Each year POLLSTAR invites a cross section of international music business professionals to make the nominations for The Pollstar Concert Industry Awards. The awards honor artists, management, talent buyers, venues, support services and more for their professionalism, achievements and abilities. Winners are determined by votes from the international readership of POLLSTAR.
The Pollstar Concert Industry Awards winners were first announced in 1984 while the official Awards presentations began in 1990 at New York City's prestigious Radio City Music Hall. Historic moments and memorable locations followed as future events were held at such notable landmarks as The Wiltern LG, House of Blues, Universal Amphitheatre and Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles, as well as the Theatre at Madison Square Garden in New York City, the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood and the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles. The Pollstar Concert Industry Awards have featured a variety of celebrity guest hosts from Bobcat Goldthwait, Joe Piscopo, Elayne Boosler and Father Guido Sarducci to the Firesign Theater, Richard Jeni, Kevin Nealon, Lewis Black, Lisa Lampanelli, The Smothers Brothers, Jeff Garcia, Kathleen Madigan, Chris Hardwick and Michael McDonald.
In the twenty seven year history of the Awards the categories have grown from ten to more than thirty. Awards have ranged from Innovation of the Year (1988 - The Benefit Concert Telethon) and Trend of the Year (1987 - Direct Talent Buying by Venues) to Best Small Outdoor Venue (renamed the Red Rocks Award in 2001 in recognition of the Colorado venue's multiple awards) and Most Creative Stage Production (2011 - Roger Waters' The Wall).
In 2015, Pollstar introduced the Pollstar Honors Lifetime Achievement Award. Presented to people who have dedicated their career to the concert industry, the first recipient was Barbara "Mother" Hubbard during Pollstar Live! 2015 in Nashville. Fred Bohlander and Dan Weiner, founders of Monterey Peninsula Artists, were jointly awarded the Pollstar Honors Lifetime Achievement Award on February 12, 2016 during Pollstar Live! 2016 in San Francisco. The Pollstar Honors Awards was presented to Live Nation's Don Law in Los Angeles during Pollstar Live! 2017.
Numerous categories continue to represent the full spectrum of the concert industry, including Major Tour of The Year, Best New Artist Tour, Talent Buyer of The Year, Personal Manager of The Year and the Bill Graham Award for Promoter of The Year which honors the memory of the legendary promoter who revolutionized the concert industry. The Bobby Brooks Award for Agent of the Year honors the CAA agent who lost his life in the same 1990 helicopter crash that claimed the life of Stevie Ray Vaughan.
Celebrities who have presented - or accepted - awards have included: Paul McCartney, Joe Walsh and Timothy B Schmit, Prince, U2, Dave Matthews, Van Halen, Donny Osmond and Sharon Osbourne, Steve Ferrone and Taylor Dayne, Carrot Top, David Cassidy and Esteban, Roni Benise, Wayne Newton and Ted Nugent, Alice Cooper, Peter Frampton, Carlos Mencia, Weird Al, Blue Man Group, Good Charlotte, Styx, David Hasselhoff, Chuck Negron, Colin Hay, Fee Waybill and Joey Molland, Spencer Davis, Bonnie Pointer and Yngwie Malmsteen, Sweet, Taylor Swift and David Coverdale, Mary Wilson and Bernie Williams, Toto and many more.
Pollstar wishes to again congratulate all the nominees and winners from past years to the present and future. With focus and diligence we're certain you will continue to make a difference in the next twenty five years as the industry evolves.