Though they’ll surely live to fight another day, U2’s brief stint holding the title of top-grossing tour ever is over.
That distinction now returns to the Rolling Stones, whose A Bigger Bang tour is now the top-grossing tour in history — and perhaps counting.
From March 28, 2005, to March 2, 2006, U2’s Vertigo tour rang up grosses of more than $333 million. That put U2 ahead of the Stones’ $320 million Voodoo Lounge tour of 1994-95. U2’s 10 additional stadium make-up shows this month will take the Vertigo total to 121 shows and a gross of about $377 million.
But the Stones’ numbers from their global A Bigger Bang tour shatter that mark. Since the fall of 2005, the Rolling Stones have grossed a staggering $437 million and drawn 3.5 million people to 110 shows. Another estimated crowd of 2 million saw the band perform at Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro back in February.
The tour, like every Stones trek since 1989, is produced by Michael Cohl under the Concert Productions International banner, with Live Nation.
Though no one’s commenting officially, talk is that the Stones will stretch the tour into 2007, meaning a final mark of more than $500 million is easily in range. If this indeed is the final Stones tour, which no one is saying it is, they will have gone out with a Bigger Bang than anyone might have imagined.