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The Rolling Stones on the road update...

by Otto Man

The Rolling Stones' Keith Richards spoke out about the band's ticket prices in Rolling Stone. When asked about the issue, Richards said: "From my point of view, it's like this: We say we want to put a Stones tour together and people come to us with proposals. And these proposals are all basically the same. We actually did push down the prices a little bit. We took the lower offer, in other words. But, um, it's the price of the market. I don't really know. I don't have much to do with it other than I would like people to get in, to be able to afford to get in, without sort of starving their babies and all. And that's about it." More

Meanwhile, contrary to reports that the Rolling Stones ’50 And Counting’ Tour is struggling to sell tickets, the tour’s promoter says the tour is doing just fine. In a new interview with Billboard dot com, John Meglen, co-president of AEG Live subsidiary Concerts West, disputes those claims saying: “It’s unfortunate in our business that everybody wants to be cynics. The fact is, the tour is doing great and we have no problems whatsoever.”

Meglen also clarified that tickets are not being discounted as has been reported by multiple sources so far. Instead, he says that the ticket price adjustments done to the Stones show in Los Angeles and elsewhere reflect a “flex pricing” strategy aimed at keeping Stones tickets out of the hands of ticket brokers that over the course of the Stones four shows in Los Angeles, more than 20,000 tickets at the $600 price range were sold: "Did we hit a point where we ran out of people that would buy at $600? Yeah. But why can’t we do the ‘market value’ thing? Why do we have to let the market value proposition live with the scalpers? Why should, in my estimation, $3 million go to the brokers, instead of the artists, in every one of these markets?” 

Meglen says another strategic move made by the Stones and AEG was making 1,000 paperless tickets per L.A. show available via the Stones’ website and the group’s social media sites. At $85 per paperless ticket, Meglen sets the record straight that there are no major ticket discounts happening to beef up the bottom line.

“There are no $600 tickets turning into $85 tickets, I can assure you of that,” he says. More