Tag Archives: Garth Brooks

Lady Antebellum & Miranda Lambert Weekend in Las Vegas

In the fickle music biz, careers many times breeze in and out like the capricious winds. 

Last year the Nashville trio Lady Antebellum, right, – “Lady A” to their fans – didn’t win the one category they were nominated in last year (for Top Vocal Group), but this year it’s a whole new story. They’re the favored front-runner, with seven nominations for Sunday’s Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. 

Lady Antebellum’s free performance drew a huge crowd to Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas last night.  Some said the show drew upwards to 20,000 people. If so, that would make it the largest non-New Year’s Eve gathering ever on Glitter Gulch and the biggest in the four-year tradition of ACM-related concerts. 

Nominated for seven awards, the group attended last Wednesday’s “American Idol” show and did a post-show taping of their hit “Need You Now.” Their performance will be part of the “Idol Gives Back” show next week. 

Lady Antebellum announced on Friday that their latest, “American Honey,” was the band’s third consecutive No. 1.  Lady Antebellum’s current single, “Need You Now,” is No. 4 on Billboard’s overall Hot 100 song chart, sandwiched between Train and Lady Gaga. 

Miranda Lambert, right, a six-time nominee for Sunday’s Academy of Country Music Awards show, though, will prove tough competition.  She heads an ACM-filled lineup of free concerts tonight at the Fremont Street Experience. Lambert performs from 10:45 to midnight on the Third Street stage. Kicking off the evening from 7-7:30 p.m. at the First Street stage will be Joey + Rory, the Top Vocal Duo nominee. Gloriana, the Top New Vocal Group nominee, plays from 7:45-8:25 p.m., also at the First Street stage. The Randy Rogers Band, nominated for Top Vocal Group, performs from 8:40-9:25 p.m. on the Third Street stage. Luke Bryan, winner of the Top New Solo vocalist award, precedes Lambert, from 9:40-10:30 p.m., performing on the First Street stage. 

If you’re lucky enough to catch Lambert and others tonigt performing live in Las Vegas, it’s a good deal.  The ceremonies at the MGM Grand Garden are a pricey ticket if you don’t have friends at a record label, topping out at $450 for something you can watch free at home. (The 5 p.m. festivities air on CBS, live on the East Coast and tape-delayed on Las Vegas KLAS-TV, Channel 8, at 8 p.m.) 

Most of the ACM stars will stick around Monday in Las Vegas for “Brooks & Dunn — The Last Rodeo,” an all-star tribute concert that will be taped at the MGM for a separate CBS show airing next month. Tickets are $108 to $208 for the 7:30 p.m. show in which the likes of Taylor Swift, Kenny Chesney and George Strait will salute the venerable duo of Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn before they hang it up. 

The ACM Awards ride country music’s ever-growing popularity; what once was a niche genre is getting harder to distinguish from any remaining notions of a separate pop world. 

Last year’s ACM broadcast drew 14.8 million total viewers, a 26 percent gain from the year before. “It’s a happy problem,” says Barry Adelman, a producer and writer for the broadcast. “We’re not trying to fix something that’s dipping, we’re trying to keep something that’s going up, going up even higher.” 

And lest we forget…Garth Brooks isn’t performing at Wynn Las Vegas this weekend. But Steve Wynn did buy him that private jet and the pilot surely knows the route by now. And who would want to leave that guy out of a weekend like this one?

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Steve Wynn’s Jihad against Garth Brooks’ Ticket Scalpers

Hours after Wynn Las Vegas sold out of tickets for Garth Brooks’ first 20 shows, Steve Wynn instituted an unusual anti-scalping procedure that has the angst of fans and ticket brokers alike. His resort not only demanded the name of every concertgoer for every ticket purchased but said tickets could be picked up only on the day of the show and photo IDs would be checked at the door. 

Although this is within his legal rights, Wynn promised that anyone who purchased a resold ticket would be denied access to Garth Brooks’ shows. He said he was going after “scalpers” — lumping black marketeers in with legitimate ticket brokers who have been legally — and profitably — reselling tickets to Strip shows for more than two decades. 

For time immemorial, ticket brokers in Las Vegas and elsewhere have used the “scalping” practice, prefering to say they are reselling on the secondary ticket market, which has become an integral part of Las Vegas’ entertainment scene. The practice allows fans to nab tickets at the last minute or to sold-out shows and sporting events, frequently at prices far above face value. It also helps venues fill their seats on less-than-full nights — including shows at Wynn Las Vegas. 

Ticket reselling is an integral part of Capitalism- something Steve Wynn believes in above all else, but apparently not when it comes to ticket reselling. 

But Wynn lured Brooks out of retirement to perform at the 1,500-seat Encore Theater on the promise that he’d keep ticket prices low — $125 a seat, which comes to $143 apiece after taxes and fees. After tickets sold out last Saturday, they were being resold for hundreds of dollars — some were advertised online for more than $1,000 apiece. 

That triggered Wynn’s decision to retroactively crack down on scalpers invoking a seldom-used Clark County ordinance that makes it a misdemeanor to sell tickets for more than face value without permission from the venue. Wynn claims he helped write the ordinance in the ’90s to thwart scalping of Siegfried & Roy tickets. County officials say the law dates to 1987 and may even be older.

So fans such as Napier learned they’d have to provide the names of concertgoers — effectively shutting out resellers. 

Both Wynn and ticket brokers say they are trying to protect fans. 

The National Association of Ticket Brokers, which was founded in 1994 to set standards for the resale industry, fired back at Wynn’s new policy: “Fans hire brokers to help them find the tickets they want for the price they can pay or to resell tickets they can’t use. Wynn has no right to tell these fans ‘Hey, tough luck. Unless you bought them at our box office within two hours of going on sale then you can’t go to the show.’ ” 

Gary Adler, legal counsel for the brokers association, said he can’t imagine why anyone would want to prevent brokers from reselling tickets in Las Vegas. 

Adler said the secondary market’s customers run the gamut — from sports fans who don’t have season tickets but want to see a particular game, to music fans who want closer seats and are willing to pay the premium, to people who don’t have the luxury of making plans months in advance. 

Adler said 40 percent of tickets on the secondary market sell for less than face value. 

There have been instances where primary sellers such as Wynn have tried to shut out the secondary market, but Adler said it only drives up prices and forces street corner deals. Adler said Wynn’s policy to identify in advance every ticket holder by name is unprecedented. 

Las Vegas attorney Barry Levinson said the procedure is an example of Wynn trying to control what goes on inside his resort. 

“I think it’s an invasion of people’s privacy. I don’t want the resort to know who I’m going with and where I’m sitting,” Levinson said. “It could be a  misrepresentation issue or contractual dispute, depending on what it says on the back of the ticket.” 

Wynn’s policies have left such a sour taste in the mouths of brokers and buyers that the National Association of Ticket Brokers will no longer be hosting its annual convention at the Wynn. 

The resort’s Facebook page has been filled with complaints from buyers, including Napier, who is thinking twice about doing business with Wynn again.

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Garth Brooks & U2 Catalyst for Las Vegas’ Economic Revival

If you were not one of the 40,000 or so raving fans fortunate enough to watch U2 perform at Sam Boyd stadium on Saturday or you weren’t lucky or fast enough to get tickets for one of Garth Brooks first 20 shows, then you, sadly, were not part of the Economic Revival of lethargic Las Vegas. 

U2 not only sold out, but it created the biggest revenue blip ever in the history of Sam Boyd stadium. 

On Saturday tickets for Garth Brooks’ first 20 shows at the Wynn Las Vegas resort sold out in less than five hours. The resort said it reached maximum capacity for callers at 141,934, with many just getting busy signals for their effort. 

Officials also say the ticket Brooks’ Web site had more than 5.4 million page views with 40,000 waiting to buy tickets online at one point. 

Brooks announced a five-year deal with casino owner Steve Wynn last week that includes 15 weeks of shows a year in the Encore Theater, which seats about 1,500. Tickets were $125 plus fees.  Feel free to do the math.  

Brooks, the best-selling solo act in history, plays Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays of select weeks beginning Dec. 11. 

Las Vegas Backstage Access says to keep the momentum going- it’s great as a start for reviving entertainment fervor and revenues in Las Vegas!

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Tickets for Garth Brooks Show in Las Vegas on Sale Now

Tickets for Brooks’ first batch of shows at the Encore Theatre at Wynn Las Vegas go on sale today, Saturday, at www.wynnlasvegas.com/boxoffice

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Garth Brooks Out of Retirement, Announces Las Vegas Residency

In a couple short hours from now country music king Garth Brooks will confirm in Las Vegas his new residency at Steve Wynn’s casino hotels, most notably the Encore Theatre at the Wynn. GarthBrooks2

The planned run of performances ends the black Stetson-wearing king’s self-imposed retirement that began back in late 2000 when the 47-year-old wanted more time with his three children. 

The announcement will be made at 1 p.m. PT today, Oct. 15, inside the Danny Gans Theatre in the Wynn with Steve Wynn by his side. 

We expect the run to start as a total of 16 weeks of concerts starting in 2010. Garth’s appearances will be keyed to major holidays, and he will most likely move into a Las Vegas home with his wife, country singer Trisha Yearwood, and his three children. 

Brooks has sold more than 128 million albums in the U.S., according to the Recording Industry Assn. of America, second only to the Beatles’ 170 million albums.  Brooks has outsold the Fab Four — more than 68 million, to the Beatles’ 58 million. 

During the 1990s he also was one of the most popular concert attractions in the world. Amusement Business magazine ranked his 1996 tour the biggest country music tour in history after he sold 1.8 million tickets that year. 

Interestingly, though, he plans not to tour or make records for another five years, leaving his retirement a quasi-so proposition in Las Vegas. 

The Las Vegas shows, which should sell out by this weekend, will be a tremendous tourism boost to Las Vegas.

UPDATE:  He will be performing at Wynn’s Encore Theatre in Las Vegas for five years, three nights each week (one show Friday, two on Saturday, and one show on Sunday) starting sometime in 2010.   Under the terms of his deal with Steve Wynn, each week after his show he will be flown in his jet provided by Steve Wynn back to his home in Oklahoma so he can spend time with his family.)

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Shhh! (Garth Brooks May Sign Las Vegas Contract!)

More Garth Brooks chatter that he has an Oct. 15 news conference scheduled regarding his Wynn Las Vegas entertainment offer.  As Las Vegas Backstage Access sorts out facts from fiction, we’ll keep you posted.

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Garth Brooks Las Vegas Show Rumors Persist

As previously reported by Las Vegas Backstage Access, country singer Garth Brooks appears to be still actively looking for a Las Vegas gig, ostensibly with Steve Wynn’s Encore Theater, after previously retiring and walking away from his iconic rise to stardom in October 2000, saying he wanted to spend more time with his three daughters. GarthBrooks

Despite trying to ink a Las Vegas show deal, people from both camps remain stauch that there is no deal in the works. 

Some close to the action are going so far as to say Brooks has already signed a 16-week headliner detail to appear at the Encore Theater, starting in October.

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