Highest Paid Country Stars

*Urban wasn't ranked in 2011, and Sugarland wasn't ranked in 2010.


Forbes latest list of “Country Music’s Highest Paid Stars” was released this week, covering gross income earned between May 2010 to May 2011. Major revenue streams for most of the acts on the list includes sponsorships/endorsement deals, touring, publishing income and album sales.

For comparison, MusicRow looked back to the 2010 rankings. Most of the same stars are on both lists, though the graph above shows fluctuations in gross earnings. Ranking for the first time in 2011 is Sugarland.

Forbes reports, “We talked to agents, managers, publishers, lawyers and others in the know to come up with our estimates, which are gross earnings. We do not deduct for taxes or things like agent and manager fees.” See full story here.

2011 Highest Earners
1. Toby Keith $50 million
2. Taylor Swift $45 million
3. Brad Paisley $40 million
4. Tim McGraw $35 million
5. Rascal Flatts $34 million
6. Kenny Chesney $30 million
7. George Strait $24 million
8. Alan Jackson $22 million
9. Carrie Underwood $20 million
10. Sugarland $18 million

2010 Highest Earners
1. Kenny Chesney $50 million
2. Toby Keith $48 million
3. Taylor Swift $45 million
3. Rascal Flatts $45 million
5. Tim McGraw $30 million
6. Keith Urban $28 million
7. George Strait $25 million
8. Brad Paisley $22 million
9. Alan Jackson $15 million
10. Carrie Underwood $13 million


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Category: Artist, Featured, Sales/Marketing, Touring, Weekend

About the Author

Sarah Skates has worked in the music business for more than a decade and is a longtime contributor to MusicRow.

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