Concert tours evoke a lot of imagery – screaming crowds, pricey merchandise, swaying smartphone screens (or lighters, if you’re old enough to remember those days) and a spectacle you weren’t likely to forget in a hurry, complete with costumes, quick changes, audience participation and breathless performers. It was like a Vegas show being brought to your doorstep.
Everyone remembers his or her first concert, whether it was Michelle Branch, Maroon 5 or a band your friend was in that you don’t remember the name of anymore. Likewise, everyone remembers his or her first concert tour. Whether it was a small club or in a fancy arena, you remember the anticipation building up to the day, the bouncing excitement just before the show, the dizzying frenzy while you danced to all your favorite songs and your giddy euphoria as your favorite performer took their bows.
Concerts are an experience people save their money all year for and which is usually worth every penny, especially if it’s part of a concert tour. It is an experience that cannot be captured on film – the performer’s actions may be on record for posterity, but who can replicate those heightening emotions during a concert when the performers make their big entrance and greet everyone?
This list examines the top 10 highest grossing concert tours of 2013 i.e. how much money each tour made on an international scale.
10 Kenny Chesney: Total Gross $90,932,957
The total gross for this American country singer’s tour was $90,932,957. Beating out Roger Waters and his rendition of Pink Floyd songs, Kenny Chesney’s tour, No Shoes Nation was his 13th tour and went on for five months in Canada and USA locations. The tour was to support his 16th album, Life on a Rock, and sold out on 31 of the 44 performances.
9 Depeche Mode: Total Gross $99, 972, 733
The total gross for this band was $99, 972, 733. In case none of you have heard of it, Depeche Mode are an English electronic music band formed in the 80’s and are the most commercially successful electronic band to date in the music industry. Their 2013 tour, The Delta Machine Tour, is still ongoing, but these numbers have been added up from the beginning of their tour on May 4th to November 22nd, just after their concert in Cologne, Germany. 51 of these 54 shows were completely sold out.
8 Beyoncé: Total Gross $104, 358, 899
Surprisingly not at the top of the list, Beyoncé’s ongoing tour, The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour, grossed $104, 358, 899 for 2013, with 40 of the 59 shows selling out. As if Beyoncé doesn’t have enough going on in her life, what with a new baby, being named one of TIME’s 100 most influential people in the world, releasing an album at the beginning of the year and appealing on Michelle William’s and Jay-Z’s albums, doing voice-over and music work for the film Epic and unexpectedly releasing a fifth album, Beyoncé, with all songs having a music video and the album debuting atop the Billboard 200 chart, making her the first female artist in the chart’s history to have her first 5 albums be number one. Exhausted just thinking about it.
7 Taylor Swift: Total Gross $115,379,331
Taylor Swift’s tour, Red, which was also the name of her album in 2012, had 66 performances between March and September, all of which sold out, and made $115,379,331. Clearly the musical experimentation of her songs, plus writing most of the songs herself, has paid off. More music artists should feature their self-discovery journeys in their music, it seems.
6 The Rolling Stones: Total Gross $126,182,391
We can’t have a top-grossing list without at least mentioning the Stones, who’ve been rockin’ and rollin’ on the stage for over 50 years now, passing the golden milestone last summer and resulting in a 50 & Counting Tour that is still ongoing. The takings to date? All sold out shows so far and a total gross of $126,182,391. Hope you guys booked your tickets as soon as the dates were set!
5 Rihanna: Total Gross $137,982,530
Rihanna shares Beyoncé’s TIME’s 100 Most Influential People in the World spotlight, and recently received the first ever American Music “Icon” Award, but has the honor of being number 5 on the highest grossing tour list, with her Diamonds World Tour. From March to November, 84 of the 87 shows were sold out and the takings were $137,982,530.
4 Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band: Total Gross $147,608,938
This is the band’s best tour to date, and the only one without founding member, Clarence Clemons. The total gross for this tour, entitled Wrecking Ball World Tour, was $147,608,938. The calculations of the total gross for 2013 begin partway through the tour, from their performance in Vancouver, Canada until its end in Rio de Janeiro in September.
3 Pink : Total Gross $147,947,543
2 Michael Jackson The Immortal World Tour by Cirque Du Soleil: Total Gross $157,299,100
Written by Jamie King, this tour is incredibly different, because it’s not solely a concert tour of music, it’s technically a theatrical production featuring the music and vision of the deceased Michael Jackson by Cirque du Soleil. So far, the tour has been a huge success, only beaten by the last entry on our list, with 205 shows and a total gross of $157,299,100.
1 Bon Jovi: Total Gross $205,158, 370
Entitled Because We Can, Bon Jovi’s tour to support their 12th album, What About Now, began in February 2013 and ended only last week, so the figures discount his Asia and Australia shows. Of his 90 shows, all of them were sold out and the total gross was $205,158, 370, making them the highest grossing band of 2013.