Billboard has released their annual list of the Top 40 Money Makers and while Madonna and Bruce Springsteen topped the chart, each earning more than $30 million, country artists made up nearly half of the Top 20. The chart was compiled using a method that calculated a variety of income streams including touring, music sales, publishing royalties and revenue from digital music and video services.
Kenny Chesney was country’s highest earner, coming in at No. 5 with more than $19 million. Kenny’s Brothers of the Sun Tour with pal Tim McGraw grossed nearly $100 million and his non-touring revenue, including sales of 2012’s Welcome To The Fishbowl album, were estimated at nearly $3 million. Revenue streams from Kenny’s merchandise sales and sponsors aren’t included in Billboard’s Top 40 Money Makers figures.
Not far behind, Tim McGraw came in at No. 7, earning just over $18 million. Nearly all of Tim’s earnings came from concerts, including his tour with Kenny Chesney. Jason Aldean came in at No. 8 on the list, earning $17.5 million, propelled by a hugely successful My Kinda Party Tour and strong music sales.
Lady Antebellum checked in at No. 12, earning almost $13 million on solid album sales and a successful international tour. Brad Paisley followed at No. 14 with solid album sales and consistent touring helping him rake in $12.8 million. Taylor Swift came in at No. 15, sales of more than three million units of her Red album pushing her to a $12.6 million pay day. Carrie Underwood checked in at No. 16, strong album sales and her Blown Away Tour helping her earn nearly $12 million.
Rounding out the country artists represented in the Top 20 were Eric Church at No. 18 with earnings of $11 million and Rascal Flatts at No. 19 with a pay day of $10.7 million. Other country artists making the list include Toby Keith at No. 23, Miranda Lambert at No. 27, Zac Brown Band at No. 37 and Blake Shelton at No. 40.
To see a complete list of Billboard’s Top 40 Money Makers, click here.