Billy Joel's Nassau-Closer Rakes in $1.7 Million

Kevin Mazur/WireImage
Billy Joel performs during the final show at Nassau Coliseum on Aug. 4, 2015 in Long Island, New York. 

Billy Joel isn’t the only musical giant to hail from the greater New York City area, but he seems to be the go-to guy when it’s time to close a major performance venue in the market.

On Aug. 4, just miles away from where he grew up on Long Island, Joel performed the final concert at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. The sold-out show (No. 1 on the Hot Tours tally, below) grossed $1.7 million with an attendance of 16,971. 

The 43-year-old arena closed this month to undergo extensive renovation, and the Piano Man was tapped to headline the venue’s final show (bolstered by guests Paul Simon and Kevin James) before closing.

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Joel’s Nassau-closer follows his two star-studded Last Play at Shea concerts in July of 2008. He was the final concert headliner to play Shea Stadium in Queens, the old home of Major League Baseball’s New York Mets. He grossing $12.8 million from two sold out shows (with more than 117,000 tickets sold). The gigs turned into a live album, Live at Shea Stadium, which peaked at No. 35 on the Billboard 200 in 2011.

As for Nassau Coliseum, the many changes planned for the property include a reduced seating capacity, downsizing it from 18,000 to 13,000 seats. The reopening is planned for late next year.

Following at No. 2 on the Hot Tours recap is veteran English rock band Def Leppard with a sold-out concert in Sioux Falls, S.D., during its 17-week summer tour through North America.  The performance on Aug. 8 logged a box office gross of $751,855 and was attended by 9,890 fans. 

On the road with Styx and Tesla through October 17, Def Leppard is booked in 59 cities during the summer run that will be followed with fall treks through Japan, Australia and Europe.

Four-time Grammy winner Sam Smith takes a slot on the Hot Tours roundup at No. 4 with 10,009 fans in attendance at a sold out performance at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.  The August 15 concert was part of his world tour’s 17-city swing through North America during July and August.

Touring in support of his album In the Lonely Hour, released in May 2014, the English recording artist hit the road in January with a 16-city trek through the U.S. and Canada, followed by a European leg in March.  The second North American jaunt began in Louisville, Ky., on July 17 and wrapped on Aug. 17 in Dallas.

 HOT TOURS - Aug. 18, 2015
 Ranked by Gross.  Compiled from Boxscores reported Aug. 11-17
 Total Gross
 Show Date Range
 Show Venue/City (Shows/Sellouts)
 Total Attendance (Capacity)
 Aug. 4
 Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, N.Y. (1/1)
 16,791 (16,791)
 Aug. 8
 Denny Sanford Premier Center, Sioux Falls, S.D. (1/1)
 9,890 (9,890)
 July 25
 Qantas Credit Union Arena, Sydney (1/0)
 8,871 (9,970)
 Aug. 15
 Frank Erwin Center, Austin, Texas (1/1)
 10,009 (10,009)
 Aug. 2
 Tuscaloosa Amphitheater, Tuscaloosa, Ala. (1/1)
 7,786 (7,786)
 July 15
 Lifestyle Communities Pavilion, Columbus, Ohio (1/0)
 7,999 (10,000)
 Aug. 7
 Coliseo de Puerto Rico José Miguel Agrelot, San Juan (1/0)
 6,809 (8,228)
 Aug. 4-11
 Orpheum Theatre, Memphis (1/1)
 Thalia Mara Hall, Jackson, Miss. (1/0)
 4,050 (4,097)
 July 20-30
 Stage AE, Pittsburgh (1/0)
 Lifestyle Communities Pavilion, Columbus, Ohio (1/0)
 5,214 (8,000)
 July 25
 Stage AE, Pittsburgh (1/0)
 4,467 (5,000)