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Where Does the Money Go?

I was at a concert recently when during intermission, I heard someone exclaim, "Do you know how much money such and such a band is getting for this show?"  I believe the number he claimed was thirty thousand dollars.  I am keeping the name of the band out here because it does not really matter in this discussion.  I desired to join in on the conversation, but instead I opted to express my thoughts here.

The ticket prices for the night were about twenty-five dollars a head, and the venue held less than three thousand folks.  There were three bands playing, typical of many concerts I attend.  Though I had a comp ticket, I still felt the price of the tickets were fair for the music being offered.

But where does the money go?  I often hear so many music fans talk of bands who get all this money at concerts.  Sure, some bands collect a lot at the end of the night.  I generally don't attend those shows because the price range is more than I am willing to bear.  Yet even those bands have many more people with whom to "share" the money.

The average concert attendee may not realize how many people work behind the scenes and receive a cut of the ticket price.  Some people, like the artist business manager and the booking agent, are not even on the road with the band but also receive a portion from each night.

My list here is no where near exhaustive, but in addition to the manager and booking agent, there is the road manager, sometimes a tour manager, merchandise people, guitar techs, lighting techs, stage managers, and sound engineers.  And here are some important roadies you may not think of - the bus drivers and truck drivers.  Oh, and yes, the band gets a portion as well.

So the thirty thousand dollars will get split among all those people, and more.  Then, there is still money from ticket sales going to the concert promoter/producer.  And the venue staff - security, ticket handlers, box office workers.  And the caterer who makes the food for the band and crew.  The list goes on. 

I am writing this not only to educate our readers on where the money goes, but I am also hoping you will remember the many behind the scenes folks who in many cases get little sleep and work tirelessly so you can enjoy the music each night,