Monday, Aug. 27, 2012
Ticket Masters: The Rise of the Concert Industry and How the Public Got Scalped (Plume), by Dean Budnick and Josh Baron
Rock concert promoters were a colorful cast of swashbucklers up until the '90s, when the business fell into corporate clutches. Before long, Live Nation became the dominant force in the industry—and a night at the arena was no longer a cheap date. As a whole, the concert business slumped even as promoters resorted to fire-sale gimmicks to fill the halls. In the revised edition of Ticket Masters, Relix editors Dean Budnick and Josh Baron sketch out a history of concert promotion. It was always a business, but the men who once ran it actually loved show business. Some even respected the artists. Now, in our publicly traded era, shareholders love the bottom line, scalping is encouraged and extra fees are routine. Bummer.