Forbes Names Garth Brooks Highest Paid Country Artist in Celebrity 100
Financial magazine Forbes has released its annual Celebrity 100, a list of the top-earning celebrities over the past year, and 10 of our own country artists made the cut. Garth Brooks comes in at No. 6 on the list, making him the top-paid country artist in the biz.
The list is made up of any and all celebrities on the planet — actors, athletes, radio personalities, musicians, you name it — so to earn a spot on the list is no small feat.
Earning $90 million over the last year, Brooks grabbed the No. 6 slot primarily due to his much anticipated return to the stage after a hiatus from performing. According to Forbes, the legend has been raking in more than $1 million at every stop, playing back-to-back shows in the same arena on the same night.
Not far behind with $80 million is Taylor Swift in the No. 8 slot (shared with actor Robert Downey, Jr.), who, though she has moved on to a more pop-centric musical style, is still selling out shows complete with the country songs that made her famous. Her album 1989 was the top-selling project of 2014 with more than 3.6 million copies sold, making her one of only three artists to earn a Platinum album last year.
Coming in at No. 47 is Jason Aldean, who earned $43.5 million. The country rocker impressed fans around the world this year, including tour dates in Sweden, Ireland and the U.K. Aldean also hopped on board as an owner of the new streaming service Tidal, alongside fellow top-earners Beyoncé and Jay Z.
Luke Bryan is just a hair behind with $42.5 million in the No. 48 slot, and it’s not just his hit singles from Crash My Party that got him there. His endorsements with brands like Cabela’s and Miller Lite have added significantly to his cash flow, as well as his wildly successful touring.
Beach lover and country vet Kenny Chesney took the 49th spot on the list, just a cool half million behind Bryan at $42 million. His fifteenth studio album, The Big Revival, was released in September 2014, and combined with its corresponding tour, his partnerships with Costa Del Mar and Corona and his very own Blue Chair Bay rum, Chesney has got it made in the shade.
Tim McGraw is an icon in country music, so it’s no surprise that he earned $38 million in the past year, putting him neck-and-neck with Foo Fighters for No. 58. He released his thirteenth album, scored a role in Disney’s Tomorrowland, and pulled in some major cash via his 48-show tour.
Compared to McGraw, they may be rookies, but Florida Georgia Line are not goofing around. The duo sits at No. 61 on the Forbes list, having earned $36.5 million this past year. Their mega-hits are inescapable, and their sophomore album brought with it a lucrative tour.
Zac Brown Band have grown steadily since their debut, and with their highly successful tour and release of their latest album, Jekyll + Hyde, they earned $32 million, tying with actor Mark Wahlberg for No. 78. Their single “Homegrown” was a No. 1 hit, not to mention the notoriety gained by performing on Saturday Night Live for the first time.
Adorably tying for No. 95, Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton both earned $28.5 million this year, meaning they are one of only three celebrity couples to both make the Celebrity 100. Lambert won several ACM Awards this year and had major success with her album Platinum, among several business ventures and endorsement deals. Shelton not only has had a successful music career over the last year, but serves as a regular judge on NBC’s The Voice.
Congratulations to all the country stars on making the cut!