One thing we hear on a regular basis is why don't we have entertainment in our city? Why do people always go to Houston, New Orleans and even Lafayette before they come here? I can't answer the question, but it could have something to do with poor ticket sales. I have seen concerts promoted heavily in the area with advertising on top of advertising, and still saw very minimal attendance.

2016 ESSENCE Festival Presented By Coca-Cola Ernest N. Morial Convention Center - Day 4
Getty Images for 2016 Essence Fe

I remember when Nephew Tommy came here in 2010 for the first time. We promoted the concert heavily on the radio and he talked about it daily on the Steve Harvey Morning Show, as well. This went on for well over two months and the presale tickets moved very slowly. On the day of the event, there were well over 800 tickets sold. While the concert ended up being a pretty successful night for Tommy, a lot of promoters can't wait until the night of an event to rely on ticket sales. Their focus is on presale tickets. This is a deciding factor of whether the show will happen or be cancelled.

2013 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Music Festival - Day 1
Getty Images

While the promoter can cut his or her losses and move on to the next city, it's not a good look for future shows' potential in the area. We love hip hop, Southern Soul, Zydeco, R&B and more. But the casinos seem to be the only places of business who do well with concerts, while the hard working promoters can't get the support to pull off a successful event.

No one wants to lose money, but word of mouth is passing around about our city. All it takes is one promoter to go and tell the next promoter that Lake Charles is not going to come out, and we have lost another concert or festival. We hear folks saying all the time if we had this in Lake Charles, we would go; then you get something close to that and no one shows up. It's similar to going to a club where the DJ is playing all of the hits out the gate with only about 2-3 people dancing. Let's just say that's not a successful night for the venue or the DJ.

Who would you like to see in concert here? What is a reasonable ticket price and what's a determining factor that you will get you to support it? New Orleans pulls in thousands of patrons every year for Essence Music Festival and The New Orleans Jazz Fest, as well as The Bayou Classics. What can Lake Charles do to get to that point? Only time will tell, but we have to get out, support and let them know that our money spends like everyone else's.

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