|Wet Leg at Music Box (Taken 3.24.22)|
San Diego has long had a venue problem. Obviously we have an incredible small venue network for up-and-coming touring acts -- Casbah, Soda Bar, Merrow, Pour House -- that feed into midsize venues like the Belly Up and Music Box. But then we get a little grim. We have the Observatory, House of Blues, SOMA, Open Air Theatre, Viejas Arena, Pechanga Arena, and North Island Credit Union Amphitheatre. All of those venues are run by one corporation. Balboa Theatre and Humphrey's by another. I thought The Shell being built on a PUBLIC park would mean accessibility for the average person but free yoga on Sundays isn't what I had in mind for that and it is not enough. And while we can love the venues -- I love seeing shows at The Observatory and Open Air Theatre -- and a lot of people I know and respect work for these venues and the conglomerate, but it doesn't mean that I don't look back on 'the good ol' days' when tours were more grassroots, concert routing would seek out the local promoters to make rad shit happen, and when service charges and fees didn't exceed the value of the baseline ticket prices, and when the resale markets and bots didn't artificially inflate ticket prices and lock actual fans out of the market entirely. Add in $6 plus gasoline in California, and we shouldn't be so surprised when the big tours just skip San Diego or Southern California altogether. If you object, please watch "Tickets: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)"
Stay safe out there.