That’s what some fans who bought or tried to buy tickets for Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s 2023 US arena tour concerts that went on sale on the morning of July 20 are experiencing.
The price of some ground floor seats rose to over $4,000 due to Ticketmaster’s dynamic pricing system, which adjusts the price in real-time based on demand.
“I suppose when Bruce yells, ‘Is anyone alive out there?’ Next tour will be more of a medical check-in for those who have had to sell a kidney to afford tickets,” one fan tweeted.
The base price for the shows on Wednesday was $60 to $399.
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“A lot of rock bands charge prices like that and are able to do dynamic pricing, but I wish he’d put a cap or say I disagree with that,” said Brandon Thompson of Moorestown. Editor of the Blog It All Night Springsteen news site. “Dynamic pricing has gotten a little out of control as demand has evolved.”
Dynamic pricing, also known as “Platinum Seats,” “enables market-based pricing (adjusting prices based on supply and demand) for live event tickets, much like how airline tickets and hotel rooms are sold,” according to Ticketmaster on its website.
Springsteen ticket prices are in line with industry norms for similar events. Paul McCartney’s recent Got Back and Harry Styles tours used dynamic pricing, and tickets cost in the thousands.
Springsteen had held the line of ticket prices up to this point. The 2016 and 2017 River Tour, the E Street Band’s final tour, was priced below the industry average at $68 to $150 for a typical arena show.
“I miss camping at Jack’s Music Store in Red Bank or calling WPLJ to win tickets!” tweeted one fan. “(Springsteen) we love you but Ticketmaster only scalps true fans!”
Some took offense at the fact that Springsteen fans who registered as “verified fans” with Ticketmaster were subject to dynamic pricing.
“The Verified Fan process is a rigged game,” said Sea Girt’s Kevin Farrell. “(Ticketmaster) knows exactly the supply of seats and the demand for those seats, so they can control and increase prices at will due to dynamic pricing. The process has evolved into an auction, not a ticket-buying process, where the auctioneer makes sure they get the most money possible.”
A fan asked E Street Band member Little Steven Van Zandt what the deal was on Twitter.
“I have absolutely nothing to do with the price of the tickets. Nothing. Nada. never. Bubkis…” said Van Zandt.
Tickets for Tampa, Florida, Orlando, Florida, Hard Rock Live in Hollywood, Florida, Tulsa, Oklahoma; The Denver and Boston shows went on sale Wednesday. Verified resale tickets are currently available for the shows.
Shows at the Toyota Center in Houston, Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Barclays Center in Brooklyn and Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland are not sold through Ticketmaster and no verified fan code is required.
Area shows also include Madison Square Garden in New York City on April 1; two at the new USB Arena in Belmont Park, New York on April 9 and 11; and the Prudential Center in Newark on April 14 to finish the run.
A second North American tour begins in August 2023 after stadium shows in Europe. To date, more than 1.2 million tickets have been sold for the European shows.
2023 US arena tour
February 1, Tampa, Florida, Amalie Arena (ticket sales July 20)
February 3, Atlanta, State Farm Arena (Tickets on July 27 at 10am)
February 5, Orlando, Fla., Amway Center (July 20)
February 7, Hollywood, Florida, Hard Rock Live (July 20)
February 10, Dallas, American Airlines Center (July 22, 10 a.m.)
February 14, Houston, Toyota Center* (10 a.m., July 22)
February 16, Austin, Texas, Moody Center (July 22, 10 a.m.)
Feb. 18, Kansas City, Mo., T-Mobile Center (10 p.m., July 27)
February 21, Tulsa, Oklahoma, BOK Center (July 20)
February 25, Portland, Oregon, Moda Center (10 p.m., July 22)
February 27, Seattle, Climate Pledge Arena (July 27, 10 a.m.)
March 2, Denver, Xcel Energy Center (10 a.m., July 21)
March 7, Milwaukee, Fiserv Forum (10 a.m., July 27)
March 9, Columbus, Ohio, Nationwide Arena (July 27, 10 a.m.)
March 12, Uncasville, Connecticut, Mohegan Sun (10 p.m., July 22)
March 14, Albany, NY, MVP Arena (July 22, 10 a.m.)
March 16, Philadelphia, Wells Fargo Center* (10 a.m., July 26)
March 18, State College, Pa., Bryce Jordan Center (10 p.m., July 26)
March 20, Boston, TD Garden (July 20)
March 23, Buffalo, NY, KeyBank Center (10 am, July 27)
March 25, Greensboro, NC, Greensboro Coliseum (10 p.m., July 22)
March 27, Washington, DC, Capital One Arena (July 26, 10 a.m.)
March 29, Detroit, Little Caesars Arena (July 27, 10 a.m.)
April 1, New York, Madison Square Garden (July 29, 10 a.m.)
April 3, Brooklyn, Barclays Center* (10 a.m., July 29)
April 5, Cleveland, Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse* (10 am, July 27)
April 7, Baltimore, Baltimore Arena (July 26, 10 a.m.)
April 9 & 11, Belmont Park, NY, USB Arena (July 29, 10am)
April 14, Newark, Prudential Center (July 29, 10 a.m.)
*General Presale: No Ticketmaster Verified Fan Access Code required
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Jersey Shore native Chris Jordan covers entertainment and features for the USA Today Network New Jersey. Contact him at @chrisfhjordan; [email protected]