Rod Stewart for 20 Bucks!

When you’re a copywriter, you’re responsible for every word on the page or on the screen. Big agencies have proofreaders, but still, you have to think about everything that’s there, and everything that’s not there. Even a single word can change the customer experience. Case in point. I recently bought tickets to see Rod Stewart for $20. I know! Sweet, right?

I’m on a mailing list for a service called Bands In Town. It’s pretty cool. You put in your preferences, and they let you know when people you like are coming to town. So a couple of weeks ago, I got an email notifying me that Rod Stewart is coming to town. To this little club called Mozambique in Laguna Beach. With Tina Turner. Whaaat? I thought, it’s gotta be a tribute band. But I clicked on the Bands In Town link, and it had Rod Stewart’s official tour dates displayed. Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands…and Laguna Beach.

I started to get cautiously excited. I know that in the past, I’d heard about major acts playing small clubs as little, under-the-radar gigs to try out new material or as a dress rehearsal for a major tour. So I’m thinking, maybe Rod and Tina want to break the ice in a small club before starting their tour.

But still, that little voice inside me was saying, “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.”

So I did more checking. Mozambique wasn’t open yet, so I couldn’t call them. But I went to their website, and sure enough, there was a picture of Rod and Tina. I looked everywhere. No mention of a tribute band anywhere. But I also noticed The Babys were playing there, and John Waite was also coming soon. For those who don’t know, John Waite used to be the lead singer for The Babys, but isn’t touring with them. Just a coincidence that they’re both playing there, I guess, though on separate dates.

So anyway. Clearly real acts play there, so it still wasn’t out of the question. But come on. Rod Stewart and Tina Turner for $20? Everything inside me was screaming “Tribute!”, but no mention of it anywhere.

Then FOMO (fear of missing out) started kicking in big-time. I got the notification, I had the opportunity, and once it hit facebook or wherever else, the tix would be gone in a heartbeat. So I pulled the trigger. I got two tickets and was excited when the transaction went through.

Excited, I went back to work. But as I worked, the thought kept nagging at me. So I Googled Rod Stewart and Tina Turner, and a bunch of videos popped up. From their tour, no doubt. I scanned the results, reading through all the descriptions. Then finally, I saw it: tribute.

Dang. I knew it.

I waited until Mozambique opened and called them. When a girl answered the phone I said, “Hi, this is going to sound stupid, but I thought it was really Rod Stewart and Tina Turner playing there. I know, only 20 bucks in Laguna Beach, but still, I thought maybe it was a warmup gig or something.” I went through my whole explanation, how it didn’t say “tribute” anywhere, and she didn’t interrupt me once.

When I was finished, she said, “Don’t worry, you’re not the only one. We got quite a few calls about it. The promoter didn’t list it properly, and everyone picked it up as the real deal. Refunds are no problem.”

Whew. I was glad, but think of how much time and trouble could have been saved by making sure the listing said “tribute” in the first place. The promoter wouldn’t make it as a copywriter, that’s for sure.

It’ll probably be a good show, but I think I’ll pass. Maybe I’ll see you at the John Waite show, though. That one’s legit.

I made sure to ask.


P.S. Happy St. Valentine’s Day!

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