Forbes Ranks the 25 Highest-Paid Musicians of 2013 [Complete List]

Patrick Lyons

by Patrick Lyons

Published November 20, 2013


Forbes has just released its annual list of the highest-paid musicians in the world. The list includes 26 names (as there are a few ties), and is topped by Madonna, who earned $125 million. The top three is rounded out by Lady Gaga ($80 million) and, somewhat surprisingly, Bon Jovi ($79 million).

According to Forbes, the list's criteria are as follows:

In order to form our list, we looked at income from June 1st, 2012 through June 1st, 2013, using data sources including Pollstar, the RIAA, Nielsen SoundScan, managers, lawyers and many of the artists themselves. We took into account concert ticket sales, royalties for recorded music and publishing, merchandise sales, endorsement deals and other business ventures. Our estimates reflect pretax income before deducting fees for agents, managers and lawyers; only living artists are eligible for the list.

Apparently, if not for that last bit of criteria, Michael Jackson would top the list with a yearly income of $160 million. Depressingly, this means that a dead MJ still earns more in one year than you'll ever make in your lifetime.

Check out Forbes' additional lists of 2013's highest-paid artists in hip-hop and electronic music, respectively, and view the complete list of the 25 highest-paid musicians of 2013 below.

No. 1: Madonna ($125 million)
No. 2: Lady Gaga ($80 million)
No. 3: Bon Jovi ($79 million)
No. 4: Toby Keith ($65 million)
No. 5: Coldplay ($64 million)
No. 6: Justin Bieber ($58 million)
No. 7: Taylor Swift ($55 million)
No. 8: Elton John ($54 million)
No. 9: Beyoncé ($53 million, tie)
No. 9: Kenny Chesney ($53 million, tie)
No. 11: Diddy ($50 million)
No. 12: Paul McCartney ($47 million)
No. 13: Calvin Harris ($46 million)
No. 14: Jennifer Lopez ($45 million)
No. 15: Roger Waters ($44 million)
No. 16: Muse ($43 million, tie)
No. 16: Rihanna ($43 million, tie)
No. 18: Jay Z ($42 million, tie)
No. 18: One Direction ($42 million, tie)
No. 20: Dr. Dre ($40 million, tie)
No. 21: Rolling Stones ($39 million, tie)
No. 22: Red Hot Chili Peppers ($40 million, tie)
No. 22: Katy Perry ($39 million, tie)
No. 24: Tim McGraw ($33 million, tie)
No. 25: Pink ($32 million, tie)
No. 25. Tiësto ($32 million, tie)

Source: Forbes

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