Episode 468: Kid Rock Vs. The Scalpers : Planet Money We talk to Kid Rock about how he tried to cut scalpers out of the business — and still sell cheap tickets to his shows.
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Episode 468: Kid Rock Vs. The Scalpers

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Episode 468: Kid Rock Vs. The Scalpers

Episode 468: Kid Rock Vs. The Scalpers

Episode 468: Kid Rock Vs. The Scalpers

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/475023002/475028325" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Carlo Allegri/Carlo Allegri/Invision/AP
Kid Rock has come up with new ways to beat the scalpers. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Invision/AP, file)
Carlo Allegri/Carlo Allegri/Invision/AP

We live in a society full of people who are obsessed with making sure that prices are right and supply meets demand. And then there's the live-music business.

Concert tickets are often too cheap and the supply is too limited. Scalpers are the proof: If tickets were more expensive to begin with, or if venues were bigger, scalpers wouldn't be able to charge more than face value. Is there a better way?

On today's show, we talk to Kid Rock about how he tried to sell cheap tickets to his fans and cut scalpers out of the business. He added more shows in some cities, essentially flooding the market with himself. He introduced "platinum seating" at the front of the arena--and made it so that you have to show ID and swipe your credit card to sit there. And the best seats of all? You can't buy them, no matter how much money you have. They're given away by lottery to the real, die-hard fans.

For More: Read Josh Baron and Dean Budnick's book: Ticket Masters: The Rise of the Concert Industry and How the Public Got Scalped and economist Pascal Courty's many papers on the topic. Also, check out Adam Davidson's 2013 New York Times Magazine column, How Much Is Michael Bolton Worth to You?

Music: Kid Rock's "Cowboy" and "Rebel Soul." "Come Out And Play," "Scratch My Back," and "Friday Night." Find us: Twitter/ Facebook.