Music News & Reviews

Sacramento’s Golden 1 Center had a huge concert year – 15th busiest in the nation

When it comes to concerts, Golden 1 Center seems to be exceeding expectations.

With more than 473,000 tickets sold, Sacramento’s downtown arena was the 15th-busiest concert venue in the United States in 2017, according to concert trade publication Pollstar. The venue ranked 35th in the world.

That placed Golden 1 Center ahead of arenas in larger markets, including Atlanta, Boston, Denver, Houston and Seattle. Golden 1 Center ranked just behind the SAP Center in San Jose and six spots behind Oracle Arena in Oakland in the world rankings.

“The world’s biggest acts have a new stage to call home,” Sacramento Kings owner and Chairman Vivek Ranadive said in a written statement. “Golden 1 Center is a must-play for artists of every genre, creating an epicenter of entertainment for the city of Sacramento and Northern California.”

Ten of last year’s 20 best-selling acts in the world have performed at Golden 1 Center since it opened in October 2016, including Guns N’ Roses, Bruno Mars and Ed Sheeran.

The Kings said the arena hosted over 350 events during its first year, including 42 concerts. Those events brought 1.6 million visitors downtown, the team said.

The Pollstar rankings actually had Golden 1 Center one position higher and ahead of Staples Center. But AEG Worldwide, which runs Staples Center, said Wednesday that it stopped reporting its concert ticket numbers in July to the concert publication and that Staples actually drew nearly 300,000 more concertgoers than Golden 1 Center.

The Kings on Tuesday announced some big names coming this year: James Taylor and his All Star Band, along with special guest Bonnie Raitt, will perform at Golden 1 Center on June 3.

Taylor and Raitt toured across the country last summer. Tickets for the Sacramento show go on sale at 10 a.m. Jan. 19 at and at, according to a Golden 1 Center news release.

Taylor has sold more than 100 million albums, has won multiple Grammy awards, and has been inducted into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

In 2012, Taylor was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama in a White House ceremony. In November 2015, Taylor was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.

Raitt is a 10-time Grammy winner, whom Rolling Stone named as both one of the 100 greatest singers and 100 greatest guitarists of all time.

Ryan Lillis: 916-321-1085, @Ryan_Lillis

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