The Cure frontman and songwriter Robert Smith has called out Ticketmaster over their ridiculous prices and admin fees, which are pricing music lovers out of being able to see their favourite bands.
It was only on Wednesday that he criticised the ticket operator’s ‘Platinum’ tier, labelling it a “greedy scam” and now following news of fans being hit with extortionate admin fees and additional charges, Smith said he has been left “sickened” by the whole “debacle”.
Taking to Twitter in response to countless fans sharing their scandalous experiences, the 63-year-old insisted “I am sickened as you all are… To be clear: the artist has no way to limit them.”
Having arisen from the band’s decision to use Ticketmaster‘s ‘Verified Fan’ system in an effort to combat scalpers and ticket touting, Smith went on to insist he has asked for justification and that he will keep people posted if gets any serious updates.
As mentioned, The Cure opted to use the new system to help combat the increasingly obstructive scalping culture pervading live music and hopefully help more fans get their hands on tickets.
However, the unfortunate result of this system is that instead of people having to resort to buying them for resellers at a massively marked-up price, the original face value of tickets is just being hugely inflated by the company’s ‘facility charges’, ‘service’ and ‘ordering processing fees’.
Countless Cure fans have since jumped on social media to complain about the cost of their tickets on their current US tour dates, despite the band having intentionally set the price to just $20 following long-running frustrations over gig-goers either missing out or being priced out.
In some cases, the original ticket has more than doubled as a result of Ticketmaster’s fees.
Ticketmaster has come under fire quite regularly of late for unpopular business practices like these, facing multiple lawsuits and even a Senate hearing in America over “unprecedented” claims of fraud that forced legitimate ticket holders to be banned from a Bad Bunny concert in Mexico City.
Having merged with Live Nation back in 2010, the parent organisation was hit with an “antitrust investigation” by the US Justice Department for potential abuse of power. In 2019 they were found to have repeatedly violated a 10-year decree to refrain from ‘monopolistic practices’ and famously went on to be wrapped up in the Astroworld Tragedy.
The Blackpool-born rock legend has now confirmed that resale company “StubHub has pulled listings in all markets except [New York], Chicago, Denver (i.e. sites that have laws protecting scalpers)”, going on to add that like with premium tiers, if people didn’t buy from scalpers these issues wouldn’t arise.
It goes without saying that music for is everyone — it shouldn’t be a case of people having to take make themselves skint to listen to their favourite artist.
Featured Image — Robert Smith (via Instagram)/NME (via YouTube)
16-year-old Manc busker, Alex Spencer, bags record deal with the same label that launched The Lathums
16-year-old busker Alex Spencer’s career has gone from strength to strength in the past couple of years. Now, after starting out singing on the rainy streets of Manchester, he has managed to bag himself a record deal.
You absolutely love to see it.
Young Alex from Droylsden has been entertaining passersby on Market Street and people all around Greater Manchester for some time now, and after years of graft that only a true music-loving Manc could muster, the local lad is taking the next step in his promising career.
Having made the step up from being one of many talented Manc buskers to playing plenty of proper gigs and even serenading the likes of the City squad, he has now been signed by record label Modern Sky and is set to release his first official single this April.
Since stepping out of his home with a borrowed guitar under his arm as a young boy, Alex Spencer has gone from covering classics by 10CC, Arctic Monkeys and Sam Fender, to playing at the likes of New Century, Band on the Wall, Manchester Academy 3 and even in front of 20,000 at the AO Arena.
After securing an Arena slot as part of Young Voices’ ones to look out for in 2022 and even getting some airplay on Radio X, the teenager was spotted by the very same record company that launched The Lathums, Jamie Webster, Brooke Combe and even The Coral back in the day.
Now, Alex is focusing on writing songs of his own and has recently finished five for his upcoming EP, one of those being his lead single, ‘A Night To Waste’, with all of them set to be released via Modern Sky.
This, however, isn’t the first time we’ve come across Alex; The Manc Audio has had the pleasure of chatting and watching him busk on a number of occasions. This was the most recent.
We’re beyond chuffed to see how far he’s come in such a short space of time and can’t wait to see him go far — which, of course, he definitely will.
Speaking ahead of the release of his debut record, Alex said: “It’s about the life of a teenager who wants to live their life a little and get out of the same old boring suburb. It’s about enjoying a good time with your friends and reminding you that none of us have a night to waste.
“It’s the same for so many people my age, especially after all the setbacks we’ve had over the past few years with lockdowns stopping us in our tracks.”
‘A Night To Waste’ drops on 25 April 2023; we were fortunate enough to get a sneak peek and, believe us, you’re in for a treat. This boy’s going to be big, so be sure to keep up to date with what he’s got coming next.
Yes, it’s true – in what is news that admittedly sounds fake, but somehow actually isn’t, one of the best rappers of all time has revealed himself to be an avid watcher of Britain’s longest-running soap, and is such a fan of it, in fact, that he said he’s “determined” to make an appearance on it sometime in the future.
The iconic ITV soap – which is set in the fictional Manchester suburb of Weatherfield, and celebrated an impressive 60 years of entertaining the masses back in 2020 – currently averages around six million viewers per episode, and has developed a well-deserved legion of loyal fans over the last six decades.
And it turns out, one of those loyal fans is chart-topping rap superstar Snoop Dogg.
“Coronation Street, I love it,” the 17-time Grammy Award nominee admitted.
“If they call me I’ll do it. I’ll play whenever they need. I love the cinematography, acting, the storylines and just the reality.
“I’d like to be a part of it because they’ve been a part of my culture.”
As bizarre as it all sounds, this surprisingly isn’t the first time the rapper – whose real name is Calvin Broadus Jr – has publicly revealed he’s a fan of the soap, and even famously admitted all the way back in 2010 that he had his agent get in touch with ITV to see if there was any chance he could make an appearance.
“I had my agent reach out to them to see if they could try to get me on and they said they were interested so hopefully it might happen,” Snoop told the BBC.
“It would be perfect for me to be on the show.”
The Drop It Like It’s Hot and The Next Episode rapper isn’t the only famous name who’s revealed himself to be a fan of Coronation Street in recent months.
One of the greatest and most well-respected singer songwriters of all time, Bob Dylan, also admitted in an interview with WSJ back in December 2022 that he loves binge-watching the soap.