Wednesday, March 25, 2009

U2? 4GET IT ...

I am a member of U2.com.

Not because I am that big of a fan, but because members receive first crack at tickets when the band goes on tour. I joined more than a year ago, thinking the band would tour last year.

They didn't. So I reupped earlier this month to have a crack at early tix for this year's tour.

Membership, as they say, has its privileges: In addition to the presale code, members also receive a members-only CD and a T-shirt, so the $32 I plunked down for the presale code was money well spent, indeed.

Except that yesterday, when the presale started for the September show at Soldier Field, I didn't buy tickets.

I could have. Over and over, I drew some pretty amazing seats. (I didn't even dip for the general-admission pit on the field; GA at the United Center? Fine. On Soldier Field? Nah. Too expansive.)

Problem was, each of those seats was – is – $250.

Not just the 100-level seats, of which there are a zillion, but also the 200-level seats, apparently, as I dipped for a pair of $95 seats right off the bat and was presented with an option way up in the 300-level.

I wavered. I did. The Vertigo tour in 2005 was easily one of the best concert experiences of my life. (In rereading that post, I was reminded that I spent $165 apiece for those tix, but it was a night-before purchase on a whim; and I'd never seen 'em before.)

But I just couldn't pull the trigger on $250 tickets. And there was no point in buying the 300-level seats, I figured, since I'd probably miss most of the show while I kept my head tilted back from the nosebleed I'd likely encounter up there, and if a beer is $10, can you imagine what they charge for a canister of oxygen to help you breathe at that altitude?

With TicketBastard fees, I would have shelled out about $550 for a pair of tickets to a band that I like but I don't love. (I haven't picked up the new CD yet, and I don't like "Boots.")

As my friend Anna asked yesterday, "Has Bono heard about the recession?"

It's not like the guy needs the money. Ditto The Edge, Adam, and Larry.

And I don't buy the "Well, the promoter sets the ticket prices."

Nuh uh. I've been to shows for which every ticket, except for the obstructed-view tix, are one price, as if the bands are saying, "Hey, you wanna see our show? Cool. That'll be $55. Thanks."

I paid $250 to see The Police from the field at Wrigley. Not worth it.

The only artist for whom top tickets were $250 and for whom I would have willingly paid that much is Paul McCartney.

But I drew $125 tickets for that show.

Which I then gave to a friend who was shut out.

But L.A. Dave, bless his heart, bought a single on Craigslist and sent it to me, so I saw the show anyway, and from a seat a couple of rows closer than the seats I gave away.

U2, though? I'll catch the highlights on the news that night once I'm through watching my DVD of Vertigo tour. Let's hear it for surround sound.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Jane Winebox said...

??!

This surprises me. I've heard of that troll Madonna asking folks to shell out hundreds, along with their first born, but U2? This is disappointing. $250 is a LOT of money, especially now.

10:00 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

I know, Jane, I know. It's very disappointing.

Maybe the (RED) initiative has spawned the (TED) initiative as in INFLA(TED) and EXAGGERA(TED).

1:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a fan and I don't like Boots, either, so doubt I'll even bother with the CD unless something significantly better comes along. I worked outside of the horseshoe (stadium at Ohio State) when their tour went through there in the mid-90's with tickets in the $150's. I was truly amazed by the sheer number of ticketholders out milling around during that concert and bugging me where I worked. Had I paid money like that, my butt would have been plastered to the seat, even if it was disappointing. Sad.

8:23 PM  

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