Part 2: My initial reaction to the Chuck Wicks VIP Experience was mixed-to-negative (see below). However, after speaking with other fans, all of whom said "Heck yeah!" to the idea, I have revised my opinion.
Increased access for a nominal fee is worth it to many fans, and Chuck Wicks and his team should be commended for their innovative idea.
In fact, I hope more artists consider the idea, particularly if they can keep the cost accessible. For $100 (which includes a ticket to the show for goodness sake! I missed that part.) Chuck Wicks is really going out of his way to give his fans access.
I stand corrected!
I thought this was fascinating: Chuck Wicks is selling "VIP Experiences" -- backstage or tour bus access for a private show, autographed photo, t-shirt, etc., for $100 (only 10 tickets per show). Have you ever heard of an artist selling this sort of access? (Details here: http://www.chuckwicks.com/vip.html)
I know radio station and other promotions offer this as giveways -- I won a private concert with David Nail last month and it was great. Just me and a handful of WMZQ listeners before the George Strait/Blake Shelton show at Nissan Pavilion in Bristow, Virginia, got to meet David and hear a few songs, get a photo with him and autograph. (And Blake Shelton was hanging out, too. Very cool experience overall, actually!)
We fans do love to get up close and personal with our artists, no question there. But doesn't selling it to us seem a little, I don't know . . . weird?
Should artists sell us access like this? Part of me thinks it's just wrong on some level. The everyday joe/joan should have access to their favorite star, not just the fan with extra dough.
But would I buy that ticket is it was for Blake Shelton, Eric Church, Jimmy Wayne, Dierks Bentley or another one of my favorite artists? Yes. I'd jump on it in a second.
I make a good living, I can afford such a splurge once in a while, and winning this sort of access from a radio contest leaves it to luck (and/or connections). Such access is also sometimes available from a charity auction, as well I know. Don't ask me how much I donated to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society for a VIP ticket to the Blake Shelton Fan Club Party in June!
And when I buy concert tickets, I go for the good seats because I can afford it. Is this any different? I just don't know.
And all the fan club parties during CMA -- aren't they, at least on some level, about paying for access to artists? I know the artists don't make a killing on those parties -- far from it. But the fans are paying for access, even if the money just goes to cover expenses.
Maybe this is actually a cool new thing? Maybe it's just a great way to give fans more access to artists? I just can't decide. But like I said, if it was available for one of my favorites, I'd do it, no questions. So why does it bug me?
What do you think? Ever heard of anyone else doing this? Would you buy a VIP Experience ticket for your favorite artist? And if so, for which artist or artists?
Let me know!