When Bob Seger Only Sold 800 Tickets and Axed a Kalamazoo Concert
A 1975 concert on campus at Western Michigan University was canceled because of poor ticket sales. The next year, Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band exploded.
Michigan knew Bob Seger was a star long before the rest of the country. Correction: some of Michigan knew Bob Seger was a star long before the rest of the country Despite taking place three months after the seminal album Live Bullet was recorded, Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band had to call off a Kalamazoo concert at Western Michigan University because less than half the tickets had been sold. An admin of the Vanished Kalamazoo Facebook group classified a recent post as "From the 'hard to believe' file..."
A Bob Seger concert scheduled for Thursday, December 4th, 1975 at the WMU Read Field House was canceled the day before the show because there had only been 800 advance tickets sold!
The poster shows tickets priced at $4.50- definitely hard to believe.
Bob Seger had success right out of the box with Ramblin' Gamblin Man from the Bob Seger System in 1969. The title track cracked the Top 20 on the national charts, but two follow-up albums did next to nothing. Bob Seger released Brand New Morning, Smokin' O.P.'s, Back in '72, and Seven under his own name with limited success. "Turn the Page" did not even chart when it was released in 1972.
Live Bullet changed everything. Recorded at Detroit's Legendary Cobo Hall on September 4th and 5th of 1975, it finally captured the emotional power of Bob Seger's songs and the power of the Silver Bullet Band. Noted rock critic Dave Marsh calls it "one of the best live albums ever made." Here's the thing. Even though the WMU show was scheduled after the Cobo concerts, Live Bullet hadn't hit record stores yet. It was released in April of 1976.
Several members of the Vanished Kalamazoo community talked about having tickets, or wishing they had been at the Bob Seger concert that never was.
- I was one of those 800 tickets sold!
- Hard to believe! Love his 🎶 🎵
- What makes it even crazier is that it’s a Michigan band!
- I'd love to go back in time and see this!!!
- talked to Eddie Van Halen after their concert in Kazoo and mentioned this to him. He just smiled and giggled a little…
- Love those ticket prices. Seen him many times always a great show.
- Paid $450 for 2 tickets 3 years ago
- Woulda been a show to remember