Queen’s Live Aid set beats Lady Gaga, Coldplay and Beyonce to ‘Most Popular Live Performance’ title

The band Queen, that is.

Queen at Live Aid

Image: Steve Rapport / Getty

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Queen‘s legendary set at Live Aid 1985 has been rated the most popular live performance of all time by a new study.

TicketSource compiled view counts and impressions from both YouTube and Google for the world’s biggest live performances and created a weighted score based on these figures.

Queen’s Live Aid set topped the table with more than double the score of the the second-placed performance, with a huge 136,901,330 YouTube views, 4,812,000 annual searches on YouTube and 1,427,500 annual searches on Google.

While the set that came second – Jennifer Lopez and Shakira’s 2020 Super Bowl performance – has more views on YouTube, it still scored lower overall thanks to its much smaller footprint in the search department.

The Live Aid Performance wasn’t the oldest to appear on the list, with The Beatles’ iconic Shea Stadium performance in 1965 taking that honour. The range of dates the performances came from varied hugely, with the 1960s, 1980s, 1990s, 2000s, 2010s and 2020s represented.

TicketSource’s head of marketing explained the timing of the study: “It’s been a really tough year without any live performances, and looking back at old videos or listening to live recordings is as close as we have gotten.

“It’s great to see so many amazing live shows in this list, and it’s even more exciting to see things starting to open up again so we can begin adding to the list.


“It’s incredible that The Beatles performance from 1965 is in the top 10 favourite performances in the world in 2021. It goes to show how powerful music can transcend generations.

“It’s also great to see so many performances from Live Aid on the list, which was an incredible cause and still relevant today. The research goes to show despite so much new music being created, we all still love our familiar favourites!”

The full rundown from TicketSource’s study can be seen below.

  1. Queen, Live Aid 1985
  2. Jennifer Lopez and Shakira, Super Bowl Halftime, 2020
  3. Lady Gaga, Super Bowl Halftime, 2017
  4. Coldplay, Beyonce and Bruno Mars, Super Bowl Halftime, 2016
  5. The Beatles, Shea Stadium 1965
  6. Michael Jackson, Super Bowl Halftime, 1993
  7. Nirvana, MTV Unplugged, 1994
  8. Prince, Super Bowl Halftime, 2007
  9. Katy Perry, Lenny Kravitz and Missy Elliott, Super Bowl Halftime, 2015
  10. Jimi Hendrix, Woodstock 1969

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