U2's most successful North America Tour

U2 had the most successful North American tour of 2009, according to music trade publication Pollstar.

The Irish band’s 360° stadium tour sold 1.3 million tickets in the US and Canada, worth $123m (£76.3m) overall.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band came second, with tour takings amounting to $94.5m (£58.6m).

U2’s tour is the fifth most successful ever held in North America. The Rolling Stones hold the record, for a 2005 tour that made $162m (£100.5m).

Pollstar’s annual list is based on data provided by concert promoters and venue managers.

U2 may have suffered disappointing sales for their new album, but the Irish rockers were easily the most popular draw on the North American concert circuit this year, according to data issued on Wednesday.

The band sold $123 million worth of tickets to its stadium tour, while Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band came in second with $94.5 million, said trade publication Pollstar.

Among all-time tours, the U2 trek ranks at No. 5, Pollstar said. The Rolling Stones hold the record with $162 million from their 2005 outing. U2’s 2005 tour is No. 3 on the all-time list with $138.9 million.

Pollstar editor Gary Bongiovanni said the overall concert business bucked the recession, mirroring a similar phenomenon at movie theaters. He said most people go to only one or two shows a year, and are willing to pay a premium for good seats.

U2 hit the road to promote its latest album, “No Line on the Horizon,” which failed to generate any hit singles and sold a relatively modest 1.06 million copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

Pollstar said the band played to 1.3 million people at 20 shows on the North American leg of its world tour, and charged an average of $93.77. The average price on the band’s 2003 tour, when it played 78 shows, was actually higher at $97.

Giant stage

U2 played 20 shows on the North American leg of their 2009 world tour, charging an average of $93.77 (£58) per ticket.

The tour featured a giant claw-like stage that offered largely unobstructed views of the veteran foursome.