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How To Get Into a Sold-Out Concert
March 11, 2003 10:55 PM   Subscribe

Big Show. No Tickets. No Problem. In case you happen to find yourself about to miss out on the concert of a life-time, because you were 2 spots behind the last person to get tickets before it sold out, have no fear. This article at Relevant shows you how to get into any concert for no more than the actual face-value of a ticket. (In other words, the legal way.) Useful information.
posted by wondergirl (15 comments total)

 
mint! ben harper is sold out in wellington - will i have the nerve to try this stuff out? do i want to go to a concert by myself?
posted by mhjb at 11:20 PM on March 11, 2003


Going by yourself is a bummer. I would go out to dinner alone, if I was hungry, but going to a concert WITH someone is half the fun, it's just TOO social an activity, at least, for me. Maybe others feel differently.
posted by jonson at 11:51 PM on March 11, 2003


As a person who has bought tickets for years using this same approach, I can vouch for its effectiveness. In my experience, pairs of tickets can be just as available as singles, depending on the event (sports tix are easier to score in pairs). However, if you go with someone else, don't pair up with the anxious type-- they'll drive you nuts while you wait for the right deal ("OMG! We only have 20 minutes left! We'll never get in!)

Another word of advice-- beware of buying one set of tix as a backup, then sticking around for another cheaper/better pair, figuring you'll just sell the first set if you score the second. I've had several friends hauled off to the pokey for that, even when selling at less than face value. At least in Missouri, the cops have a beef with sellers, never buyers, regardless of cost.
posted by F Mackenzie at 2:00 AM on March 12, 2003


jonson: If I bring someone else along I often feel responsible and worry about whether he/she is having a good time. I suppose if I got invited it would be different.
posted by ODiV at 4:17 AM on March 12, 2003


Reminds me of the time I was with a bunch of friends in Las Vegas to see the Grateful Dead. As usual, there were hundreds of people walking around with index fingers in the air signifiying they needed a ticket. Concert time was drawing near and those without tickets were beginning to think they might not get in this time. Well, everyone except for this one little ragmuffin of a gal who wouldn't give up. She walked up to an extra long white stretch limo that was waiting for the fences that kept the driveway under the stadium clear to be unlocked. (Obviously a VIP - or Jerry?) Anyway,the darkened back window of the limo slowly unrolled, a hand held out a ticket into the sold out show, and the window rolled up as the limo pulled into the security area. This gal looked at our group and we all started cheering.

You just never know...
posted by Dinzie at 6:51 AM on March 12, 2003


ODiV:If I bring someone else along I often feel responsible and worry about whether he/she is having a good time.

*Flashes back to the time he dragged th' wife to a Residents concert, breaks into cold sweat at the sheer thoughtlessness of it*
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:08 AM on March 12, 2003


Yup, this could degenerate into a "worst idea for taking someone to a concert" contest.

My entry: I took my wife to see Transatlantic.
posted by salmacis at 7:13 AM on March 12, 2003


I gave my wife my one Dylan ticket, and she went without me. It was back in his religious days, though, so I don't know if that counts as a good deed or not. (She loved it, especially the back-up singers.)
posted by LeLiLo at 8:34 AM on March 12, 2003


Met my wife at a Moody Blues show; good wife. BAD show. Luckily she was in the next seat, and the Fixx opened.

I have only gone to shows alone as a reviewer, never as an enjoyer. And trust me, they are not the same.

Nowadays, I buy from scalpers when I want good seats. Which is rare, I must admit. I'm one of those monsters that often feels that the recorded studio versions of songs are, with a few notable exceptions, superior to seeing/hearing it live.
posted by UncleFes at 8:50 AM on March 12, 2003


Nowadays, I buy from scalpers when I want good seats.

Clarification: I buy from the scalp services, not from the guys on the street. Trustworthy, and you can pay by credit card.
posted by UncleFes at 8:53 AM on March 12, 2003


Anti-social type that I am, I've probably gone to as many shows by myself than I have with other people. And honestly, I can't really say that I enjoyed myself significantly more at the shows I've attended with a group or a SO; once the show starts, socializing is impossible anyways. The only major difference, as far as I'm concerned, is that you have nobody to have the "Wasn't that show great?" "Yeah, it rocked." "Totally" conversation with afterwards; and while there's something to be said for it, it's certainly not worth spending the time convincing reluctant compatriots that they want to see a group with a name as pretentious as "Godspeed You! Black Emperor", say. (Or maybe I just need to find compatriots with better taste in music.)

UncleFes: I'm one of those monsters that often feels that the recorded studio versions of songs are, with a few notable exceptions, superior to seeing/hearing it live.

Thank goodness — I thought I was the only one. There are a few acts that put on great live shows, certainly, but they have to be pretty damn good to overcome the horrendous acoustics and sound system at your run-of-the-mill ~500-person venue. And don't even talk to me about stadium/arena shows.
posted by Johnny Assay at 9:36 AM on March 12, 2003


i like the advice in this article, but it doesn't particularly seem useful for smaller venues, which, since i don't have a tv (ok, ok, i do) are the only shows i ever attend.

of course, at these smaller venues, i've never seen anyone get busted for selling tickets -- i had no idea that this was even still considered a criminal enterprise, even for above face value.

heck, i've even been offered tickets by the bouncer of the show before (who probably had "tickets" meaning he'd open the door for me.)

anyhow, in SF, sometimes craigslist is the best chance to score some tix. As the show draws nearer, weirder and more frantic bidding for tickets ensues (ie "I'm a hot chick and I will totally go to the show with you and hang out and you can pretend I'm your gf or something, but don't be a freak, ok?"). Anyhow, it's probably a good place to go if you *just* missed the selling out date, but it's a great place to get ripped of the day of the show.

personally, i usually try to scan ticketmaster, et al, for a few months in advance to see if there are shows coming up i want to see (none of the shows i attend sell out day of sale). this usually works well for me, except when i decide i'm too lazy to do the particular transaction at the moment.

which reminds me. I've got to get my delgados/aereogramme tix NOW! whew. still available.
posted by fishfucker at 10:21 AM on March 12, 2003


It's ocassionally possible to get tix to "sold-out" shows if you try exactly two days before the show. This is because the venue/performer usually keeps some reserved for VIPs and releases them for sale when the show is close.

Using this method I saw a Penn and Teller show on my birthday with three friends that was sold out three days prior. We didn't sit together, but we all got in and I sat in the front row.
posted by ringmaster at 11:56 AM on March 12, 2003


There are a few acts that put on great live shows, certainly, but they have to be pretty damn good to overcome the horrendous acoustics and sound system at your run-of-the-mill ~500-person venue.

You're also much better off going to a live show where you know the audience will keep their mouths shut. Cheering and screaming is one thing, singing along and aloud to your favorite song at a show qualifies you for a severe beating to within an inch of your life. Some bands just seem to be magnets for thoughtless, out-of-tune asshole fans. Dave Matthews, for example.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 1:06 PM on March 12, 2003


Additionally, this paltry advice that can be culled down to two steps.

Step 1: Look for people selling extra tickets. As the show draws near, they'll be more willing to unload their extras for a reasonable (i.e., non-scalping) price.

Step 2: Pay for the ticket.

Glad there was a whole article to explain that complicated chicanery to us poor slobs.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 1:18 PM on March 12, 2003


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