MEGADETH’s DAVID ELLEFSON Defends High Admission Price Of ‘Boot Camp’, Says Band ‘Gave An Exceptional Value’ To Attendees

MEGADETH’s DAVID ELLEFSON Defends High Admission Price Of ‘Boot Camp’, Says Band ‘Gave An Exceptional Value’ To Attendees

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Monday, 17 July 2017
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David Ellefson has defended the high admission cost of the recent Megadeth Boot Camp, explaining that he and his MEGADETH bandmates "gave an exceptional value" to what fans "were provided with" at the event. Megadeth Boot Camp, which took place on March 10-12 on MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine's private estate in Fallbrook, California, was described in a press release as "a once-in-a-lifetime experience for the ultimate MEGADETH fan." Fans willing to plunk down anywhere from $999 to $5,499 were able to go to Mustaine's house for a wine tasting, be enthralled by the band's "fireside stories," take in an acoustic performance, attend assorted music-based clinics, and even get to record their own vocal take of "Symphony Of Destruction". During a recent interview with Screamer Magazine, Ellefson was was asked about some people's belief that the Megadeth Boot Camp seemed to cater only to the upscale MEGADETH fan — the doctor or lawyer who has tons of disposable income, and perhaps plays in a cover band as a weekend warrior. Ellefson responded: "Yeah, well, we did our research and we looked at all the other camps that are out there. And there's several of them out there who cater to exactly who you said, these sort of fifties-, sixties-something classic rock fan who probably is a lawyer, a doctor, a real estate developer who has some excessive disposable income to be able to afford a very high ticket price. I've been involved in some of those camps as a camp counselor and even as a special guest. And I'm always amazed that people are willing to pay that much money. I know that's far above what our fans are going to pay, what they want to pay, and quite honestly, what I think they deserve to have to pay. "I think if you look at the cost of what a Megadeth Boot Camp was, there were three phases, one was $1000 bucks," he continued. "If you lived in the area, you can drive in every day for three days and participate. The other was $2000 if you wanted to have the hotel option, participate every day but stay at a hotel off-site with all the other campers. The third one was camp on Dave's lawns and feel like you're…I know for me as a fan if I could have camped on Gene Simmons's or Jimmy Page's lawn, I would have done it in a heartbeat. "So, I think when you look at what you're really getting — it is exclusive. It's absolutely an exclusive opportunity. This is not… you know, if you want to come and see MEGADETH play their songs at a concert, look, that's open to everybody and you can see us everywhere from a thousand- to a one-hundred-thousand-seat venue and that's why it's priced affordable for everybody. But to come and do something like this where you get the value of everything that we did, I mean, look, I not only did all my MEGADETH duties, I also did a bass clinic, I preached a sermon, I married somebody and I also did a coffee tasting with me. That's five things I participated in in three days that normally I get paid very well to do separately. And if you look at what someone paid to come into the boot camp and do that, well, I gave excessively of my time, talent, energy, brand and 52 years of experience of life as did Kiko [Loureiro], as did Dave, as did Dirk [Verbeuren]. I mean, Dave basically let everybody come over to his house. You know what I mean? So when you view it… and I understand, again, this is a sort of back-and-forth conversation but when you look at the [other camps]… there's another brand in the L.A. area that does camps, you look at what they charge, you look at what other music camps charge, and then you look at what we charge, I feel that we gave an exceptional value to what you were provided with at the camp." The Affliction Clothing video wrap-up of the first-ever Megadeth Boot Camp can be seen below. Mustaine put his Fallbrook house on the market in October 2015 for $5.375 million — more than five times what he paid for it three years earlier — but that price came down in June 2016 by almost a million and a half to $3.895 million and in January 2017 by another $700,000 to $3.195 million. The property was relisted on June 2 with a new agent at an even lower price of $3.175 million. Mustaine and his family moved to Nashville in October 2014.

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