The number crunchers over at Forbes have put together their list of hip hop’s most cashed-up characters, dubbed Cash Kings 2013: The World’s 20 Highest-Paid Hip-Hop Artists – and it’s full of surprises.
Forbes had their work cut out for them this year, assessing the multiple finance streams hip hop moguls often have but they’ve but managed to wade through all the alcohol endorsements, fashion labels, TV deals, headphone brands and – oh, yeah! – music sales to determine who is really as rich as they claim they are.
Judging from the figures produced by the musicians over the past 12 months, there’s something of a triumvirate forming between P. Diddy who won with $50 million, Jay-Z who came a close second with $43 Million and Dr. Dre, $40 million. These three stand head and shoulders above the remaining 17 artists.
Coming in at number 4 is Nicki Minaj, marking a milestone for this list as the first female rapper to ever be included. Raking in $29 million, Minaj falls a fair bit short of being included in the power trio at the head of the list. For now.
Kanye West isn’t going to be too pleased with his placing, placing after Birdman (and, seriously, who the fuck is Birdman?!) and despite being in the game for, like, ever, Ludacris came in with a lousy $9 million. Looks like he’ll be sticking around until Fast And The Furious 16 then.
Eminem had a surprisingly slow year, making just $10 million – mind you, he’d done SFA until last month. On the other hand, rising star Kendrick Lamar has done just about everything, racing up the list but still only pulling a lousy $9 million.
Despite featuring in just about every song released in the past 12 months, Pharrell Williams must be working with some pretty tight contracts, earning just $9 million also. 50 Cent is well on his way out, laying claim to $7 million. I mean, you could probably only by 5 Ferrari’s with that, pfft.
Perhaps the most interesting finalist is Tech N9ne who, despite being totally independent and underground, managed to earn a cheeky $7.5 mill over 12 months, no doubt helped by the merchandise and touring companies he owns.
Several big name artists only just missed out on making the list including Nas, Timbaland, Akon, 2 Chainz, J. Cole and A$AP Rocky. So when you hear a song from them talking about smashing bottles of Chandon, or living the life, they’re probably bullshitting you. Just saying.
Cash Kings 2013: The World’s 20 Highest-Paid Hip-Hop Artists – The Top 10
dr dre 050410
And the rest…
11. Drake ($10.5 million)
12. Snoop Lion ($10 million, tie)
12. Eminem ($10 million, tie)
14. Kendrick Lamar ($9 million, tie)
14. Pharrell Williams ($9 million, tie)
14. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis ($9 million, tie)
17. Swizz Beatz ($8.5 million)
18. Tech N9ne ($7.5 million)
19. 50 Cent ($7 million)
20. Lil Jon ($6 million, tie)
20. Rick Ross ($6 million, tie)
20. Mac Miller ($6 million, tie)
20. Young Jeezy ($6 million, tie)
20. Questlove ($6 million, tie)