Classic Rock News

Classic Rock News

Classic Rock News

I’m always interested to find out the rockers who made the most money. I’m not trying to jump in their wallets, but it’s interesting to me. The “average” musician does what they do for the love of the craft. We all want money, but band pay (especially bar bands) can be less than adequate for living purposes.  They do it because they love it and hope the money follows.

A friend of mine recently took a trip to Nashville.  Every bar had a band playing live.  The band would send a member through the crowd asking for tips.  This terrified me because the thought crossed my mind, “Are these bars asking bands to work for tips?”

Even the bands who have made it all have stories of getting screwed over in deals.  Look what John Fogerty went through to get the rights back to his own songs!  Billy Squier wrote “The Stroke” because he was supremely frustrated with the record industry.  He felt he was writing great songs, but if the right people didn’t hear them and the right egos weren’t stroked, his music did not have a chance.  Billy Squier wasn’t wrong.

The money doesn’t just come from touring.  The last couple of years has seen a massive trend of artists selling their catalogs for BIG MONEY.  Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan both signed 300 million dollar deals for the rights to the songs.

According to Forbes, these are the highest-paid rock acts for last year… after taxes.

3 Rockers Who Made The Most Money in 2022

  • #3 - The Rolling Stones - 98 Million

    The Rolling Stones made their money the old-fashioned way… they toured.  Between their tour and record royalties, they grossed 136 million and netted 98 million in 2022.  The Stones played 15 cities on their tour, at an average revenue north of $8.5 million dollars PER SHOW.

    Rolling Stones: Charlie Watts, Ronnie Wood, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards


  • #2 Sting - 210 Million

    Sting sold his record catalog in 2022 for 300 million.  He sold his entire catalog, both solo and with The Police to Universal Music Group.  That should be him quite the trophy case for his 17 Grammy Awards.  In other news, Sean Combs continues to be pissed for never making a dime off of “I’ll Be Missing You.”


    Sting made a massive splash in February 2022 selling his entire catalog — both solo and his music with The Police — to Universal Music Publishing Group. While Universal did not disclose the price tag of this deal, ‘The New York Times’ reported the deal is worth at least $250 million or more.

  • #1 Genesis - 230 Million

    It was a banner year for Genesis.  They got a $300 million music rights sale to Concord Music Group in 2022.  Publishing rights and a selection of recorded music income streams from the group, as well as solo income streams from Phil Collins (including “In The Air Tonight”) and bandmates Tony Banks and Mike Rutherford. Throw their tour money and song royalties into that figure and it pops out at 230 million dollars.

    Mike Rutherford, Phil Collins and Tony Banks of Genesis

    In September 2022, ‘The Wall Street Journal’ reported the music rights for Phil Collins and Genesis, along with some of the music of Mike + the Mechanics, sold to Concord Music Group Inc. for a reported $300 million.


    You can see Forbes complete list of the top ten entertainers when you CLICK HERE.


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