Sunday, August 16, 2009

NOW the concert business is imploding.

Now the concert business is imploding.
It’s not like promoters, managers, agents and acts couldn’t see this coming. They just didn’t want to believe it. They’re just as ignorant as their major label brethren.
It’s just that their comeuppance is occurring a decade later.
How long did you think it was going to last? Did you really think people were going to want to overpay to see the Stones, believing this was the last tour, when that whisper campaign began TWO DECADES AGO?

Do you really have to go see Aerosmith? Sure, they outlasted their seventies contemporaries, had hits in the MTV era, even played the VMAs year after year, but you don’t even want to hear those lame Geffen hits, you want the Columbia classics, and you’ve been able to hear them year after year.

It’s not only Aerosmith that’s having problems selling tickets. AC/DC is papering stadiums.
Paul McCartney is essentially giving tickets away. Springsteen’s tour is a joke. Come on Bruce.
You’re on a closing buildings tour? Just call it what it is, a going out of business tour!
You’re just so greedy, you want to get the money before it evaporates.

Ticket sales are not in the dumper because of the economy. That’s like saying major labels are in trouble because of piracy. Sure, piracy put a dent in the Big Four’s bottom line.
But what about the fact that people hate the crap they’re purveying, and where they’re purveying it most people aren’t paying attention anymore?
Sure, the economy is hurting ticket sales. But that’s just the cover-up. The true story is the business has broken very few superstars, and the old ones are on overpriced tours, blaming Ticketmaster while they scalp their own tickets.

You say the labels should have seen Napster coming. That they should have authorized P2P.

When is the concert business going to have an all-in ticket price?
When is greed going to be put aside for the long term health of not only the promoters, but the acts themselves? Do you really think Live Nation can overpay forever? Look at the company’s financials. And no new entity is going to line up to overpay guarantees.

But the live business, like the recorded music business, doesn’t want to start over.
It just wants to raise prices in order to assure growth.

Hate to tell you, but music doesn’t drive the culture. Because all the big acts are tied in with corporations, and are fearful of speaking the truth for fear of being Dixie Chicked.
Used to be the artists were beholden to no one, which is why the business blew up. Artists lit the way. Now techies lead.
I think of someone like Frank Sinatra. Frank Sinatra would still be a big star if he were starting out today. But he'd be a different kind of star. The day of worldwide icons who would maintain stardom for fifty years are, sadly, gone forever.
You’ve got to start small, charge little and build an audience. Which you nurture over time.
Trying to break a new superstar overnight is like GM believing it can save itself with a new Malibu (it didn’t, in case you weren’t paying attention). GM drove itself towards a cliff with no consciousness of the future.
People want mileage and longevity. GM provided neither.

Concert attendees want music. Sure, Madonna might be able to survive selling spectacle, but how many successful circuses exist? There’s Ringling Brothers and…

And a night at the show must not break the bank. Broadway overcharges because it’s seen as a once in a blue moon event. You’ve got to go to New York City… It’s like selling tickets for a U2 show on the moon.
You can charge up the yin-yang for that!

The Kinsey Sicks have announced a campaign to derail the President's proposed health reforms by distracting huge crowds of progressives with performances in key northeastern states. "We are against health. Health is bad and UnAmerican and we oppose anything that makes people feel better," stated Kinsey Spokesperson Trampolina, adding: "That's why our shows are so depressing."

Winnie of the Sicks noted the dragapella quartet's personal stake in the issue: "If people are healthy, won't death panels kill the Sicks?"
For this reason, she indicated, The Kinsey Sicks will be interrupting Congressional Town Hall meetings in addition to performing their shows.
Fellow Kinsey Rachel chimed in: "I personally plan to shove my naked buttocks in the face of as many Congresspeople, poll workers, and voters as possible.
Such is my dedication to the cause!"
She also noted that she remains opposed to a pubic option.
Do YOUR part to help make America Sicker by buying tickets for the following shows:

August 19: Rehoboth Beach, DE
Showtimes are 8:30 and 10:30 at the Blue Moon, 35 Baltimore Ave.

August 20-21: Ogunquit, ME
Showtime is 7 pm at MaineStreet, 195 Main Street, Ogunquit.

August 22-September 4: Provincetown.

Wake the F#@k Up America!: Saturday 8/22 & 8/29, Sunday 8/23 & 8/30, Thursday 8/27 & 9/3
GreatesTits and Other Bawdy Parts: Wednesday 8/26 & 9/2 and Friday 8/28 & 9/4.
Both shows at The Crown & Anchor, 247 Commercial Street. All shows 8:30pm.
September 5: Bronxville, NY
The Kinseys return to Sarah Lawrence University. And sorry to be a tease, but this one is for students and faculty only.

As for U2… They don’t sell out either anymore. Maybe because they’re no longer seen as vital, they’re the new Stones. U2 could possibly rehabilitate itself, by releasing a string of singles, one every month. By releasing a live album from the tour in progress. Instead, playing by the old rules they topped every mass media event with their lame "Get On Your Boots" and no one cared.

Just like no one cared about Springsteen’s album after the Super Bowl.

Maybe no one cares to the equivalent of a multiplatinum level anymore. Maybe the live business has to give that paradigm up.
At least for a decade, until new acts are grown.

We want music that resonates. And we want music. Lady GaGa is outfits. Katy Perry is so second rate she’s third rate. The future looks more like the Kings Of Leon. A band that’s been around for years that finally breaks through. And doesn’t break the bank when it sets ticket prices.

Screw lawn tickets at a discount. That’s like listening to music on your neighbor’s stereo. How about getting a ticket for a developing artists show when you buy the ticket for a star. We’ve got to get people sampling, we’ve got to get people coming to the show on a regular basis. Now we’ve got a business of extravaganzas. We’re like North Korea, trying to blast rockets into the stratosphere, but usually failing. To the point we’re a joke.

Check out one my pals friends showbiz savvy blog
Kristopher McDowell has a pretty great blog, click here to check it out:

Eleven members of the New York City Ballet have lost their jobs, cut from the corps de ballet. (Read the full article, to be published in Arts & Leisure on Sunday, here.)
Most are in their 20s and for some, it means the end of careers that took root in childhood, when they started on a long, intense, arduous road that left little room for normal high school lives or college. Their identities, the very essence of who they are, are defined by their jobs.

These jobs involve the very highest level of artistic expression in a performing art of immense grace and beauty. Some of the laid-off dancers are going back to school, some are searching for new careers and some are forging on with auditions.

There are, of course, many veterans in the performing arts who have faced and struggled with unemployment.

If you are among them — or are among those who may be hiring them — what advice would you offer these young dancers?

The date for Bea Arthur’s memorial has finally been set. The show will take place at the Majestic Theater in New York on Monday, September 14, 2009 at 1pm. The afternoon will be hosted by Bea’s Bosom Buddy, Angela Lansbury who will be joined by Bea’s close friends, both professional and personal, as well as family.

The program will be a celebration of Bea’s life and career. All are invited and admission is free. Further information on the event is expected to follow shortly.

Before she became an iconic Emmy®-Award winning television star, Bea Arthur received a Tony Award® for Best Featured Actress in a Musical in 1966 for her performance as Angela Lansbury's best friend Vera Charles in the original Broadway production of Jerry Herman's musical Mame, directed by Gene Saks, her husband at that time.
Ms. Arthur's Broadway career began in 1955 with the original musical Plain and Fancy and continued with roles in Seventh Heaven and Nature's Way. Among her Broadway credits, she played Yente the Matchmaker in the 1964 premiere of Fiddler on the Roof and appeared in Woody Allen's The Floating Lightbulb in 1981.

In 2002, she returned to Broadway starring in Bea Arthur on Broadway: Just Between Friends, a collection of stories and songs based on her life and career. The show was nominated for a Tony Award® for Best Special Theatrical Event.

In a career spanning seven decades, the celebrated actress, comedienne, singer and writer became a television star as the title character, Maude Findlay, on the 1970's sitcom Maude, and as Dorothy Zbornak on the 1980's sitcom The Golden Girls. She won Emmy® Awards for both roles.

She is survived by two sons and two granddaughters.GO SEE A LIVE SHOW THIS WEEK! Don't forget to contribute to the DR. CAROL CHANNING & HARRY KULLIJIAN FOUNDATION FOR THE ARTS:

With grateful XOXOXs for your support!

Richard Skipper

Follow me on Twitter @RichardSkipper


What a ball it was to be among the wonderful entertainers last night (8/12/09).I had a ball singing with Barry Levitt on piano. Richard, I think you and Dana are doing a grrreat job at the Iguana. Keep up the loving atmosphere of supporting the artists and providing entertainment to the consistent audiences. Congratulations dear friend. Love, Leslie Orofino

Richard, You are the best!! Passionate about everything that you do & always thinking of others. You are an amazing entertainer - but, more importantly a sincerely generous person.
Big hugs, Debbie Rehr

Had a great time last nite at the Iguana. That was a wonderful show with marvelous talent.
The most fun I have had in a long time. Thanks for your generosity and your great spirit. I will come again soon! It was a great crowd.

August 19th: Helene Feldman, Barbara Gurskey, Travis Moser,
Alan Palmer, Gretchen Reinhagen w/Christine Talbot-Sutin on keyboard


Now a night out in NY to see a show at a VERY AFFORDABLE price! Joan Crowe
started this Wednesday night series.
Dana Lorge and Richard Skipper have
now put their OWN spin on it and are now hosting this weekly variety show in
NYC at The Iguana VIP Lounge ( in the heart of
NYC (240 West 54th Street 8-11PM/with an intermission). WEDNESDAY NIGHT OF
What they are doing is NOT being done anywhere else! Each week
will showcase 5 entertainers. NEXT WEEK
Christine Talbott-Sutin on keyboard and Saadi Zain returns!
bass. Each week will be different. Time: 8 - 11:00 p.m.
Cover: $10 - no food or drink minimums – but remember – the food is great!
CASH ONLY PAID AT THE DOOR! This is a nice night
out with the family! The show will also be done with class and elegance. A
"throw back" to the variety shows we grew up with.
For more info, please call 845-365-0720 or visit _www.RichardSkipper.com_

RESERVATIONS A MUST!!!!!!!!! 212-765-5454. No one admitted before

August 26th Dana Lorge hosts! (Richard Skipper is out of town). Special Guest stars Helena Grenot, Jana Robbins, Adam Shapiro, Tanya Mobley, Bryn Holdsworh!

September 2nd: Dana Lorge hosts. Guests Scott Albertson (with Daryl Kojak on keyboard), Steve DePasse, Laura Hull, Anthony Santelmo, Jr.

SEPTEMBER 9th: Richard returns from Malibu! Special guest stars: John Demarco, Jackie Draper, Robin James, Sue Matsuki!

September 16th: Ann Dawson, Lou Iacovino, Sara Rice, Val Ryder, & Bill Zeffero

September 23rd: Risa Benson, Stewart Brodian, Jenna Esposito, Frank Torren, Susan Winter

September 30th: Wendy Lane Bailey, Bobby Belfry, Josh Zuckerman

October 7th: Edd Clark, Marianne Meringolo, Wendy Russell, Marcus Simeone, Maureen Taylor

October 14th: Kelly Esposito- Broelmann, Barbara Gurskey, Jonathan Long, Andrea Mezvinsky-Kolb , Martin Vidnovic

October 28th: Hector Coris returns!, Laurie Krauz & Wicked’s very own Walter ONeil!

December 30th: Ritt Henn, Annie Hughes

Keep checking for updates

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