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Journal of the Music & Entertainment Industry Educators Association

Volume 10, Number 1 (2010)

The Impact of Late Night Television Musical Performances on the Sale of Recorded Music

Terry Tompkins
Drexel University


Study focuses on how record sales respond to live performances on network television programs. It will examine every live musical television performance that took place on eight network television programs from September 2008 through May 2009. The 700+ network televised musical performances included in this study feature artists in five categories: Rock, R&B, Pop, Rap and County. The eight featured network television programs are Late Night with Conan O’Brien, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Last Call with Carson Daly, Saturday Night Live, The Late Show with David Letterman, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and Jimmy Kimmel Live!

Live musical performances will be correlated with Nielsen SoundScan album sales for the week prior, week during, week after and two weeks after the artist’s live television performance. The study will then assess various factors to evaluate the impact of artists’ performances on their sales achievements, including: genre and status of the artist, television program/host, television network, day of performance, time of performance and album release date. Author attempts to formalize any anecdotal evidence of such correlation with study findings. A regression analysis will assist in demonstrating various sales benchmarks.    

Keywords: late night television, televised music performances, Nielsen Soundscan, record sales, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Carson Daly, Saturday Night Live, Craig Ferguson, Jimmy Kimmel

Tompkins, Terry. “The Impact of Late Night Television Musical Performances on the Sale of Recorded Music.” Journal of the Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association 10, no. 1 (2010): 39-58. https://doi.org/10.25101/10.2

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