Chance The Rapper has something special on the way with his Magnificent Coloring Day Festival, but he has to battle ticket scalpers to preserve its integrity.
“It’s become apparent to me that many people have targeted my cheap tickets to #MCD and used me and my fans as a way to make money from music,” Chance tweeted. “These people just like music labels. Greedy untalented folks who don’t even like music spending a lil bit of money early to come up later.
“I saw $75 #MCD floor seat for over $2000,” he continued. “Some people may choose to buy it, or you can go with #optionbee.” Chance then opened up every seat at the venue and began to sell tickets for $25 from his website, ChanceRaps.com.
“Obstructed view but we’re going to get everybody in!!” he said.
Chance has good reason to be upset. The secondary ticket market is bastardizing the heart of his campaign: communality and accessibility. The essence of Chance's message is to create music and experiences that can be accessed by anybody for free or on the cheap, and without middlemen impeding that process.
In an age when artists aren’t selling records, or in Chance's case giving them away for free, and shows are more important than ever before, the Chicago native's fears that his die-hard fans will lose out on seats - or worse, unsold secondary market tickets lead to empty seats - are valid. Every empty seat or unsold ticket means Chance is missing out on a borderline fan becoming a die-hard or a die-hard fan further falling in love with his artistry and brand.
There is no easy solution to Chance's ticket scalping problem, and when you host a huge festival at a major American ballpark your options are limited, but one idea might be to cut out a ticketing and distribution company like Ticketmaster and sell seats direct to fans. Obviously a direct to consumer approach would take more man power, effort and time, but it would certainly help to guarantee fans aren't being gouged on the secondary market.
Magnificent Coloring Day will take place on Saturday, September 24 at the home of the Chicago White Sox, U.S. Cellular Field. The star-studded lineup will Skrillex, John Legend, Alicia Keys, Lil Wayne, 2 Chainz, Tyler the Creator, Young Thug, Lil Uzi Vert, and other special guests.
By William E. Ketchum III, who you can follow on Twitter @WEKetchum
Art Credit: Edd Leigh