Who says these are troubled times?! But seriously, these guys work hard, people love them, and they’re famous, right? Props to them. Let’s see who busted through to the top 5 in 2010.
5 Kenny Chesney ($50 million)
Country fans are some pretty die-hard fans and evidently there are a lot of them because Kenny Chesney made bank in 2010. His 2009 tour brought in about $1.6 million a night – a NIGHT. The whole tour grossed $71 million and he left his country competitors in the dust. He’s also got Corona and Mastercard sponsorships so tour or no tour, this guy is going OK. Does it make you want to listen to country music? You don’t have to answer that.
4 Jay-Z ($63 million)
He’s a rapper, a mogul, a husband to Beyonce, daddy to baby Blue, and buddy of the president. Basically, he’s the man, and his earnings show it. He had a new album, his 40/40 nightclubs, the New Jersey nets basketball team, a Broadway show, and his gigantic Blueprint 3 tour. The shows got over $1 million a night – not too bad, but his wife still out-earned him. She’s Beyonce – she’s worth it.
3 Bruce Springsteen ($70 million)
No wonder Obama wanted this guy to play for him at the end of his campaign. He is The Boss, and he is pretty awesome, so there’s that too. The New Jersey icon sold more than two million tickets on his tour that year making it the third highest grossing tour in the world. He’s also on the radio constantly and how many times do you hear his songs in movies or shows? Tons. That’s why he’s a gazillionaire. He deserves it.
2 AC/DC ($114 million)
Have you seen the Family Guy episode where Peter and Lois go to a KISS concert and everyone is totally obsessed with the band still? That must be what went on with AC/DC in 2010 because these guys are definitely not sitting around in a Florida retirement home drinking Ovaltine and complaining about their sciatica. Forbes says they grossed “a staggering $226 million” on their world tour that had 99 stops and averaged a cool $2 million per night. Maybe they’re not wearing shorts and suspenders anymore, but they’re still packing the house.
1 U2 ($130 million)
These Irish do-gooders made it two years in a row – they were on the Forbes 2011 list as well – at #1. They’ve been around a long time so if you’re consistently good your fan base can only grow right? Forbes calls them “the world’s biggest rock band.” Can you imagine? That’s pretty intense. Their world tour that year brought in about $311 million at the box office, not to mention the fact that they’re on the radio constantly, they sell merchandise all over the universe, and thy probably got a lot better deals than musicians back in the day got – back then they were usually screwed out of royalties and things. These guys are in good shape.