Rolling Stones: 'Our Tickets Are No Rip-Off'

Band thinks high prices for their shows are worth it.

Ultimate Guitar

That the Rolling Stones were charging upwards of £100 for their recent London shows has sparked debates about the soaring price of concert tickets. Now the Stones themselves have weighted in, claiming that the costs of putting on the shows justify the expense. Speaking to Billboard, Mick Jagger had the following comments.

"You might say, 'the tickets are too expensive'. Well, it's a very expensive show to put on, just four shows because normally you do a hundred shows and you'd have the same expenses".

"Most of the tickets go for a higher price than we've sold them for, so you can see the market is there. We don't participate in that profit. If a ticket costs £250 and goes for £1000, I want to point out that we don't get that difference."

"We've already spent a million on rehearsing in Paris. And the stage is going to be another few million. And the lights."

As Ultimate-Guitar reported last week, Ronnie Wood recently shared Jagger's sentiments in an interview with the Telegraph: "We've already spent a million on rehearsing in Paris. And the stage is going to be another few million. And the lights. We feel no bad thing about ticket prices. We've got to make something."

The band recently released the second of the new singles from their up and coming Greatest Hits album. The track, titled "One More Shot", follows the release of "Doom And Gloom" last month. "Grrr!", the latest Stones compilation, is released today (November 12th).

YouTube preview picture

It is still rumored that former Stones Bill Wyman and Mick Taylor may be appearing at either London or New Jersey shows later this month.

79 comments sorted by best / new / date

    A million to rehearse... the F!!! They got ripped off :-P Well at least we know why the "fans" got ripped off...
    WD Punk
    Hold on guys, everybody knows that the Stones haven't been around for too long and really need that money
    Just because someone is rich doesn't mean they have less of a right to make money from their work. Not that I condone the outrageous ticket prices, mind. I just think your argument, while clearly sarcastic, is a little misguided.
    I don't get why the stones even bother with a crazy stage production. If you ask me, they don't even need it. They're good enough to just go out and play their music with a minimal stage set and still blow peoples minds.
    stage production is an excuse, Queen, Pink Floyd and U2 had much bigger stages and rigs and didn't even charge a third of that back in the days
    How do the expenses for four shows equal more than a hundred shows on a normal tour? Sounds like extravagant spending in a short period of time to me.
    I see where he's coming from they have to set a show up and buy equipment and if that costs 3 million then to make that back in 4 shows you have to charge more than if you were doing 100.
    well its easy math dude.... you buy 3 milion worth of equipment so to get money back you would do 1 show for 3 milion or 100 shows for 30 000,-..... and if there are people willing to buy ticket for 1000,-, i think it is worth of money for someone
    Maybe they should be looking at ways to reduce their overheads. A million to rehearse in Paris?! They've been doing this for 50 years they've had enough rehearsals!
    "Most of the tickets go for a higher price than weve sold them for, so you can see the market is there. We dont participate in that profit. If a ticket costs 250 and goes for 1000, I want to point out that we dont get that difference." "Weve already spent a million on rehearsing in Paris. And the stage is going to be another few million. And the lights." As Ultimate-Guitar reported last week, Ronnie Wood recently shared Jaggers sentiments in an interview with the Telegraph: "We've already spent a million on rehearsing in Paris. And the stage is going to be another few million. And the lights. We feel no bad thing about ticket prices. We've got to make something." am I the only 1 who was amazed that UG says Mick and Ronnie say exactly the same words?
    My Last Words
    It's what they call article-fillers. Advanced form of journalism, I know.
    repeating yourself in an article seems more like an amateur form of journalism to me. especially when it's so close together. if there were 2 paragraphs I might've missed it.
    The Rolling Stones haven't given a crap about music since the 80s. They just figured that they can sell good songs that take effort why not just sell bad songs and charge an exorbitant amount of money to see them live.
    They could always have absorbed the cost and "gave something back to the fans" that gave them their millions - alas no. Falling revenues from record sales means that this has to provide a return for those that are actually bankrolling the tour. The business behind this is that the Stones will 'sub-contract' the set up to somebody else who will demand a profit on that investment. To those that say it's all about seeing legends in the flesh - it's all about business and money for those legends. I'm no socialist byw but let's just have some openess and honesty.
    " We've got to make something." Why? Are you running out of money or something? ... Millionaires...
    The Stones became a parody of themselves back in the 80's. Save the ticket money and buy a copy of their concert films Gimme Shelter & Let's Spend the Night Together.
    A million on rehearsing??? I pay $15 per hour and that only because I can't afford a house large enough to jam at, otherwise it'd be free. Start shovelin' Mick lol
    They spent a MILLION rehearsing?!?!?!?! Does that include drugs and booze?
    MultiMillionaire in that's not expensive shocker. Mick, you probably haven't bought a concert ticket ever... So shush.
    who cares, only decaying middle aged lawyers or doctors go at their shows, justl ike mc cartney they're relying on nostalgia, their relevant days are way gone
    "The market is there" is a pretty bad justification. How much something is actually worth and how much people are willing to pay are not the same thing at all. For example, some people are happy to spend perfectly good money on homoeopathic remedies, or Nickelback tickets.
    Something is worth only what people are willing to pay
    Depends how you define worth. My point was that "the market is there" is a financial justification, not a moral one.
    I would pay $100 for a good seat to see the Stones if the setlists from previous shows looked good to me. Maybe even $150 if the reviews and recordings indicated that the band sounds good. That said, face value for floor or lower level seating for the Newark, NJ shows is $813. Mezzanine (next level above the lower level) is $493. These prices aren't from second-hand dealers, they are directly from ticketmaster. If rehearsals and the stage actually do cost millions of dollars and result in these astronomical ticket prices, I think it's time to rethink things.
    If I was such a legendary, famous band who had made millions upon millions of dollars, I would go out truly classy. I would perform a whole tour free or donate it all to charity(s). I mean, money isn't everything in this life, and if there is an afterlife, it won't count for nothing. I guess I'm just a dreamer..
    Yes, since these guys make so much money, that would be really cool and nice if they just donated the money from a tour to a good cause. I start to dislike all those big old legendary bands, because the bigger and richer they get, the more self-centered, egocentric and useless they become.
    "A million to rehearse in Paris" is their way of saying we spent about 2000 but we need a good excuse on why we "need" to make ticket prices skyrocket. Mick trying to illude: "If a ticket costs 250 and goes for 1000, I want to point out that we dont get that difference." Ronnie screwing the story up: "We feel no bad thing about ticket prices. We've got to make something."
    I've seen them 3 times in the last ten years. Each time they've been playing a little bit worse, progressively. Ain't no way I'd pay that much to see them play an underwhelming show.
    100$ for a legend is no money if you're a real lover, once in a life time opportunity for some.
    they're talking about 100. not 100$
    150$, same opinion.
    Actually, the difference is even less significant. It actually converts to around $120. Euro's crashing, dudes.
    . means pounds, is euros. 100 = $160 OT: I would never pay more than 30 for a gig, and even that's pushing it. Legendary or not. Besides, I'd prefer to go to a gig at a small club venue than a giant arena or something. What's the point in going to see a band if you can't even see them?
    seeing as you've never paid to go to a real show, how would you know? Also if you want to see them, get up close. also its mostly for the whole concert environment.
    And I tried getting some today. 400 for standing tickets. that's $600. Money and loving music are 2 separate things. I'd love to see the Stones, but that's straight out profiteering. I don't understand why they need the cash to do it.
    Yes there legends but there expenses like rehearsing ,etc shouldnt have anything to do with the price of there tickets , plus once in a lifetime opportunity my ass ..the stones will never stop touring cause they've just mad eit obvious its all about the money!!
    The Rolling Stones can do whatever the **** they want!
    True but I for one won't support them when they do something pants-shittingly dumb as this.
    Hey man, let's not make pants-shitting jokes. These poor guys are geriatric as hell now, and that is probably a real concern for them when they are up on stage. Am I going to see the show, personally? Well that Depends... *wink*
    Its expensive, but I spent almost $1,000 to fly my ass to St. Louis and see Chuck Berry play.....and that was well worth it. Got to meet him after the gig too, for five seconds.
    Ticket prices nowadays are a total rip off but to put these Rolling Stones prices into perspective, about 6 years ago my ex wife paid 90euros for f*****g Beyonce and about 75euros for Pink. U2 have been charging as much as 500 euros for tickets in recent years. I've seen Metallica, Guns n Roses, Ozzy and loads more legendary bands for less than 20 quid back in the day. Ah, the good oul days
    Maybe the bands are trying to compensate for the money "lost" due to illegal downloads...
    Generally every summer one big band comes to a city near by me, and the ticket is usually 100 dollars. Bands like Rolling Stones, ACDC, U2, and this summer, Springsteen. Paying 100 dollars to see these shows is absolutely worth it for me, and as long as the city keeps bringing in good music, I'll pay 100 dollars.
    I dropped $125 each for tickets for their "Bigger Bang" tour back in '06, and it was worth every penny. The stage was massive, the show was darned good, and they sounded fantastic.
    Doesn't surprise me, here in Mexico there a lot of bands that charge up to 500 usd, U2, Kiss, Floyd. McCartney's tickets were up to 1000usd. You may think that the economy around here is wealthy but is the opposite... i don't how they sell out!
    $150 is not a lot to see the Stones... If you don't like it download some more of their albums for free... And I'm not a Stones fan really (know their singles) but DO NOT bring Richards' guitar skills into question. His ability to come up with riffs in different tunings is brilliant!
    Vicryl 2.0
    why are they spending millions on rehearsals? dont they have their own studio? or are they on tube medication while rehearsing...
    When's the last time you heard a band say this, "Don't waste your money on our tickets, we suck"?
    the way i've seen most ticket prices made is from the venue, most common is the band receiving less than half of the cost of the ticket....just thought i would throw that out there. But they also have to pay for all the speakers, cables, power supplies, lights, pyrotechnics, staff, the venue itself, ad promo's, rehearsal space (though they could just use one of their BIG ASS HOUSES), and dust off all their instruments to make sure the show happens ...i may have forgotten a thing or two. but they may make only 1/3 of the ticket, or it's a fixed price even, they get $X per ticker purchased regardless of cost of seating.
    What kind of a band spends a million on rehearsing? I'd say, really lame band. If you know your thing, you come in, rehearse, and go on. How can you spend so much on rehearsals? Besides, if they'd care for the fans, they would try to do something to minimize the price. For example, smaller expenses on rehearsals would be a good start.