Mercy Sells, but Who's Buying?

The Manu Chao Craigslist ticket war: A microcosm of capitalism, anarchy, and desperation

The sold-out August 7 Manu Chao concert in Prospect Park was two days away, and glad to have secured my own ticket well ahead of time but rather desperate to find one for a visiting friend, I turned to Craigslist, hoping to find at least a couple offers. What I found instead was a battlefield. Into the fray leapt brash sellers flexing their bargaining muscles; buyers, far more desperate than me, offering outrageous sums of money and more for the once $25 tickets, including a heartfelt plea from "three beautiful models"; and morally outraged onlookers who condemned scalping—any form of capitalism, really—in connection with the proudly political musician.

Below are some of my favorite posts, divided into categories and with all spelling/grammar/capitalization idiosyncrasies intact.


"Always fun and amazing, and always a capitalist extravaganza."
photo: Giulietta Verdon-Roe
"Always fun and amazing, and always a capitalist extravaganza."

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See also:
  • Pogoing Among the Bongos
    World-rock egalitarian takes it to the bridge
    Uday Benegal on Manu Chao at the Prospect Park Bandshell
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    We Have What You Want

    I have 4 passes to the show. Best offer gets them. You will have to pay cash ahead of time and will be guestlisted for the show under your own name. Just to be clear, best offer means you make an offer, not ask me what the best offer is. I will not respond to that question. Thank you.

    I have extra two tickets to Manu Chao concert. What criteria should I use to decide who to sell them to: highest bidder (cash and/or goods), first come first serve, best post to this response, or some other criteria? If interested in influencing my decision, please reply. I will repost an offer—that is if I do not award them to someone replying to this message—taking into account submitted suggestions.

    I have 2 tickets. $300 for the pair. Serious inquiries only.


    You Have What We Need. Is There Anything You Want?

    I am one of the unfortunate souls that was beat out of Manu Chao tickets. I am willing to offer Cash or preferably goods, I have some bottles of some pretty amazing Tequila. Patron, 3 Generaciones, Don Julio, you name it. These agave spirits are bound to give you your tickets worth, other goods available if Tequila is not your thing.

    Soooo... There's this girl that I wanted to take to the Manu Chao show but I wanted to make sure she was coming before I got the ticket. You see where this is going, yeah? The thing is I lied about having the ticket and now they're told out. Anybody has an extra ticket I can buy? I'm willing to pay money or body parts.

    Will pay face value and/or more or face value AND been told that I put the most amazing music compilations(that is if we have the same taste) together...will put together some cd's for you...priceless...should you have my deep, dark taste in music. spend many of my waking hours finding cool, obscure music...(knew about manu chao many many years ago).


    Why We Deserve Mercy

    I would like to buy your Manu Chao tickets. I'm only going to pay face value + Ticketmaster expenses unless the profit you make off my ticket is donated to some charitable cause that does not include your own morale (ie extra spending money, drinks, pot, etc). I will pay in cash or check and meet your wherever you'd like.

    Manu Chao is our favorite musician—and he's playing on Aug 7th—our anniversary. If you have 2 tickets that you're willing to sell we would REALLY appreciate it...we're willing to meet up wherever and whenever to arrange pick up. Thank you!

    My girlfriend came all the way from Costa Rica to see Manu Chao in Brooklyn on August 7th. We are looking for 2 tickets. Please have a heart and offer us a reasonable price.


    Capitalist Pigs, All!

    Manu Chao Way to demonstrate the monstrosity of capitalism in the U.S.—$300

    You people scalping tickets to the Manu Chao show for more than face value SUCK. No wonder he hates playing the U.S. He's kind enough to play in venues where EVERYONE should be able to see him, and scalpers buy up the tickets and turn around to sell them for $300, or the best offer, or only to women who smoke pot, or for the correct answer to some elitist political pop quiz. I'll wait and see him in South America, where the people have power and the poor have cojones. Considering the price of tickets to see him in Brooklyn, I can fly to Argentina for a few dollars more. Viva Castro! Viva Chavez! Viva Evo Morales! Viva Lula! Viva la Gente!

    Two Manu Chao tickets—all you for just $3.5 million. I plead you to make offers to all these jackass scalpers, arrange to meet up and then BAIL on them. Or show up, beat the piss out of them, and then take their tickets. This is what Manu wants.


    Capitalist Pig Rebuttal

    The same "socialists" and "communists" who get on a high horse about the capitalist scalpers, well they might be reminded that they bought their Che shirts from capitalists and their spliffs from capitalists and their burned knock-off Manu Chao CD's from capitalists on the streets. How is one additional "capitalist" consumer purchase gonna tarnish their already hypocritical souls? Think about this: the ticket-selling dude and the marijuana-selling dude are doing the exact same thing. And your internet connection and your computer may have actually been sold to you by capitalists as well. I've been to see Manu Chao many times in many locations, and its the same everywhere: Germany, Mexico, Paris, and now Prospect Park. All the same. Always fun and amazing, and always a capitalist extravaganza.

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