Top 10 Tours Alone Gross $3.8B In Banner Year

Coldplay "Music of the Spheres" World Tour Perth
Chris Martin of Coldplay performs on stage at Optus Stadium on November 18, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

In a year of touring that has seen record-smashing box-office success in practically every facet of live entertainment, it should come as no surprise that the crème de la crème of the top 100 worldwide tours of 2023 – namely, the top 10 – is responsible for much of the historic impact on the industry this year. Indeed, the combined gross of $3,805,026,321 from this year’s 10 highest-grossing tours accounts for an incredible 41.5 percent of the overall box-office haul from the top 100 tours.

That $3.8 billion total easily surpasses the gross from the top 10 in any previous year, although both 2022 and 2018 topped $2 billion in grosses from the 10 top-grossing touring artists. Last year’s combined gross hit $2.1 billion from Bad Bunny, No. 1 for the year with a $393.3 million gross, and nine others who land in the top 100 this year.

And 2018’s top 10 grossed $2.06 billion, largely on the strength of that year’s “Big Three” – Ed Sheeran’s massive $432.4 million gross during the second year of his “Divide” tour along with Taylor Swift’s “Reputation” gross of $345.1 million and Jay-Z & Beyoncé’s “On the Run II” that earned $254.1 million.

Swift and Beyoncé top this year’s list of concert industry heavyweights, ranked first and second, respectively. It is the first time in 15 years that two women top the chart, the last being 2008 when Madonna was No. 1 with $282 million from the first two legs of her “Sticky & Sweet” tour. It wrapped the following September as the highest-grossing tour of all time for a female headliner, a record that was held until this year and surpassed by both of this year’s top female concert stars. Then, Celine Dion followed at No. 2 in 2008 with $237 million from her “Taking Chances” world tour that covered five continents that year and also ended in 2009.

Following the ladies at the top is Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, certainly no stranger to the No. 1 ranking as the rock legend has topped the worldwide tours chart twice in this century, 2003 and 2016, as well as all the way back in 1985. This year he has the third ranking based on a gross of $379.5 million from 3.5 million tickets sold at 66 concerts. The tour, which kicked off in February, was Springsteen’s first trek with the E Street Band since playing a nine-city Oceania tour in early 2017. Current plans are to resume the tour in March with dates booked in North America and Europe through November 2024.

Coldplay’s “Music of the Spheres” world tour launched in March of last year and is currently booked on two continents throughout much of 2024, but this year the tour racked up $325.5 million to secure the No. 4 slot on the top tours chart. From a six-show engagement in Brazil in March through a two-show run at the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, California, Sept. 30-Oct. 1, the group performed for more than 2.8 million fans at 50 shows in the Americas and Europe. Adding the box-office totals from 2022, the tour in its entirety has grossed over $667.7 million so far based on an overall ticket total topping 6.6 million.

With his “Love On Tour,” Harry Styles takes No. 5 in the year-end recap based on a $290.5 million gross from 59 performances that took place during the 2023 chart year (Nov. 17, 2022-Nov. 15, 2023). The pop star played for 2.7 million fans this year, marking the culmination of his almost-two-year trek that began in September 2021 as one of the first major tours to go out during the early months of pandemic recovery in North America. Altogether since it began, his “Love On Tour” amassed a 169-show gross of $595.4 million from just under 4.8 million sold tickets.

Morgan Wallen (No. 6), the only country star in the top 10, is one of the genre’s biggest success stories of the past two years. 2023
saw him perform 48 shows at 46 venues for more than 1.4 million fans in North America and Oceania during his “One Night At a Time” world tour that grossed $284.8 million. He played a variety of venues on the trek:
17 arenas, two amphitheaters and 13 stadiums, although most of the stadium events
featured multiple performances. Included was an appearance at Boston’s Fenway
Park, his only three-show stadium date, but he also had played three concerts at one of the sheds on his schedule, Budweiser Stage in Toronto.

Taking the seventh ranking is Sheeran who earned a $268 million gross in 2023 with his “Mathematics” tour (stylized +-=÷x) that began in April 2022 and is booked through next September.  Included in this year’s tallies were 54 shows during the Oceania and North American legs of the tour with attendance totaling 2.5 million at multiple venues. His top gross was $20.8 million, recorded at Melbourne, Australia’s Cricket Grounds where he played for a total of 210,857 fans at two performances. In the U.S., his top numbers came from MetLife Stadium in the New York City market where he grossed $18 million from two shows.

P!NK took her “Summer Carnival” tour to stadiums in Europe and North American this year, beginning in June and continuing through early October. She then followed that tour with a stretch of arena dates in North America dubbed the “Trustfall” tour. With reports from all the stadiums and some
of the arenas in the fall, her combined gross for the year totaled $231.7 million, which
earns the eighth ranking. Her total number of sold tickets at 44 reported concerts was 1,525,162.

Following at No. 9 is The Weeknd who launched his “After Hours til Dawn” stadium tour last summer and grossed $130 million from 19 shows in 2022. He returned to the road this year beginning in June and completed 42 shows in Europe and Latin America, earning $220,985,529 at the box-office from a ticket total of 2.2 million.

Then Drake takes the tenth ranking based on a gross of $184.9 million from 711,271 sold seats at 43 shows this year. After “It’s All a Blur Tour” wrapped with two nights at Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena, Oct. 6-7, Drake will be back on stage in January with J. Cole for “It’s All A Blur Tour – Big As The What?”