Forbes released its highest paid celebrities list earlier this week, making us laypeople feel even less financially adequate than we do all other weeks of the year. Included on the coveted annual list were seven country music stars, proving once again that the genre has become one of the largest in music.
Leading the country music list is, unsurprisingly, the seven-time Diamond album certified Garth Brooks. Brooks sells out show after show, night after night, generating a profit that can’t be topped by another other country artist this year. According to Forbes, Brooks brought in $60 million last year. That income placed the legendary artist at No. 26 in the rankings.
Joining Brooks on the list of the 100 top paid celebrities are: Kenny Chesney (No. 53 with $42.5 million), Luke Bryan (No. 55 with $42 million), Dolly Parton (No. 71 at $37 million), Toby Keith (No. 83 at $34.5 million), Florida Georgia Line (No. 83 at $34.5 million), and Jason Aldean (No. 98 at $32.5 million).
It’s not just touring that is helping these artists rake in the big bucks. Yes, hitting the road for the majority of the year is a major source of monetary gain, but many of these guys have side projects that are incredibly fruitful.
Chesney works with Corona and Apple, while also having his own Blue Chair Rum. Bryan is endorsed by Miller Lite and Cabela’s. He also has a reality show, Buck Commander, on the Outdoor Channel. Parton has her very own theme park, Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. Florida Georgia Line has deals with Nitto Tires and Advance Auto Parts. Keith is a restaurant chain mogul who also works with Ford and Wild Shot Mezcal. And Aldean is able to rely on his music and touring to round out the Top 100 list.
Mamas, you may not want to let your babies grow up to be cowboys; but you may want to consider letting them sing about them!