Highest Paid Musicians List Topped By U2 and Metallica, Features Only 7 Women

NASHVILLE, TN - MAY 26: Bono of the rock band U2 performs at Bridgestone Arena on May 26, 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images)

Today, Billboard released its list of the highest paid musicians of 2017, which yielded results both surprising and unsurprising. You can decide which of those adjectives applies to the following fact: only 7 of the 50 are women. Lady Gaga was the sole female artist to make it into the Top 10 (#6). Taylor Swift–somewhat surprisingly, despite the fact that her Reputation tour didn’t begin until May of this year– was ranked at #48.

U2 scored the top spot on the list, thanks to the combined profits of their Joshua Tree 30th anniversary tour and their chart-topping Songs of Experience album of December, which was also included in ticket bundles for their 2018 tour. The second most staggering aging-rock-star achievement was Metallica‘s, who came in at #3. Despite landing behind Garth Brooks and Bono and the gang overall, the metal legends ranked at #1 in terms of recorded music royalties. They scored $8.7 million in sales and $2.2 million in streaming, despite not having released an album in 2017. The band were also busy with their WorldWired tour last year, which earned them an additional $30 million.

Another important fact to keep in mind: the Trans-Siberian Orchestra made more money than Drake in 2017. John Mayer is a crucial double-earner on this year’s list, since both the singer and guitarist’s Dead and Company, the Grateful Dead offshoot he fronts, and John Mayer as a solo artist landed in the high-to-mid 20s. Check out Billboard‘s full list here.

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