Why should anyone be surprised? With the added "convenience charges" and general high ticket prices, consumers are balking at the high prices for a concert ticket. But it's not only the ticket that gnaws at joe-ticket buyer. It's the price of parking, the price of refreshments and the price of swag that adds up to an evening that's beyond the ability of the average consumer to afford at the moment.
The audacity of the concert industry is that they don't consider this in the least and continue to charge prices that are way beyond what their fan base can absorb. So it's no surprise that concert attendance is down.
But the interesting part of all this is that Live Nation's revenue per fan is actually up 5% despite the drop in attendance. While it might seem to be the proper MBA strategy to raise prices, it's a disaster for long term business. The public is already resentful and getting more so every day.
We're reaching the breaking point for the average consumer in terms of affordability. They really want to support the artists that they love but just can't swing it financially.
The average concert goer wants and needs value. It needs a price concession to the economics of the times. If it doesn't get one soon, yet another facet of the music business will be in trouble if it isn't already.