The touring landscape may be tough this summer, but Billboard Boxscore's midyear numbers illustrate that many tours have enjoyed significant success already.
And, with major tours underway after the cutoff dates for our midyear charts, more help is coming. The time frame for Billboard's midyear touring charts runs from Nov. 14, 2007, until May 13 of this year, and during that period Bon Jovi ruled the roost. Promoted worldwide by AEG Live, the tour sold out arenas and stadiums in North America and the Pacific Rim during this period, grossing $112.4 million.
"The fact is that [Bon Jovi] are still current musically and have consistently delivered a live show that has very few equals in terms of musicianship, spectacle and gigantic hits," AEG Live CEO Randy Phillips says. "Whatever concerns I had initially that they might have chosen to go back on the road too soon after the last equally successful tour were quickly dispelled by the early public on-sales."
AEG Live also produced the second-highest-grossing tour of the period, the Spice Girls reunion, which took in more than $70 million from 45 shows. Coming in third for this time period is the Police reunion tour, which topped all touring charts in 2007 and likely will top others before 2008 is done.
Produced by Arthur Fogel at Live Nation and Bill Zysblat at RZO Productions, the Police will follow up a summer amphitheater run (the band's first) with a final gig Aug. 7 at Madison Square Garden in New York. At that point, the Police will have played 146 shows (not including festivals), moved 3.3 million tickets and grossed $359 million, enough to make this the third-highest-grossing tour of all time.
Rounding out the top 10 are the Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus tour ($45.3 million), the holiday blockbuster Trans-Siberian Orchestra ($44.8 million), Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band ($42 million), the Van Halen reunion tour ($40.2 million), Michael Buble ($36.6 million), Take That ($32.5 million) and Jay-Z/Mary J. Blige ($30.3 million).
As always, the top tour rankings will change substantially by year's end, though the Police, Bon Jovi and Springsteen will still be near the top. But with tours just getting underway by Coldplay, Celine Dion, Kenny Chesney, Rascal Flatts, the Jonas Brothers and Tim McGraw, and upcoming tours by Tina Turner, Madonna and Neil Diamond, some different names will grace the list.
There will also be some unexpected appearances in the rankings, like the surging New Kids on the Block reunion tour.