Kanye West, Elton John, Ariana Grande, Jonas Brothers, Chainsmokers Named Highest-Earning Music Acts On Forbes Celebrity 100 List

The top four musical acts were in the Top 20 overall.

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West - Selfie via @kanyewest on Instagram

Forbes released its annual Celebrity 100 list, ranking the highest-paid entertainment, sports, literary and media celebrities based on pretax earnings from June 2019-May 2020. The list includes a variety of high-profile music names.

Kanye West, who earned $170 million in that period, claimed #1 among musicians — and #2 overall (below Kylie Jenner). The artist garnered a significant percentage of income from his deal with Adidas for the Yeezy brand. He also released new music and a “Sunday Service” series.

Elton John took second place among musicians (and #14 overall) with $81 million. He enjoyed a highly successful “Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour.”

Ariana Grande grabbed #3 among musicians (and #17 overall), courtesy of $72 million in earnings. Along with releasing more hits, she ran the successful “Sweetener Tour.”

The reunited Jonas Brothers have fared quite well in the past twelve months, earning #4 among musicians and #20 overall with $68.5 million. Like John and Grande, they scored big from their tour (“Happiness Begins”).

The Chainsmokers also benefited from a strong tour (“World War Joy”), taking #5 on among musicians and #21 overall with $68 million.

Other high-ranking musicians (or at least names with a big music component to their careers) were as follows:

6) Ed Sheeran – $64 million (#23 overall)
7) Taylor Swift – $63.5 million (#25 overall)
8) Post Malone – $60 million (#28 overall)
9) Rolling Stones – $59 million (#32 overall)
10) Marshmello – $56 million (#35 overall)
11) Shawn Mendes – $54.5 million (#39 overall)
12) Billie Eilish – $53 million (#43 overall)
13) BTS – $50 million (#47 overall)
14) Drake – $49 million (#49 overall, tie)
15) Jennifer Lopez – $47.5 million (#56 overall)

Written by Brian Cantor

Brian Cantor is the editor-in-chief for Headline Planet. He has been a leading reporter in the music, movie, television and sporting spaces since 2002.

Brian's reporting has been cited by major websites like BuzzFeed, Billboard, the New Yorker and The Fader -- and shared by celebrities like Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber and Nicki Minaj.

Contact Brian at brian.cantor[at]


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