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Concert ticket sales revenue in North America 1990-2017

The time series shows concert ticket sales revenue in North America from 1990 to 2017. In 2017, the revenue amounted to eight billion U.S. dollars. In that year, the most successful music tour in North America was U2's tour, which generated gross revenue of over 176 million U.S. dollars. The tour sold over 1.5 million tickets throughout North America, making it the most attended show of the year.

The concert industry in North America – additional information

Despite physical music sales declining, the concert industry in North America remains healthy. A ranking of the highest grossing music tour each year held in North America since 2000 reveals which artists had the largest audience draw each year. In the 16 years since 2000, the Irish rock band U2 have held the title for the highest grossing music tour four times in the years 2001, 2009, 2011, and 2017, which reflects not only the longevity of their career, but also their popularity with fans. However, the accolade of bestselling concert in this timeframe goes to Taylor Swift, because her 2015 tour generated revenue of almost 200 million U.S. dollars.

The revenue generated by concerts and tours heavily relies on the number of tickets being sold. The high price of tickets can often act as a deterrent for consumers. From 2011, the average price for a music tour concert admission has been slowly on the rise. In 2011, the average price was approximately 78 U.S. dollars, but this figure increased to almost 85 U.S. dollars in 2017.

Live music has always been popular. A chance to see some of the world’s biggest musicians in the flesh is often too big an opportunity for fans to miss. In one survey, over 1,000 adults in the U.S. were asked ‘Which band would you go back in time to see?’ The American rock band The Doors, fronted by Jim Morrison in the 1960s and 70s was the band that 13 percent of respondents chose. However, the most popular answer during the poll would see audiences travel in further in time to the 1950s, as 22 percent wished to see Buddy Holly and the Crickets perform live.

Concert ticket sales revenue in North America from 1990 to 2017

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Release date

January 2018


North America

Survey time period

2000 to 2017

Supplementary notes

The source states that the figures are its own estimates for major concert tickets sold in North America.

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Statistics on "Live music in the U.S."

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