Setlist History: Britney Spears Kicks Off Dream Within Dream Tour

On November 1, 2001, Britney Jean Spears was embarking on her fourth tour to support her third album. She was a month away from turning 20.

The global success of ...Baby One More Time and Oops!... I Did It Again racked up 37 million in album sales making her the best selling solo teenage artist of all time.

But she was about to have her first setback with her 2001 release, Britney.

After touring to support her first few albums, Britney's team decided it was time to stop touring with Clear Channel, who owned about 10% of the US radio stations after their billionaire owner went on a buying spree after Congress passed the 1996 Telecommunication Act which allowed media companies to own as many outlets as they wanted.

Previously a radio station owner, for example, could only own 40 around the nation. By 2001, Clear Channel (which now goes by the name iHeart) owned over 1,200.

"I'm A Slave 4 U" at the 2001 MTV VMAs

What could go wrong? Well one thing that could happen is, let's say you would rather not have a touring partner that owns radio stations, and instead you want to work with someone like AEG's Concerts West who owns arenas you might play in, Clear Channel might get a little bent out of shape.

They might decide not to play your new song, "I'm A Slave 4 U" as much as they played your previous hits.

Britney's Dream Within A Dream Tour poster

That's what California Congressman Howard Berman alleged when he asked the Department of Justice to investigate the media giant.

Despite all the media attention and commotion surrounding her now-iconic performance of "...Slave 4 U" at the MTV VMAs that September, the lead single from the album was the first time Spears didn't chart a US Top 20 tune.

"Boys," written and produced by the Neptunes, became a dance staple in Britney's shows.

None of her six singles off Britney broke the Top 20 in the states, not "I'm Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman," nor her cover of "I Love Rock 'n' Roll" and not even "Boys" which she live debuted during her tour kickoff in Ohio.

The songs did top the charts around the world where Clear Channel was not as powerful, curiously.

The tour, however, was always meant to be epic and made-for-TV.

The gameplan of the tour was to get a couple of weeks of shows under her belt and then do a two-night stand at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Both nights would be filmed.

The second night would be broadcast live on HBO. Two months later the Britney Spears Live from Las Vegas DVD was released compiling the best performances from each night.

Who needed radio support when HBO and MTV were supporting Britney, the tour, and the live DVD that would go double platinum in the US?

The sixteen-song set began with Britney tied to a rotating wheel where she spent a little bit of time singing "Oops! ... I Did It Again" upside down. And it ended beneath a water curtain that soaked the teen queen and her writing dancers two stories above the crowd for the encore, "...Baby One More Time."

The tour had 68 stops. Britney donated $1 per ticket to the mourning children of the slain firefighters and first responders of the 9/11 attacks. The tour sold 1 million tickets around the world.

Britney is taking a break from touring for a little while. But you may have heard she has written a tell-all memoirThe Woman In Me.

The Simon and Schuster website has many options where you can pick up the hot selling book.

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Last updated: 23 May 2024, 19:23 Etc/UTC