The Pioneer

The Pioneer

Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

Back to Article
Back to Article

Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

PHOTOS BY JXFFSMXTH/CREATIVE COMMONS

PHOTOS BY JXFFSMXTH/CREATIVE COMMONS

PHOTOS BY JXFFSMXTH/CREATIVE COMMONS

By Eric Parker, CONTRIBUTOR

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story







Many alternative musical artists that set out on tour in the past several years have had a tendency to avoid the San Francisco Bay Area due to the high risk of lowering their tour “grade” or quality assessment, making it harder for them to be booked for future tours.
The San Francisco Bay Area is one of the most popular and highly populated areas in the country, making it a long sought after touring location for musical acts. However, due to a poor local alternative music economy, that is greatly decreasing in grade year by year, the location has become less sought after.
“So cities (markets) are broken down by letter scale- Los Angeles and New York City are A list markets, whereas somewhere like Winnemucca, Nevada, is a D List market,” says Jake Shaw, a former booking agent and talent scout for an alternative record label. “The Bay Area used to be A list, but over the last 15 years our local music economy has gotten pretty bad.”
In essence, there is a smaller market for alternative music. With the rise of new genres popular among younger audiences, there is a high risk-low reward gamble for alternative artists that are heading out on tours to come to the Bay Area.
“The higher your ticket sale percentage is for your tour, the better it looks, so if you play a lower tier market that doesn’t sell many tickets, your percentage goes down. Better idea to just skip a potentially bad turnout,” Shaw said.
Without the assurance of getting a decent turnout and good ticket sales, alternative artists would prefer more profitable regions and stronger markets, such as Los Angeles, Sacramento, Portland, or Seattle.
The Bay Area was once the location of the rise of multiple alternative genres, such as the thrash metal movement of the early 1980s, or the punk movement of the mid-1990s. With the rise of other genres as well as other cultural shifts, the concert-going audience of the Bay Area is not as interested in many alternative acts.
“I would say the Bay is a B or C list market now,” Shaw says.

Navigate Left
  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Art, Representation, and Skateboarding

  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Playboi Carti SOMO Village performance

  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Queen memorialized in “Bohemian Rhapsody”

  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Oakland decides to cancel November’s First Friday event

  • Arts & Life

    PHOTO GALLERY – Dragon School 99 Mural Tour in Chinatown, Oakland, California

  • Arts & Life

    PHOTO GALLERY – Oakland Art Murmur unites the Bay Area community

  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Treasure Island Music Festival returns after one year hiatus

  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Marvel movie review: Venom symbiote in the Bay Area

  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Hip-Hop festival set to take over Oakland

  • Low ticket sales stunt local music scene

    Arts & Life

    Photographer helps bridge gap between sneaker culture

Navigate Right
California State University East Bay
Low ticket sales stunt local music scene