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Biting the 'dust

A last-minute switch takes Sevendust out of the City Auditorium and into The Black Sheep

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Now might not be the best time to meet Sevendust in a - back alley...
  • Now might not be the best time to meet Sevendust in a back alley...

Oh, the perils of being a middling, well-known, but apparently not-as-popular-as-it-thought alternative metal band.

After three and a half weeks of ticket sales, Sevendust's performance at the City Auditorium has been moved mostly, it seems, due to a lack of support for the Atlanta-based band. The show will now instead be at The Black Sheep, says Geoff Brent, that venue's general manager.

Brent, who learned of the news Tuesday morning, says a deal was struck between the booking agency that owns his venue, Soda Jerk Presents, and AEG Live, the powerhouse concert booking/promotion agency. AEG originally tried placing the Sevendust show in the City Auditorium, which has a standing-room capacity of 3,000 people.

Owned by Denver billionaire Philip Anschutz, AEG is the second-largest live music and events presenter in the world, after the Clear Channel-owned Live Nation. The company only recently took up shop in Anschutz's backyard, causing a shakeup among Front Range-based concert promotions. At least two employees left Live Nation for AEG, leaving Live Nation to recruit agents from smaller, local companies and help from its other regional marketplaces.

The Sevendust show was part of a two-pronged AEG attempt to start promoting shows at the City Auditorium. In an interview last week, before the switch, building manager John Carricato said the Sevendust show was booked second, and packaged with the Godsmack concert set for that venue July 24.

"We actually worked [the Godsmack show] out first," Carricato said. "[The people at AEG] are the ones driving this [Sevendust show]. My role is to provide the information so they can make a decision."

Other companies, including Soda Jerk Presents, have contacted Carricato within the past year to try and book the City Auditorium. Largely because of scheduling conflicts, Carricato said, most of those proposals fell through.

While Carricato stressed that he has just a small role in the process, he did express excitement over hosting the AEG shows.

"[The City Aud] is a community facility and, philosophically, it's my job to bring big draws into this building," he said. "Sevendust and Godsmack will do that."

Calls to Carricato on Tuesday, after the venue change went into effect, were not returned, leaving his closing words from the previous week to ring ominously.

"Sometimes," Carricato said, "we get the reputation that our concerts don't fill, and we can't get people downtown."

Brent, for his part, expects the Sevendust concert to do quite well in his 450-person capacity room.

"They'll definitely sell out The Black Sheep, which not a lot of bands can do," he says.

Brent assures that tickets bought for the City Auditorium performance will be honored at his venue. He also says he expects the Godsmack concert to remain at the City Aud likely because that group's draw is larger than Sevendust's.

"They'll do well there," he says.

pete@csindy.com

Sevendust with Operator, Diecast and Point One

The Black Sheep, 2106 E. Platte Ave.

Tuesday, June 26, 6 p.m.

Tickets: $22.50 in advance, $25 day-of show; visit ticketmaster.com or ticketweb.com.

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