It started with a bulletin board.
The year is 2009, and brothers Dusty and Brando Rich are tired of purchasing tickets to see their favorite bands (mainly Phish) for triple the value due to scalping. The pair decided to pack a bulletin board on summer tour, popping up in parking lots for fans to post their requests, and others to offer trades with their extras. Fellow concert goers took to the idea so well, the Rich brothers came home and launched CashorTrade.org, the world’s first social network where fans can buy, sell, or trade tickets at face value.
Touted as the “Airbnb of concert tickets”, the Burlington-based tech company has grown into an online fan community of over half a million devout members. Cash or Trade hosts members in every state in the nation and more than 20 countries around the globe. In 2017, Cash or Trade caught the attention of the ticketing industry during Phish’s “Bakers Dozen” at Madison Square Garden. The site handled more than 50,000 transactions, accounting for 25% of the stadium’s seats during the 13-night run.
And then the pandemic hit, grounding all live music events indefinitely.
They say when one door closes, another door opens… and for CashorTrade, that door blew off the hinges. Rich and the CashorTrade team, a group of nearly twenty rabid music fans, spent the touring hiatus nurturing relationships with artists, agencies, and managers. As they weathered the storm together, Cash or Trade realized their true potential within the music industry. Their goal had always been to keep tickets in the hands of real fans, and to do that, they needed to start with the source: the bands. Artists were also seeking a solution to release tickets in a way that leveraged an anti-scalper type technology and would put the tickets in the hands of fans over brokers.
“It is an amazing and exciting time for live music and CashorTrade,” says Brando Rich. “Working directly with artists to help protect their fans and avoid scalping has been a dream of ours since the very beginning."
While the jam music space has been successful Cash or Trade, the ticketing platform is currently scaling into other genres with upcoming ticket drops for Americana artists like Grammy award-winning artist, Billy Strings. Strings has been a vocal supporter of CashorTrade for some time, but their latest partnership to sell a portion of tickets directly from Cash or Trade takes his commitment to his fans to a new level.
Beginning on Wednesday, September 28th, CashorTrade will be releasing a number of For Sale ticket posts for String’s sold out “Away From The Shire” Lord of The Rings themed Halloween run in Asheville, NC. Tickets will be available here beginning at 12 pm est.
“With any lottery or on-sale, there is always an influx of scalpers,” says Brando Rich, CEO and co-founder. “At CashorTrade we involve a more manual curation– members create a profile and gain reviews, which creates a set of data points that determine if someone is a real fan more than any other ticket platform.”
With this latest announcement, CashorTrade continues to solidify their position as a formidable opponent to scalpers and a “ticket karma” alternative to the current primary market. Strings joins the ranks of Phish, Tyler Childers, Little Feat and Goose on CashorTrade, all of which previously hosted ticket drops on the site for sold out events. The site is also currently partnered with music festivals like FloydFest, Summer Meltdown, Northwest String Summit, Northlands Music & Arts Festival, and Domefest.
For more information on CashorTrade, face value tickets, and upcoming drops, please visit www.cashortrade.org.