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Britney Spears tops Forbes' highest-earning women in music

December 12, 2012|By Randy Lewis
  • Britney Spears tops Forbes' ranking of highest-earning women in music.
Britney Spears tops Forbes' ranking of highest-earning women in… (Vince Bucci / AP Photo )

Forbes has just issued its annual ranking of the highest-earning women in music, and heading the list is Britney Spears, whose $58 million from May 2011 through May 2012 outranked all others. It is, however, about 30% less than the $90 million that Lady Gaga earned the previous year to top the magazine’s 2011 roster.

Spears generated most of her $58 million from her “Femme Fatale” concert tour and album, along with additional revenue from her Elizabeth Arden fragrance line and other product endorsements.

Spears barely edged out Taylor Swift, at No. 2 with $57 million, which doesn’t include her blockbuster “Red” album released in October. Swift was still on her “Speak Now” tour during the ranking period and also benefited from deals with CoverGirl and Sony, Forbes reported.

Rihanna came in third at $53 million, followed by Lady Gaga at $52 million and Katy Perry at $45 million. Rounding out Forbes’ top 10 are Beyonce ($40 million), Adele ($35 million), Sade ($33 million), Madonna ($30 million) and Shakira ($20 million).

Forbes bases its calculations on figures from Pollstar, the concert industry-tracking publication, the Recording Industry Assn. of America, and interviews with managers, lawyers and concert promoters. Gross income figures come from record and concert ticket sales, merchandise sales, product endorsements and other business ventures.


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Follow Randy Lewis on Twitter: @RandyLewis2 


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