarantees will be adjusted downward 20% from 2020 levels.”

They want artists to take a pay cut. 

In a perfect world where the artists and fans are the priority of this business..

Ticketmaster takes the pay cut. 

For a $134.50 ticket to a Harry Styles show, Ticketmaster is going to charge $37.70 in fees.

That is a whopping 28% fee.

Technically….$5.00 per ticket for a “facility fee” – but Live Nation owns most of these facilities and is already expensing a rental fee on the promoter end.  ($5 * 15,000 capacity = $75,000 per show)

Let’s take 20% from Ticketmaster instead of the hardworking artists.

If they can’t survive on 8-10% of every concert ticket, they should get a new CEO and a new business model.

Ticketmaster is owned by Live Nation and used as their tool for taking money from the fans and artists. Ticketmaster has often taken the heat, while Live Nation could be a part of solving the problem. When they charge more in fees, the artist gets less of the cash you are spending.

In a perfect world, if we freed up 20% of this expense for the consumer, the artist would be able to charge more for the actual ticket. If you’re actually willing to spend $172 to see Harry Styles, would you rather give that money to Live Nation or Harry Styles?

The other option would be for artists not to increase the price. Their fans would likely spend more on merchandise. Or they’d spend this money on supporting independent artists at smaller venues. The best thing for this industry right now would be to facilitate spending, not reduce the incentive for the artist.

The fact stands: Ticketmaster does not need $37.70 to process that ticket order.

Billboard reported that in 2019, “Live Nation’s revenue grew 7% to $11.5 billion”

Who do you think needs to take the pay cut?

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Live Nation Memo to Talent Agencies

The global pandemic has changed the world in recent months and with it the dynamics of the music industry. We are in unprecedented times and must adequately account for the shift in market demand, the exponential rise of certain costs and the overall increase of uncertainty that materially affects our mission. In order for us to move forward, we must make certain changes to our agreements with the artists. The principle changes for 2021 are outlined below.

Artist Guarantees: Artist guarantees will be adjusted downward 20% from 2020 levels.

Ticket Prices: Ticket prices are set by the promoter, at the promoter’s sole discretion, and are subject to change.

Payment Terms: Artists will receive a deposit of 10% one month before the festival, contingent on an executed agreement and fulfillment of marketing responsibilities. The balance, minus standard deductions for taxes and production costs, will be paid after the performance.

Minimum Marketing Requirements: All artists will be required to assist in marketing of the festival through minimum social media posting requirements outlined in artist offer.

Streaming requirements: All artists will be required to allow their performance to be filmed by the festival for use in a live television broadcast, a live webcast, on-demand streaming, and/or live satellite radio broadcast.

Billing: All decisions regarding “festival billing” are at the sole discretion of the promoter.

Merchandise: Purchaser will retain 30 % of Artist merchandise sales and send 70% to the artist within two weeks following the Festival.

Airfare and Accommodations: These expenses will be the responsibility of the artist.

Sponsorship: The promoter controls all sponsorship at the festival without any restrictions, and artists may not promote brands onstage or in its productions.

Radius Clause. Violation of a radius clause without the festival’s prior authorization in writing will, at the festival’s sole discretion, result in either a reduction of the artist fee or the removal of the artist from the event, with any pre-event deposits returned to the festival immediately.

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