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Bon Jovi tops Billboard's 2008 concert tally

December 11, 2008 | 11:06 am

Bon Jovi's refrain for 2008 could well be “have a nice payday,” as the veteran New Jersey rock band tops Billboard’s tally of the year’s most lucrative concert tours worldwide.

The group attracted nearly 2.2 million fans and grossed $210.6 million, according to Billboard’s Boxscore, outpacing their fellow Jerseyites, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, who raked in $204.5 million during the period covered by the magazine’s survey -- Nov. 14, 2007, through Nov. 11, 2008.

Madonna’s “Sticky and Sweet” tour, which is still going on, tallied $162 million during the period to place third, followed by the second leg of the Police’s reunion tour, which brought in $150 million. Céline Dion rounded out the Top 5, generating $91 million on her return to the concert trail after staying put in Las Vegas for the previous five years.

The rest of Billboard’s Top 10 includes Kenny Chesney ($86 million), Neil Diamond ($81.2 million), the Spice Girls ($70 million), the Eagles ($56.6 million) and Rascal Flatts ($55.8 million).

The Spice Girls logged almost half of their total for the year during their 17 sellout performances at London’s 02 Arena, which attracted 256,647 people and grossed $33.8 million. Dion’s 11 sold-out shows at Montreal’s Bell Centre last summer pulled in 246,000 people and $23.1 million.

Overall tour grosses globally came to more than $4 billion, a record that represents nearly a 13% increase over 2007.

-- Randy Lewis

Photo: Getty Images