[image-1]When country singer-guitarist Eric Church last played in town in 2014, he delivered a two-hour concert in front of a packed house at Quicken Loans Arena. Drawing on his rock roots, he put on an energetic show that came off as the country equivalent of a Springsteen concert. Church even sang a few riffs from Springsteen’s “Born in the U.S.A.” as an intro to his hit “Springsteen.”
Now, Church is set to return to the Q on Feb. 24, 2017. The tour comes on the heels of thge single, “Record Year,” from Church’s latest album, Mr. Misunderstood. For the first time ever, there will be no support act on this tour. Eric Church and the ECB will play two full sets with an intermission in between.
In an effort to ensure his core fans get great tickets at face value, Church has revamped the pre-sale and on-sale process to eliminate scalpers from the equation. We’ve taken some language from the official press release to explain the process.
“In this era where growing inequality seems to be the norm, we wanted to do everything within our power to put the advantage back in the hands of true fans rather than those that take advantage of the system, and by extension our people,” says John Peets, Church’s manager in a statement. “It was important to us to invest time into evaluating and redesigning the ticket buying process and build the technology to level the playing field.”
Church and his team have developed a new fan club pre-sale system that will allow them to remove scalpers from the pre-sale process before it even happens. Church Choir members will pre-register for the fan club pre-sale prior to it starting. Once verified, fan club members will receive buy links via text message when the pre-sale starts. Scalpers that are found to be gaming the system and posing as real fans won’t receive the buy link at all.
Church has secured a larger allotment of fan club tickets than in the past so fan club members will have much better success buying tickets in the pre-sale. The fan club pre-sale will be the only pre-sale, and there will be no venue, credit card or radio pre-sales.
As on past tours, Church will continue to cancel any and all orders found to be made by scalpers. For the current tour, he’s even commissioned a proprietary technology that identifies ticket purchases using up to 10 different data points and automatically flags orders made by scalpers. Church cautions fans to stay away from the secondary market because it’s likely those tickets will be invalid by the time the show happens. Finally, delivery of all ticket orders will be delayed until the days leading up to each show.
“The way this album came together mandated we release it as a surprise, straight to our fans, as it was important for me to deliver the music the same way the creativity hit me—directly and swiftly. What I didn’t anticipate is that it left me scratching my head a little as this year was supposed to be spent writing,” Church says. “What this year’s open schedule did afford us was time to think through the way the fans experience our music live, and it was important to us that we find a way to stick to these same principles when it came to approaching our shows, down to the way they go on sale.”
Pre-sale registrations for the tour run through 11:59 p.m. CT on Tuesday, Aug. 23. Pre-sale purchase links and unique codes will be sent directly via text message to pre-registered standard and premium fan club members, affording them a three-day window to purchase tickets to the shows. This fan club pre-sale begins at 11 a.m. CT on Friday, Sept. 9, and ends at 11:59 p.m. CT on Sunday, Sept. 11.