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Prince postpones UK ticket sales, concerned about ticket resellers

by Jay Gabler

November 13, 2015

Tickets for the U.K. stops on Prince's "Piano and a Microphone" European tour were scheduled to go on sale today at 10:00 a.m. local time (early morning in Minnesota), but they've been postponed with no explanation — though this morning's tweets from Prince suggest that the cause might have something to do with concerns about ticket resellers.

Prince's Twitter feed has been full of tweets and retweets (done in the distinctive Prince style of typing a user's name, then cutting-and-pasting their comments) about the troubles with "touts" — i.e. ticket resellers, in British parlance.

Generally speaking, many musicians are concerned about resellers — legal in some markets (including Minnesota), illegal in others — who snatch up concert tickets and flip them at sometimes exorbitant markups. A small solo concert by a superstar like Prince would be a prime show for scalpers to target, so it's not surprising that Prince and other parties associated with his tour are concerned about the potential difficulty getting tickets into fans' hands at actual face value.

Meanwhile, the Guardian has published a report on Prince's Paisley Park press conference with European journalists — one offering far more detail than has previously been reported about what seems to have been a cozy conversation with Prince sitting at the keyboard. "If he doesn’t like a question," writes Alexis Petridis, "he strikes up with the theme from The Twilight Zone and shakes his head."

Among the comments newly reported, some regard Prince's persistent love-hate relationship with the Internet. He stands behind his infamous 2010 declaration that "the Internet is completely over."

"What I meant was that the Internet was over for anyone who wants to get paid, and I was right about that,” he now clarifies. “Tell me a musician who’s got rich off digital sales. Apple’s doing pretty good though, right?"

On the other hand, Prince seems to be the only major musician who actually thinks the Internet has had a positive influence on music journalism. "Now, with the Internet," he says, "it’s impossible for a writer to be lazy because everybody will pick up on it. In the past, they said some stuff that was out of line, so I just didn’t have anything to do with them. Now it gets embarrassing to say something untrue, because you put it online and everyone knows about it, so it’s better to tell the truth.”

In addition to sharing an Englishman's take on suburban Minnesota (Paisley Park is described as being "in the middle of nowhere"), Petridis also reports that Prince confirmed that he's trying to clean up his act a bit.

Regarding horny hits like "Head" and "Darling Nikki," Prince now asks, "Could I say things better, more succinctly, more truly? And wider, for example, if you want kids to come to your concerts. Now I’ve got older fans, they have families, so they want to bring their kids, so I think it’s a pretty good move to take some of those songs out, so you can get a bigger audience, to experience the same thing.”

To stay on top of all the latest Prince news—including the big moment when it snows in Chanhassen and we pull our purple lever to go all-Prince on our Local Current stream—sign up for our Purple Alert e-mails.

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