October's Top 10 Events: George Strait, P!nk, Book of Mormon, TSO

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The major story of last month is George Strait's Cowboy Rides Away Tour with Martina McBride. I don't believe I've seen a higher number of tickets bought for a performer (or a duo) in a month than I have for them. In fact, their tour accounts for 22% of all the tickets in this month's Top 10. I guess it just goes to show that it helps to be the king, and even more so when you're retiring in two years.

Meanwhile, singer-songwriter P!nk was the leading solo performer, with a strong showing all throughout the month. Trans-Siberian Orchestra moved up, which isn't unexpected since their tour is quickly approaching. On the other hand, One Direction moved down quite a bit after spending the previous two months in the Top 3. However, this also isn't surprising. Their current tour is soon ending, and the next doesn't begin until June 2013, so sales will likely pick back up later.

Finally, Maroon 5 entered the Top 10 for the first time with extremely strong sales, especially when you consider what other performers and shows are on the list.

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Electronic music continues to grow in 2012

DJ performing at a nighclub.

Last year I did some research on the growth of electronic music on the TicketNetwork.com Exchange, and found that at the time Tiësto and deadmau5 were two of the biggest artists on the Exchange. Now that we're a year apart from the first post, it seems a good time as any to provide an update.

First off, some numbers for the genre as a whole. I compared the same two periods in both years, January 1 to October 10. As it turns out, the number of ticket purchases for the genre grew by 112%. This isn't as much growth over 2010, which was 447%, but still decent for an emerging genre (in terms of touring performances). The number of artists represented in the genre at TN.com also grew, from 37 to 64.

The lineup of top artists has also changed, partially due to growth, and partially due to some tours ending and others starting. For example, last year deadmau5 topped the list, but he hasn't performed much this year. Instead Avicii has taken over his place; tickets for his events represent 18% of all electronic music tickets sold during the period. The other artists in the Top 5 include Skrillex, Swedish House Mafia, Pretty Lights, and Bassnectar. Skrillex tickets in particular have seen a modest growth in sales. They hasn't surpassed deadmau5, as I predicted last year, but are still up 35%.

At the end of the year we'll take a closer look at how electronic music has done at TN.com in 2012, especially compared to other concert genres.

George Strait: A look back at recent tours

If you haven't heard yet, country icon George Strait is going on his final tour next year. The first leg of the Cowboy Rides Away Tour, with Martina McBride as the opener, will kick off on January 13 in Lubbock, TX, and end on June 1 in San Antonio, TX. The full tour will last about two years, ending in 2014.

The King of Country has been popular since he began singing in 1982. Beginning at a time when country music was under heavily influence by pop and rock, Strait took a different path, becoming the standard bearer for the traditional country sound.

The preference has helped him stand out among other pop and rock-influenced country artists, particularly when it comes to touring. Here are a few factoids:

  • Collectively, Strait's tours with Martina McBride have sold the eighth highest number of tickets among country tours on the TicketNetwork.com exchange.
  • When his tours with other artists are included, he is the fourth highest-selling country artist on the exchange.
  • George Strait is only of two neo-traditionalist artists to have concert series in the Top 20 list of country tours on the exchange. The other is Reba McEntire, due to the touring she's done with Strait.

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2012 NBA Season Tip-Off: Top-Selling NBA Home Openers

You may not have noticed, but the NBA season is just a few weeks away from getting started. It feels like yesterday that I had to cringe watching LeBron James lift up the Larry O'Brien Trophy after leading the Miami Heat to the NBA title. Luckily for me (a Celtics fan) and basketball fans everywhere, the start of a new season means a fresh start for your team and another shot at the championship.

The preseason has just started getting underway this past week, but what people are truly waiting for is the beginning of the regular season and to find out when their favorite team plays in its home opener. There are a lot of great openers scheduled, so I decided to take a look at the Top 5 selling home openers on TicketNetwork.com:

#1 - New York Knicks vs. Miami Heat
November 2 at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY

No surprise here. The biggest basketball market hosting the NBA's defending world champions. It doesn't get much bigger than that. Last year, the Heat visited Madison Square Garden three times including the playoffs, winning two of those games.

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A lot changed last month in the Top 10. One Direction returned to the top, displacing the Ringling Bros. Circus, but just barely. Meanwhile, theater staple Wicked and the popular Book of Mormon moved up, thanks to a burst in orders.

Lady Gaga, Paul McCartney, and Trans-Siberian Orchestra have entered the list for the first time, due to the fact that they haven't had tours since last year. Notably, Lady Gaga has not displaced One Direction. There was a time when she would have topped this list, perhaps alternating with Justin Bieber. However, tickets have been on sale for a little more than a week; we'll give her some extra time to climb.

Speaking of performers not doing as well, Jason Aldean and Luke Bryan are slowly, but surely, slipping down the list. This isn't very surprising, given that their tour is wrapping up. But it is the first time since May that they haven't been in the top three.

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