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Sean A

Open Letter to Radiohead

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Dear Radiohead,

 

I am a Radiohead fan that goes way, way back. I first saw the band when they opened for Belly in 1993. Since then, I have seen just about every show they played in the Los Angeles area. I have watched as they progressed from clubs and small halls to arena-sized crowds and headlining Coachella.

 

I still remember the exact moment when I knew Radiohead had jumped into the realm of the concert greats...the bands that could sell out any show, any time, at the drop of a hat (Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Bruce Springsteen, U2). It was when the April 1, 1998 Universal Amphitheatre concert went on sale and tickets were gone in minutes.

 

From that point on, Radiohead was a band everyone knew they had to see in concert. And if the fans knew it, the band and their management surely must have known it, as well.

 

In 2000, they sold out two nights at the Greek Theatre in LA lickety-split. By 2001, they were headlining the Hollywood Bowl (capacity 18,000). On both the 2003 Hail to the Thief tour and the 2008 In Rainbows tour, they sold out multiple nights at the Hollywood Bowl. Not to mention the Coachella Festival appearances that created mania. They could easily sell out a week at the L.A. Forum, just as Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones did in the 1970s.

 

That is why I find it slightly disingenuous for Thom Yorke to express surprise and shock about tickets selling so quick for the Los Angeles shows. Los Angeles, a city of 10-plus million people, got two dates at the puny Shrine Auditorium while New York at least got two nights at Madison Square Garden. That is only 12,000 tickets for L.A. compared to 40,000 for New York. When you add in the amount of tickets that are pulled for industry weasels and celebrities at L.A. shows, that number of 12,000 drops even more. I bet there were scarcely 10,000 tickets that actually went on sale for the L.A. shows.

 

I don't know about you, but I find that a bit cruel to Radiohead's Los Angeles fans...of which, there are considerably more than 12,000. I understand why the band doesn't want to play Staples Center (it sucks as a concert venue) and the Hollywood Bowl wasn't available this summer due to its summer season. But the Forum has been renovated and restored and is even owned by the Madison Square Garden people now. If the Forum is good enough for Bruce and U2, it should be good enough for Radiohead. Two dates at minimum, preferably three, should have been scheduled at the Forum for this tour.

 

Thanks to the extreme shortage of tickets for the Shrine shows, the cheapest tickets on the secondary markets start at $1,200-$1,300. Congratulations Radiohead! You have pretty much guaranteed that the Los Angeles shows will be filled with rich, yuppie assholes who will chitter and chat and look at their phones all throughout your concert...until you play the one song that they recognize: "Creep". How ironic.

 

I am still going to try to get a ticket somehow. I still love the band and hate missing out on any concert they play. But I wish they would have shown more consideration for the Los Angeles Radiohead fan on this tour. I can't believe Thom and the band's management are that out of touch with their popularity that they really thought two measly shows at the Shrine Auditorium would suffice for a market the size of L.A.

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Or you could live in Australasia and not have them here at all.  'two measly shows' - fuck off!

 

I still have all my fingers and toes crossed that they'll come to Aus next year...

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Or you could live in Australasia and not have them here at all.  'two measly shows' - fuck off!

  

I still have all my fingers and toes crossed that they'll come to Aus next year...

I am sure they will make their way Down Under eventually. Meanwhile, at last look the minimum price for Shrine tix was $1,800.

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considering that they're all old now and family men, it's not that surprising that this tour is really relaxed and spread out. i felt majorly disappointed too when all 3 London shows sold out in minutes but i don't exactly blame them for it. they've spoken about the impact of long intensive tours on their health and personal relationships. it's the same for most bands. "they've make it to your country eventually" is a piss poor response if they're in the same mood towards touring and when they do get there, they just play one or two cities like everywhere else. 

 

but ffs - we're badly open-lettering them now? and being all entitled and judgemental about how the people who did get tickets won't even listen to them the right way? scalpers suck and getting tickets was a shitty lottery and people charge that silly money because there is a demand for it probably not from yuppies but desperate fans who'll see them at any cost.

 

OP you sound like a twat, just at the other end of the fandom spectrum.

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At least they're still touring at all. I dunno they owe us exactly nothing. They've given me three of the most important albums of my life plus 5 more that I adore (and one I like a whole lot). I can't repay them for that in any way other than not being a baby when I they don't do what I want.

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this band did not save my life or alter my state of being.

 

They did however make things much more bareable for me as a teen during the Bush Jr. years. And gave me a much needed respite.

 

They owe me nothing in return - and for all the shit that fame and fortune did to scramble Thoms head in the late 90s early 00s - let's just call it even.

 

This was a serious reason why i love in rainbows. They finally looked like they were having fun. I was sharing in the joy with them. There was no longer a feeling like I was exploiting their anger or sadness for my own personal peace of mind.

 

This has continued on and it's been beautiful. The last 9 years of radiohead have been more gratifying for me than those first 5 years.

 

Because the band and I are both having fun.

 

They don't owe me anything. I don't owe them.

 

Quit complaining and enjoy the ride before it's over.

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Dear Radiohead, the last time you were in my country was in 2003 and you have released three albums since. I could be an ungrateful twat but instead I took holidays in Lisbon and went to see you there. Most countries in the world don't even get to ever host you. Sincerely, etc.

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I'm all for open discussion. But if you just want to call people names, I have no time for you.

 

It takes time to tour the world and it definitely takes time to set up an Australian tour. The travel alone to Australia is exhausting and expensive. So I don't see how my response that Radiohead will get around to touring Australia is a "piss-poor response". Especially, if as you say, they are spreading out their tours so as not to wear them out.

 

Once they get through with their current tour, I can see them wanting to rest at home with families thru the holidays before thinking about revving up the tour machinery again.

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i think I can sympathize kind of, because no one I know in london (not counting mt) was able to get in the roundhouse, and I can only imagine how big the uk fan base is.

 

but yeah I don't blame them for keeping the tour brief and we aren't entitled to anything to begin with

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It takes time to tour the world and it definitely takes time to set up an Australian tour. The travel alone to Australia is exhausting and expensive. So I don't see how my response that Radiohead will get around to touring Australia is a "piss-poor response". Especially, if as you say, they are spreading out their tours so as not to wear them out.

 

Once they get through with their current tour, I can see them wanting to rest at home with families thru the holidays before thinking about revving up the tour machinery again.

 

you're missing the point. they're not touring the world. this is not a "world tour" in the usual sense of that phrase. i meant that they're spreading these dates out. they've played some festivals, and then a couple of dates here and there, with relatively long breaks in between. they're spreading 28 shows over months and months. that could be a 5-week schedule for some other bands. 

 

i'd love to see them too but touring must be shit and i imagine most bands only do it these days because it's a necessary evil. radiohead don't really need to do that anymore. they're probably still enjoying that OKC tour money so why would they bother killing themselves with 100+ dates if they don't need to? especially at this point in their career?

 

my main gripe about the UK shows was that usually UK bands know better. US bands maybe don't get our two countries differing senses of scale and so the north gets neglected. to have a UK band as big as them only do the capital is really weird. but then taking a less self-centred look at these dates, it's the same in every other country they're visiting and they're not even visiting that many countries anyway. so meh if that's how they feel then fine. don't see the point in being bitter and entitled about it. especially since the Periscoping during the European leg was amazing. that immediacy is unprecedented and this tour, despite its size, has been the most communal feeling for maybe 10 years in terms of connecting their fan base.

 

i can't remember where but they've said that they didn't really expect much from AMSP. they didn't think anyone would care and that self doubt is possibly a contributing factor to this tour being so minimal. but the response has been pretty great and Alan said in the Roundhouse thread that there were rumours of them doing more dates next year. if that happens, that'll be nice. 

 

i don't blame people feeling disappointed and feeling like they've missed out but whole tone of OP was just cringeworthy.

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Also it's worth noting they played small shows AND festivals. Small shows are hard to get tickets for, festivals aren't. Obviously festical tickets cost more but in relative terms considering how much more a festival offers it's not bad at all.

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Also it's worth noting they played small shows AND festivals. Small shows are hard to get tickets for, festivals aren't. Obviously festical tickets cost more but in relative terms considering how much more a festival offers it's not bad at all.

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pretty sure thom had a breakdown last time he did one of those stupidly long massive world tours.

 

 

sure it's annoying(3 UK GIGS!) but if they dont want to its not like they owe you anything.

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