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P!nk grosses $350m with Summer Carnival Tour

P!nk has grossed US$350 million and sold nearly three million tickets on her blockbuster Summer Carnival Stadium Tour.

The outing, which is still underway, spans 64 dates in Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand.

“P!NK is a once-in-a-lifetime artist – her stage presence, dedication, and ability to captivate audiences is unparalleled,” says Brad Wavra, SVP, Live Nation Touring. “The incredible success of this record-breaking stadium tour shows her global impact, which only continues to grow.”

The tour kicked off on 7 June in Bolton, UK, going on to gross $125m and sell one million tickets on the European leg.

Stops included two concerts at BST Hyde Park in London, two at La Défense Arena (cap. 40,000) in France and two at Olympiastadion (74,475) in Germany.

European promoters involved in promoting the tour include Marshall Arts, AEG Presents/BST Hyde Park, Paris La Defense Arena, Live Nation/Werchter Boutique, Mojo, Peter Reiger Konzertagentur, Barracuda Music and Live Nation Poland.

The Summer Carnival is currently making its way through North America, with $150 million grossed and nearly one million tickets sold in the territory.

“P!NK is a once-in-a-lifetime artist – her stage presence, dedication, and ability to captivate audiences is unparalleled”

The Australia/New Zealand leg of the tour, which sold out in minutes, will commence in February 2024 and run until late March. More than 800,000 tickets have already been sold and AU$150 million grossed, becoming the country’s biggest-selling run ever by a female artist.

The 44-year-old has also become the highest-selling artist in Australia with over 3,000,000 tickets sold in the country throughout her career.

“It’s been the thrill of a lifetime to promote P!NK’s six Australian tours since 2004, and the twentieth anniversary of that association will see P!NK surpass three million tickets sold in Australia and New Zealand,” says Michael Coppel, Chairman of Live Nation Australasia.

P!nk’s longtime manager, Roger Davies, comments: “Alecia (P!NK) and I started working together over two decades ago. One of our goals was to make her an amazing international live act. Starting in little clubs and pubs, we travelled the world performing everywhere we could. Over the years, she’s just gotten better and better.

“Twenty-two years later, it makes me so proud to see her selling out stadiums around the world. She’s so comfortable on stage performing in front of tens of thousands of fans, always singing live and captivating audiences with her theatrical productions, continuing to push creative boundaries. She never ceases to amaze me! She has become a global superstar.”

Marshall Arts represents P!nk worldwide excluding North America, Australia & New Zealand.


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Pink sells over 725k tickets for Australian tour

Pink has extended her Australian tour, which has already sold more than 725,000 tickets to become the country’s biggest-selling run ever by a female artist.

The 43-year-old American is set to cover the largest distance of any touring artist around Australia by playing a record-breaking 15 stadiums concerts on her 2024 Summer Carnival tour, which launched in Europe back in June and switched to North America last month.

Live Nation Australia chair Michael Coppel, the singer’s career-long promoter in the region, says the dates will take Pink past three million ticket sales in Australasia.

“It’s been the thrill of a lifetime to promote Pink’s six Australian tours since 2004, and the 20th anniversary of that association will see Pink surpass three million tickets sold in Australia and New Zealand,” says Coppel. “Only fitting that we break new ground with the record to be set at her first show in Northern Queensland at Queensland Country Bank Stadium.”

The trek is currently set to conclude in Townsville with a newly announced show at Queensland Country Bank Stadium on 23 March next year, with support from Tones and I.

“Pink’s Aussie shows sold out in minutes across the country, making the tour extension into North Queensland an exciting next step in meeting this unprecedented demand,” says Live Nation Australia president Roger Field. “The only regional Pink show hosted here in Townsville is not only testament to Live Nation’s ability to deliver world class events, but our commitment in continuing to provide a world-class pipeline of major events for Queensland.”

The tour leg will start with two nights at Sydney’s Allianz Stadium from 9-10 February, and will go on to visit Newcastle, Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth before landing in New Zealand for shows at Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin on 5 March, and Eden Park, Auckland from 8-9 March.

“Pink’s immense popularity across Australia is extremely hard to miss, and the addition of a show in North Queensland will be incredible for local fans”

It will then return to Australia for further concerts in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, before wrapping up with the new Townsville date. The singer’s previous 2018-19 Beautiful Trauma tour was attended by more than three million fans worldwide, generating $397.3 million from 159 dates.

“Pink’s immense popularity across Australia is extremely hard to miss, and the addition of a show in North Queensland will be incredible for local fans,” adds Ticketmaster Australia MD Gavin Taylor. “It is great to be part of the Queensland Country Bank Stadium story, and we can’t wait to see Pink perform at the only world-class stadium in Townsville.”

Meanwhile, the New South Wales government is continuing its bid to increase the number of major concerts at Sydney’s Allianz Stadium and this week released the planning modification for public exhibition after Paul McCartney confirmed he will play back-to-back concerts at the new A$828 million (€490m) venue this October.

Under a concert cap that was created in the mid-1990s, the stadium is restricted to a maximum of six concerts per year, with a five-year rolling average of for concerts a year.

“Our goal is to bring live music back to NSW,” says NSW minister for jobs and tourism John Graham. “The state lost half of all music venues over the last decade and we are addressing this.

“There could not be a bigger symbol of where the new government wants to head than lifting the concert cap.”


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Female superstars lead 2023’s blockbuster tours

Female artists are leading the way on 2023’s touring circuit, with American superstars Beyoncé, Madonna, Pink and Lizzo joining Taylor Swift in scoring huge sales for blockbuster tours.

A raft of additional US stadium shows were confirmed for Beyoncé’s Renaissance World Tour – the singer’s first solo tour in seven years – after demand exceeded the number of originally available tickets by more than 800%. The run kicks off in Europe at Stockholm’s Friends Arena on 10 May, switching to to North America in July.

“Even with these added dates, it is still expected that the majority of interested fans will not be able to get tickets because demand drastically exceeds supply,” reads a Live Nation statement.

Following the Eras tour fallout, which prompted last month’s US Senate antitrust hearing, Ticketmaster tweaked the presale for the Renaissance tour in the US, dividing the Verified Fan registration period into three groups based on city.

More than three million people attempted to buy tickets for Beyoncé’s European dates, with her original two-night stand in London expanding to five at the 60,000-cap Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Extra nights were also added in cities such as Amsterdam, Stockholm and Warsaw.

“We experienced and successfully handled an extraordinary level of demand and traffic for Beyoncé”

While the BBC reported complaints of long queues and technical issues during the UK onsale, Ticketmaster declared the process a success.

“We experienced and successfully handled an extraordinary level of demand and traffic for Beyoncé,” says a Ticketmaster spokesperson. “While there were never going to be enough tickets to meet demand, thousands of happy fans secured their tickets.”

Live Nation France boss Angelo Gopee tells Le Parisien “the demand has been huge” for the star’s two French shows at the 60,000-cap Stade de France in Paris and 55,000-cap Orange Velodrome, Marseille. Tickets started at €85.

“Do not believe that because 270,000 people are [in the queue], we can sell 270,000 tickets and fill four stadiums,” says Gopee. Many come to see the prices, the location of the seats and leave. For Madonna, we had 120,000 fans waiting and we sold 60,000 tickets.”

“We had never experienced such demand since 2014,” adds Velodrome stadium director Martin d’Argenlieu.

Taylor Swift’s 52-date The Eras US tour remains the standard-bearer in terms of demand

Madonna’s 2023/24 The Celebration Tour – which marks the 40th anniversary of her breakout single Holiday – has been another smash hit, selling more than 600,000 tickets.

Produced by Live Nation, the global greatest hits tour will kick off in North America on 15 July at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, Canada. Madonna’s 2008-2009 Sticky and Sweet Tour is currently the highest-grossing tour by a female artist ever, raking in $411 million (£335m).

In addition, Pink’s first tour in four years, The Pink Summer Carnival, commences on 7 June with the first of two concerts at the University of Bolton Stadium and takes in stadiums and festivals around Europe, including two dates at the 65,000-cap BST Hyde Park in London. Making its way to North America in July, the run is due to conclude at Chase Field, Phoenix on 9 October.

And Lizzo’s The Special Tour got underway in the US last Autumn and arrived at European arenas in February, with a second North American leg slated from April to June.

Nevertheless, Taylor Swift’s 52-date The Eras US tour remains the standard-bearer in terms of demand, selling a record 2.4 million tickets in a single day.

“Despite all the challenges and the breakdowns, we did sell over two million tickets that day, we could have filled 900 stadiums.” said Live Nation chair Greg Maffei following the controversial presale last November.

Other acts playing stadium tours this year include Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band, Harry Styles, The Weeknd, Elton John, Coldplay, Rammstein, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Def Leppard + Motley Crue.


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Huge tour announcements rack up for 2023

The live business is braced for another intense year of touring amid a flurry of huge announcements for 2023.

This week has seen Pink, Depeche Mode, Iron Maiden, Lizzo, The 1975 and Dead & Company all confirm major tours for next year, adding to shows already on sale by artists such as Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band, Arctic Monkeys, Harry Styles, Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Muse and Elton John.

Pink will perform two nights at the 65,000-cap BST Hyde Park in London from 24-25 June to conclude her UK stadium tour, which will also stop at the University of Bolton Stadium (7-8 June), Sunderland’s Stadium of Light (10-11 June) and Birmingham Villa Park (13 June).

Depeche Mode unveiled their first tour in five years at a special event in Berlin on Tuesday (4 October) in support of their forthcoming 15th studio album, Memento Mori. The Live Nation-presented tour will begin with a series of North American arena dates starting 23 March, before heading to Europe for a summer stadium run.

Live Nation president and chief financial officer Joe Berchtold recently detailed the post-Covid rush to return to the road.

“Next year’s shaping up to be another very big stadium year”

“Artists are like everybody else – they went without the majority of their income for a couple of years – they’re making 80-90% of their money from touring,” he told Goldman Sachs Communacopia & Technology Conference. “So if you’re going to lose that percentage of your income for a few years, you obviously are going to be pretty motivated to get out and start making money again.

“What we saw was a very strong return on the supply side with artists wanting to get out. Next year’s shaping up to be another very big stadium year. We’re seeing that ’23 is looking like another great year for us.”

Meanwhile, Iron Maiden will visit arenas for their The Future Past Tour, which launches in Europe next June. The dates will showcase previously unperformed songs from the band’s most recent studio album, Senjutsu along with a focus on 1986’s Somewhere In Time.

“This combination of the two albums we feel is very exciting,” says the band’s manager Rod Smallwood of Phantom Management. “We know fans want to hear those epic cuts on Senjutsu for the first time live and we think that by combining it with an iconic album like Somewhere In Time it will make for another really special tour for fans old and new. Of course, for a new album tour in Europe and the UK we will go back largely to the relative intimacy of arenas and we know fans will be very happy about that too.”

Elsewhere, Lizzo will play 15 shows across European arenas next February/March and The 1975 have revealed Australia and New Zealand dates for April 2023, while Dead & Company have said their US 2023 summer tour, produced by Live Nation, will be their final tour since forming in 2015.

The announcements come despite warnings from European festival heads that there is “trouble ahead”, with the impact of spiralling costs, while AEG Presents UK head Steve Homer advised “the watchword is caution” for 2023.


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Stars come together for virtual LGBTQ+ benefit

Demi Lovato, Lil Nas X, Ricky Martin and Pink are among the artists who will appear at ‘Can’t Cancel Pride,’ a virtual relief benefit for the LGBTQ+ community

The organisers, consumer goods corporation P&G and media company iHeartMedia, say: “Covid-19 has not only led to the disruption of many national Pride events but has also had a damaging effect on fundraising efforts LGBTQ+ organisations rely on to survive.

“The second annual event will demonstrate that nothing can cancel the heart of Pride and the spirit that the LGBTQ+ equality movement embodies while focusing on the issues that continue to impact the LGBTQ+ community in 2021, including the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.”

Brothers Osborne, Hayley Kiyoko, Jennifer Hudson, JoJo Siwa, Marshmello and Troye Sivan, among others, are also set to perform.

The hour-long concert will stream on 4 June at 9 pm via a number of iHeartRadio channels and stations and will be available to watch back on-demand throughout June.

“This amazing night of music will honour the communities’ fight for equal rights, while benefitting six remarkable nonprofits”

The event is once again teaming up with Greater Cincinnati Foundation to distribute the money raised by the event to LGBTQ+ organizations including GLAAD, SAGE, The Trevor Project, The National Black Justice Coalition, CenterLink, and OutRight Action International.

Last year’s event raised over $4 million to benefit LGBTQ+ communities impacted by the global pandemic.

“As the country is returning back to normal and we are slowly starting to gather again, LGBTQ+ communities around the world are still feeling the devastating effects of Covid-19,” said Gayle Troberman, chief marketing officer for iHeartMedia.

“We look forward to once again celebrating the incredible voices and allies of the LGBTQ+ community with an amazing night of music that will honour Pride and the communities’ fight for equal rights, all while benefitting six remarkable nonprofits that make an everyday positive impact.”

To support this year’s participating nonprofits, visit www.cantcancelpride.com or text “Rainbow” to 56512.


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Growing number of artists contract coronavirus

Updated 8/4/20: US folk and country singer John Prine has passed away due to complications from Covid-19, aged 73. Garnering praise from the likes of Johnny Cash and Roger Waters over the years, artists including Bruce Sprinsteen, Ron Sexsmith and Bonnie Raitt are among those to have paid tribute to the late singer.


As cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, continue to mount around the world, members of the live music community are among those falling ill.

Pink, whose Beautiful Trauma tour was the highest grossing of 2019, raking in $215.2 million, is among artists to have contracted coronavirus. The singer, who has now recovered, is donating $1m to support health care workers in Los Angeles and Philadelphia.

Other artists to have contracted the virus include English singer Marianne Faithfull, who is being treated in hospital, US singer-songwriter Christopher Cross, actor and DJ Idris Elba, producer Andrew Watt, rapper Slim Thug, rock artist Jackson Browne and Spanish opera singer Plácido Domingo.

‘Love Song’ singer Sara Bareilles recently revealed she had been ill with the virus, but is now fully recovered.

Tragically, the live music world has lost a number of great talents to coronavirus in recent weeks. Artists to have passed away from Covid-19 include Fountains of Wayne bassist and songwriter Adam Schlesinger, who died on 1 April, aged 52. Schlesinger’s achievements include co-writing Fountains of Wayne hits including ‘Stacy’s Mom’ and his soundtrack work on Crazy Ex Girlfriend, A Colbert Christmas and That Thing You Do!.

Tragically, the live music world has lost a number of great talents to coronavirus in recent weeks

US country music singer Joe Diffie, passed away on 29 March, aged 61, known for hits including ‘Bigger Than the Beatles’ and ‘John Deere Green’. Tributes have been paid to the late Diffie by country stars including Jason Aldean, Carrie Underwood, Charlie Daniels, Brad Paisley and Travis Tritt.

Singer and songwriter Alan Merrill, best remembered for co-writing the original ‘I Love Rock’n’Roll’, died over the weekend from Covid-19, aged 69. Artists including Meat Loaf and Joan Jett have paid tribute to the singer on social media.

The world of jazz has also lost some greats to coronavirus in recent days. Trumpeter Wallace Roney passed away on 31 March, aged 59. The Grammy-winning trumpeter played with the likes of Miles Davis and Ornette Coleman.

Jazz pianist and educator Ellis Marsalis Jr lost his life on 1 April, aged 85, due to complications caused by coronavirus. Four of Marsalis’ six sons are also prominent musicians, including trumpeter Wynton Marsalis and saxophonist Branford Marsalis.

African jazz great Manu Dibango died on 24 March, from coronavirus, aged 86. The Cameroon-born saxophonist gained international fame with his 1972 song ‘Soul Makossa’.


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The decade in live: 2019

The start of a new year and, perhaps more significantly, a new decade is fast approaching – and while many may be thinking ahead to New Year’s Eve plans and well-meaning 2020 resolutions, IQ is casting its mind back to the most pivotal industry moments of the last ten years.

The final edition of IQ’s decade in live brings us right up to the present day. From the turbulent early post-financial crisis years, the live industry has emerged triumphant, repeatedly setting new records and reaching new heights in the latter part of the decade.

A number of artists have cropped up repeatedly during IQ’s decade analysis with both Bon Jovi and U2 topping the year-end tour chart twice.

Other acts to perform well throughout the decade include Bruce Springsteen, Taylor Swift and Pink – with three top-five appearances, including one top spot, each; Beyoncé, with four top-five tours; Metallica with three; and AC/DC, Roger Waters, Coldplay, Guns N’ Roses, Bruno Mars and the Rolling Stones, who all achieved double top-five appearances.

Major industry players were hard at play in 2019, as Live Nation completed 20 acquisitions over the year, as well as recording its highest-ever quarterly operating income in Q3; AEG Facilities and SMG finalised their mega-merger to create ASM Global; Superstruct continued its run of festival roll-ups; Oak View Group launched internationally; CTS Eventim expanded its rapidly-growing promoter network, and much more.

However, perhaps the biggest deal of the year came from one of the live industry’s most controversial members – Viagogo. The company’s US$4.05 billion all-cash acquisition of fellow secondary ticketer StubHub signals that the secondary ticketing debate will carry over well into the new decade.


2019 in numbers

The live concert business is seeing out the decade in style, with new records set in gross revenue by the top 100 tours worldwide.

The ten biggest touring artists of 2019 brought in a collective $1.6bn, falling short of the more than $2bn brought in the year before, with 2018’s charts skewed by Sheeran’s massive Divide tour ($432.4m) and Swift’s Reputation stadium tour ($345.1m).

Sheeran was the man of the moment in 2019, as his colossal Divide tour became the highest-grossing tour in history after knocking U2 off the top spot in August. The tour wrapped up having generated $768.5m and sold 8.8m tickets over three years. The singer came in at number three on 2019’s chart, grossing $211.7m.

Pink, the highest-grossing artist of the year, generated $215.2 million on her Beautiful Trauma trek, which sold 1.8m tickets in 2019, adding to 2018’s 1.3m, and earning her Ticketmaster’s global ticket of the year accolade.

Elton John’s Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour came in at second, grossing $212m, with Metallica’s WorldWired tour at four with $179m and the Rolling Stones’ No Filter tour at five with $177.8m.

Twelve artists grossed more than $100m in 2019, one more than the year before, with BTS, Bon Jovi, Ariana Grande, Michael Bublé, Fleetwood Mac, Paul McCartney and Backstreet Boys, in addition to the top five, clearing the nine-figure mark.


2019 in brief

DEAG acquires the remaining 24.9% of shares in MyTicket from German publishing house Axel Springer SE.

Scandinavian promoter Beatbox Entertainment rebrands as Down the Drain Concerts, after its parent company Down the Drain Group.

More than ten million people “attend” EDM star Marshmello’s virtual concert in the popular free-to-play video game Fortnite.

Live Nation acquires or takes a majority shareholding in promoters Planet Events and Embrace Presents; marketing company Neste; festivals Blockfest and Tons of Rock; and ticketer Moshtix (through Ticketmaster).

Providence Equity Partners, the parent company of festival operator Superstruct, buys into industry leading staging specialist Tait.

Oak View Group (OVG), the US-based venue development, advisory and investment company co-founded by former AEG CEO Tim Leiweke and ex-Live Nation chairman Irving Azoff, launches its new international business at ILMC.

CTS Eventim announces plans to combine 26 of its majority-owned promoters into a new London-based, pan-European live entertainment network, called Eventim Live.

Australian promoters Michael Gudinski and Michael Chugg announce a new joint venture between their respective companies, Frontier Touring and Chugg Entertainment.

The decade in live: 2019

Marshmello performs in-game in Fortnite to over ten million people © Keneth Cruz

AEG Presents joins forces with Frontier Touring, Australia’s last major independent promoter, in a strategic joint venture that sees the companies merge operations in Australia and New Zealand.

Competition regulators examine the proposed mega-merger of venue behemoths AEG Facilities and SMG, as the companies look to roll up an international portfolio that includes more than 300 venues.

Providence Equity-backed Superstruct Entertainment takes corporate control of Global’s festival arm, amid rumours Broadwick Live is undertaking a management buyback of its events.

Superstruct Entertainment invests in Down the Drain Group, forming a partnership with the largest independent concert and festival promoter in Denmark.

BookMyShow, India’s largest online ticketing company, expands into the Middle East after signing a five-year deal with AEG Ogden’s Coca-Cola Arena in Dubai.

DEAG becomes the latest major live music player to invest in the fast-growing esports sector, acquiring a minority stake in ally4ever Entertainment, a specialist gaming events agency.

BTS-mania hits London for a second time, with the Korean pop superstars making history by playing to 120,000 people over two nights at Wembley Stadium – and another 140,000 fans across the world via a £21-a-head livestream.

Oak View Group (OVG) partners with Live Nation to build and run a new entertainment and sports arena in Santa Giulia in Milan.

DEAG acquires a majority stake in three promoters: Stuttgart-based C2 Concerts; I-Motion, the German division of electronic music behemoth, LiveStyle; and Swiss concert promoters Live Music Production and Live Music Entertainment.

The decade in live: 2019

Dubai’s Coca-Cola Arena © AEG Ogden

Live Nation makes moves in Latin America, confirming it will acquire a majority stake in South America’s biggest festival, Rock in Rio, and in Latin America’s largest promoter, Ocesa Entertainment.

Google suspends secondary ticketing site Viagogo as an advertiser indefinitely, following pressure from industry organisations, anti-touting groups and politicians.

After five years as partners, London’s Coda Agency formally merges into its Los Angeles-based parent company, Paradigm Talent Agency, becoming Paradigm London.

Ed Sheeran’s ÷ tour becomes the highest- grossing concert tour of all time, breaking the current record of $735.4m set by U2’s 360° stadium tour in July 2011.

Superstruct Entertainment invests in Germany’s ICS, adding leading metal event Wacken Open Air to its stable of European festivals, which also includes recently acquired hip-hop event Parookaville.

Australasian live entertainment powerhouse TEG, the parent company of Ticketek and TEG Dainty, acquires the UK’s MJR Group.

Through its Swedish division, FKP Scorpio Sverige, FKP Scorpio acquires Stockholm-based promoter Woah Dad! Live.

Oak View Group launches the International Venue Alliance, a network of independent venues modelled on its US Arena and Stadium Alliance, with Silverstone Circuit as founding member.

AEG takes full control of its ticketing business, AXS, from co-owners TPG Capital and RockBridge Growth Equity.

The decade in live: 2019

Ed Sheeran’s ÷  tour became the highest-grossing of all time in 2019, generating a total of $768.5m © Ed Sheeran/Instagram

CTS Eventim expands into Russia, acquiring 51% of concert promoter Talent Concert International.

AEG Facilities and SMG complete their merger to create a single worldwide venue management company: ASM Global.

Private equity firm Silver Lake Partners acquires Australia’s TEG, adding to a live portfolio that also includes Oak View Group, MSG and Endeavor.

Upcoming shows by Spanish star Enrique Iglesias in Croatia, Belarus and Latvia are cancelled, as Iglesias’s agency, CAA, declares a lack of compliance on behalf of promoter Art BG.

In a landmark deal that brings together the world’s two largest secondary ticket sellers, Viagogo announces its acquisition of StubHub for $4.05bn in cash.

Just four months after its indefinite suspension from Google Ads, Viagogo advertisements once again appear at the top of Google’s search results as the ban is lifted.

CTS Eventim makes official its acquisition of a majority stake in Barracuda Music, formerly the largest independent promoter in Austria.

Live Nation makes its 20th acquisition or equivalent deal of the year, taking a controlling stake in the live entertainment division of Malaysian promoter PR Worldwide.


The decade in live: 2019

Keith Flint (1969–2019) © The Prodigy

Who we lost

Croatian concert promoter Jordan Rodić; the Prodigy frontman Keith Flint; singer-songwriter Scott Walker; Stephen Fitzpatrick and Audun Laading of UK band Her’s and tour manager Trevor Engelbrektson; VMS Live founder and managing director Steve Forster; Matt Ward, Manchester Arena’s head of event marketing and PR; ATC Live agent and LeeFest/Neverworld festival director Chris Meredith; SFX Entertainment founder Robert FX Sillerman.

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The decade in live: 2013

The start of a new year and, perhaps more significantly, a new decade is fast approaching – and while many may be thinking ahead to New Year’s Eve plans and well-meaning 2020 resolutions, IQ is casting its mind back to the most pivotal industry moments of the last ten years.

Following on from a few tough years, 2013 was the year the live industry began to sparkle again, thanks to the improvement of several key economies and more favourable weather conditions.

The main issue for the 2013 business, in fact, appeared to be the abundance of tours, which somewhat outnumbered the amount of resources available to handle them.

2013 was also the year when a new generation began to shine, with the likes of Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber and One Direction performing well on year-end charts, indicating that the future of live was certainly looking bright.


2013 in numbers

In 2013, the top 20 worldwide tours raked in a combined US$2.4 billion, up 24% on the $2bn generated the year before, according to Pollstar.

Bon Jovi once again made the top spot, surpassing their winning 2010 total by almost $60 million and achieving the highest year-end tour total of the year, grossing $259.5m from 2.7m tickets with the Because We Can tour.

Beyoncé’s The Mrs Carter Show came in second with a total gross of $188.6m, followed by Pink’s The Truth About Love with $170.6m. Justin Bieber came hot on the Pink’s heels at fourth, grossing $169m with his second concert tour Believe. Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band earned $145.4m, adding to the $210.2m grossed in 2012.

Newcomers also made their mark in 2013, with One Direction scraping into the top ten global tours for the first time with the Take Me Home tour ($114) and Bruno Mars making his first top twenty appearance with Moonshine Jungle tour.


2013 in brief

Seatwave founder and chief exec Joe Cohen exits the UK-based company, claiming that the secondary ticketing business is in great shape.

Kylie Minogue and her manager of 25 years, Terry Blamey, split, as the artist announces her intention to concentrate on her acting career. Minogue is now represented by Jay-Z’s management company Roc Nation, who also look after Rihanna, MIA and The Ting Tings.

Universal sells EMI’s Parlophone label group to Warner Music for an estimated £480m ($764m). The deal effectively means that three record companies now dominate the global market – Universal, Sony and Warner.

SFX Entertainment receives an undisclosed financial boost from advertising giant WPP, which counts agencies such as JWT; Grey; and Young & Rubicam in its portfolio. The deal gives SFX a powerful ally as it looks to ramp up its EDM empire.

AEG’s deal to take over the management of Wembley Arena is referred to the Competition Commission in the UK after an investigation by the Office of Fair Trading, which is concerned that AEG has too big an influence over live entertainment in the capital.

The decade in live: 2013

Wembley Stadium in 2013 © Wikiolo/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0

Princess Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer, becomes arguably the most renowned ticket tout in the world, when he resells tickets for his debenture box at the Royal Albert Hall.

New York-based agency Paradigm launches a record label, Big Picnic Records, which boss Marty Diamond intends to use to “support the development of new artists.”

Ticketmaster files a lawsuit against a New York man who they allege uses bots to buy as many as 200,000 tickets a day, before the general public can.

Pink smashes her record of 17 shows at Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena by booking an 18th date on her The Truth About Love tour. The Australian leg includes 46 shows and is expected to sell more than 500,000 tickets.

The promoter and stage supplier are charged in relation to a fatal stage collapse, which claimed the life of Radiohead drum tech Scott Johnson in Toronto’s Downsview Park last year.

Live Nation and Insomniac Events confirm rumours of a creative partnership, although the latter’s chief, Pasquale Rotella states Insomniac will remain independent.

The decade in live: 2013

Insomniac promotes EDM festival franchise Electric Daisy Carnival © Global Stomping/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Vince Power sells a major shareholding in Benicàssim Festival to SJM Concerts and Denis Desmond in a deal designed to assure the future of the popular Spanish event. Power will remain MD of the event which this year featured Arctic Monkeys, Queens of the Stone Age, Beady Eye, and The Killers.

Vivendi rejects an $8.5bn offer for Universal Music Group from Japanese telecoms giant SoftBank. It’s thought the increasing importance of music services in the mobile market prompted the unsolicited offer.

Lady Gaga and Madonna face prosecution in Russia for allegedly performing without proper visas. Both artists are accused of breaking Russia’s new gay propaganda laws, which make it illegal to promote homosexuality to minors.

Agency IMG Worldwide is put up for sale by private equity firm, Forstmann Little & Co, with analysts expecting a price tag of about $2bn.

Michael Gudinski’s Frontier Touring agrees a strategic partnership with dance promoter Future Music Festival to present the touring event, which visits five Australian cities and Malaysia next March.

Irving Azoff partners with The Madison Square Garden Company to create Azoff MSG Entertainment. In return for a $125m investment, MSG will own a 50% stake in a company, which will include artist management, TV production, live event branding and digital marketing divisions.

The decade in live: 2013

Benicàssim Festival © Jiquesan/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)

The jury in the $1.5bn case brought by Michael Jackson’s family against AEG finds that although AEG did employ Dr Conrad Murray, the company was not liable for his negligence.

Austin City Limits organisers are forced to cancel the final day of the US music festival when heavy rain and thunderstorms cause flooding.

Scooter Braun, manager of Justin Bieber, is pulling together a management conglomerate thanks to backing from Waddell & Reed Financial. The New York Times says Braun is in talks with several potential partners including Drake and his management team, Shania Twain and Troy Carter (ex Lady Gaga manager).

Live Nation confirms it is negotiating terms to acquire the management companies of U2 and Madonna. The deal to buy Paul McGuinness’s Principle Management and Guy Oseary’s Maverick could cost about $30m with Oseary taking over management of both operations.

Talent agency William Morris Endeavour acquires IMG Worldwide in a $2.3bn deal backed by private equity group Silver Lake.

SFX Entertainment pays $16.2m for a 75% stake in Dutch- based ticketing operation Paylogic, which counts 2,000 clients across its offices in Groningen, Amsterdam, Berlin and Antwerp.

The decade in live: 2013

Claude Nobs, Montreux Jazz founder (1936-2013) © Yvan Hausmann @ MJF/Yvanhausman (CC BY-SA 3.0)


Who we lost

Notable industry deaths in 2013 include Claude Nobs, Montreux Jazz Festival founder and GM, 76; Modern World founder Henning Tögel, 58; Cecil Womack, The Valentinos and Womack & Womack singer, aged 65; Live Nation Denmark CEO Flemming Schmidt, 63; German promoter Fritz Rau, 83; Edwin Shirley, founder of Edwin Shirley Trucking and Edwin Shirley Staging, 65; Danish live music impresario Arne Worsøe, 72; Velvet Underground singer and guitarist and solo artist Lou Reed, 71.


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Eagles to play Wembley Stadium in Europe exclusive

US rock band Eagles are bringing their Hotel California tour to London’s 90,000-capacity Wembley Stadium on 29 and 30 August 2020, the group’s only European dates of the year.

Eagles, consisting of Don Henley, Joe Walsh and Timothy B Schmit, along with Deacon Frey and Vince Gill, will perform the Hotel California album in full at the Wembley concerts, followed by an additional set of the band’s greatest hits.

The group recently performed three sold-out performances of the album – the third best-selling US album in history – in Las Vegas. The concerts marked the first time Eagles had performed Hotel California in its entirety and featured 77 musicians on stage, including a 46-piece orchestra and 22-voice choir.

As the best-selling US band of the 1970s, Eagles have won six Grammy Awards, were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998 and received the Kennedy Center Honors for lifetime contribution to US culture in 2016.

“We are delighted to welcome back The Eagles who played a huge part in this year’s success story”

The Live Nation-promoted shows see Eagles return to the stadium for the second time in as many years, following a sell-out show in June. The band contributed to a record-breaking summer for Wembley in 2019, with over 900,000 fans watching acts including the Who, Fleetwood Mac, Bon Jovi, Billy Joel and Pink.

“We are delighted to welcome back The Eagles who played a huge part in this year’s success story,” comments James Taylor, senior commercial manager for Wembley Stadium.

“Wembley is an iconic venue that attracts the biggest and best acts and we are thrilled this legendary band has once again chosen our world-class stadium for what will be their only performances in Europe in 2020.”

Tickets for Eagles 2020 Wembley Stadium shows go on sale on Saturday 14 December at 9 a.m. (GMT), available here.


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Study: Capaldi, EIlish among hardest-working artists

The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance (ICMP) has named Lewis Capaldi the “hardest-working musician” of the past two years, after research revealed the Scottish singer played close to 200 shows from January 2018 to August 2019.

Billie Eilish, Pink, Ed Sheeran and Elton John complete the ICMP’s top five most conscientious artists.

Taking Billboard’s top 100 artists from 2018 and 2019, ICMP analysed the total number of domestic and international shows played and countries visited by each act to calculate a final tally.

Scottish crooner Capaldi, who earlier today cancelled a UK gig due to voice issues, came out on top with 195 shows in total – the most of any artist on the list. Among those, Capaldi clocked up 127 international dates, second only to Elton John at 147, and closely followed by Dua Lipa and Ed Sheeran at 124.

Billie Eilish, Pink, Ed Sheeran and Elton John complete the ICMP’s top five most conscientious artists of last year

In terms of domestic shows, the singer lagged behind in 27th place with 68 home-country concerts, although he was the only non-US artist among the top thirty in this category.

Teen sensation Billie Eilish topped the domestic shows chart, playing 92 US dates, as well as 92 international dates, putting her in second place overall. A capella group Pentatonix, fast-rising star Lizzo, country music band Old Dominion and Pink also played a high number of shows in their native United States.

Both Eilish and Capaldi have visited 23 different countries since the start of last year, fewer than Portugal the Man (24), Sam Smith (25), Post Malone (26), J Balvin (27) and the Chainsmokers (31). Thanks to his mammoth Divide tour, Sheeran had the highest country tally at 32 and fourth highest number of shows overall at 156.

The complete list of results can be found here.

The ICMP is an independent music school in London, UK.


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