List of highest-attended concerts

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Vasco Rossi 2.jpg
Rod stewart 05111976 12 400.jpg
The record for biggest concert attendance is held by Vasco Rossi (left) for a ticketed concert and Rod Stewart (right) for a free concert.

This page lists the highest-attended concerts of all time. The oldest 100,000-crowd concert reported to Billboard Boxscore is Grateful Dead's gig at the Raceway Park, Englishtown, New Jersey on September 3, 1977. The concert was attended by 107,019 people, which remains the largest ticketed concert in the United States to date. Frank Sinatra, Tina Turner, and Paul McCartney broke the record respectively in Maracanã Stadium. With an audience of over 184,000 people on April 21, 1990, McCartney held the record for 27 years. Italian singer Vasco Rossi surpassed McCartney's record with his solo concert on July 1, 2017. The concert was a celebration of his 40 years of career.

Concert live performance of music

A concert is a live music performance in front of an audience. The performance may be by a single musician, sometimes then called a recital, or by a musical ensemble, such as an orchestra, choir, or band. Concerts are held in a wide variety and size of settings, from private houses and small nightclubs, dedicated concert halls, arenas and parks to large multipurpose buildings, and even sports stadiums. Indoor concerts held in the largest venues are sometimes called arena concerts or amphitheatre concerts. Informal names for a concert include show and gig.

<i>Billboard</i> (magazine) American music magazine

Billboard is an American entertainment media brand owned by the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, a division of Eldridge Industries. It publishes pieces involving news, video, opinion, reviews, events, and style, and is also known for its music charts, including the Hot 100 and Billboard 200, tracking the most popular songs and albums in different genres. It also hosts events, owns a publishing firm, and operates several TV shows.

Grateful Dead American rock jam band

The Grateful Dead was an American rock band formed in 1965 in Palo Alto, California. The band is known for its eclectic style, which fused elements of rock, folk, country, jazz, bluegrass, blues, gospel, and psychedelic rock; for live performances of lengthy instrumental jams; and for its devoted fan base, known as "Deadheads". "Their music", writes Lenny Kaye, "touches on ground that most other groups don't even know exists". These various influences were distilled into a diverse and psychedelic whole that made the Grateful Dead "the pioneering Godfathers of the jam band world". The band was ranked 57th by Rolling Stone magazine in its The Greatest Artists of All Time issue. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994 and a recording of their May 8, 1977, performance at Cornell University's Barton Hall was added to the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress in 2012. The Grateful Dead have sold more than 35 million albums worldwide.


Although the attendance numbers of free concerts are known to be exaggerations, [1] several concerts have been reported to have a million audience or more. According to the Guinness World Records , Rod Stewart's show in Copacabana Beach, Rio de Janeiro, remains the highest-attended free concert with an estimated 3.5 million audience.

<i>Guinness World Records</i> Reference book listing world records

Guinness World Records, known from its inception from 1955 until 2000 as The Guinness Book of Records and in previous United States editions as The Guinness Book of World Records, is a reference book published annually, listing world records both of human achievements and the extremes of the natural world. The brainchild of Sir Hugh Beaver, the book was co-founded by twin brothers Norris and Ross McWhirter in Fleet Street, London, in August 1954.

Rod Stewart British singer and songwriter

Sir Roderick David Stewart, is a British rock singer and songwriter. Born and raised in London, he is of Scottish and English ancestry. Stewart is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold over 100 million records worldwide. He has had nine number-one albums in the UK Albums Chart and his tally of 62 UK hit singles includes 31 that reached the top ten, six of which gained the #1 position. Stewart has had 16 top ten singles in the US, with four reaching #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. He was knighted in the 2016 Birthday Honours for services to music and charity.

Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro Neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Copacabana is a bairro (neighbourhood) located in the South Zone of the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It is known for its 4 km (2.5 miles) balneario beach, which is one of the most famous in the world.

Highest-attended concerts

 Indicates the concert was the highest-attended of all time up to that point

Single-artist concerts

The following are the highest-attended single-artist's ticketed concerts (excluding music festivals) with attendance of 100,000 people or more.

Music festival festival oriented towards music

A music festival is a community event oriented towards live performances of singing and instrument playing that is often presented with a theme such as musical genre, nationality, or locality of musicians, or holiday.

July 1, 2017 Vasco Rossi  Enzo Ferrari Park Modena Modena Park 2017 220,000 [2]
July 31, 1999 Glay   Makuhari Messe Chiba Glay Expo'99 Survival 200,000 [3]
April 21, 1990 Paul McCartney   Maracanã Stadium Rio de Janeiro The Paul McCartney World Tour 184,000 [4]
January 16, 1988 Tina Turner  Maracanã StadiumRio de Janeiro Break Every Rule World Tour 180,000 [5] [6]
January 26, 1980 Frank Sinatra  Maracanã StadiumRio de JaneiroFrank Sinatra Live175,000 [5] [7]
September 10, 2005 Luciano Ligabue Aeroporto di Reggio Emilia Reggio Emilia Campovolo165,264 [8]
July 19, 1988 Bruce Springsteen Radrennbahn Weissensee Berlin Tunnel of Love Express Tour 160,000 [9]
September 20, 1997 U2 Aeroporto di Reggio Emilia Reggio Emilia PopMart Tour 150,000 [10]
March 20, 1981 Queen Estádio do Morumbi São Paulo The Game Tour 131,000 [11]
August 29, 1987 Madonna Parc de Sceaux Paris Who's That Girl World Tour 130,000 [12]
August 5, 1995 The Rolling Stones Strahov Stadium Prague Voodoo Lounge Tour 126,742 [13]
September 11, 1988 Michael Jackson Aintree Racecourse Liverpool Bad World Tour 125,000 [14]
September 7, 1996 Michael Jackson Letná Park Prague HIStory World Tour 125,000 [15]
August 10, 1996 Oasis Knebworth Park Stevenage (What's the Story) Morning Glory? Tour 125,000 [16]
August 11, 1996125,000
August 1, 2003 Robbie Williams Knebworth ParkStevenage 2003 Tour 125,000 [18]
August 2, 2003125,000
August 3, 2003125,000
March 21, 1981 Queen Estádio do Morumbi São Paulo The Game Tour 120,000 [19]
July 25, 1982 The Rolling Stones Roundhay Park Leeds The Rolling Stones European Tour 1982 120,000 [20]
August 9, 1986 Queen Knebworth ParkStevenage Magic Tour 120,000 [21]
November 6, 1993MadonnaMaracanã StadiumRio de Janeiro The Girlie Show World Tour 120,000 [22]
September 20, 1996Michael Jackson Bemowo, Airport Warsaw HIStory World Tour120,000 [23]
July 15, 1987U2 Santiago Bernabéu Stadium Madrid The Joshua Tree Tour 115,000 [24]
September 3, 1977 Grateful Dead   Raceway Park Englishtown Terrapin Station Tour 107,019 [25]
November 25, 2017 Ricky Martin Zócalo Mexico City Ricky Martin Live at Zócalo in Mexico City100,000 [26]

Free concerts

The following are free concerts with reported attendance of one million people or more. It also includes multi-artist festivals which may not be directly comparable with single-artist concerts. Attendance numbers for many of the kinds of events listed here rely on estimations from the promoters and are known to be exaggerations. [1]

DateHeadlining artistLocationCityEventAttendanceRef.
December 31, 1994 Rod Stewart   Copacabana Beach Rio de Janeiro New Year's Eve 3,500,000 [27]
September 6, 1997 Jean-Michel Jarre State University of Moscow Moscow The 850th Anniversary of Moscow3,500,000 [28]
July 14, 1990 Jean-Michel Jarre   La Défense Paris Bastille Day 2,000,000 [29]
September 28, 1991 AC/DC, Pantera, Metallica, The Black Crowes, E.S.T. Tushino Airfield Moscow Monsters of Rock 1,600,000 [30] [31]
July 2, 2005Various artists Philadelphia Museum of Art Philadelphia Live 8 1,500,000 [32]
February 18, 2006 The Rolling Stones Copacabana BeachRio de Janeiro A Bigger Bang 1,500,000 [33] [34]
April 5, 1986Jean-Michel Jarre   Downtown Houston Houston Rendez-vous Houston 1,300,000 [35] [36]
September 20, 2009Various artists Plaza de la Revolución Havana Paz Sin Fronteras II 1,100,000 [37] [38]
July 4, 1985 The Beach Boys Philadelphia Museum of Art Philadelphia Independence Day concert1,000,000 [39]

See also

Related Research Articles

The Bridges to Babylon Tour was a worldwide concert tour by The Rolling Stones. Staged in support of their album Bridges to Babylon, the tour visited stadiums from 1997 to 1998. It grossed over $274 million, becoming the second-highest-grossing tour at that time, behind their own Voodoo Lounge Tour of 1994–1995. The Bridges to Babylon Tour was followed by 1999's No Security Tour.

The Rolling Stones American Tour 1981

The Rolling Stones' American Tour 1981 was a concert tour of stadiums and arenas in the United States to promote the album Tattoo You. It was the largest grossing tour of 1981 with $50 million in ticket sales. Roughly three million concert goers attended the concerts, setting various ticket sales records. The 5 December show in New Orleans set an indoor concert attendance record which stood for 33 years.

Break Every Rule World Tour

Break Every Rule World Tour is the fourth worldwide concert tour by American singer Tina Turner. The tour supported her sixth solo album Break Every Rule. It was sponsored by Pepsi-Cola and broke box office records in 13 different countries. It was the top female concert attraction in 1987–1988 and is the biggest tour, by attendance, for a female artist ever, bringing in over 4 million people.

Paul McCartney English singer-songwriter and composer, bass guitarist of The Beatles

Sir James Paul McCartney is an English singer, songwriter, musician, record and film producer, composer, and businessman. A multi-instrumentalist, he gained worldwide fame as the bass guitarist and singer of the Beatles, who are widely considered to be the most popular and influential band in history. McCartney is one of the most successful composers and performers of all time. He has written or co-written 32 songs that have reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, and as of 2009 he had 25.5 million RIAA-certified units in the United States. His songwriting partnership with John Lennon remains the most successful in history. After the group disbanded in 1970, he pursued a solo career and formed the band Wings with his first wife, Linda, and Denny Laine.

Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert

The Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert was a benefit concert held in memory of music executive Ahmet Ertegün at the O2 Arena in London on 10 December 2007. The headline act was the English rock band Led Zeppelin, who performed their first full-length concert for almost three decades, since the death of drummer John Bonham in 1980, in a one-off reunion. Bonham's son Jason Bonham played drums during the band's set, and also provided backing vocals on two songs.

U2 360° Tour tour by U2

The U2 360° Tour was a worldwide concert tour by rock band U2. Staged in support of the group's 2009 album No Line on the Horizon, the tour visited stadiums from 2009 through 2011. The concerts featured the band playing "in the round" on a circular stage, allowing the audience to surround them on all sides. To accommodate the stage configuration, a large four-legged structure nicknamed "The Claw" was built above the stage, with the sound system and a cylindrical, expanding video screen on top of it. At 164 feet (50 m) tall, it was the largest stage ever constructed. U2 claimed that the tour would be "the first time a band has toured in stadiums with such a unique and original structure."

Last Girl on Earth concert tour by Rihanna

The Last Girl on Earth Tour was the third concert tour by Barbadian recording artist Rihanna. The tour visited Europe, Asia, North America and Australia to support her fourth studio album, Rated R (2009).

Out There (tour)

Out There was a concert tour by English singer-songwriter Paul McCartney lasting from 4 May 2013 to 22 October 2015. Some notable nights of the tour included concerts at Warsaw's National Stadium, Verona's Roman Amphitheatre, and Vienna's Happel Stadium, the latter of which he would play for the first time since 2003's Back in the World tour. McCartney played in Belo Horizonte, Goiânia and Fortaleza, all in Brazil and in Japan for the first time since the Driving World Tour back in 2002.

Starboy: Legend of the Fall Tour 2017 concert tour by The Weeknd

The Starboy: Legend of the Fall Tour was the sixth concert tour by Canadian singer and songwriter The Weeknd, to support his album Starboy (2016). The tour started on February 17, 2017, at the Ericsson Globe in Stockholm and concluded on December 14, 2017 at Perth Arena in Perth.

WorldWired Tour

The WorldWired Tour is a concert tour by American heavy metal band Metallica in support of their tenth studio album Hardwired... to Self-Destruct, which was released on November 18, 2016. It is also their first worldwide tour after the World Magnetic Tour six years earlier.

÷ Tour 2017–19 world concert tour by English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran

The ÷ Tour is the third world concert tour by English singer and songwriter, Ed Sheeran, in support of his third studio album, ÷. Comprising 255 shows, it officially began on 16 March 2017, in Turin, Italy and is set to end on 26 August 2019, in Ipswich, England. Ticket sales started on 2 February 2017. The tour set world records for the highest-grossing concert tour and the most tickets sold by a tour.

Act III: M.O.T.T.E World Tour

The Act III: M.O.T.T.E 'Moment of Truth The End' World Tour was the second concert tour by South Korean rapper and singer-songwriter G-Dragon. It was in support of his self-titled EP Kwon Ji Yong (2017). The tour began on June 10, 2017 in Seoul and concluded on October 8, 2017 in Taipei, Taiwan.

Harry Styles: Live on Tour concert tour by Harry Styles

Harry Styles – Live on Tour was the debut concert tour by English singer Harry Styles in support of his self-titled debut album (2017). The tour was announced on 28 April 2017 and additional dates were added on 8 June. The two-part tour began with intimate venues in 2017 and continued on to arenas in 2018. The tour started on 19 September 2017 in San Francisco and concluded on 14 July 2018 in Inglewood, comprising 89 shows.

Dead & Company Fall Tour 2017

The Dead & Company Fall Tour 2017 is a concert tour by the rock band Dead & Company during November and December 2017. It is the band’s fourth tour, following their 2017 Summer Tour. The tour comprises a total of 15 concerts in 14 different cities between November 12 and February 27, 2018.

<i>Taylor Swifts Reputation Stadium Tour</i> Fifth concert tour by American singer Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift's Reputation Stadium Tour was the fifth concert tour by American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift, in support of her sixth studio album, Reputation (2017). The tour began on May 8, 2018 in Glendale and concluded on November 21, 2018 in Tokyo, comprising 53 concerts. The tour was attended by 2,888,892 fans and grossed $345,700,000 in revenue, becoming Swift’s most successful tour to date, and the 13th highest grossing concert tour of all time. The supporting acts for the tour were Charli XCX, Camila Cabello, and Broods.

Freshen Up (tour) 2018–2019 concert tour by Paul McCartney

Freshen Up was a concert tour by English musician Sir Paul McCartney that began on 17 September 2018 with the first four shows in Canada. The tour was McCartney's first tour after the release of his album, Egypt Station. Prior to the announcement of the tour, McCartney revealed he would headline the 17th Austin City Limits Music Festival at Zilker Park, in October 2018.

Sweetener World Tour 2019 concert tour by Ariana Grande

The Sweetener World Tour is the fourth concert tour by American singer Ariana Grande, in support of her fourth and fifth studio albums, Sweetener (2018) and Thank U, Next (2019). The tour began on March 18, 2019 in Albany, New York, and is set to conclude on December 22, 2019 in Inglewood, California.


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