They don’t call her the Material Girl for nothing. Madonna, at age 55, raked in $125 million last year — enough to put her atop a list of the highest-earning musicians on the planet according to the latest Forbes ranking.
And while Lady Gaga hasn’t always played nice with Madge, she has played well enough to sidle up next to her on the rankings, sliding into second place, with $80 million in the last year.
Madonna’s big moneymaking endeavors were thanks to her MDNA Tour, but she also has a steady stream of income from merchandise sales, a clothing line and her own fragrance. Lady Gaga also had a lucrative tour, even though an injury stopped her short. Forbes says that concerts serve as a musician’s main revenue stream and a successful ARTPOP album tour could vault the Lady past the Material Girl in 2014.
The rest of the top-five all filled arena seats too, with Bon Jovi ($79 million), Toby Keith ($65 million) and Coldplay ($64 million) bringing some diversity to the group.
Familiar pop-star names turn up among the second five, with Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift earning big bucks from album sales and tours. Elton John is still a money-making force — Beyonce is tied with Kenny Chesney for ninth.
In the 11 spot ($50 million), Sean “Diddy” Combs was the top hip-hop musician, based on endorsement deals. Jay-Z (No. 18, $42 million) and Dr. Dre (No. 20, $40 million) were the only other hip-hop stars to join Diddy in the top-50. With only three hip-hop names total it was impressive to see two DJs make the list, Calvin Harris (No. 13, $46 million) and Tiesto (No. 25, $32 million).
1. Madonna, $125 million
2. Lady Gaga, $80 million
3. Bon Jovi, $79 million
4. Toby Keith, $65 million
5. Coldplay, $64 million
6. Justin Bieber, $58 million
7. Taylor Swift, $55 million
8. Elton John, $54 million
9. Beyonce, $53 million
tie. Kenny Chesney, $53 million