Chart Scene: Elton John 2022’s Top Performer On Artist Power Index

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LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – NOVEMBER 20: Elton John performs at Dodger Stadium on November 20, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images)

Elton John comes full circle as the highest-ranked performer on the Artist Power Index at the end of the year, as he was also the first to rank No. 1 when the inaugural chart was introduced and published in the first issue in February. His year on the road with the “Farewell Yellow Brick Road” tour has seen him excel at the box office in both arenas and stadiums – enough to score the highest Live rank on the chart.

He averaged $2.4 million per show at arenas during a 40-show stretch through 32 U.S. cities from January through April. Then, for the remainder of the year, he was a stadium headliner with concerts performed in both European and North American venues. Beginning on May 27 with a stadium event at Deutsche Bank Park in Frankfurt, Germany, through his three-night engagement at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, Nov. 17-20, his average gross per night at stadiums on both continents came to $5.9 million.

He is also featured on the Top 100 Worldwide Tours (see page 28) with the second-highest overall gross of the year at $273.8 million behind Bad Bunny’s massive $393 million haul. And, in the North American top tour rankings, he again lands at No. 2 among the 200 top grossers. 

Along with Sir Elton, only seven other artists have appeared at No. 1 on the Artist Power Index in 2022. Katy Perry took the top position for its second week in the issue dated Feb. 14, followed by Imagine Dragons the next week. Dua Lipa was the first to repeat atop the chart, and she did so at the end of February and beginning of March during the early weeks of her “Future Nostalgia” tour’s opening trek through the U.S. and Canada.

Then with the launch of Justin Bieber’s “Justice” tour – ultimately cut short due to his health issues, the pop star quickly ascended to No. 1 where he stayed for a total of 10 weeks. Ed Sheeran doubled that, though, and held on to No. 1 for an impressive 20 weeks during the summer run of his “Mathematics” tour in Europe. Bad Bunny, who usually was found in the second slot on the chart behind Sheeran, made it to No. 1 for five issues after the end of Sheeran’s stadium tour. Then, Harry Styles earned the top chart position for two weeks in the fall. Those eight concert headliners – along with Coldplay and Morgan Wallen – fill out the top 10 on the APX year-end rankings.

The Artist Power Index ranks the current global popularity of musical artists based on four distinct metrics – ticket sales data reported to Pollstar along with market activity for live concerts, streaming audience and social activity monitored by Chartmetric and airplay audience data from Mediabase. Each week, the chart is created using the streaming, social and airplay results from the most recent seven-day period and live concert activity during the past 30 days.

Performers with a “DNP” notation in the Live Rank column indicate those who did not play, were not on tour in 2022 and had no box-office data reported from a headlining concert performance during the eligibility period for the chart.

For this recap of 2022, the final year-end Top 50 were determined by a sum of the artist’s weekly rankings throughout the year, beginning with the first published chart in February through the end of Pollstar’s chart year on Nov. 16.