Live music is back and bigger than ever!
Forbes has recently rounded up the top-earning concert tours over the summer of 2023, with Taylor Swift leading the pack. Morgan Stanley has even credited tours like Swift’s and Beyoncé’s for adding $5.4 billion to the U.S. economy in the third quarter.
But even with these soaring sales, not every dollar is going straight to the artists’ pockets. While these tours are growing in magnitude, needing hundreds of staff members at every stop, it’s not cheap to put on each show.
The higher the costs, the higher the ticket prices need to be. Despite the significant expense of touring, Forbes estimates that the top 10 highest-earning musicians have earned $1 billion from January to the end of August.
Taylor Swift’s The Eras Tour
With 56 shows, Swift’s Eras Tour has grossed around $780 million, earning the artist an estimated $305 million. The pop culture phenomenon of a tour is a retrospective of Swift’s entire career, spanning 10 albums.
With the second half resuming in November, it’s expected to be the first tour to gross well over a billion dollars by the time it finishes in 2024.
Beyoncé’s Renaissance Tour
Beyoncé has also been taking on the world with her Renaissance Tour, wrapping it up with 46 shows earlier this month. It’s estimated to have grossed $460 million, with around $145 going to the artist. This is the artist’s highest-grossing tour to date.
For the show, Beyoncé performed the songs in her Renaissance album in order, interspersed with other tracks from her discography. With a giant set and advanced technology at play, it was truly a sight to behold.
Ed Sheeran’s Mathematics Tour
Though Ed Sheeran’s shows had a much more pared-down production style compared to the first two, the 2023 leg of his Mathematics Tour still pulled big numbers. With 41 shows this year, it grossed an estimated $240 million while the English singer-songwriter earned about $110 million.
At his Santa Clara, California stop, Sheeran broke the attendance record at Levi’s Stadium with almost 80,000 people in the audience. He only has one more stop to go in Paradise, Nevada before wrapping up the tour.
Coldplay’s Music of the Spheres Tour
For its most recent tour, Coldplay focused on creating an eco-conscious concert. They used reusable materials to build the set, the confetti was biodegradable, and the LED wristbands they gave to fans were compostable.
Having 43 shows so far this year, the band’s tour is far from over, continuing with stops in Asia, Australia, and Europe. As of August 2023, Coldplay grossed $275 million and earned $85 million.
P!nk’s Summer Carnival
Even with only 37 shows, P!nk’s Summer Carnival has grossed $300 million, earning her $85 million. While this tour is still ongoing, the artist is taking a break from it to embark on a different one in support of her new album, Trustfall.
In August, she became the first woman to headline a stadium in Wisconsin. The Summer Carnival will resume in Australia and New Zealand next year.
Banner image via Instagram @taylorswift.