2010 By The Numbers (So Far)

It’s no secret ticket sales are down compared to previous years, but do you have what it takes to stare into the numbers for the first six months of 2010 without flinching? You do? Then grab hold of something nailed to the floor.

Photo: Tony Nelson
Xcel Energy Center, Saint Paul, Minn.

While compiling Pollstar’s Mid Year Business Analysis and charts we discovered an approximate 15 percent drop in key concert industy indicators. While some geographical areas are doing better than others, mostly because of higher employment figures, current economic conditions appear to be affecting all markets regardless of size.

But it’s not exactly a complete, across-the-board drop in ticket sales. Larger shows are feeling the economic pain more than their smaller counterparts. What’s more, club shows are still attracting respectably sized audiences.

Of course, there are some tours that always do well. Paul McCartney can still play Mexico City and sell more than 100,000 tickets. But then, not everyone is a former Beatle.

Our Top 100 Tours for the first six months have a combined gross of $965.5 million, down $196.8 million, or 17 percent, from the same period one year ago. If you want to find a lower number you’ll have to go back to 2005 when the mid-year gross volume was $730.9 million.

To read Pollstar’s complete Mid Year Business Analysis, just click here for the PDF.

Photo: AP Photo
Foro Sol / Autodromo Hernandez Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico

Top 100 North American Tours

Everybody likes lists and we’re no different. We love lists showing who’s selling tickets, how much they’re selling tickets for and who’s winning and who’s, well, not doing so well.

When you add up all the tickets sold in North America for the first six months of 2010, Bon Jovi comes out on top, playing 38 shows in 28 markets and selling more than a half million tickets for a total gross of $52.8 million.

The James Taylor / Carole King tour nabs second place, playing 33 shows in 27 markets, selling just over 473,000 tickets for a total gross of $41 million. Taylor Swift comes in at third place, 39 shows in 30 cities, 556,331 tickets sold for a total gross of $34.2 million. Fourth place goes to Paul McCartney who played only seven shows in five markets, but sold 243,921 tickets for a total gross of $31.6 million.

Photo: Andrew Markowitz
Verizon Center, Washington, D.C.

And fifth place? That would be the George Strait / Reba / Lee Ann Womack tour, playing 20 shows in 20 cities, selling 344,186 tickets for a total gross of $29.8 million.

Also in the Top 100 are all the bands and artists you’d expect to be selling tickets, including The Black Eyed Peas (No. 6), Nickelback (No. 9), Jay-Z (No. 12), Eric Clapton (No. 14) and Brad Paisley (No. 16).

Want more? Sure you do. Click here for Pollstar’s Top 100 North American Tours and here for our Top 50 Worldwide Tours.