The post Jeff Rosenstock Exposes Merch Cuts Taken at Venues appeared first on Consequence.
Jeff Rosenstock has broken down the exorbitant merch cuts being taken by some venues on his upcoming North American tour to explain why he’ll have to charge more at certain dates and critique the corporations that control the touring industry.
“Here are the merch cuts being taken by the venues on this upcoming tour,” Rosenstock wrote in the caption of an Instagram post with the breakdown. “This is going to cause us to sell our merch for higher prices than we’d like to at certain venues. We think that sucks.”
Rosenstock specifically targeted “big corporations” like AEG and Live Nation, who bought up “many of the types of venues that we play” during the pandemic. “Dodging these super high cuts is nearly impossible,” he explained.
“If you work in a creative field you’re supposed to feel lucky and happy enough to be there to get raked over the coals by millionaires and billionaires who will give you as small [a] slice of the pie as they can to perpetually show growth in profits,” Rosenstock lamented.
Some of the worst offenders on Rosenstock’s tour include New York City’s Terminal 5, DC’s 9:30 Club, Boston’s Roadrunner, Atlanta’s The Masquerade, and Toronto’s Danforth Music Hall — all of which take at least a 20% cut from soft goods like clothing, with some taking an additional cut or tax on items like music products. See Rosenstock’s Instagram post below.
In response, producer Steve Albini claimed merch cuts are “100% negotiable, to the extent that my bands over 40+ years have never, not once, ever paid them” and said artists have to push back against their agents. Meanwhile, fellow musicians including Car Seat Headrest, Helado Negro, Caracara, Sweet Pill, and equipment all chimed in with their own experiences dealing with merch cuts.
“a majority of the money we earn from touring is from merch, which we then have to pay back to a lot of venues. the music industry is broken, thanks for sharing jeff,” tweeted Sweet Pill.
Not often admitted, but merch cuts are 100% negotiable, to the extent that my bands over 40+ years have never, not once, ever paid them. When agents make deals, they don't care about ticket surcharges, merch cut or other leaks; they don't affect their cut. The band has to insist. https://t.co/EoX5fHiz5J
— steve albini (@electricalWSOP) September 5, 2023
This! + if you're using high quality blanks (USA made / ethical) your profit margins are even smaller! You can do gildan blanks for like $8, but a decently made garment is usually $16+. https://t.co/Bh3WCZslvQ
— Car Seat Headrest Merchandise (@CSHMerch) September 4, 2023
posted this on IG and im supportive of this. been wanting this to change for a long time. this shit is absurd. this practice makes no sense, would love to see it gone now. https://t.co/3DiWcfxLoE
— helado negro (@HeladoNegro) September 5, 2023
more people need to know that venues / promoters do this. it’s as insane as it sounds and it’s prevalent at almost all levels. important thread tune in happy labor day. https://t.co/ilWYZ55z1P
— Caracara (@caracaraphilly) September 4, 2023
a majority of the money we earn from touring is from merch, which we then have to pay back to a lot of venues. the music industry is broken, thanks for sharing jeff ❤️🔥 https://t.co/KNPDRf41yf
— where the heart is out now 🖤❤️ (@sweetpilll) September 5, 2023
i promise that any time you think an artist is overcharging for merch, a lot of the time we are not making as much as you might think! many online marketplaces and music venues bite a huge chunk out of every purchase. still unfortunately the best/only real way to support us https://t.co/qa0CQss6Mh
— equipment (@equipment_ohio) September 4, 2023