Hearne: Dinosaur Rockers Going Way of the Dinosaurs

130420-bob-dylan-600-1366561064Close but no Blowing in the Wind

About that triple bill of Bob Dylan, Wilco & My Morning Jacket at Sandstone – ain’t gonna happen, sources say.

The so-called Americanarama Festival of Music had been looking for a shed date here but the fest was pricey and there were concerns about the drawing power of 71 year-old Dylan as headliner.

Dylan’s rep as a live act has suffered mightily over the course of the last 20 years. And while geezer bands like Paul McCartney and Tom Petty are still making the rounds as festival headliners, there’s growing evidence that those days are numbered.

rollingStones_2373378bLive music pundit Bob Lefstez, for example, refers to the current Rolling Stones tour as “a disaster.”

“All you’ve got to do is go to their site and see what’s available, your jaw will drop,” Lefsetz says. “Enthralled with the ancient British rockers, the mainstream press has completely dropped the ball on this story…that the bottom just dropped out of the Stones business.”

Lefsetz went online to see what seats were available for the band’s May 3rd gig at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, “home to more poseurs than anywhere but the Cote d’Azur.”

After selecting the best seat at any price option and clicking “find tickets”, Lefstez was stunned to learn that not only could he “sit right down front,” he could “still get 8 seats together in desirable sections!”

Translation: “Sales are horrific,” Lefsetz says.

Lefsetz blames it on “greed,” but I think people are just tapping out on ancient mariner bands that no longer have the chops.

“This time around, prices are so damn high the public is balking, which surprises even me, because this truly looks like the last tour,” Lefsetz says. “But what we’ve learned here is the mania surrounding recent Stones shows has been created by the press, there’s just not that much demand, people cared more about Miley Cyrus and Beanie Babies. Yes, parents care more about their kids than decrepit rockers.

“Then again, the Stones have been doing weak business for eons. You could always get a ticket. So where does this leave us?

kid_rock“In the land of Kid Rock. Where everybody scales back, where we have a reset…The Stones have jumped the shark. And that means most of the other classic rock acts have too.”

Back to my contention, that bands like McCartney are snoozers.

“If you think the Stones are phenomenal in concert, you haven’t seen them, or are used to the Grateful Dead,” Lefsetz says. “They lock on occasionally, otherwise, it’s rough.”

Still wanna see the Dylan, Wilco, My Morning Jacket bill?

The presale is going down now in Nashville.

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15 Responses to Hearne: Dinosaur Rockers Going Way of the Dinosaurs

  1. Fresh says:

    “About that triple threat bill of Bob Dylan, Wilco & My Morning Jacket at Sandstone, ain’t gonna happen, sources say.”

    We told you this when you floated it. That bill wouldn’t even sell out Starlight much less Sandstone.

    • admin says:

      I’m not so sure about that, I was at My Morning Jacket last year at Starlight and they drew a respectable crowd. Throw in Wilco, which has done well, and what’s left of Dylan who always seems to attract some people who either never saw him before or who think now’s the time to finally see him and I’ll wager they could have done well in a 7,000 venue with seating.

      But remember, Sandstone tore out all the seating down front, so it’s a standing venue with the VIP seats waaaaaay back.

      So the Dylan – and even Wilco crowd at this tender stage of the band’s career – would have a nice, long night of being on their feet.

      Add to that premium ticket pricing and…

  2. legendaryhog says:

    Too bad, that sounds like a killer show to me. Both Wilco and My Morning Jacket have done well in this market. I don’t know how many seats Sandstone needs to sell, but that seemed like a pretty good ticket. Perhaps it could be moved to Starlight? That would be a great venue as well for this show and I could see it selling out. My Morning Jacket played a successful show there last year with Band of Horses supporting.

    On a side note, I saw Dylan a couple of years ago, and he looked me in the eyes, and now I know that he is the devil.

  3. Fresh says:

    “My Morning Jacket played a successful show there last year with Band of Horses supporting.”

    Only 3000 people showed up. Wilco drew 2000 to Lawrence a couple years ago. And many of those fans overlap.

    • legendaryhog says:

      I think it was more toward 4,000 for the MMJ/BOH show, and yes their fan-bases do overlap (which I think is intentional when you put a lineup together) but regardless, i figure you throw some Dylan fans in there that might not really know MMJ and Wilco, and the fact that it is in the city instead of a drive out to Sandstone and you could get the 8,000 people needed to sell it out, don’t you think? Or maybe close to it. I dunno, I always like shows at Starlight and I would think it would be worth a stop in KC for the acts.

    • admin says:

      Don’t forget the theory of critical mass.

  4. Mysterious J says:

    Good job, Hearne! You only piggybacked on MOST of a Lefsetz column this time.

  5. cheech lifting weights says:

    The Stones have always gone off a model where they have front row tickets priced at 500 bucks or so to discourage scalping and take the profits themselves. So simply searching that isn’t going to give you much information.

    They have, however toured relentlessly over the last decade and have perhaps played to all the people who want to pay 175 dollars to see the Rolling Stones.

    Bands that play different setlists have seen their popularity continue to grow as they get older. Examples of this include Government Mule, The Flaming Lips and Phish.
    These bands also hit a sweet spot in ticket pricing of about 75 dollars a ticket.

    Tom Petty continues to tour and puts on a good show. But keep in mind that he is 25 years younger than the Rolling Stones and charges $50 a ticket.

    Dylan’s stage show may need a bit of a re-boot as he is essentially still doing the “Time out of Mind” era sound. And from a quick look at Pollstar.com he seems to have a pretty tight collection of dates there with little room to add more. He is skipping STL, KC, Omaha, OKC, and Dallas/Ft. Worth as well.

    • admin says:

      He’s skipping KC because he didn’t get the deal he wanted here

      • cheech lifting weights says:

        you know what bobby d always sings…

        we’ll put some old bleachers out in the sun and have it on hhheeeerrrwwwaaayyyyy sseeeexxxtttyy uuuunnnnnn

  6. Ross says:

    The 5/3 Stones show was some sort of weird add on. They’re also playing Staples 5/20. I believe that second show (which was really the first) is selling better. But, not sold out.

    Regardless, I don’t think the ONE example of a Stones concert in LA is evidence that people aren’t going to these events.

    • the dude says:

      Yeah, if they were not making money at it, they would not be doing it any more.

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