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Bruce Springsteen fanzine to end after 43 years as 'disillusioned' fans protest ticket prices 'that many of our readers cannot afford'

'Backstreets, a  respected Bruce Springsteen fanzine, has announced that it will be shutting down.
Backstreets, a respected Bruce Springsteen fanzine, has announced that it will be shutting down.Jemal Countess/Getty Images
  • A fanzine dedicated to Bruce Springsteen is closing down because of inflated tour ticket prices.

  • Ticketmaster's dynamic pricing model led to tickets surging from $400 to $5,000.

  • The fanzine's editor wrote that "a good portion of our readership has lost interest" in the tour.

A fanzine dedicated to Bruce Springsteen has announced that it will be shutting down after 43 years, in part because of the rise in ticket prices for the Boss's new tour.

Backstreets, a quarterly fan-run magazine that began in 1980, has said that it will be ending production this year.

"After 43 years of publishing in one form or another, by fans for fans of Bruce Springsteen, it's with mixed emotions that we announce Backstreets has reached the end of the road," publisher and editor-in-chief Christopher Phillips wrote to readers on February 3. 

Phillips said that he and his editorial staff have been feeling "dispirited, downhearted, and, yes, disillusioned" since tickets for Springsteen's first tour with the full E Street Band in six years went on sale last summer.

Ticketmaster's widely criticized dynamic pricing model, which allows ticket prices to increase or decrease depending on demand, led to prices for a floor seat reportedly jumping from $400 to upwards of $5,000.

"There's no denying that the new ticket price range has in and of itself been a determining factor in our outlook as the 2023 tour approached," Phillips wrote, citing the reasons for the publication's shuttering.

"Six months after the onsales, we still faced this three-part predicament: These are concerts that we can hardly afford; that many of our readers cannot afford; and that a good portion of our readership has lost interest in as a result."

"Know that we're not burning our fan cards, nor encouraging anyone else to do so," he added. "In fact, as diehard music fans, we have every hope of rekindling enthusiasm for what we've always believed to be a peerless body of work."

In November, the "Born to Run" singer addressed the controversy over the Ticketmaster system shortly after the company was criticized over its handling of the sale of tickets for Taylor Swift's Eras Tour. 

Bruce Springsteen performs on stage alongside the E Street Band at State Farm Arena on February 03, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Bruce Springsteen performs on stage alongside the E Street Band at State Farm Arena on February 03, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia.Paras Griffin/Getty Images

In an interview with Rolling Stone, Springsteen said that while the system was "confusing" for fans, "most of my tickets are affordable."

The 73-year-old singer explained that while he usually charges "a little less" than other artists, for his new tour, which kicked off in Tampa, Florida, on February 1, he wanted to do "what everybody else is doing."

He said: "For the past 49 years or however long we've been playing, we've pretty much been out there under market value. I've enjoyed that. It's been great for the fans. This time I told them, 'Hey, we're 73 years old. The guys are there. I want to do what everybody else is doing, my peers.' So that's what happened. That's what they did."

"But ticket buying has gotten very confusing, not just for the fans, but for the artists also," he went on to say. "And the bottom line is that most of our tickets are totally affordable. They're in that affordable range."

Springsteen reasoned that scalpers — people who resell tickets at astronomical prices after purchasing them for that sole reason — shouldn't be the ones to profit off the demand to see the artist.

Springsteen said: "I'm going, 'Hey, why shouldn't that money go to the guys that are going to be up there sweating three hours a night for it?'"

"I know it was unpopular with some fans. But if there's any complaints on the way out, you can have your money back," he added.

Read the original article on Insider