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Billboard Proves There Is Still Money in Music

Billboard just released their top 40 money makers in the music biz for the last year. Here is the top 10:

01. U2 - $108,601,283
02. BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN - $57,619,037
03. MADONNA - $47,237,774
04. AC/DC - $43,650,466
05. BRITNEY SPEARS - $38,885,267
06. PINK - $36,347,658
07. JONAS BROTHERS - $33,596,576
08. COLDPLAY - $27,326,562
09. KENNY CHESNEY - $26,581,141
10. METALLICA - $25,564,234

I'm not surprised by this list in the least. Touring always nets famous musicians of any genre a hefty payout. The only surprising fact at all is that U2 is so far ahead of their next competitor. I mean, good grief. I guess that's a good thing: Bono will have even more cash to donate to his charities.

The problem with the list above is that - at this point - every act is 'legacy.' By this I mean either longstanding in their genre such as Metallica or so hot like Pink that popularity is guaranteed for another decade no matter what. Sure, the music buying public is fickle but once you become so huge, your reputation can weather a lot of storms and you'll still earn mondo bucks regardless of new output or radio hits.

Pretty soon we'll be running out of long-standing legacy acts because they'll all be retired and then there won't be many (any?) stadium shows to speak of. Are there even any modern acts - besides Lady Gaga and Carrie Underwood - that could sell out a stadium right now? And I mean modern: as in, on the scene less than five years. I don't think so, but I hope I'm wrong. It's sort of like new rock bands never get a shot. When AC/DC and Aerosmith hang it up for good, the 80s bands we love will just roll up to the "classic band" status of touring and that pushes up the Nickelbacks of the world.

I just wonder if our new economy and ticket buying habits has changed touring forever? There's no chaotic need to rush online at a general on-sale to grab "great seats" when ticketing software doesn't work that way anyway. You can't camp out anymore and even if you are allowed to stand in lines at certain venues, being first doesn't guarantee front row. There's no real motivation to work for great tickets anymore. Sure, there's always bands on your "must see" list, but how often do shows sell-out these days? I saw AC/DC at a sold-out show and that was cool but I certainly didn't have any troubles getting tickets.

Thinking about the potential tours a decade from now makes me sad. No one can predict the future, but I can't imagine the live rock scene being fantastic then. Of course, I hope I'm wrong.


Reader Comments (20)

istill think theres money in music as well but the problem is bands put out shitty cds and the record comp charges $20 to $30 plus for a cd that 1 or 2 good songs, all the pop garbage out there is 10 to 12.99 thats why they sell rock bands unless its kiss or crue on average cost 25.99 no wonder people dont buy them i have no problem at 10.99 but people with families wont support bands at $25 record companys should try selling at a decent price and see the sales go up downloading will always be there but offer a decent alternative and bands will reap the benefits, sorry just my little rant lets hear from metalboy on this lol im curious to his or anyone elses opinion
February 28, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
God, I despise U2. Just sayin.
February 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKenny Ozz
Who pays $25 for a CD? Just go on the internet and compare prices.
February 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterXandra73
Who in the hell pays $25 dollars for a single CD? At Amoeba Records here in Hollywood (the local record store where I shop), Walmart and online at CDUniverse, most 70's/80's/90's albums cost between 5 and 10 dollars. New releases rarely cost more than $12.

I think this all stems from illegal downloading and the fact music is so disposable these days. New acts can't build up a following, no superstar acts are made, there are fewer diehard fans who wanna go to shows. The future for the industry is very bleak.
February 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBlaine
WTF ? I'haven't seen a CD for 20 $ unless it is some kind of special edition/deluxe edition. Regular new CDs no matter where bought ( Amoeba, Amazon, Best Buy ) cost between 8-13 $
February 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPeter
Lemme tell ya, in my quest for every Glam Metal album on the planet, I've paid anywhere from $1.00 to $500 on a CD (there, you want insane, you got it! Leave Archie alone, you mean Metal Chix! Dang!), depending on it's rarity.

I need the stuff to live and you earthling's money is never a problem to acquire (yeah, right, that's my comic book hero persona talkin'), so I am always buyin' tons of Glam Metal CD's, as I must eat 'em all day, everyday...

So, wake up people, Glamrockerarchie is not far off. There are actually stores that are charging $16.99 to $22.99,sometimes more, for new major releases. Hello, Barnes and Noble. I think the point he's tryin' to make is this is what the Record Companies and the Retailers think they can get and it's stupid because look at their ever shrinking CD sections.

And what about dummies like Axl doing an exclusive at Bestbuy and then Chinese Democracy is a kind of a dud P.R. wise when it coulda had maybe even Katie Couric talkin' about it's release once it hit the stores. Instead it was like a tree fallin' in an unpopulated forest.

But I digress. Arch is right. They should keep it cheaper. Hell, DVD's are a helluva lot cheaper over all in theez rip-off joints.

Then again, Glamrockerarch, Blaine and Xandra make good points. Just look around a little and you'll find deals. But the rarer, original, first press, out of print stuff, which are the real gems (I'll list 'em for ya here, brace yourselves) cost big bux, way upwards of $25 unless you get lucky.

As far as what Al is talkin' about...

Geeez, what a sorry state of affairs we're in. I've been cryin' here and in private over the sad period we're in. We have all these great new bands out there like Crash Diet, Vains of Jenna, Miss Crazy, Dirty Penny, Hansel, Dynazty (thanks, Xandra!), 77, Gunfire 76, Loud n' Nasty, Charm City Devils, Them Crooked Vultures, etc., etc., and no one has ever heard of 'em over here.

What we, er, rather, they get is Daughtry, Nickelback and all that other unrock sh*t out there.

Or the so called "Legacy" acts, as Al points out, the only legit one being AC/DC.

And Kenny O's absolutely right, U2 frickin' suxx!

What a shame Zep won't tour (Robert Plant suxx, too, for wimpin' out!) because that would have really boosted the whole Hard Rock scene and thus, Glam Metal scene, way up.

And Al might very well be right... Once AC/DC and Aerosmith call it quits that could be it. Then again, where's the next Buckcherry? Or the next Darkness? We need one of our heroes to catch on!

Meanwhile a taste of the Glam Metal out-of-print rarities that are fetchin' the big bux these days, if they're in very good to mint condition, that are absolutely worth every penny. Of course, you can probably just cheat and get most of this stuff out there in cyberland...

Wildside, RoughHouse, Cold Sweat, Le Mans, Joker, Beau Nasty, Johnny Crash (A Nikki Sixx fave), Cry Wolf, Lion, Kick Axe, Paradise, Lancia, Casanova, Sargant Fury, Julliet, Leatherwolf, Saraya, Blonz, Tangier, BB Steal, Alien, Shok Paris, Pantera (1st 3 albums with the Original line up), Steeler (US), Steeler (Germany), Icon, Jillson, American Angel, Great King Rat, Southgang, Valentine, Unruly Child, Sweet F.A., Love/Hate, Four Horsemen, Rock City Angels, Law & Order, Saints & Sinners, Vamp, Shotgun Messiah, Hot boy, Dirty Blonde, Jeruselem Slim, McAuley Schenker, Brighton Rock, Bronz, Razormaid, Slik Toxik, Jet Red, Sven Gali, McQueen Street, Life Sex & Death, Tigertailz, Bad Moon Rising, Tokyo Blade, Gypsy Rose, Jagged Edge U.K., Anthem, EZO, Bangalore Choir, Nitro, WWIII, etc., etc...

But you might be able to randomly find some of theez by fluke in Amoeba like Blaine sez, in L.A. or San Francisco since they are such clearing houses for collections that could randomly contain originals such as theez totally randomly. i've been havin' a lot of luck in awesome indy strip mall places like Rock'n'Roll Heaven in Orlando. I even found a promo only pink vinyl 45 with pic sleeve, of Vinnie Vincent Invasion's "The Boys Are Gonna Rock"...

Most likely, tho, you'll have to face the music (pun semi-intended) on Ebay, Amazon and Gemm among others, particularly one I found where you can pretty much find anything you can imagine... Musicstack!!!

So, alas, all of this stuff goes pretty much under special edition in the sense that if it's a reissue, it's Japanese, which is naturally expensive or it's rare and out-of-print.

Good luck and happy hunting!

Come on Rock'n'Roll People! People, let's Rock'n'Roll!
February 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
U2 had two good songs thats it. True the state of arena rock is not looking good in the next 10 or so yrs. I can testify to rare cds being insanely pricey. In FYE I saw a british copy of Paranoid for 35 bucks and right behind it was an american copy for 5 bucks. so yeah they can be crazy expensive. I guess jonas bro could sell out a stadium but i don't see them as anything other than a disney robot band. NOw i will say it seems that rap is not what it used to be and this synth pop isn't filling the gap massivly so maybe there is a chance these bands may start to get more and more attention. Hope so and come on! Judas Priest could beat ac/dc for legitness and so could Heaven and Hell.
March 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShadow
well i hate to tell you folks but new tesla is 25.99 here last firehouse same last dio dollar more and newest scorpions 21.99 newest saxon 28.99 and stuff like winter rose was 39.99 so i guess where you guys live is much cheaper but here unless its top 40 its top buck
March 1, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
by the way walmart here does not carry anything that isnt a main artist the farthest they venture off is the new foreigner you cant get dick all in terms of bands like ratt cinderella warrant danger danger etc. sorry but im not in hollywood and dont order off the net i dont trust it we have a sunrise records and an hmv to chose from
March 1, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
Only the Shadow Knows, but I'm not sure about this one, bro.

Judas Priest and Heaven & Hell more legit than AC/DC?

'Xcuse me, but isn't Heaven & Hell the Mark II version of Black Sabbath? Granted, the Black Sabbath album, "Heaven & Hell" is a classic, but are they more legit than AC/DC?

AC/DC are currently in their Mark II line-up, but that is a line-up that was caused by the death of the original lead singer, Bon Scott. Certainly Brian Johnson, his replacement, has earned his stripes and rightful position as lead singer when you look at his body of work from the ultra-classic "Back In Black" album to their latest magnum opus, "Black Ice".

AC/DC may owe some of their sound to Judas Priest and Black Sabbath but not really the Mark II version of the latter. They also owe a lot of their sound to Punk Rock (believe it or not, beyond just the look of Angus' schoolboy get-up, you hear elements of that movement on all of their Bon Scott fronted albums) as well as the Stones, Zeppelin, Montrose, Brownsville Station, Grand Funk and the like.

Thing is, they have dominated the Hard Rock and Metal World for nearly 30 years, outselling Priest and Sabbath combined. Not that this fact makes 'em more "legit" than those two acts.

What makes them just as legit, or I contend more legit than Heaven and Hell, and just as legit as Judas Priest (though they lost their original drummer to his legal troubles), is the fact that their contribution musically and image-wise to the Hard Rock and Metal scene is irrefutable.

They have influenced many of our faves like Kix, Accept, The Cult, Shotgun Messiah, Tuff, Circus of Power, Four Horsemen, Rhino Bucket, Motley Crue, Ratt, Cinderella, Poison, Hericane Alice, Wildside, Scorpions, Pretty Boy Floyd, Quiet Riot, Guns'n'Roses, Def Leppard, Great White, Cold Sweat, RoughHouse, Bulletboys, L.A.Guns, Faster Pussycat, Dirty Looks, Love/Hate, Rock City Angels, Roxx Gang, Shy, Vain, Jetboy, Le Mans, Krokus, Cherry Street, Johnny Crash, D'Priest, London, Britny Fox, Spread Eagle, Twisted Sister, Skid Row, The Almighty, The Front, Lion, Dirty Blonde, Kingdom Come, Junkyard, Dokken, Bang Tango, Zodiac Mindwarp, Danzig, Steve Jones (later on), Iggy Pop (later on), The Scream, Smashed Gladys, Gypsy Rose, Sweet F.A., Blonz, both Steelers (US and German), Icon, Babylon A.D., Skin, TNT, Cheap Trick (by "Dream Police" onward, most certainly musically and image-wise, Nielsen's "Satch" persona certainly aped, to a degree, Angus' schoolboy), Y&T, Saxon, Keel, Helix, Life Sex & Death, Brighton Rock, Wendy O. Williams/Plasmatics, Bangalore Choir, Sven Gali, Blackfish, Jeruselem Slim, Billy Idol, Silent Rage, 220 Volt, Hurricane, WW III, I, Napoleon, Kik Tracee, Kane Roberts, Heavy Pettin', Faith No More, Rollins Band, War Babies, Dirty White Boy, Bang Gang, Royal Court of China, The Angels, Trouble, Shooting Gallery, Cats in Boots, Law & Order, T.T. Quick, Riot, Bad Moon Rising, etc., etc... (let me know who I forgot!)...

Granted you can hear traces of Zep, Sabbath and Priest in the music of many of these bands but I would claim AC/DC to be the dominant influence.

And we can even hear the influence of AC/DC in the music of recent phenoms like Buckcherry, the Darkness, Velvet Revolver and Jet, let alone many of our new upstart faves such as Charm City Devils, jokesters Steel Panther and Big C*ck (I heard they are on hiatus), Gunfire 76, Mad Margritt, Million Dollar Reload, Babylon Bombs, Airbourne, Dynazty, Lynam, Wolfmother, 77, Bullet, Wildstreet, Miss Crazy, Skillet, The Answer, Wig Wam, Crazy Lixx, Hot Leg, Vains of Jenna, Crash Diet, Volbeat, Stone Gods, Sideburn, Towers of London, et al...

And back to the core of our little discussion (most likely with myself, at this point, unfortunately, as people tend to forget about the older threads)...

...Hell, I would even contend Judas Priest's "Livin' After Midnight" was influenced by AC/DC.

Besides, this wasn't about "legit" in our world, this was about "legit" as far as being the most true to Rock'n'Roll, looking at the list of the top money makers Al posted here.

For me, pound for pound, AC/DC outrocks U2 and Springsteen, I saw Springsteen 5 times and managed to avoid U2 completely and hopefully will be lucky enough to go to my grave never having seen them.

Springsteen's all right if you go for that sort of thing but has been guilty of putting out too many pop records, not even good ones...if I hear "Glory Days" one more time, I'll seriously contemplate leaping from the upper deck of a U2 stadium show (I know, what you're thinking, Metalboy! can threaten such action because he can fly, right?)...

p.s. Glamrockerarchie! Here I am, sir! Metalboy! to the rescue, hahaha!!! (echo!... echo!...) I've ordered tons off the net, probably about 12K in just the last two years alone (total illness, I know, believe me, it's made me broke, having recently sold one of my vintage cars, a near mint '69 Chrysler 300 Convertible, to support my habit) and I've only gotten stiffed twice, which was worth it, considering all the gems I've been able to snag. Where the hell do ya live (generally), anyway, Arch?
March 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
metalboy i live in canada about10min niagara falls ontario and about an hr from toronto we will have to find a way to exchange emails
March 2, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
metalboy if you ever go on winmx go into metal massacre chat room good room for music trading and discussions and we can switch info there
March 2, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
Cool, GlamrArch.

I'll go check out WINMX and the Metal Massacre Chat Room. I used to go to Toronto to make TV commercials a lot and always bought tons of stuff at HMV and Tower (boo-hoo, no more!), as well as some pretty cool indy stores.

This was from 1996 to 2001. I used to stay at the old Four Seasons (the so cool original that's now been knocked down, I hear). My record was 18 days straight. What a life.

And what great selection they had in the stores up there, and I presume HMV still duz, to a degree, which probably explains some of the cool recent scores you have mentioned.

I don't think I saved that much as prices were hiked up to match American prices, but on some stuff I definitely did, particularly Japanese Imports.

In fact, Toronto is where I picked up Japanese Imports of the entire Black Sabbath catalogue, including my favorite, the much maligned, but actually quite outstanding "Technical Ecstasy" album.

As far as what you're going through with theez whack prices you're faced with up there, I'm going to fathom a guess that you're payin' more cuz of import taxes and maybe the exchange rate being weird theez dayz.
March 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
actually metalboy are dollars are almost even and at times we have been higher funny to hear you been to toronto i used to to those stores quite frequently too but i just cant justify spending that kind of money anymore
March 3, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
Seriously, Glamrarch, I have gotten killer dealz and gotten just about everything there is to get, around 90+% of all Glam Metal, or Hard Rock/AOR (no shred) circa 1980 - 1993 (with some '94), including a lot of Swedish and German stuff from that era, plus rare promos, demos and indies at this point, the latter two just about my total focus now, all off the web.

Don't be afraid, bro.

Amazon (gotten some great deals there), Ebay (usually overpay, but I get what I want) Gemm, as well as and Musicstack, are all incredible, the latter two being the most excellent sources for just about anything you can imagine.

I have found such incredible obscurities there. It took my about two years and big $$$, but it was worth every well researched minute.

Dude, stuff that's been long gone from the stores is all out there on the web. It can be expensive but, like I've said, you can find deals. But it's a game well worth playing.

All you have to do is say to yourselves, "I want every Glam/Hair Metal/AOR/Hard Rock Band or Artist in existence from '80 to '93 and go about getting it. I've got one playlist with 360 songs and a little over 24 hours long, which represents just about everything from that era.

Though, I did get a lot of the stuff back in the day, thinking I pretty much had it all, I soon realized, with the advent of the internet, I had only scratched the surface.

Thanx to researching the web, like this incredible site by Allyson, which I stumbled on about a year and a half ago, with all her great, and everyone on here's (including you, Arch) recommendations and Heavy Metal Harmonies, Sleaze Roxx, Sleaze Grinder and Wikipedia),I've pretty much discovered or rediscovered it all...

...with the exception of Ultra Rare Indies or Demos from L.A. unsigned acts, which I still need a lot more of, it's pretty much all on that Playlist, which I call "Heavy Roxx".

Of course, everytime I think I've got it all sussed, one of you like Arch here, mentions an act I either forgot or have never heard of and away we go again...

Thanx all, and...

Happy hunting, kidz, now you know, if you didn't already... I actually bet some of you are pretty close or are even a little closer to having an exhaustively researched collection yourselves.

Bon Appetit (le Destruction)!
March 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
yeah metalboy back in the late 80s early 90s i was buyin almost everything that came out so i also thought bands like junkyard, tnt, beau nasty, heavy pettin, shy, blotto, killer dwarfs,krokus, aldo nova, hanover, mad max, coney hatch you get the pic i have tons of cassetes lots of vinyl and some cool picture d viscs and some live bootlegs it was a lot easier then no responsibilities and man thint sure opened up how much of music we were really missing around the world so much out there lol
March 4, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
ps metalboy room is up on mx come check it out and say hey it was down for a couple days
March 4, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterglamrockerarchie
I thank for the information, now I will know.
June 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFake Psychic
glamrockerarchie - you really need a life
August 24, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersteve
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February 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterUnceptelp
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