Biggest of 2012: Pollstar’s Year End Top 50 Worldwide Concert Tours

Bruce Springsteen

Sorry, Bruce, but you're not Number One...

Story by Greg Haymes
Photograph by Kirsten Ferguson

The concert industry bible Pollstar has announced its round-up of the biggest grossing concert tours of 2012, and the list makes for some fascinating reading.

Here are a few tidbits that we gleaned from the list:

Only three of the Top 10 acts made tour stops in the Capital Region – Bruce Springsteen, Roger Waters and Cirque du Soleil – all of which played at the Times Union Center. No Top 10 acts played at SPAC.

Three Cirque du Soleil shows – “Michael Jackson: The Immortal,” “Varekai” and “Alegria” – ranked in the Top 20 concerts. And a grand total of eight – count ‘em, 8 – different Cirque shows all landed in the Top 50.

Not So Road Weary: Paul McCartney played only 16 shows, but he still managed to rake in $56.9 million, ranking him #11. And Barbra Streisand played a dozen shows, but pulled in $40.7 million (#22). But the Rolling Stones (#33) scored the biggest average gross, hauling in $35.5 million in just five concerts.

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Of course, the Stones also had the highest average ticket price, too – $529.51.

Half of the Top 10 concerts had an average ticket price in excess of $100.

The highest ranked hip-hop act was Drake (#19), who pulled in $43.4 million.

The highest ranked country act was the Kenny Chesney & Tim McGraw double-bill (#7), which raked in $96.5 million.

Biggest surprise: Andre Rieu – the Waltz King – hauled in $55.6, landing him at #12, in between Paul McCartney and Jennifer Lopez.

Here’s Pollstar’s list of the Top 10 highest grossing tours with the gross (in millions):

1. Madonna – $296.1
2. Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band – $210.2
3. Roger Waters – $186.4
4. Coldplay – $171.3
5. Lady Gaga – $161.4
6. Cirque du Soleil’s Michael Jackson: The Immortal – $140.2
7. Kenny Chesney & Tim McGraw – $96.5
8. Metallica – $86.1
9. Elton John – $69.9
10. Red Hot Chili Peppers – $57.8

Go here for Pollstar’s complete list of the Top 50 tours…

One Response to “Biggest of 2012: Pollstar’s Year End Top 50 Worldwide Concert Tours”

  1. dan hogan says:

    I saw none of them and I saw a number of great concerts this year:

Caffe LenaHolly & EvanCartoonist John CaldwellAdvertise on Nippertown!Artist Charles HaymesThe LindaLeave Regular Radio BehindBerkshire On StageKeep Albany BoringHudson SoundsThistle Hill WeaversArtist GG Roberts