Published Nov 30, 2016Whether it's some solid business dealings or some dividends from the Church of Satan, pop star Taylor Swift was the highest paid artist of 2016. All of this despite the fact that she never released any new music.
Swift released her 1989 album way back in 2014, but she still managed to rake in an impressive $170 million USD this year. This was confirmed by Forbes, who have just released their list of the top paid musicians in 2016.
That money clearly comes from royalties and touring income, not to mention endorsement deals with Apple, Diet Coke and Keds. Swift also wrote songs for Rihanna and Little Big Town, so she nabbed some cash that way too.
Swift was followed by One Direction, who raked in $110 million, and Adele, who brought in $80.5 million. Swift's ex Calvin Harris will apparently be able to pay his own bills too, as he's No. 9 on the list with a $63 million payday.
Somehow, despite their ever-fading relevance, U2 still manage to have a beautiful payday on an annual basis. This year, they took in a whopping $55 million. The Weeknd tied them with the same amount of earning, although he doesn't have to split it four ways like they do.
Despite a big year for Beyoncé, the Lemonade performer raked in a relatively smaller $54 million annual income (not that we'd turn down the money). Her hubby Jay Z also brought in $53.5 million — maybe he can splurge and buy another streaming service.
Check out the breakdown of the year's highest paid performers as per Forbes below.
1. Taylor Swift ($170 million)
2. One Direction ($110 million)
3. Adele ($80.5 million)
4. Madonna ($76.5 million)
5. Rihanna ($75 million)
6. Garth Brooks ($70 million)
7. AC/DC ($67.5 million)
8. Rolling Stones ($66.5 million)
9. Calvin Harris ($63 million)
10. Diddy ($62 million)
11. Bruce Springsteen ($60.5 million)
12. Paul McCartney ($56.5 million)
13. Justin Bieber ($56 million, tie)
14. Kenny Chesney ($56 million, tie)
15. U2 ($55 million, tie)
16. The Weeknd ($55 million, tie)
17. Beyoncé ($54 million)
18. Jay Z ($53.5 million)
19. Luke Bryan ($53 million)
20. Muse ($49 million)
Dive into her back catalogue via Umusic.