Initial on-sales for Rod Stewart's upcoming tour are running about 20% ahead of his last North American tour in 2004, according to his agent, Dennis Arfa, president of Artists Group International. The 2004 tour grossed $37 million. Stewart took in about $50 million last year playing mostly stadiums in the U.K. and Pacific Rim territories.

The singer will play about 65 dates in North America beginning Jan. 12 in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., followed by stadium dates in the U.K. in June. AEG Live promotes North American dates, while Live Nation promotes dates in the U.K.

Arfa attributes Stewart's strong sales to his "icon" status. "He is also one of the few artist in his age bracket where record sales have made a difference," Arfa tells Billboard.biz.

Stewart is touring in support of his most recent album, "Still the Same -- Great Rock Classics of Our Time."

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