Morgan Wallen may be performing at venues across the United States in 2022, but many of his fans are feeling left behind after encountering sky-high ticket prices as The Dangerous Tour 2022 went on sale this week. The country favorite, who was dropped from his record label and all appearances after controversy involving him being recorded saying a racial slur, announced the tour early this week with presales for many dates beginning Tuesday, but social media is full of complaints about the pricing, which has seen nosebleeds for well over $100 and “platinum” prices soaring as demand has been high.
The culprit is likely the use of “dynamic” pricing, which is a Ticketmaster system that moves prices up at moments of high demand in order to capture maximum revenue. In theory, it chases away people who would purchase tickets with the intent to resell them at a higher price. In practice, it just makes everyone pay substantially more than whatever arbitrary number the promoters pretend to be a “face value.” And in the case of an artist like Morgan Wallen, who has written songs with titles like “Redneck Love Song,” it alienates a portion of his fan base who are drawn to the “blue collar” vibe he deliberately puts out.
When I saw them ticket prices I was like.. pic.twitter.com/MiepECnZnK
— Tyler Patrick (@tyler2patrick) November 17, 2021
morgan wallen you wrong as hell for the prices of these tickets
— tab (@its_tabbb) November 16, 2021
Who sets these ticket prices? $275 + fees for pit tickets? Almost triple the price of Luke Combs at half the lineup talent.
— Wyatt Scepaniak (@WyattScepaniak) November 16, 2021
— TICKETSHELP1 (@momc110) November 16, 2021
Browsing tickets for many dates on the tour as of Thursday morning, where presales are still active before Friday’s sale opens to the general public, the minimum prices on dates where there are still options that aren’t specifically “platinum” markedup tickets, are well over $100 even before fees. For a Wednesday, March 16 performance at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, the get-in price for a ticket in Section 329, Row J is $136.50. Closer rows in the upper tier are $161.50, which jump to over $200 each with fees. Seats on the floor can’t be had for less than $365 after fees – and this is for a Wednesday show, with Thursday and Friday night performances in the same market.
The pricing strategy seems to mimic that of Taylor Swift’s much maligned “Reputation” tour in 2018, which saw sky-high prices for fans who lined up at the start of the sales process – maximizing dollars taken from the artist’s biggest fans. As tour dates approached, many markets saw prices collapse, including some documented instances where thousands of tickets were given away at steep discounts or entirely free to avoid half-empty buildings as the singer took the stage. This technique, generally referred to as “slow ticketing” is designed to chase away speculators, but has nothing to do with making tickets more affordable for the artist’s biggest fans. It is designed only to make everyone pay the maximum price that a secondary market might charge, rather than a small fraction of fans paying a secondary market price after an event sells out and demand remains high.
Despite the controversy, Swift’s team declared the plan a massive success, capturing enormous revenue for the singer. Will Wallen see the same types of numbers after charging maximum prices for a massive tour, particularly on the heels of such controversy? Only time will tell. But for now, at least some of his fans are very upset over the premium they are being hit with for events that haven’t even seen a general sale take place, and where there exists no transparency for how many seats have even been released for sale rather than held back.
One fan wrote a lengthy reply to the tour announcement on Facebook on the topic.
“OK so me and my wife were super excited that we would possibly get to come see you if we could get tickets,” wrote E.j. Fulkerson. “But we looked up your ticket prices and for somebody that sings to and about the blue-collar community you are really screwing us. Now I’m not saying I can’t afford it but to charge up to $1000 a seat is a little ridiculous now unless there’s a reason that I’m not aware of you should be very ashamed of that. Just so you know there’s probably gonna be plenty of people out there in that concert that have taken their hard earned money and even skipped on a house payment or a truck payment or will probably have to really watch what they spend for the next month trying to catch back up because they want to come see your concert so bad. I’m sad to say I’m not gonna be one of them because I will not spend that much for a concert ticket nobody is worth that. Especially when they sing to people that are hard-working and a lot of us most of the time are barely getting by and we just love to see our favorite singer in concert but yet you’re charging a ridiculous amount. Not sure if anybody else feels this way but that’s it for me.”
In the thread below, others chimed in agreeing with Fulkerson, including some who indicated that attempted purchases glitched out due to a Ticketmaster system error, only to have the same tickets available when they went back, only for hundreds of dollars more.
“ugh same happened here! I was trying to get tickets to his OKC show and as soon as I picked the seats it said someone beat me to them,” wrote Brittany Corral. “I refreshed the page and those same seats were still available for 300 more. Nosebleeds were starting at 500 that’s insane!!”
Thus far, it appears that most fans are expressing delight at having a chance to see the artist on tour next year – even if they paid more than they might have hoped. But we’ll see how things go during the general ticket sale that begins on Friday, and whether or not the dynamic pricing continues to be surged to the maximum, and whether or not the blowback continues from a subset of Wallen’s fans regarding the ticket prices he’s asking them to pay.