We’re Feeling Twenty-Three

Issue #184 | December 28, 2023 

BOH’s EOY Recap is brought to you by the letter T. 

T as in Ticketing, Ticketmaster (+ Live Nation), Travis Scott, The 1975, The Sphere, and of course, Taylor Swift.

Enjoy and we’ll see you again on January 9th. 🥂

Credit: Euan Cherry/Getty ImagesJanuaryZach Bryan hates Ticketmaster. Barclay’s Center breaks up with SeatGeek and returns to its ex (Ticketmaster) right before Ticketmaster, SeatGeek and others take the stand in US Senate hearings covering all things ticketing and calls to drop merch fees.

Ineffable Live is the first to announce that it will no longer take a cut of artist merch.

FebruaryTicketmaster makes modifications before Beyoncé’s Renaissance Tour goes on sale and calls it a success. US President Joe Biden pushes his Junk Fee Prevention Act harder; Ticketmaster says it's here for it and later announces its FAIR Ticketing Act.

There’s a big football game where Rihanna performs (while pregnant) and U2 confirms that it will open the Las Vegas Sphere.AEG is opposed to building a Sphere in London, but it is green lit by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC). 

MarchStubHub says the FAIR Ticketing Act isn’t fair, but 20+ industry organizations pledge their support. Meanwhile, AEG wants venues to be able to use multiple ticketing companies and Robert Smith of The Cure publicly gets into it with Ticketmaster.The Eras Tour officially kicks off and does 👏not 👏 disappoint👏.KISS announces their absolute final shows after 50 years. 

AprilRobert Smith gets Ticketmaster to refund and cancel 7,000 scalped tickets. NITO releases a 9-point ticketing reform platform; it’s like LN’s FAIR Ticketing Act (kinda). Canada considers ending junk fees.

Billy McFarland announces Fyre Festival II without any info on location, dates, artists, etc. Seems legit. And, AI hits the music industry with Fake Drake & The Weeknd’s “Heart on My Sleeve”.  

MayTwo new ticketing bills are introduced: the “Unlock Ticketing Markets Act” and the “Transparency in Charges for Key Events Ticketing (TICKET) Act”. The Fix the Tix coalition is formed to advocate for more equitable concert ticketing. Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino suggests artists could easily “charge a bit more” for tickets to their shows and Taylor Swift ticket troubles continue on the secondary market.

Billy secures funding for FYRE 2.0 and announces plans for a Broadway musical, FYRE 1.5. 

JuneUpdated BOSS and SWIFT Act legislation is introduced; Fix the Tix doesn’t buy it. Ticketmaster and SeatGeek agree to begin rolling out upfront, all-in pricing and Ticketmaster quietly swaps their Verified Fan program with Advance Registration; NIVA and NITO respond.

Taylor Swift adds international dates to The Eras Tour. US fans realize it may be cheaper to travel abroad to see her, but Swifties in Brazil can’t get tickets either and Congress takes action. Sweden is the first to recognize The Beyoncé Effect.

Coldplay implements eco-friendly touring practices and a stage at Glastonbury will run entirely on renewable energy. 

JulyHello World: the Sphere is lit up for the first time in Las Vegas. Legends is reportedly in discussions to buy ASM Global. Travis Scott is acquitted of criminal charges from Astroworld Festival and his Utopia performance at the Pyramids in Egypt is threatened, but sold out. The 1975’s Matty Healy’s on-stage kiss cancels The Good Vibes Festival in Malaysia.Taylor ticket troubles continue in France and Ticket resellers average $40k profit per show, per NITO. 

AugustTravis Scott’s pyramids show is canceled and moved to Rome’s Circus Maximus where neighbors fear an earthquake. He announces North American tour dates, including Houston, and we learn that Apple Music required him to finish his Astroworld show in order to be paid. Artists and vendors from The Good Vibes Festival prepare a class-action lawsuit against The 1975 and the event fines them.

Taylor Swift and Beyoncé are the first concerts to have mega economic impacts to surrounding areas and Taylor’s truck drivers are rewarded.Fyre Festival II tickets go on sale.

SeptemberThe Playa is inundated with rain and Burning Man guests are forced to shelter in place. EZoo cancels opening day due to the stage not being ready and incomplete permits and reaches capacity early on Sunday, leading to fans crashing the gates. Blue Ridge Rock Festival is officially canceled due to severe weather, but maybe it was the stagehand strike or health violations?

Taylor crashes the AMC app, Google, and the NFL. And Zach Bryan returns to Ticketmaster.

OctoberTragedy in Israel as Hamas terrorists bomb and invade the Supernova festival.

Live Nation drops merch fees. The FTC proposes banning junk fees and the BOSS and SWIFT ticketing acts take next steps while Ticketmaster’s promise to institute all-in pricing is questioned.Beyoncé teases a concert film while her Renaissance Tour becomes the highest-grossing tour by a female artist (for now) and The Eras Tour film rakes in $123.5 million. Billy McFarland sells a “Crew Trip”, the Malaysian government requires a “kill switch” for concerts, and London residents aren’t excited about the Sphere. 

NovemberLondon’s Mayor rejects the Sphere. Legends officially buys ASM Global. A heatwave in Rio has tragic effects on Taylor’s Brazil shows. The US Senate issues a subpoena to Live Nation and Ticketmaster. Rapino responds. More lawsuits for Live Nation and Travis Scott.

DecemberLive Nation expands its “On the Road Again” program by raising the minimum wage. The “Fans First Act” is introduced. The London Sphere may still be alive and more Spheres are planned in UAE and South Korea. A trailer is released for “Supernova: The Music Festival Massacre”. 

KISS performs their final (in-person) show.

Oh, and The Eras Tour is officially the first to cross the $1 billion mark and Taylor is named Time’s Person of the Year.

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