Grateful Dead's Fare Thee Well: Stage Revealed as Secondary Ticket Market Heats Up

Grateful Dead Stage - H 2015
Courtesy of Peter Shapiro

Grateful Dead Stage - H 2015

According to StubHub, sales for the band's five shows outpaced Taylor Swift's average by 65 percent.

The stage is set for the Grateful Dead's Fare The Well shows — literally. The 50th anniversary celebration kicks off Saturday, June 27 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., where the above photo was taken on June 22. Joining the "core four" — Dead members Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann — will be Phish’s Trey Anastasio, Bruce Hornsby and Jeff Chimenti for a two-night stand followed by three penultimate shows in Chicago on July 3-5.
Marking the close of this latest chapter in the Dead's long strange trip, it was a given that the demand for tickets would be unrivaled. The number of initial mail order ticket requests for the Chicago shows numbered over 500,000. As a result the large majority of fans were shut out, forcing the addition of the two California shows, near the band’s hometown of San Francisco. When the Chicago run sold out in just one hour on Ticketmaster, fans still searching for tickets were forced to turn to the secondary market, which initially raised the prices drastically but has since leveled. 
Secondary market giant StubHub released some interesting statistics about the fluctuating demand for tickets, travel trends and much more about the five upcoming Fare The Well concerts.
How much bread for the Dead? StubHub ticket prices for Santa Clara average out at $187, while Chicago commands $693 per show. The good news, however, for fans still looking for a miracle is that prices are dropping. Over the past week, prices have fallen 16 percent for Santa Clara and 20 percent for Chicago. The lowest price on StubHub at press time for Santa Clara is an unbelievable $17, while the worst seat in the house in Soldier Field is going for $154. Conversely there are many tickets for all five concerts listed on StubHub for a whopping $11,000, while a ticket in a suite in Soldier Field will set you back $20,000. There is even a pair of tickets listed for over $1.1 million dollars on StubHub for Saturday’s concert in Santa Clara.
Have ticket, will travel: The Chicago shows over the fourth of July weekend are drawing fans from all over the U.S., while those attending the Santa Clara shows are predominately from California. Some 86 percent of fans attending the three Chicago shows are from outside Illinois, while 59 percent of those going to the two Santa Clara shows live in California.
Grateful state of mind: The top five states attending the hometown shows in Santa Clara shows are California, Colorado, Oregon, Washington and New York, while the top five states represented in Chicago will be Illinois (accounting for only 14 percent), California, New York, Florida and Massachusetts. 
The Grateful Dead’s five shows are commanding more sales per show than any other artist on StubHub. While Taylor Swift is the site’s highest selling tour this summer, the Dead saw 65 percent more purchases per show.
The five upcoming Fare The Well concerts will outsell every music festival this year with the exception of Coachella, according to StubHub.
The Grateful Dead top the list of legacy artist’s on tour this summer, doubling the StubHub sales of Paul McCartney, while the Rolling Stones, Fleetwood Mac, Rush, AC/DC, U2, Van Halen, The Who and Garth Brooks follow.